THE ACTS AND MONUMENTS OF THE CHRISTIAN CHURCH
Commonly known as
FOXE'S BOOK OF MARTYRS
The Reign of Queen Mary I. - Part IV.
Published by the Ex-classics Project, 2010
329. Thomas Whittle, Bartlet Green, John Tudson, John Went, Thomas Browne; Isabel Foster, and Joan Warne, alias Lashford.
The story of seven martyrs suffering together at London, for the testimony of Christ's gospel. January 27, Anno 1556.
THE catholic prelates of the pope's band, being as yet not satisfied with this their one year's bloody murdering of the reverend, learned, and principal members of Christ's church, (whereof there were now very few which either were not consumed by most cruel fire, or else, for the avoiding of their popish rage, compelled to fly their natural country,) continued still this next year also, which was anno 1556, in no less cruelty towards the poor, simple, and inferior sort of people, (I mean in degree, though, God be praised, not in stedfastness,) having yet sometimes amongst them such as were both learned and of good estimation, as in continuance of this story shall appear. Wherefore, as the first fruits thereof, to begin this year withal, about the twenty-seventh day of January were burned in Smithfield at London these seven persons hereafter following, to wit: Thomas Whittle, priest; Bartlet Green, gentleman; John Tudson, artificer; John Went, artificer; Thomas Browne; Isabel Foster, wife; Joan Warne, alias Lashford, maid.
All which seven, as they were burned together in one fire, so were they likewise all upon one sort and form of articles condemned in one day. Howbeit, forasmuch as the gifts of God in them were diverse, (some more abounding in knowledge than others,) their dealings withal were also diverse, as shall be more plainly perceived in the discoursing of their several processes hereafter following. And therefore for the better understanding hereof, I will first, (by the leave of the Lord,) passing over their private articles and examinations had at sundry times in the bishop's house, set forth their general examinations in the public consistory, upon the bishop's articles there ministered unto them; with their answers also unto the same, according as they all agreed after one manner and sort together, as here by the words both of the articles, and their answers underwritten, may appear.
The form and words of Bonner's articles ministered to the seven persons above-mentioned in his consistory, with their answers.
And first, to behold the manner of speech in these bishops, sitting in their majesty to terrify the ears of the simple withal, let us hear the pontifical phrase of this bishop, beginning in this sort:--
"The within written articles, and every of them, and every part and parcel of them, we Edmund, by the permission of God, bishop of London, do object and minister to thee Thomas Whittle, &c., of our mere office, for thy soul's health, and for the reformation of thine offences and misdemeanours, monishing thee in the virtue of obedience, and under the pains of both censures of the church, and also of other pains of the law, to answer fully, plainly, and truly to all the same.
"1. First, that thou, N., hast firmly, stedfastly, and constantly believed in times past, and so dost now believe at this present, that there is here in earth a catholic church; in the which catholic church the faith and religion of Christ is truly professed, allowed, received, kept, and retained, of all faithful and true Christian people.
"2. Item, That thou, the said N., in times past hast also believed, and so dost believe at this present, that there are in the catholic church seven sacraments, instituted and ordained by God, and by the consent of the holy church allowed, approved, received, kept, and retained.
"3. Item, That thou, the said N., was in times past baptized in the faith of the said catholic church, professing by thy godfathers and godmother, the faith and religion of Christ, and the observation thereof, renouncing there the devil and all his pomps and works; and was by the said sacrament of baptism incorporate to the catholic church, and made a faithful member thereof.
"4. Item, That thou, the said N., coming to the age of fourteen years, and so to the age of discretion, didst not depart from the said profession and faith, nor didst mislike any part of the same faith or doings; but didst, like a faithful Christian person, abide and continue in all the same by the space of certain years, ratifying and confirming all the same.