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among others of his councellors in that matter. And

nevertheles he graciously declared unto me, that he would

in no wise that I should other thing do or say therin,

than that I should perceive mine awne conscience should

serve me. And that I should first look unto God, and after

God unto him. Which most gracious words was the first

lesson also, that ever his G. gave me at my first coming into

his noble service.

This motion was to me very comfortable, and much I

longed, beside any thing that my self either had seen, or by

further search should hap to find for the tone part or the

tother, yet especially to have some conference in the matter

with some such of his Graces learned Councel, as most for

his part had laboured and most hand found in the matter.

133 Wherupon his H. assigned unto me the now most reve-

rend Fathers, the Archbps. of Canterbury and York, with


Master Dr. Fox, now his G's Almoner, and Master Dr.

Nicolas, the Italian Frere. Wherupon I not only sought

and read, and, as far forth as my poor wit and learning

served me, wel weighed and considered every such thing,

as I could find my self, or read in any other mannys labour,

that I could get, which any thing had written therin : but

had also diligent conference with his G's councellors afore-

said. Whose honors and worships I nothing mistrust in

this point, but that they both have and wil report unto his

H. that they never found obstinate manner nor fashion in

me, but a mind as toward and as conformable, as reason

could in a matter disputable require. Wherupon the Kings

H. being ferther advertised, both by them and my self, of

my poor opinion in the matter, (wherin to have been able

and meet to do him service I would as I then shewed his

H. have been more glad, than of al such worldly commodi-

ties, as I either then had, or ever shal come to,) his H. gra-

ciously taking in gre my good mind in that behalf, used of

his blessed disposition, in the prosecuting of his great mat-

ter only those, of whom his G. had good number, whose

consciences his G. perceived wel and fully persuaded upon

that part : and as wel my self, as any other, to whom his

H. thought the thing to seem otherwise, he used in his other

business. Abiding of his abundant goodnes nevertheless

gracious Lord unto me : nor never was willing to put any

man in ruffle or trouble of his conscience.

After this did I nothing more therin ; nor never any word

wrot I therin, to the impairing of his G's part, neither

before nor after, nor any man ellys by my procurement:

but setthng my mind in quiet to serve his G. in other things,

I would not so much as look, nor wittingly let ly by me

any book of the other part. Albeit that I gladly read after-

wards divers books that were made on his part yet. Nor

never would I read the book that Master Abel made on the

other side ; nor other books, which were, as I heard say,

made in Latin beyond the sea, nor ever give ear to the

Popes procedings in the matter.
Moreover, wheras I had founden in my study a book that

o 4

I had before borrowed of my L. of Bath, which book he

had made of the matter at such time as the Legates sat

here therupon, which book had been by me neghgently cast

aside, and that I shewed him I would send him home his

book again, he told me, that in good faith he had long time

before discharged his mind of that matter, and having for-

gotten that copy to remain in my hand, had burned his

awne copy that he had therof at home : and because he no

more minded to meddle in the matter, he desired me to

burn the same book too ; and upon my faith so did I.

Besides this, divers other Avayes have I so used my self,

that if I rehearsed them al, it would wel appear, that I

never have had against his G's mariage any maner de-

meanor, wherby his H. might have any maner cause or

occasion of displesure against me. For likewise as I am

not he which either can, or whom it could become to take

upon him the determination or decision of such a weighty

matter ; nor boldly to affirm this thing or that therin, wherof

134 divers points a great way pas my learning; so am I he,

that among other his G's faithful subjects (his H. being in

possession of his mariage, and this noble woman really

anointed Queen) neither murmur at it, nor dispute upon

it, nor never did, nor wil. But without any other maner

meddling of the matter among his other faithful subjects,

faithfully pray to God for his G. and her both, long to live

and wel, and their noble issue too, in such wise as may be

to the plesure of God, honor and svu-ety to themself, rest,

peace, wealth, and profit unto this noble realm.

The prima- As touching the third point, the primatie of the Pope, I

*'^- nothing meddle in the matter. Troth it is, that as I told

you, when you desired me to shew you what I thought

therin, I was my self some time not of the mind, that the

primatie of that see should be begun by the institution of

God, until that I read in the matter those things that the

Kings II. had written in his most famous book against the

heretics of Martin Luther. At the first reading wherof I

moved the K. H. either to leave out that point, or else to

touch it more slenderly ; for doubt of such things as after


might hap to fal in question between his H. and some

Pope: as between Princes and Popes divers times have don.

Wherunto his H. answered me, that he would in no wise

any thing minish of that matter. Of which thing his H.

shewed me a secret cause, wherof I never had any thing

heard before. But surely after that I had read his G's

book therin, and so many other things as I have seen in

that point by this continuance of these x years since and

more, have founden in effect the substance of al the holy

Doctors from S. Ignatius, disciple to S. John the Evangelist,

unto our own dayes, both Latins and Greeks, so consonant,

and agreing in that point, and the thing by General Councel

so confirmed also, that, in good faith, I never neither read

nor heard any thing of such effect on the other side, that

ever could lead me to think, that my conscience were wel

discharged, but rather in right great peril, if I should fol-

low that other side, and deny the primatie to be provided

by God. Which if we did, yet can I nothing, as I shewed

you, perceive any commodity, that ever could come by that

denyal. For that primatie is at the leastwise instituted by

the corps of Christendome, and for a great urgent cause, in

avoyding of schismes, and corroborate by continual succes-

sion more then the space of a thousand years at the least.

For there are past almost a thousand years, sith the time of

holy S. Gregory.
And therfore, sith al Christendom is one corps, I cannot

perceive how a member therof may, without the common

assent of the body, depart from the common head. And

then if we may not lawfully leave it by our selves, I cannot

perceive (but if the thing were a treating in a General Coun-

cel) what the question could avail, whether the primatie

were instituted immediately by God, or ordained by his

Church ? As for the General Councels assembled lawfully,

I never could perceive, but that, in the declaration of the

truth to be believed and to be standen to, the authority

therof ought to be taken for indubitable. Or else were

there in nothing no certainty, but through Christendom,

upon every mans affectionate reason, al tilings might be


brought, fro day to day, to continual ruffle and confusion.

From which by the General Councels, the Spirit of God,

assisting every such Counsel wel assembled, keepeth, and

135 ever shal keep, the corps of the Catholic Church. And

verily, sith the K. H. hath, as by the book of his honorable

Councel appeareth, appealed to the General Councel from

the Pope, (in which Councel I beseech our Lord to send his

G. comfortable speed,) methinkith in my poor mind, it could

be no furtherance there unto his G's cause, if his H. should

in his own realm before, either by laws-making, or books-

putting forth, seem to derogate and deny, not only the pri-

matie of the see apostolick, but also the authority of the

General Councels. Which I verily trust his H. intendeth

not. For in the next General Councel it may wel happen,

that this Pope may be deposed, and another sustituted in

his room, with whom the K. H. may be very wel content.

For albeit that I have for mine own part such opinion of

the Popes primatie, as I have shewed you, yet never thought

I the Pope above the General Councel, nor never have, in

any book of mine put forth among the Kings subjects in

our vulgar tongvie, avaunced greatly the Popes authority.

For albeit that a man may peradventure somewhat find

therin, that after the common maner of al Christen realmes

I speak of him as Primate ; yet never do I stick theron

with reasoning and proving of that point. And of my book

against the Masker, I wrot not, I wot wel, five lynys, and

yet of no mo, but only of S. Peter himself. From whose

person many take not the primatie, even of those that graunt

it none of his successors. And yet was that book made,

printed, and put forth of very troth, before that any of the

books of the Councel was either printed or spoken of. But

wheras I had written therof at length in my confutation

before, and for the proof therof had compiled together al

that I could find therfore, at such time as I little looked

that there should fal between the K. H. and the Pope such

a breach as is fallen since; when I, after that, saw the

thing likely to draw such displesure between them, I sup-

pressed it utterly, and never put word therof into my book,


but put out the remnant without. Which thing wel de-

clareth, that I never intended any thing to meddle in that

matter against the Kings gracious plesure, whatsoever mine

own opinion were therin.

And thus have I, good Master Cromwel, long troubled

your mastership with a long process of these matters, with

which I neither durst, nor it could become me to encumber

the Kings noble Grace. But I bese(?ch you for our Lords

love, that you be not so weary of my most cumbrous suit,

but that it may like you at that opportune time or times, as

your wisdome may find, to help that his H. may, by your

goodnes, be fully informed of my true faithful mind : and

that in the matter of that wicked woman, there never was

on my part any other mind than good : nor yet in any other

thing else never was there, nor never shal there be, any

further fault founden in me, than that I cannot in every

thing think the same way, that some other men of more

wisdom and deeper learning do. Nor can find in my hart

otherwise to say, than as mine awn conscience giveth me :

which condition hath never grown in any thing, that ever

might touch his gracious plesure, of an obstinate mind, or

misafi'ected appetite; but of a timerous conscience, rising

happily for lack of better proceding. And yet not without

tender respect unto my most bounden duty towards his

most noble Grace. Whose only favour I so much esteem,

that I nothing have of mine awne in al this world, except 136

only my soul, but that I wil with better wil forgoe it, than

abide of his H. one heavy displesant look.

And thus I make an end of my long tedious process, be-

seeching the blessed Trinity, for the great goodnes ye shew

me, and the great comfort ye do me, both bodily and ghostly

to prosper you, and in heaven to reward you. At Chelcith,

the vth day of March, by
Your deeply bounden
Tho. More, Kt.

E. 6.

Number XLIX.

Shaxton, Bishop of Salisbury, to Secretary Crumwel ; in

answer to orders sent him for preaching the Kings su-

Cleopatra, HONORABLE Sir, I certify your good mastership,

that I have this day received the Kings most honorable

letters, sent unto me from you by my servant : and rejoyce

not a little, that it hath pleased his Highnes to write so

earnestly unto his Bishops in this so earnest a cause : think-

ing surely, that God hath used your wisdom to stir up the

good Prince hereunto. Wherof I highly thank that Almighty

Lord. Praying you also to go on stil from one thing to

another, as your wisdome, yea Gods very wisdom in you,

exciteth and stirreth you, til the usurped power of that

man of Rome be clean abolished and put out of the hearts

of the Kings subjects. And I shal with al my diligence

apply my self to the accomplishment of this his so godly

commandment, by Gods grace.
And forasmuch as I have taken my leave of the King

and Queen, and tary for nothing now but only for the in-

strument called custodias temporalium, I eftsoones beseech

your mastership to have that in your remembrance, when

you shal next repair unto the Court, together with a dis-

charge for taking any oath of the residentiaries of Sarum :

which surely they wil exact of me, unles I bring some-

thing, either from the King his Highnes, or else from you,

his chief Councellor, for to stop their mouths.
And as for sealing new obligations, if it like you to com-

mand your servant to send me them to morrow by this

bringer, I shal seal them and send them to you without any

tarriance, by the grace of God. Who conserve you and

prosper you in al godly purposes and enterprises. Morte-

lack, the iiii. day of June.

Your own to command,

Nic, Shaxton, Bishop of Sarum.


Number L. 137
Robert, Bishop of Chichester, to Secretary Crtimrvel; upon

the same argument.

AFTER my most hearty recommendations, with like Cleopatra,

thanks for your manifold kindnesses shewed unto me in ' *

times past : Pleaseth it you to be advertised, that upon Sun-

day, viz. the 13th day of this instant month of June, after

such smal talent, as God hath lent me, I preached the word

of God openly in my cathedral church of Chichester ; and

also published there the Kings most dreadful commandment

concerning (with other things) the uniting of the Supreme

Head of the Church of England unto the imperial Crown

of this realm ; and also the abolishing and secluding out of

this realm the inormities and abuses of the Bp. of Romes

authority usurped within the same. And likewise have sent

forth my Suffragan to preach and publish most speedily the

same in the populous townes within my dioces. And further

have proceded, that by this day at the furthest, there is

neither Abbot, Prior, Dean, Archdeacon, Provost, Parson,

Vicar, nor Curate within my dioces, but they have com-

mandment to publish the same in their churches every Sun-

day and solemne feast accordingly. And, as much as in me

is, I shal see and cause them to continue in doing of their

duty in this behalf. Most heartily desiring you to move

the K. Highnes, that it may please his Grace, considering

mv age and impotency, that the further doing of these pre-

misses by other sufficient persons may be sufficient for my

discharge in this behalf. And if it shal please you to par-

ticularly advertise me of the Kings plcsure herein, ye shal

bind me to do you any plesure, that lyeth in my little

power. And thus fare ye most heartily wel. From Selsey

xxviiio June.
Your bounden orator,

Robt. Cicest.


Number LI.

John, Bishop of Lincoln, to Mr. Crumwel; of the same


Cleopatra, RIGHT worshipful Master Secretary ; My duty remem-

¦ '^' 'bred unto your good mastership, with my humble thanks

for al your goodnes towards me, and in al my causes

ever. Pleaseth it the same to understand, that I have, ac-

cording as I am bounden, and as the King his Grace com-

mandment was by his letters, since the receit of the same,

set forth, and caused to be declared throughout my dioces,

138 his title, dignity, and style of Supreme Head in earth, im-

mediately under God, of the Church of England, and shal

so continue. And for as much as the last letter of declaration

in English, which your mastership sent unto me last, must

go into so many several places within my diocess, that al the

Clerks I have are not able to write them in long process of

time, I have caused 2000 of the same to be put in print, for

the speedy and good setting forward thereof: and have sent

unto you a paper of the same. Beseeching you, I may

have knowledg of your plesure by this bearer my servant :

whether it be your plesure I shal in this forme in print send

forth the same or not. And your plesure known, it shal

not be long in doing, God willing.
Over this I have in mean time set forth to divers parts in

every shire within my diocess the same in writing, as many

as al my clarks could in the mean season write, and are

doing stil. Thus the Godhead preserve your good master-

ship. Written at Woburn, this xxv. day Junii.
Your bedisman, and priest,
John Lincoln.

Number LI I.

Cuthhert, Bishop of Durham,, to Mr. Crumwel; concerning

his preaching the King''s supremacy.

cieop. E. 6. AND where now of late I have also received the Kings

p. 248. b. ^^^^^^j. ]^Q^Qj.^|3ig letters, sent unto me by Sir Francis Bygot,


Kt. containing the Kings Highnes commandment for setting

forth of his title of Supreme Head of the Church of Eng-

land, and the abolishment of the authority of the Bp. of

Rome; I not only my self, before the receit of the same

letters, had don my duty in setting forth his title of Su-

preme Head, but also caused others to do the same. And

so his Grace was prayed for ever since the proclamation of

the act therupon made. And eftsones upon the receit of

the Kings said letter, I repaired to Duresm, and there

preached my self again in great presence, as wel in setting

forth the Kings title, as in declaring the usurped authority

of the Bp. of Rome, heretofore used in this realm. And so

have done, and shal, from time to time, accomplish the Kings

commandment in my diocess, God willing.

There were words in the said letter that sore grieved me ;

that the Kings Highnes should repute, that I should look

for a new world, or mutation. If the Kings H. knew my

mind, as God doth, sure I am those words had not been

put in. For I have been as sore against such usurpations

of the Bp. of Rome, as dayly did grow, as any man of my

degree in this realme. And that I should now look for the

renewing of that thing, which I withstood heretofore, as far

as I might, when he flourished most, it is not likely. Surely

I look for no mutation, nor new world, but one; which is I39

the changing of this life transitory to the life eternal in the

world to come. Which mutation, whensoever it shal happen,

I beseech Almighty Jesus of his infinite mercy, that I may

leave the Kings H. in his most prosperous reign many years

after my decease, to myche increase of his honour, the

wealth of his subjects, and the propagation of his most

royal posterity. And thus Almighty Jesus preserve -your

good mastership to his plesure and yours. From Aukland

the xxi. day of July.
Your masterships humble bedeman,
Cuthbert Duresm.


Number LIII.
The King's letter to the Earl of Sussex ; to seize such as
preached up the Pope's authority in England.
By the King.


Cleopatra, RIGHT trusty and right wel beloved covisin, we greet

'^' you wel. And where it is commen to our knowledg, that

sundry persons, as wel Religious, as Secular Priests and

Curates, in their parishes and divers places within this our

realm, do daily, as much as in them is, set forth and extol

the jurisdiction and authority of the Bp. of Rome, other-

wise called Pope ; sowing their seditious, pestilent, and false

doctrin ; praying for him in the pulpit, and making him a

God, to the great deceit, alluding, and seducing of our sub-

jects, bringing them into errors, seditions, and evil opinions :

more preferring the power, lawes, and jurisdiction of the said

Bp. of Rome, then the most holy lawes and precepts of Al-

mighty God: we therfore, minding not only to procede

for an unity and quietnes to be had and continued among

our said subjects, but also greatly coveting and desiring

them to be brought to a perfection and knowledg of the

mere verity and truth ; and no lenger to be seduced nor

blinded with any such superstitious and false doctrin of any

earthly usurper of Gods laws ; wol therfore and command

you, that where and whensoever ye shal apperceive, know,

or hear tel of any such seditious persons, that in such wise

do spread, teach, and preach, or otherwise set forth, any such

opinions and pernicious doctrine, to the exaltation of the

power of the Bp. of Rome ; bringing therby our subjects

into error, grudge, and murmuration ; that ye indelayedly

do apprehend and take them, or cause them to be appre-

hended and taken, and so committed to ward, there to re-

main without bayle or mainpiize, until upon your adver-

tisement therof unto us, or our Councel, ye shal know our

further plesure in that behalf. Yeven under our signet at

our manor of Greenwich, the 17th day of April.


Number LIV. j^q
The Kings letters to the Justices of peace ; to further the

Kings cause of the supremacy.

By the King.


TRUSTY and right wel beloved, we greet you wel. Cleopatra,

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