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VIII.

1536.

following, followeth the death also of queen Anne, who had now been Henry married to the king the space of three years. In certain records thus we find, that the king, being in his jousts at Greenwich, suddenly

A.D. with a few persons departed to Westminster, and, the next day after, queen Anne, his wife, was had to the Tower, with the lord Rochford her brother, and certain others, and, the nineteenth day after, was beheaded. The words of this worthy and christian lady at her death were these :

The Words of Queen Anne at her Death. Good christian people! I am come hither to die, for according to the law, and by the law, I am judged to death; and therefore I will speak nothing against it. I come hither to accuse no man, nor to speak any thing of that whereof I am accused and condemned to die ; but I pray God save the king, and send him long to reign over you, for a gentler, or a more merciful prince was there never; and to me he was ever a good, a gentle, and a sovereign lord. And if any person will meddle of my cause, I require them to judge the best. And thus I take my leave of the world, and of you all, and I heartily desire you all to pray for me. O Lord have mercy on me! To God I commend

my soul.

And so she kneeled down, saying,

" To Christ I commend my Queen soul :" "

Jesu, receive my soul.” Repeating the same divers times, beheaded. till at length the stroke was given, and her head was stricken off.

And this was the end of that godly lady and queen. Godly I call commen her, for sundry respects, whatsoever the cause was, or quarrel objected dations of against her. First, her last words spoken at her death declared no less her sincere faith and trust in Christ, than did her quiet modesty utter forth the goodness of the cause and matter, whatsoever it was. Besides that to such as wisely can judge upon cases occurrent, this also may seem to give a great clearing unto her, that the king, the third day after, was married in his whites unto another. Certain this was, that for the rare and singular gifts of her mind, so well instructed, and given toward God, with such a fervent desire unto the truth and setting forth of sincere religion, joined with like gentleness, modesty, and pity toward all men, there have not many such queens before her borne the crown of England. Principally this one commendation she left behind her, that during her life, the religion of Christ most happily flourished, and had a right prosperous course.

Many things might be written more of the manifold virtues, and Her mila the quiet moderation of her mild nature, how lowly she would bear, taking adnot only to be admonished, but also of her own accord would require her chaplains plainly and freely to tell whatsoever they saw in her amiss. Also, how bountifal she was to the poor, passing not only the common example of other queens, but also the revenues almost of her estate ; insomuch that the alms which she gave in three quarters of a Her great year, in distribution, is summed to the number of fourteen or fifteen thousand pounds; besides the great piece of money which her grace intended to impart into four sundry quarters of the realm, as for a stock there to be employed to the behoof of poor artificers and occupiers. Again, what a zealous defender she was of Christ's gospel all the world doth know, and her acts do and will declare to the world's end. Amongst which other her acts this is one, that she placed Master Hugh Latimer in the bishopric of Worcester, and also preferred

monition.

alms.

VII.

Parliaments not always constant.

Henry Dr. Shaxton to his bishopric, being then accounted a good man.

Furthermore, what a true faith she bare unto the Lord, this one A.D. example may stand for many : for that when king Henry was with her 1536. at Woodstock, and there, being afraid of an old blind prophecy, for

which neither he nor other kings before him durst hunt in the said park of Woodstock, nor enter into the town of Oxford, at last, through the christian and faithful counsel of that queen, he was so armed against all infidelity, that both he hunted in the aforesaid park, and also entered into the town of Oxford, and had no harm. But because, touching the memorable virtues of this worthy queen, partly we have said something before, partly because more also is promised to be declared of her virtuous life (the Lord so permitting) by others who then were about her, I will cease in this matter further to proceed.

This I cannot but marvel, why the parliament holden this year, that is, the twenty-eighth year of the king (which parliament three years before had established and confirmed this marriage as most lawful), should now so suddenly, and contrary to their own doings, repeal and disable the said marriage again as unlawful, being so lawfully before contracted. But more I marvel, why the said parliament, after the illegitimation of the marriage enacted, not contented with that, should further proceed, and charge her with such carnal desires of her body as to misuse herself with her own natural brother, the lord Rochford, and others; being so contrary to all pature, that no natural man will believe it.

But in this act of parliament did lie, no doubt, some great mystery, which here I will not stand to discuss, but only that it may be suspected some secret practising of the papists here not to be lacking, considering what a mighty stop she was to their purposes and proceedings, and on the contrary side, what a strong bulwark she was for the maintenance of Christ's gospel, and sincere religion, which they then in no case could abide. By reason whereof it may be easily considered, that this christian and devout Deborah could lack no enemies amongst such a number of Philistines, both within the realm, and without.

Again, neither is it unlike, but that Stephen Winchester, being then abroad in embassy, was not altogether asleep; the suspicion whereof

may be the more conjectural, for that Edmund Bonner, archdeacon of Leicester, and then ambassador in France, succeeding after Stephen Winchester, did manifestly detect him of plain papistry, as in the sequel of their stories, when we come to the time, more amply (the Lord granting) shall be expressed.

And as touching the king's mind and assent, although at that time, through crafty setters-on, he seemed to be sore bent both against that queen, and to the disheriting of his own daughter; yet unto that former will of the king so set against her then, I will oppose again the last will of the king, wherein, expressly and by name, he did accept, and by plain ratification did allow, the succession of his marriage to stand good and lawful.

Furthermore, to all other sinister judgments and opinions, whatsoever can be conceived of man against that virtuous queen, I object and oppose again (as instead of answer) the evident demonstration of

(1) Stat. an. 28 Hen. 8. cap. 7.

Lawfulness of queen Anne's Succession.

VIII.

God's favour, in maintaining, preserving, and advancing the offspring Henry of her body, the lady ELIZABETH, now queen, whom the Lord hath so marvellously conserved from so manifold dangers, so royally hath A.D. exalted, so happily hath blessed with such virtuous patience, and with 1536. such a quiet reign hitherto, that neither the reign of her brother Defence Edward, nor of her sister Mary, to hers is to be compared; whether against we consider the number of the years of their reigns, or the peaceable back ness of their state. In whose royal and flourishing regiment we have biters. to behold, not so much the natural disposition of her mother's qualities, as the secret judgment of God in preserving and magnifying the fruit and offspring of that godly queen.

And finally, as for the blasphemous mouth both of cardinal Pole, The proand of Paulus Jovius, that popish cardinal, who, measuring belike testants other women by his courtezans of Rome, so impudently abuseth his many forpen in lying and railing against this noble queen :' to answer again Henry for in defence of her cause to that Italian, I object and oppose the consent of queen and judgment of so many noble protestants and princes of Germany, Anne. who, being in league before with king Henry, and minding no less but to have made him the head of their confederation, afterwards, hearing of the death of this queen, utterly brake from him, and refused him only for the same cause.

But all this seemeth (as is said) to be the drift of the wily papists, The wily who, seeing the pope to be repulsed out of England, by the means for the chiefly of this queen, and fearing always the succession of this marriage papists. in time to come, thought by sinister practice to prevent that peril before, whispering in the king's cars what possibly they could, to make that matrimony unlawful; and all for the disheriting of that succession.

Again, Stephen Gardiner (who was a secret worker against that marriage, and a perpetual enemy against lady Elizabeth), being then abroad with the French king, and the great master of France, ceased not, in his letters, still to put the king in fear, that the foreign princes and powers of the world, with the pope, would never be reconciled to the king, neither should he be ever in any perfect security, unless he undid again such acts before passed, for the ratification of that succession : which thing when they had now brought to pass after their own desire (that both now the queen was beheaded, and Elizabeth God's the king's daughter disherited), they thought all things to be sure for dence ever. But yet God's providence still went beyond them, and deceived a poliethem; for incontinently after the suffering of queen Anne, the king, ethide, within three days after, married lady Jane Seymour, of whom came The king king Edward, as great an enemy to God's enemy the pope, as ever ladyJane his father was, and greater too.

In the mean time, as these troublous tumults were in doing in the seat England, Paul III., bishop of Rome, for his part was not behind, to help forward for his own advantage; who, seeing his usurped kingdom darkenand seat to be darkened in the countries of Germany, and also in England, thought it high time to bestir him ; and therefore, to provide some remedy against further dangers, appointed a general council at Mantua in Italy, requiring all kings and princes either personally to (1) Paulus Jovius can find no immorality in all Rome, but must come and pick matter, where

of the beast

none is, in England.

VII.

Henry be there, or else to send their ambassadors under fair pretences, as

to suppress heresies, and to restore the church, and to war against the A.D. Turk, &c. This bull was subscribed with the hands of twenty-six 1536.

cardinals, and set up in divers great cities, that it might be known and published to the whole world; unto which bull first the protestants of Germany do answer, declaring sufficient causes why they refused to resort to that council, being indicted at Mantua, in the pope's own country. Whose declaration, with their causes grave and effectual, being set forth in print, and in the English tongue, although they were worthy here to be inserted, yet for brevity, and more speed in our story, I will pretermit the same, and only take the oration or answer of our king here; wherein he likewise rendereth reasons and causes most reasonable, why he refuseth to come or to send, at the pope's call, to this council indicted at Mantua : whose oration or protestation, because it containeth matter of some weight and great experience, I thought good here to express as followeth :

A Protestation in the Name of the King, and the whole Council and

Clergy of England, why they refuse to come to the Pope's Council, at his call.

Seeing that the bishop of Rome calleth learned men from all parts, conducting them by great rewards, making as many of them cardinals as he thinketh most meet, and most ready to defend frauds and untruths; we could not but with

much anxiety cast with ourselves, what so great a preparance of wits should The mean. As chance was, we guessed even as it followed. We have been so long pope's

acquainted with Romanish subtleties and popish deceits, that we well and easily craft espied.

judged the bishop of Rome to intend an assembly of his adherents, and men sworn to think all his lusts to be laws: we were not deceived. Paul, the bishop of Rome, hath called a council, to which he knew well either few or none of the christian princes could come. Both the time that he indicted it, and also the place where he appointed it to be, might assure him of this. But whither wander not these popish bulls? whither go they not astray? What king is not cited and summoned by a proud minister and servant of kings, to come to bolster up errors, frauds, deceits, and untruths, and to set forth this feigned general council? For who will not think that Paul, the bishop of Rome, goeth sooner about to make men believe that he pretendeth a general council, than that he desireth one indeed? No! who can less desire it, than they that do despair of their cause, except they be judges, and give sentence themselves against their ad

versaries? We, who very sore against our will at any time leave off the pronot bound curement of the realm and common weal, need neither to come ourselves, nor

yet to send our procurators thither; no, nor yet to make our excuse for either of both. For who can accuse us, that we come not at his call, who hath no authority to call us ?

But for a season let us (as a sort of blindlings do) grant that he may call they that and that he hath authority so to do, yet, we pray you, may not all men see,

what availeth it to come to this council, where ye shall have no place, except ye place,

be known both willing to oppress truth, and also ready to confirm and stablish pope's errors? Do not all men perceive, as well as we, with what integrity, fidelity, council. and religion, these men go about to discuss matters in controversy, that take The place them in hand in so troublesome a time as this is ? Is it not plain what fruit the

common weal of Christendom may look for there, whereas Mantua is chosen

the place to keep this council at? Is there any prince not being of Italy, yea, Norcason is there of Italy any prince, or other dissenting from the pope, that dareth come

to this assembly, and to this place? If there come none that dare speak for

trodden truth, none that will venture his life, is it marvel if (the bishop of Rome judge

being judge, no man repining, no man gainsaying) the defenders of the papacy obtain that popish authority, now quailing and almost fallen, be set up again?

(1) Ex Johan. Sleid., lib. x.

to come at the pope's call.

us,

Who be

have

in the

ferent.

that the pope should

his own cause.

her leave

ever. our

Refuseth

Is this the way to help things afflicted ? to redress troubled religion? to lift Henry up oppressed truth? Shall men this way know, whether the Roman bishops VNI, (who, in very deed, are, if ye look upon either their doctrine or life, far under A.D. other bishops) ought to be made like their fellows, that is, to be pastors in their 1536. own diocese, and so to use no further power; or else, whether they may make laws, not only unto other bishops, but also to kings and emperors ? O bold- The bir ness ! meet to be beaten down with force, and not to be convinced with argu- Roine, in ments! Can either Paul that now lordeth, or any of his, earnestly go about learning (if they alone, or at least without any adversary, be thus in a corner assembled far under together) to heal the sicknesses, to take away the errors, to pluck down the other biabuses that now are crept into the church, and there be bolstered up by such shops. councils as now is like to be at Mantua?

It is very like that these, who prowl for nothing but profit, will right gladly Paul the pull down all such things as their forefathers made, only for the increase of pope inoney. Whereas their forefathers, when their honour, power, and primacy, fur profit.

prowleth were called into question, would either in despite of God's law maintain their dignity, or, to say better, their intolerable pride, is it like that these will not tread in their steps, and make naughty new canons, whereby they may defend old evil decrees? Howbeit, what need we to care either what they have done, or what they intend to do hereafter, forasmuch as England hath taken her England leave of popish crafts for ever, never to be deluded with them hereafter? taketh Roman bishops have nothing to do with English people. The one doth not of the traffic with the other; at least, though they will have to do with us, yet we will pope for none of their merchandise, none of their stuff. We will receive them of council no more. We have sought our hurt, and bought our loss a great while

the pope's too long. Surely their decrees, either touching things set up or put down, merchanshall have none other place with us than all bishops' decrees have; that is, if dise. we like them, we admit them; if we do not, we refuse them. But lest, peradventure, men shall think us to follow our senses too much, and that we, moved by small or no just causes, forsake the authority, censures, decrees, and popish councils, we thought it best here to show our mind to the whole world.

Wherefore we protest, before God and all men, that we embrace, profess, and will ever so do, the right and holy doctrine of Christ. All the articles of his faith, no jot omitted, be all so dear unto us, that we would much sooner stand in jeopardy of our realm, than to see any point of Christ's religion in jeopardy with us. We protest that we never went from the unity of this faith, Gueth not neither that we will depart an inch from it. No, we will much sooner lose our from the lives, than any article of our belief shall decay in England. We, who in all faith, althis cause seek nothing but the glory of God, the profit and quietness of the though world, protest that we can suffer deceivers no longer. We never refused to it goeth come to a general council; no, we promise all our labour, study, and fidelity, pope. to the setting up of trodden truth, and troubled religion, in their place again, the faith and to do all that shall lie in us, to finish such controversies as have a great of Engwhile too long vexed Christendom. Only we will all christian men to be ad-land; ca. monished, that we can suffer no longer that they be esteemed willing to take away errors, who indeed, by all the ways their wits will serve them, go about this alone, that no man, under pain of death, may speak against any error or abuse.

We would have a council; we desire it, yea, and crave nothing so oft of what a God, as that we may have one. But yet we will that it be such as christian true gemen ought to have; that is, frank and free, where every man without fear may council say his mind. We desire that it be a holy council, where every man may go ought to about to set up godliness, and not apply all their study to the oppressing of truth. We will it be general, that is to say, kept at such time, and in such place, that every man who seeketh the glory of God may be present, and there frankly utter his mind : for then it shall seem general, either when no man The conthat dissenteth from the bishop of Rome is compelled to be from it; or when ditions. they that be present are not letted by any just terror, to say boldly what they truly think : for who would not gladly come to such a council, except it be the pope, his cardinals, and popish bishops ? On the other side, who is so foolish, where the chief point that is to be handled in this council is the pope's own cause, power, and primacy, to grant that the pope should reign, should be judge, should be president of this council? If he, who indeed can never think

be.

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