The Actes of Englysh votaryes, comprehendynge their vnchast practyses and exam­ples by all ages, from the worldes begynnynge to thys present yeare, collected out of their owne le­gendes and Chronycles By Iohan Bale.

¶Lerne herin (good reader) to proue all spretes, and to iudge false myracles, rebukynge no Christen beleuer, but those obstynate hypocrytes onlye, whyche yet lyue after their popes olde rules. Reade, but laugh not.

O thu mayden of Chaldea, Thu shalt no more be called tender and plesaunt. Thy shame shall be dyscouered, aud thy preuytees shall be seane, for I (sayth the lorde) wyll auen­ge me of the, and no man shall let me.
Esa▪ 47.

❧ The preface of thys boke.

GIldas that auncyent Brytayne, in hys first treatyse of the dolorouse destruc­cyon of hys coutreye, hath thys worthye sentence agaynste them whych were the chefe cause therof▪ And borowed yt ys of the .xxiiii. chaptre of Salomons prouerbes. Who so euer cōmēdeth the wycked (sayth he) and reporteth them ryghtuouse or holye, the same shall ones haue the curse of the people, and the commynalte shall ab horre hym. Plentuouse hath the Popes clergye bene in thys poynt, specyallye in the churche here of Englande. Not onlye haue they commended vnto vs whoremō gers, bawdes, brybers, Idolaters, hypo­crytes, trayters, and most fylthye Go­morreanes, as Godlye men and womē, but also they haue canonysed thē for most holye sayntes, sett them vp gylt Images in their temples, commāded their vygyls to be fasted, appoynted them holye dayes and the peoples to do them honoure with euēsonges, howres, processyons, lyghtes, masses, ryngynges, syngynges, sensyn­ges, and the deuyll and all of soche hey­thnysh wares. They haue done by vs as [Page] their olde predecessours the Idolatrouse prestes ded by the auncyeut Romanes. They haue set vs vp a sort of lecherouse Goddes to be worshypped in our tem­ples, to be our aduocates, and to helpe vs in our nedes.Olde goddes &c. newe. In stede of Iupiter, Satur­ne, Mercurye, Mars, Iuno, Proserpina, Diana, and Venus, which ded all their feates in whoredome, as the poetes vere­fyethe, they haue geuen vs Wenefryde, Cuthbert, Dunstane, Oswalde, Ansel­me, Becket, Brigyde, Audrye, Modwē, Edith, Osith, Ethelburge, and a great sort more of vnpure workers out of mar­ryage.

Marke the lyues of their Englyshe sayntes, almost from the begynnynge, & ye shall not fynde one of them canonysed for preachynge Christes veryte a ryght, neyther yet for leadynge a lyfe after the perfyght rules of the Gospell. Not one commende they for worshyppynge God wythout mennys tradycyons, nor yet for executyuge the workes of Mercye, vnles se yt were to their aduauntage. Neuer reckened they wedlock anye Godlye estate of lyuyuge, though yt were an onlye ordre instytuted of God in the begyunynge, yea, for hys prestes also. Commōlye they haue dyswaded both men and wo­men from yt, as from a most pernycyou­se euyll,Dyffa▪ / or from a myschefe of all myschefes, [Page 3] callynge yt folyshnesse, fylthynesse, beastlynesse,macyōs of Marryage. a walkynge in darkenesse, a mayntenaūce of lechery, a fulfyllyng of fleshlye desyres, a grounde of all vyce, an entraunce of deathe, a corruptynge of maydenhode, a lake of myserye, a claye pytt of vnclēnesse, a thraldome of Egipt, a nette of Sathan, a snare of the deuyll, & a ponde of perdycyon, loke Iohan Capgraue in Catalogo sanctorum Anglie, specyallye in the lyues or legendes of Clarus, Eanswyde, kyneswyde, Etheldrede, we nefrede, Mylburge, and Myldrede with soche other lyke, aud ye shall fynde my wordes most true. In the hystorye of Saynt Vrsula haue they named thē An­gels of darkenesse whych hath persuaded marryage laufull.blasphemye. Of whose nōbre was firste God the eternall Father, and thā Moses and the Prophetes for the olde lawe. And afterwarde Iesus Christe hys eternall Sonne, with Peter, Paule & the other apostles for the newe lawe. Were not the men (thynke yow) wele ouer­seane?

So peruerse stomakes haue they bor­ne to women, that the more part of their temptynge spretes they haue made she deuyls (loke their Sayntes legendes) but he that tempted Christ was an he deuyll, a relygyouse deuyll, and a prestlye de­uyll. Whā they haue bene tempted with [Page] lecherouse spretes in the lykenesse of wō ­men,The de­uyls. they haue (they saye) by the suffren vertu of holye water, turned them into denyls agayne. But neuer were they yet so comiyuge with all their holy water, as to make of theyr whores honest mar­ryed women. No▪ yt is not their ordre, to do soche myracles In the lyfe of Saynt Godrick is mencyon of a she deuyll, but in the conclusyon, he apereth with han­gynge ware of no small quantyte, hauynge hys yonge ones folowynge hym with shauē crownes. Of a lykelyhode therfor he was some spyrytuall he tempter, and hys chyldren within holye orders. Soche power had Saynt Guthlake ouer those watchynge wormes, that he made them to tarrye with hym, and to buylde hym vp a monasterye at Asendyck, now cal­led Crowlāde, some saye. To be short in thys matter.Sayn­tes vn­maryed Their sayntes in a maner were all vnmaryed. If anye were mary­ed that wolde nedes be sayntes, they we­re anō compelled by othe, or by the waye of penaunce, to leaue their makes to the occupyenge of others, the man hys wyfe, and the woman her husbande, as ye shall beholde in this boke by most plentuouse examples. For matrimonye hath e­uer bene suche a blacke bugge in their synagoge ād churche, that neuer wolde canonysacyon serue yet, where he was [Page 4] in place.

Notwithstandinge we are throughly as­sertayned by innumerable scripturs and argumentes, that matrymonye is of God, ād by their innumerable examples of fylthynesse, that their vowed wyueles­se and husbandelesse chastyte is altogy­ther of the deuyll.Votaryes. Sens the gloryouse a­peraunce of the Gospell haue that Sodo mytycall swarme or brode of Antichrist (that ye call the spirytualte) bene oft ty­mes admonyshed of their fleshlye er­rours by the manyfest scripturs therof, that they shuld ones repent their most horryble myschefes, and graunt vnto maryage the fredome due therunto. And what haue they done, thynke you? No­thynge els at all but laughed them to scorne, reportynge them to be but fables and lyes. The lerned allegacyons, rea­sons, & argumentes of Phylyp Melāchton,Christē doctors. Luther, Lambert, Pomerane, Bar­nes, and soche other, they haue hearde, but the answere is yet to make. They mocke and mowe at thē lyke Iack a na­pes, or lyke them which went vp & dow­ne by the crosse whan Christ was crucy­fyed, and that is ynough for them. For they haue yt of theyr popes lawe to an­swere no man, yea although they wryte theyr abhomynacyons to the vttermost, [Page] vnlesse they haue hym in preson. I haue therfor thought yt best,The antour. seynge they re­garde not the sacred scrypturs, to laye before them their abhomynable practy­ses and examples of fylthynesse, by their owne legendes, chronycles, and sayntes Lyues, that all men maye knowe what legerdemaynes they haue vsed, and what lecherouse lyues they haue led here in Englande sens the worldes begynnynge. Lete them now be ashamed of their beastly­nesse, or els put on their mothers face al­togyther.

In the firste part of thys boke, maye men breuelye beholde how and by whom thys realme was first inhabyted, whiche thynge hath bene hytherto in all Englysh Chronycles,Chronycles. doubtfullye, vnagreablye, yea, and vntrulye treated, vpon coniec­turs, fantasyes, and lyes onlye, by reason of ignoraunce in the scripturs and moste auctorysed hystoryes. They shall also perceyue, what peoples haue here by all ages remayned, what doctryues, hath bene taught by their true and false prophetes, what worshyppynges of God they haue vsed, and what lawes in relygyon they haue folowed. Fynallye they shall knowe clerelye, the deceytfull workemā ­shyp of the instrumētes of Sathan, their byshoppes,prestes. prestes, & monkes, with other dysgysed locustes of the same generacyō. [Page 5] Whose contynuall stodye, labour, and sekynge was alwayes to blynde them by a colour of chast lyuynge,Maryage. makynge them to beleue, that their marryenge of wyues was a prophane layte, a brutysh beastly­nesse, and a thynge which greatlye dys­pleased God. Their owne vowynge of vyrgynyte was agayne (they sayd) a spi­rytuall ordre,Vyrgynyte. a lyfe of Angels, and an holye relygyon which pleased God aboue all other, what though they neuer had yt in their lyues. For true vyrginyte ys a fayth vncorrupted,Faythe or a beleue gouerned by the onlye worde of God without all superstycyons of men. Thys was the onlye vyrgynyte that Marye was com­mended of, Luce. 1. Thys vyrgynyte per­teyneth chefelye to marryage, as testy­fyethe Saynt Paul. 2. Cor. 11.2. Cor. [...]. And as apereth in Abraham and other iust fathers which had faythfull wyues. No people are lesse acquaynted with thys vprgyuy­te than sectaryes, or they that vowe vpr­gynyte, for they thefelye depende vpon mennys tradycyons and rules.

But yf a tre maye be knowne by hys frutes, and a man by hys dedes, as our sauer sayth they maye, Math. 7. ye shall easelye perceyue by their actes,Mat. 7. that these vyrgyuall votaryes hath bene the verye Angels of darkenesse. Marke their gost­lye conueyauuces, and their other good [Page] workes (as they wyll haue them yet cal­led) lyke as they are here regestred in course. And ye shall fynde them more fyt for hell than for heauen. Yet must they be canonysed sayntes, and do most won­derfull myracles.Myra­cles. But those myracles a­re the stronge delusyons (saynt Paule sayth) that the lorde wyll sende vnto thē that shall perysh for their vnbeleues sa­ke. 2. Thessalon 2. I doubt not but thys labour of myne, though yt be verye sym­ple, wyll mynystre some lyght as wele to the lerned as vnlerned. At the least yt shall teche thē to iudge false myracles, that they be no more so deuylyshly deceyued. Lete not the oft cytynge of authors be greuouse to the readers, my occasyon iustlye cōsidered.Au­tours. For therby shall the papystes haue shame alwayes, yf they re­port them fables, or els me a lyar for the tellynge of them, beynge in their wry­tynges so manyfest. And as conceruyu­ge those autours, they were their owne dere fryndes, and wrote the best they coude of them. If they had bene their enemyes, and so shewed the worst of them, or els but indyfferent wryters as they we­re most parcyall wytuesses, it had bene a farre other shewe of their mischefes than here will apere.

Men trusted they wolde haue seane themselues in this clere lyght of the Gospell, [Page 6] and so haue repented their former factes of falsehede.Bys­hoppes But trulye they are of a farre other kynde than so. Their nature is not to repent, do they neuer so manye myschefes. Rather stodye they out newe practyses of tyrannye and cau­tels of cruelte, to adde myschefe to myschefe, tyll the great vengeaunce promy­sed, lyght fullye vpon them. Who so euer hath promoted forewarde Gods veryte (they thanke God of yt) they haue bene non of them as yet.Gospel If they shuld make their boastes with Paule. 1. Corin. 15. that they haue done therin more la­bours than the other discyples, men of knowlege wolde by and by saye, that they lyed most falselye. In dede they ha­ue with Menelaus, Alchinius, Ananias, & wyth Capphas gone afore all world­lye tyrauntes in the murtheringe vp of them which hath done yt. And for er­rours,Errour they saye. But who euer erred as they haue done, sens the worldes be­gynnynge? Trulye non as yet. Neyther, Turke, Iewe, Saracene, Pagane, nor deuyll, as the examples herafter wyll shewe, they shall not be able to auoyde yt, vnlesse they dyspute with fyer ād faggottes as they haue done hytherto. For starke nought are they in dysputacyons, where as they are not at hāde. For this boke, I shall haue theyr cōmō lyuerye, [Page] and be called a thousande tymes herety­ke. But neyther loke I for reasonable an­swere of them, nor yet for amendement of theyr knaueryes.

In this boke of myne,Face of Anti­christ. is one face of Antichrist chefelye dysclosed (parauenture iij. vndre one) wherwith he hath of longe tyme paynted out his whore, the Rome churche, that she myght to the world apere a gloryouse madame. That face is her vowed chastyte, wherby she hath deceyt­fullye boasted herself spirituall, beynge but whore and thefe,Marryage ma­keth laye. and dysdayned marryage as a vyle draffe sacke and dyrtye dyshe cloute, callynge all them but lewde laye persones that were vndre yt, though they were kynges and quenes, lordes ād ladyes. Ye noble gouerners and lerned lawers, vnto whom God hath in thys a­ge delyuered the measurynge rodde of hys worde, as he ded to Iohan. Apocal. 11. that ye shuld measure all thynges ryght­lye. Be not now slacke in your offyces, as in the blynd tyme, but throwe fourth that wretched bonde woman with her dough­ter, that Rome churche with her whoryshnesse. No poynt of nobylyte were yt,Nobylyte. nor yet of lerned worthynesse, to be as ye haue bene of late yeares. styll seruaunt sla­ues to a most fylthye whore, and to her whoredome and whoremongers. Our most christen Emprour of Englande, kinge [Page 7] Hērye the.Kynge Henry. viî. of that name, as a most worthye mynystre of God, hath goue be­fore yow in that behalfe. He hath made open vnto ye the waye, and dryuē awaye from your gates the great aduersarye that shuld most haue noyed yow. Dysdayne not than yow to folowe, Take from your true subiectes, the popes false Christ with hys belles and bablynges,Christ. with hys myters and mastryes, wyth hys fannoms and fopperyes, and lete them haue frelye the true Christ agayne that their heauen­lye father sent them from aboue fashyo­ned out vnto thē in the Gospell. For mo­che more bewtifull is he in the syght of true beleuers, thā are all the corrupt chyldren of men, with all theyr gorgyou­se aparelynges. Loke you ther­vnto with ernestnesse, for nothinge will be at the lat­tre day­more strayghtlye requy­red of you thā that.

The Actes of Englysh votaryes, comprehendynge their vnchast practyses and exam­ples by all ages, from the worldes begynnynge to thys present yeare, collected out of their owne le­gendes and Chronycles By Iohan Bale.

¶Marryage instytuted of God.

IN paradyse our eternall and mercyfull father instytuted maryage,Matrymonye. inme­dyatlye after mannys first creacyon, and left yt with hym as an honest, comelye, wholsom, holye, and nedefull remedye agaynst all beastlye abusyons of the fleshe that shuld after happē, and graunted therunto hys eternall blessynge. Increase (sayth he) multyplye, and fyll the earthe, Gene. 1. And thys repeted he thryse after that▪ Gene. 8. ct. 9. to the intent yt myght be groundedlye marked, and wele knowne of men to be hys most ernest ordynaunce.the first relygyō Thys was the first ordre of Relygyō that euer was made, and of must holy­nesse, yf we dewlye respect the maker therof with the other cyrcumstaunces besydes, preferrynge hys wysdome to mā ­nys [Page 8] wysdome. And for that yt shuld not be reckened a thynge vnaduysedlye done of hym, he loked thervpon agayne amonge all hys other workes, and coude beholde no imperfeccyon therin, but percey­ued that yt was of excedynge goodnesse. Yet hath there sens rysen a sort, whiche haue agaynst Gods heauenlye wysdo­me,Vnma­ryed prestes. set their fleshlye folyshnesse, whiche are non other to be reckeued than the verye sede and of sprynge of the serpēt. Thoughe these haue knowne that there is a God, yet haue they not gloryfyed hym in faythe and mekenesse, but haue become most vayue in their ymagynacy­ons. Where as he hath declared marryage excedynglye good,Gods aduersaryes. they haue condempned it as a thynge execrable and wicked. And where as he hath spoken yt by hys owne mouthe, that yt is not good for mā to be alone, they haue improued that doctryne and taught the cōtrarye, as a thynge more perfyght and Godlye.

¶Marryage contempned of Sa­than.

THus Sathan erected hymself a­gaynst God in that wycked generacyon, whiche beganne first in Cain,Cain. and hath euer sens contynued in that posteryte. For thys presumpcyon God gaue them clerelye ouer, and left them to themselues with all their good [Page] intentes and vowes, wherupon they ha­ue wrought sens that tyme fylthynesse vnspekeable. Their chast women, vestals Monyals,Nōnes and Mō kes. Nonnes, and Begynes, changynge the naturall vse, haue wrougth vnnaturallye. Lyke wyse the men in their Prelacyes, presthodes, and innumerable kyndes of Monkerye, for want of wo­men hath brent in their lustes, and done abhomynacyons without nombre, so re­ceyuynge in themselues the iust rewarde of their errour. Of these most hellyshe & dyabolyck trutes, holy Saynt Paule admonyshed the Romanes, in the firste chaptre of hys Epystle vnto them, kno­wynge afore hande that out of their cor­rupted christy anyte,Sodo­mytes. shulde ryse soche a fylthye flocke as shuld worke them eue­rye where. But neyther of Paule nor yet of Peter haue the fore warnynges away led, but those brockysh boores haue gone frely forewarde without checke tyll now of late dayes, where in God hath geuen vs as more pure syght to beholde their buskelynges.

¶Marryage of Prestes in both lawes.

TO make manyfest vnto thē, what wyues the lorde appoynted by hys seruaunt Moses,Prestes wyues. vnto the leuytycall prestes in the sacred posteryte of Aaron Leuit. zi. et Ezech. 44. yt were [Page 9] but labour lost.Prestes wyues. Eyther to put them in remembraunce that Christ was borne in marryage, though hys mother were al­wayes a mayde, ād that he left vnto hys Apostles marryage in lyberte euermore yt were in veyne also. For all thys hath God shewed vnto them playnelye, by hys true prophetes in thys lattre age, declarynge the fynall destruecyō of that wretched kyngedome. As by Martyn Luther,Haters of the Pope. Iohan Pomerane, Frances lam­bert, Oswaldus Myconius, Philpp Melanchtō, & soche other (as ys sayd afore) but all haue they taken for fables. That lorde sent them one vnto their owne doores, which effectuallye ded hys massage, euen Robert Barnes by name, [...]arnes. of whose grounded argumentes they haue not yet dyscharged the leaste, besydes that they haue had from hym by good Wyllyam Turner and George Ioye. And all thys haue they dysdaynouslye laughed to scorne. Consyderynge therfore that no gētyll speche wyll amende them, nor yet shar­pe threttenynges call them to repentaunce,The autour. he wyll now cast their owne vyle donge in their faces, that yt shall cleaue fast vpon them, Mala. 2. He wyll throwe in their tethe by thys boke and soch other the styukynge examples of their hypo­crytysh lyues, with their calkynges and cloynynges to patche vp that dauberye [Page] of the deuyll, their vowed wyuelesse and husbandelesse chastyte.

¶Englande inhabyted afore Noe and after.

ANd for as moche as the tyttle of thys present treatyse only respecteth Englande,Englā de. onlye shall yt treate the vnchast examples of the spirytualte therof, with serten examples of Ro­mysh Popes whiche than wrought their iuggelynge mastryes there. To fetche the matter from the first foundacyon, & so to stretche yt forewarde, I am fullye assertayned by auncyēt writynges, that thys lande was with people replenyshed longe afore Noes dayes.Afore Noe. Yea, soche tyme as men were multyplyed vpon the vny­uersall earthe, Gene. 6. As they than had left God appoynted Relygyō, and had taken wayes vnto them after their owne good intentes, soche vnspekable fylthy­nesse folowed, as brought vpon them the great dylu [...]ye or vnyuersall flod, which left non alyue,The flood. but drowned them vp as yt ded all other quarters. Thys wytnes­seth both Moses and Berosus, the most aun­cyēt writers we reade of. After the seyd flood, was yt agayne inhabyted by the of sprynge of Iapheth the third sonne of Nor.Iapheth For of thē (sayth Moses) were the Iles of the Gentyles sorted oute into re­gyons, euerye one after, knowne dyuer­se [Page 10] from other, by their languages, kynde redes, & nacyons, Gene. 10. And in the da­yes of Phaleg the sonne of Heber,Phaleg was that dyuysyon of Prouynces, lyke as fo­loweth in the same chapter. Samothes the Brother of Gomer (whō the Byble calleth Mesech) restored than agayne thys lande in hys posteryte,Samo­thes gygas. the prestes therof called Samothei, for so moch as he was the first that fournyshed yt with lawes, as witnesseth Ioannes Annius in commentarijs Berosi.

¶Albion with hys Samothytes.

AFter thys grewe yt into a name, & was called Albion.Albion gigas. Not ab albis ru­pibus, as fryre Bartylmew hath fantasyed in hys worke De proprietatibus rerū. Nor yet ab Albiana the kynges dougter of Syria, as Marianus the monke hath dreamed yt. For of latyne wordes coude yt haue no name, before the latyne yt selfe was in vse. And the other without grounded autoryte, apereth a playne fable, as witnesseth both Volateranus and Badius But rather yt shuld seme to be called Albion, ab Albione Gygante, the sonne of Neptunus, Neptu­nus. whiche was afterwarde slayne of Hercules for stoppynge hys passage at the enteraunce of Rhodanus, as testyfyeth Diodorus Siculus and also Pomponius Mcla. Not onlye bycause the seyd [Page] Albion was a gyaunt, lyke as the afore seyd Samothes was afore hym, but also for that hys father Neptunus was than take for the lorde of great God of the see, wherin yt is enclosed. What the chastyte was of the Samothytes or prestes for that age,Samo­thytes. the Poetes dothe declare at large. Venus was than their great God­desse, and ruled all in that spirytuall fa­melye, as she hath done euer sens.

¶The Samothytes and their chastyte.

THey had in their temples, vestals (whom now we call Nōnes) who se offyce was to maynteyne the fyre for perfourmaunce of the sacryfyces, least yt shuld at anye tyme go out.vestals. These were chosen in before they were .xvi. years olde, there remaynyng vnmaryed the space of .xxx. years, and others alwa­yes by that tyme succeded in their row­mes. Some of these were presbyteresses, as they pleased the spyrituall fathers. And as the lyghtes went out by their neglygence, their ponnyshmentes were to be beaten of the Byshoppes. More ouer yf anye of thē chaunced to fall in aduou­tery, except they ded yt in the darke with them,chastyte their iudgement was to be buryed in the grounde quycke. Alwayes they went awaye vyrgynes from them (what so euer was done in the meane season) & [Page 11] at the .xxx. years ende, they were in lyberte to marrye yf they wolde. Thys testy­fyeth Hermanus Torrentinus, and Iohannes Textor, Tyrāny now. with other autours. Yet was not thys abhomynable superstyeyon so tyrannouslye handeled amonge them than, as yt hath bene sens a monge their succes­sours the papystes, whom by their cru­ell conceyons[?] (syned they neuer so longe) they sent at the last to hell with a conscy­ence adust, were not the lorde more mer­cyfull.

¶Brute with hys Druydes.

IN processe of tyme, gote Brutus Syl­uius brutus syluius. thys lande of the Albyons by conquest, in the .xviij. yeare of Heli the hygh prest of the Israelytes, lyke as Aeneas ded Italye, and other great aduē ­tourers their regyons. And of hym was yt called Brytayne, and the people ther­of Brytaynes. After he had fournyshed yt with newe regymentes and lawes, there entered in a newe fashyoned sort of prestes, all dyuerse from the other, and they were called Druydes.Druy­des. These dwelt in the forestes lyke heremytes and pro­cureth both publyque and pryuate sacry­fyces to be done. To them was yt alwa­yes put, to dys usse all matters of rely­gyon, to appoynt therunto the ceremo­nyes, to brynge vp youthe in naturall [Page] dyscyplyne, & to ende all controuersyes▪ Plinius, Strabo, Cornelius Tacitus, Caius Iulius, and other approued autours, report thē to haue their first orygynall in thys lan­de, but that apereth not true. Rather shuld they seme to come first hyther frō Athens,Athens a most famouse cytie of the Grekes. Iohan Hardynge reporteth in hys Chronycle, that kynge Bladud brought them first frome thens, allegynge there Merlyne for hys autour.

¶The Druydes and their chastyte.

VVhat their rule was conceruyn­ge women, we shall not nede to seke farder than to the .vi. chap­tre of Baruch, and the .xiiij. chaptre of Daniel in the Byble.whores Baruch sayth there, that their custome was to decke their whores with the Iewels and ornamen­tes of their Idolles. Daniel sayth, that they with them deuoured vp the daylye offerynges and sacryfyces of Bel. Yet Hector Boethius writeth in the seconde bo­ke of hys Scottysh Chronycle, that there were some amonge them,one god whiche taught one euerlastynge God alone to be wor­shypped, without Image made or other symylytude els. Neyther allowed they them (sayth he) that applyed vnto their Goddes the symylytudes of beastes af­ter [Page 12] the Egyptyanes maner (as the Pa­pystes do yet to thys daye Saynt Marke to a Lyon,beastes wor­shypped Saynt Luke to a calfe, and Saynt Iohan to an egle, besyde Saynt Antonyes pygge, Saynt Georges col­te, and Saynte Dunstanes deuyll) but greatlye reproued them. Neuerthelesse yet were they great teachers of sorcerye. For as testyfyeth Iohan Textor in hys offycynes, so expert were the Brytay­nes in art magyck in the dayes of ply­nye, that in a maner they passed the Parthyanes, whiche were the first masters therof.

¶Prestes marryed and vnmar­ryed.

NOw as concernynge the prestes of the Hebrues or Israelytes for all these ages (whiche were the peculyar flocke of God) they had all wyues that were ryghtuouse amonge them,Prestes maryed accordynge to the Relygyon that he first appoynted them. Not, Melchi­sedech, Abraham, Moyses, Aaron, Phi­nees, Samuel, Nathan, Zorobabel, Ie­sus, Esdras, Mathathias, & soche other, were all marryed men and had chyldrē. The Scripturs report that these men were beloued with God, and that' in ho­lynesse non were euer founde lyke vnto them. But neyther was that for their vowes nor yet for their good intentes, [Page] Eccli. 44. and so fourth .vi. chapters mo­re. If anye were chast vowers that tyme the .ij.Vota­ryes. prestes that lusted after Susanna, were of them, Daniel. 13. So were the wā ­ton sonnes of Heli and Samuel, 1. Reg. 2. & 1. Reg. 8. with soche other lyke. Which were afore God verye reprobates, for despysynge hys ordre, as wele in that as in other thynges. Of soche chast vowers were there some, at the verye tyme whā Christ was borne, both relygyouse pre­stes and leuytes, which were most hygh lye taken amonge them. These thynkynge marryage vnholye, abstayned from the vse of women, but they spared not to worke execrable fylthynesse amonge thē selues,Zacha­rye marryed. and one to polute an other. Za­charye a marryed prest, and father of holye Iohan Baptyst, a man for hys mar­ryage founde iust afore God, reprehen­ded that abhomynacyon in them, & was cruellye slayne for yt, as testyfyeth Epi­phanius li. 1. To. 2. De heresibus. He was put vnto deathe (sayth Philip Melanchton vpon the .xi. chaptre of Daniel) for re­bukynge the vyces of hys college.

¶Christ alloweth marryage in hys.

IEsus Christ the eternall sonne of God, neuer contempned the firste ordynaunce of hys euerlastynge father, but had yt insuche reuerence, that he wolde not be borne but vndre yt. He [Page 13] found his worthy mother Mary no professed Nonne,Marye a wyfe. as the dottynge papystes haue dreamed, to couer their sodometrye with a most precyouse coloure, but an honest mannys wyfe, marryed accordynge to the custome than vsed, Matt. 1. and Luce 1. In her so marryed without eyther vo­we or promes of virgynyte,No nonne. by the holye Ghostes most wonderfull workynge was he incarnated and so became man, to redeme vs from the captyuyte of syn­ne, and restore vs agayne to the full fa­uer of hys father. He honoured marrya­ge with the fyrst myracle that he outwardlye wrought in our manhode, and cal­led vnto hys Apostleship, not wyuelesse vowers, but marryed men. Ioan, 1. & Mar et. 1. Peter maryed He wēt verye gentyllye vnto peters howse, and healed hys wyues mother which laye there syeke of a feuer, takynge hys repast there, tarryenge with thē all the nyght, and doynge great cures there also. And at hys departure in the mornynge, he neyther commaunded Peter to breake vp howsholde, nor yet to forsa­ke hys wyfe and make her a vowesse. Marci. 1. Luce. 4. Math. 8. He neuer cōmaunded,No vo­wes cō ­maūded nor yet exacted the vowe of vyrgy­nyte in all hys whole Gospell, but left all men in lyberte to marrye yf they lyst, forbyddynge al men fyrmelye, to make anye lawe of coaccyon or of separacyon, [Page] where God hath sett fredome in marryage. Math. 19. Marci. 10. No forsakynge of wyfe and chyldrē admytted he euer, but as the vnmoueable & constaunt stādynge by hys worde requyreth yt, in them that he hath appoynted to suffre deathe vndre the worldes tyrannye for yt.

The Apostles & fyrst preachers marryed

PEters wyfe went with hym in the tyme of his preaching.Peters wyfe. 1. Cori. 9. and was put to deathe at Antioche for confessinge Iesus Christ, as wytnesseth Clemens Alexandrinus in .7. li. Stro­matum, and Eusebius Caesariensis li. iij. Ca. 30 Ecclesiastice historie. Paule left hys wyfe at Philippos,Paule marry­ed. a cytie of the Macedone­anes, by consent of them both. Phil 4. & 1. Cor. 7. For thys onlye cause (sayth both Clemens and Eusebius) that he myght the more easelye therby and with the lesse cō beraunce, preache the Gospell abrode. Isi dorus híspalēsis in hys boke De ortu & obi­tu sanctorum patrum, and Freculphus lexouiensis in the seconde boke and fort chaptre of hys Chronycles, reporteth both, that Philip the Apostle preached in fraunce to the verye extent of the Occeane see,Phylpp marry­ed. ād was afterwarde done vnto deathe in hierepoli a cytie of the Phrygiaues, and at the last honorablye buryed there with his doughters. By whose occasyon this real me than called Brytayne was conuerted [Page 14] vnto the Christen beleue For in the yea­re from Christes incarnacyō Ioseph of Ari­mathe. An. do. 63 lxiij. was Ioseph of Arimathe and other dyscyples sent ouer of the seyd Philip to preache Christ, and entered both with their wy­ues and chyldren, Armagus than beynge Kynge of the lande. This testyfyeth Iohan Capgraue in Catologo sanctorum Anglie, Thomas scrope de anti. carm.Scrope ca, 7. Iohā Hardyng in hys. 47. chaptre, and Polido­rus uergilius. li. z. Anglice historie.

Brytayne first conuerted by mē maryed.

THese were surelye the orygynall begynnynges (sayth Polidorus of the Christē Relygyō in Brytayne. Gildas witnessyth also, in his fyrst treatyse De excidio Britannie. That the Bry­taynes toke the christen faythe at the verye sprynge or fyrst goynge forth of the Gospell,gospell. whā the churche was most per­fyght, and had most strengthe of the ho­lye ghost. All that tyme and a longe sea­son after, the mynysters helde their wy­ues, accordyng to the fyrst ordre of God, without, vowynge or yet professinge of vyrgynyte, and so contynued to the dayes of Lucius, which ys called in the Chronycles the first Christē Kynge.Kynge. Though thys Lucius were a good man,Lucius. and began wele to inclyne to the Gospell, yet was he worldlye mynded, and thought that yt wanted dewe auctoryte [Page] so lōge as yt was mynystred but of symple and poore laye marryed men. Anon therfor he sent vnto Rome .ij.Rome. of those minysters called Eluanus and Meduinus vnto Eleutherius the Byshop (for they had than no pope) to haue some autoryte from thens. And thys was done in the yeare of our Lorde. L. lxxix.Anno domini 179. Wherupon Marcus Sabellicus sayth, Enneade. 7. li. 5. That of all provynces Brytayne was the fyrst that receyued the Christen fay the with publique ordynaunce.

¶Christyanyte somwhat corrupted.

THā Eleutherius sent hyther .ij. of hys doctors, called fugacius and Damyanus, to set here an ordre. These fyrst baptysed lucius with a gre­at part of hys nobylyte and commons, ād than with hys consent changed the Idols temples into christen churches (as they no we all them) the flamynes or Idoll sacryfycers,Chur­ches. which were than .xxviij. in nō bre, into so manye byshoppes, and the .iij. archyflamynes into .iii. archebyshoppes, as wytnessyth Galfridus Monemthensis in hys seconde boke. Au­tours De origine & gestis Britonum. cap. i. Alphredus Beuerlacensis in hys Chronycle, Vincencius, Antoninus, Nauclerus, Bergomas, Polidorus, and a great sort more. Thys chrystianyte endured in Brytayne,Chrysti­anyte the space of .CC. and .xvi. years, vnto the persecucyon of Dyoclesyane, [Page 15] sayth Ranulphus in Polichronico. li. 4. Ca. 16, Vpō thys toke the Rome churche first occasyon,Dyoce [...] ses pa­ryshes. to deuyde the christen prouynces into dyoceses and parryshes. Marke wele these fyrst buyldynges of Antichrist, or of Nemroth the yongar, and consydre out of what good stuffe they ryse with­out Gods worde. All this haue I writtē hytherto, not as matters correspondyn­ge to the tyttle of my boke, but that their spirytuall frutes maye apere what they are, euen from the verye rootes.

¶The first sprynge of monkerye in Brytayne.

AS this newe chrystiantye from Rome, had gotten here of the Paga­nes both temples and possessyons,Tēples and were wele fauerdlye satled (their byshoppes and prestes perchaunce beynge the same mynysters that had serued the Idolles in them afore) anon after there arose out of yt a serten kynde of mon­kerye,Mōke­rye. not in apparell, but in aperaunce of a more sober lyfe. These within a whyle semed better lerued than the other, ād more depelye fell into the peoples esty­macyon. Wherupō arose sone after gre­at stryfe and vnquyetnesse amonge thē,Heresy­eu. and out of that stryfe most detestable he resye [...]. For one of them called pelagius,Pelagi­us. beynge of the great monasterye of Bē ­cornaburch in Chestre shyre (though so [Page] me call yt Bāgor) begā to dyspute with them for the strēghte of mānys fre will, and sayd that man myght be saued ther­by,frewyll without the grace of God, so deuyenge the effect of Christes blood, as hys fo­lowers are not ashamed to do yet to this daye. Agaynst this heretyke pelagius, wrote Saynt Augustyn, Saynt Hierom, Cyrillus, Orosius, Innocencius, Gennadius, ād at the last Thomas Braduuardin a doctour here in Englande, with dyuerse other.

¶Heresye in Brytayne aryseth of monkerye.

YEt came there in no vowynge of chastite all this tyme, neyther was vyrgynyte thought anye holyar amonge them than marryage. For one Seuerus beynge both a monke,Seuerꝰ prest, ād byshop, had a sonne there called leporius a monke also and a prest,Leporiꝰ which vexed the lande with that leruynge taught of hys father, in the yeare of our Lord. CCCC xxxij.432 as wytnessyth both Prosper Aquitannus, and also Flores historiarum. Thys leporius made hys boast, that he was able to lyue purelye of hym selfe, and by force of hys owne fre wyll, without the assistēce of God, as reporteth of hym, Gennadi­us Massiliensis,Antors Honorius Augustudu­nensis, & Ioannes Tritemius, in suis illustriū uirorum Catalogis, and now last of all, Cō ­radus Gesnerus in uniuersali bibliotheca.. Of [Page 16] the same sort was there an other called Agricola,Agricola. a prestes sonne also, which in the yeare of our Lorde .CCCC.xivi. trobled the Brytaynes with the same doctrine,446. as flores historiarum sheweth. The er­rours of both these were at the same ty­me confuted by Germanus and Lupus with other frenche doctours, which ca­me thydre thā for the same purpose, spe­cyallye of Saynt Augustine in Affrica.

¶A prestes sonne was Saynt Partrick.

SAynt Partrick the great Apost­le of Irelande,Par­trick was borne here in this Brytayne aboute the yeare of our Lorde .CCC.lxi. and had a prest to hys father called Calphurnius, 361. which was also a deacons sonne that was na­med Fodunus. His mothers name hyght Conches, and was holye Saynt Marty­nes systre.Marti­nus. Thus testyfyeth Ranulphus Cestrensis in Polychronico, li. 4, ca. 29. and Iohan Capgraue in Catologo sanctorum Anglie. If this had bene fowle playe in tho­se dayes, Saynt Martyne wolde neuer so pacyentlye haue suffered yt. For we reade that he was verye tendre vnto the seyd Partrick,Patricius. after that his fryndes had sent hym thydre, and taught hym manye Godly thyngs. What rule this partrick kepte in that behalf, I haue not redde. Yet fynde I in hys lyfe wrytten, that [Page] he had a ladde waytynge on hym called Benignus, Benig­nus. which alwayes reported hym, to be his owne propre father, he neuer deuynege yt. I reade also that one Mod­uenna an Iryshe woman was verye fa­mylyar with hym, whether yt were by the waye of marryage or no, that can I not tell. Ex ante nominatis autoribus.

¶Sayntes were begottē in whordome.

TO entre more depelye into the peoples oppnyon,Chastyte. a chastyte was pretensed anon after in that mō ­kerye,Mod­wenna. but not yet solempnelye vowed, & in manye places of the realme were mo­nasteryes buylded both of men and wo­men, But marke what folowed therof immedyatlye after. Christ chaunced in those dayes to haue many bretherne. For manye virgynes had than children with our fathers, at the least the fathers of thē were neuer yet knowne.

Saynt Dubrice that was after war­de the great archebyshop of Cairlegyon and metropolytane of all the lande,Dubri­tius. had a mayde to hys mother, called Eurdila, but neuer wolde she confesse hym to ha­ue any father.Kētigernus. Saynt Kētigerne byshop of glasghu) that ye now call Saynt As­ses or Asaphes (had in lyke case a fayre mayde to hys forth bryngar, but father wolde she graunt non to hym, for no cō ­pulsyon.merlinꝰ Merlyne also the great soth sayer [Page 17] of wales, was an holy Nonnes sonne in saynt Peters of Cairmardyne, no fa­ther yet knowne to hym but a sprete of the ayre. The first .ij. sheweth Iohan capgraue in Catal sanc. Ang. And this lattre wondre ys mencyoued of all famouse writers. A great sort of the hystoryes roude I reherse, but these are ynough at thys tyme.

¶Lyke examples are amonge the Turkes.

SOche an other knauerye ys v­sed amonge the Turkes relygy­ouse buggerers to this present daye,Turkes and those chyldren that are begottē amonge them, are holden for most holye sayntes, as these were. They take it for no maruele that Christ was borne of a vyrgyne, for (they saye) they haue soche amonge them at all tymes. But to turne agayne to my purpose. The cause whye the fathers of the afore seyd chyldren myght not than be knowne, was thys, Iohan capgraue sayth.A awe The lawe was that tyme in Brytayne, that yf a yonge wenche had be begottē with chylde in her fathers howse, or anye where els [...], this was her iudgement.Iudge­ment. She shuld haue be­ne brought vnto an hygh mountayne, ād there throune downe headlonges, her corruptour beynge byheaded. Yf this lawe had styll contynued, and neuer so bene [Page] put to the spirytuall courte without con­seyence, neuer had the vowe of their cha­stite ronne so farre as yt hath done, to manye a thousandes dempnacyon.

¶More Sayntes yet begotten in whoredome

SAynt Dauid of wales the gre­at archebysehop of Mentuia,Dauid. which had so manye prophecy­ers and so manye Angels sent afore to geue warnynge of hys cōmynge .xxx. ye­ars ere he was borne, was begotten out of maryage in stynkyng whoredome. For hys mother was a Nonne, ād his father the earle of a contreye there called Cairdigam shyre. A prynce called Dyhocus in Kynge Arthurs tyme, inflamed at the deuyls suggestion with the fleshlye loue of hys owne naturall doughter, begat of her Saynt Kynede the holye hermpte,kynedꝰ that in Wales wrought so manye great myracles. One Dubtacus an Iryshe mā begate holy saynt Brigyde of hys mayd seruaunt called brocsech,brigida. euen vnderneth hys wyure nose to spyght her with it, which had so manye re [...]e [...]lacyons from heauen, and so manye popes pardōs frō Rome. Saynt Cuthbert the great God,Cuth­bert. of the Northe, and he that was wonte to defende vs from the Scottes, was a mysbegottē also, for hys mother was vnmarryed. And hys father in Irelande to ha­ue the good occupyēg of her, slewe both [Page 18] her father and mother. These were the spirytuall begynnynges of the Sayntes of that age. If ye beleue not me, loke Io­han Capgraue in Catalogo sanctorum An­glie. capgra­ue. and he shall tell ye moche more of the matter. I coude shewe yow manye more yet of soche holye sayntes byrthes, but lete these for this tyme suffise.

¶Whoredome estemed most holynesse.

MArke how abhominable who­ryshnesse in all these whorysh frutes,whore­dome is holye is auaunced of that who­rysh Rome churche, to the great blemyshynge of Godlye marryage. The spyrytuall Sodomytes and knaues hath not be­ne ashamed to wryte yt in the lyues and lyenge legēdes of all these, that is to saye of Dubricius, Dauid, Kynedus, Kenti­gerne, Cuthberth, and Brigyde, with so­che lyke, and solempnelye so to reade and syng yt as Gods seruyce in their sēples,Theyr Gods seruyce that they were sanctyfyed in their mo­thers wombes. Se what aduauncemen­tes they haue for stynkynge whoredome, and now lytle deuocyon to chast marryage instituted of God. Neuer were the sō ­nes of Abraham, Isaac, ād Iacob, of Moyses, Eleazar, and Phinees, so paynted oute with myracles ād wonders, nor yet so pranked vp with tabernacles ād lygh­tes, sensynges and massynges, as these whores byrdes. Thus iudge they whoredome holynesse, & wholsō maryage synne, [Page] Come out of Sodome ye whoremongers and Hypocrytes,The Popes. chaplaynes. popysh byshoppes and prestes, for as yet ye haue not refour­med thys abhomynacyon, but styll vpholde yt for your Romyshe Gods seruyce. Come out theues and knaues come out.

¶Women greuouse and solacyouse.

VVhat a do these holye sayntes of theyrs had ād their vowers (whā they come ones to vowes makynge) for women ād with womē,women as to kepe them out of their monasteryes, & to make thē beare chyldrē whā they were barrē, it were in infynyte thyng to wryte.Dauid Saynt Dauids mōkes were sheared away with naked women at a broke syde in Rosidaualle. So were Saynt Theliaes hermy­tes also in an other place not farre frō thens.dubriciꝰ Saynt Dubrices bretherne had manye hote mouynges in their fleshe, ād were fayne oft tymes to stande naked in the colde ryuer.Kenti­gernus. Saynt Kentigernes disciplen toke great paynes vpon them, to make barren women frutefull. Whan saynt Brigyde was at the verye poynt of marryage,brigida she stole awaye preuylye with her iij. maydes, and wayted longe after vpō byshop Machyll, doynge manye great cures in hys seruyce with holye water. Saynt Modwē Saynt Modwen. also after soche an other sort, wayted vpon byshop Hiber and his [Page 19] bretherne with her maydes. A woman the same season accused byshop Broon for begettynge her with chylde,brigida. and Brigyde lyke a good bodye, by a charme or ij made all safe agayne. As one of her maydes was goynge to her lou [...]r a prestes bed, for returnynge agayne in tyme, she coude her moche thanke. All these holy hystoryes shall ye fynde in Iohā capgraue.

¶A spirytuall example of a votarye.

SAynt Iltute,Iltutus which had bene alwayes a most valeaunt captayne amonge the Brytaynes, at the suggestyon of saynt of Cadoc an Hermpte, put from hym hys most vertuouse and chast wyfe, leauynge her nothynge els to lyue vpon, but barlye breade and wa­ter, an homelye repast for her that had bene a ladye and tenderlye brought vp.hys wyfe. And as she on a tyme resorted vnto hym onlye to haue hearde the swete worde of the Lorde, her commynge thydre so sore discontented hys mynde, that wyth a charme he put out both her eyes. For I am certayne, yt come by no Godlye po­wer, she beynge ledde of so Godly a spre­te.Not Paules lernyng If this be saynt Paules lernynge, a man so myserablye to leaue, hys wyfe, ād so vngodlye to vse her for axynge good counsell, I report me to yow. Yet must [Page] he be styll a faynte in the Popes holye churche, bycause he was a tyraūt to marriage, for non other holynesse had he. So the Sayntes recken I more fytt for hell thā for heauē. Wale, this story hath also Iohā Capgraue in Catalogo sāctorū Anglie

¶Vrsula with her sort, appoynted to marrye.

OF Vrsula and her .xi.Vrsula cum .xi millibꝰ thousande companyons, haue the spyrytuall hypocrytes by helpe of their spi­rytuall father the deuyll, practysed innumerable lyes, by them to make their newlye sought out vyrgynyte to apere sum­what gloryouse to the worldlye dodypolles that neuer wyll be wyse. The veryte of the hystorye ys thys, after all iust writers. Whan our Brytaynes had ones gotten by theyr warre,Armorica. the lande of Ar­morica (that we now call the lesser Bry­tayne) and were put in perpetuall possessyon therof by their Kynge Maximus a­boute the yeare of our Lorde .CCC. and XC.390 they accorded amonge themselues through the assent of Conanius their captayne,Cona­nus. onlye to marrye with their, owne nacyon, and in no wyse to haue a do with the frenche women there, for dyuerse parels.Diono­thus. Wherupon they sent by ād by ouer the see to Dionothus the duke of Cornewale, which than in the kynges absence had gouernan̄ce of all the realme, instaūtlye [Page 20] desyerynge hym, to make prouysyon for them Which immedyatlye gathered from all partes of the lande,For mariage to the nom­bre of .xi. thousande maydes ād other womē, and so shypped them at London vpō the Thamys with hys owne dere doughter Vrsula, for so moche as Conanus despered to haue her to wyfe. And as they were abroode vpon the mayne sees, so­che contrarye wyndes and tēpestes fell vpon thē,Drow­ned. as drowned some of their shyppes, and droue the resydue of them into the handes of their enemyes the hunnes and the pyctes, which slewe a great nombre of them, as they founde them not agreable to their fleshlye purposes. Thys sheweth Galfredus Monemuthēsis, li. 2.Au­tours ca, 4. Alphredus Beuerlacensis, Ranulphus Cestrēsis, Ioānes Harding, Robertus Fabiā, Tritemius in Cōpēdio, Volateranus, & Polydorus.

¶An historye to their ghostlye purpose.

BVt se here the cōueyaunce of these spyrytuall gentylmen, in Play­sterynge vp their vnsauerye sor­cerye [...].With lyes. They saye, they all vowed vyrgynyte, & were persuaded of saynt Micha­ell the Archāgell & of saynt Iohā the Euā gelist, neuer to marrye (as though they were dyswaders of maryage for their lecherouse vowes) & so wēt frō thēs relygyously to Rome on pylgrymage,Pylgri­mage with great deuocyō .ij. and .ij. togyther, & were [Page] honorablye receyued there of the Pope and hys clergye. If this be not good wa­re, tell me. I thynke there wanted no spyrytuall occupyenge, for the tyme they were there, yf the storye were true. For Daniel sayth, that the lust of that proude kyngedome, shuld be vpon women. Daniel. 11.Dan. 11 In all fleshlye desyres (sayth Hieremye) they are become lyke ranke stoned horse, neyenge at euerye mannys wyfe. Hieremi. 5.Hiere. 5. And in dede fome wryters haue vttered yt, that they were neuer good sens their beynge there. Now marke the sequese[?]. In their returne homewarde a­gayne towardes Coleynt, they had in their cumpanye (saye theyr wryters) po­pe Ciriacus Names teyned. (yf there euer were anye soche) Poncius, Petrus, Vincencius, Calixtus, kilianus, Florencius, Ambrosius, Iustinus, and Christianus, all cardinalles. Cesarius, Cle­mens, Columbanus, Yuuanus, Lotharius, Pantalus, Mauricius, Maurilius, Foillanus, Sulpicius, Iacobus, Guilhelmus, Michael, Eleutherius, Bonifacius, and vij more of the Popes howsholde, all Byshoppes, besydes a great nombre of Prestes and Chaplaynes.Hystoryames Diuerslye is this holye legende handeled of Iacobus Bergomas in Li. De claris mulieribus, of Sigebertus, Vincencius, Antoninus, Hartmā nus, Carsulanus, Vorago, Vuernerus, Naucle­rus, Mantuanus, Vuicelius, Caxton, Capgra­ue, Hector Boethius, Maior, and a great [Page 21] sort more, scarselye one agreynge with an other.

¶Fyne workemanshyp to be marked,

HE that wolde take the payne,Proue the spretes. to conferre their Chronycles and writynges, but cōcernynge this onlye matter, obseruynge dylygentlye their diuerse bestowynge of tymes, pla­ces, and names, with other thynges per­teynynge to the cyrcumstaunce of hysto­rye, shuld anon perceyue their subtyle cō ue yaunce in manye other matters. The solempne feast of these .xi. thousande she pylgrymes, for their goynge to Rome, ys yet no small matter in their Idolatrouse churche, and yet they poore sowles ne­uer came there, as the moste auctentyue writers doth proue.Onlye to mar­rye. Their goynge out of Brytanie was to become honest Christen mennys wyues, and not to go on pylgrymage to Rome, and so become byshoppes bonylasses, or prestes playefers Se what our auncyēt Englyshe writers hath sayd in thys matter, which more experimentlye knewe yt, and lete the forē lyars go, whiche beynge farre of cared the lesse to lye. In dede thys ys a verye straunge procurynge of Sayntes, yf ye marke yt wele, but that the monkes and prebendes of Coleyne thought to do sumwhat for the pleasure of their Nonnes [Page] there,Nōnes of Co­leyne. whiche had gathered togyther an heape of dead mennys bones. For their bones coude they not haue, beynge drowned in the great Occeane see, as Galfre­dus and the other autours veryfyeth afore. But both Christ and Paule ones tolde vs, that we shuld be subtyllye cyrcumuented of that wylye generacyan, whan they shuld worke their deceytfull won­ders. Math. 24. and. 2. Thes. 2.

¶Vowynges ded not yet constrayne.

ALl thys tyme were there no con­straynynge vowes but all was fre to leaue or to holde. For Constans Cōstās the eldeste sonne of kynge Constantyne the seconde, beynge a mōke of Sayt Amphibalus abbeye in Cairguent, that ye now call Saynt Swythunes in wynche­stre, was taken out of yt without dyspensacyon, about the yeare of our lorde. CCCC.xliij.443. ād crowned kynge of Brytayne, beynge in full lyberte of marrya­ge. Galfredus, Ranulphus, Hardyng, Capgra­ue, Caxton, and Fabyan. In lyke case Maglo­cunus Maglocunus. (as Gildas reporteth) was first a monke, and afterwarde constytute kyn­ge in the yeare of our lorde .CCCCC.lij. contynuynge styll by the space of more than .xxxiiij.552. years, and had for the ty­me .ij. wyues besydes hys concubynes. Thys Maglocunus was rekened the most comelye persone of all hys regyon, and a [Page 22] man to whom God had than geuen gre­at vyctoryes agaynst the Saxons, Nor­weyes, and Danes. Yet was he in hys age as was longe afore hym, Mempricius Mem­pricius. hys predecessour, geuen to most abhomynable sodometrye, whiche he had serued in hys youthe of the consecrate chastyte of the holye clergye. Galfredus, Ranulphus, Hardynge, Fabian, and Flores Historiarum. Verye vehement was Gildas beynge thā a monke of Bencornaburch not farre frō Chestre,Gildas prophe­cyeth. in hys dayly preachynges, both agaynst the clergye and layte, concernynge that vyce and soche other, and prophecyed afore hande of the subuersyon of thys realme by the Saxons for yt, lyke as yt sone after folowed in effect. Loke in both hys bokes, De excidio Britannie, et in scriptis Polidori, Galfredi, et Ranulphi, with the preface of Wyllyam Tyndals obedyence.

¶The Saxons entre with newe Christyanyte.

ANon after the Saxons had gottē of the Brytaynes the full cōquest of thys lāde,Saxōs. the name therof was changed, and hath euer sens bene called Englāde of Engist which was thā their chefe captayne,Englād as wytneseth Iohan Har­dyng, Iohā Maior, Christyanyte. Hector Boethius, Caxtō, Fabyā. Thā came there in a newe fashyoned Christyanyte yet ones a gayne frō Rome [Page] with manye more heythnysh yokes than afore. And that was vpon thys occasyō, as all writers agre. Gregorye the first of that name (now called Saynt Gregorye) behelde in the open market at Ro­me,Grego­rye. Englysh boyes to sell. Marke thys ghostlye mysterye, for the prelates had than no wyues. And womē in those da­yes myght sore haue dystayned their ne­wlye rysyn opynyō of holynesse, yf they had chaunced to haue bene with chylde by them, and therfor other spirytuall re­medyes were sought out for thē by their good prouyders and proctours, ye maye (yf ye wyll) call thē apple squyres.In stede of mar­ryage. And as thys Gregorye behelde them fayre skynned and bewtyfullye faced, with he­are vpon their heades most comelye, anō he axed, of what regyon they were. And answere was made hym, that they were of an yle called Englande. Wele maye they be called Angli Angli. (sayth he) for they haue verye Angelyck vysages. Se how curyouse these fathers were, in the wele [...]yenge of their wares.Wares Here was no cyr­cumstaunce vnloked to, perteynynge to the sale. Yet haue thys Byshopp bent of all writers reckened the best sens hys ty­me. Thys storye mencyoneth Iacobus de Voragine, Vincencius, Antoninus, Ioannes Capgraue, Maior, Polydorus, & an hondred Au­tours more.

¶More Englysh boyes solde at Rome.

AN other example lyke vnto thys, telleth the seyde Iohan Capgraue in hys Cataloge. That as one Macu­tus Macu­tus. an Englysh Brytayne, and Byshop of Ale [...]h in Irelande, beynge at Rome about the yeare of our lorde .CCCCC. [...]00. perceyued serten Englysh boyes to be lolde there openlye. He gaue the pryce of them, and sent them home agayne. Of a lyke lyhode he smelled the spirytuall oc­cupyenge there, and pysyed the most dāpnable castynge awaye of those poore in­nocentes, whome Christ had so derelye redemed with hys blood. Soche an other acte of christē pitye wrought kynge Etel­uuolphus Ethel­wolphꝰ there (after dyuerse writers) whan he in the yeare of our lorde. DCCC. xlvij.847. made sute to Pope leo the fort, to be clerelye dyspensed with for the ordre of subdeacon, whiche he had in hys yowthe receyued (wholsome ware I warande yow) of Helmestane thā Byshop of wynchestre. For by that tyme they had crepte into the seate of the Serpent, Apoca. 13.Apo. 13. and obtayned full autoryte to dyspense with all pactes, professyons, promyses, vowes, [...]thes, oblygacyons, and sealynges to the Beastes holye ser­uyce. Marke alwayes the tymes.Tymes Thys storye hath Vuylyam of Malmesburye, li. 2. [Page] De regibus, Ranulphe, Hardyng, Fabyan and Polydorus with other. And that the one wanteth, the other alwayes habundauntlye supplyeth. Possessyon was taken of that seate of the Beast vndre phocas the emproure in the yeare of our lorde. DC and .vij.607. whan the papacye first begōne.

¶Augustyne entreth with hys Mōkes

NOw to returne agayne vnto Gregorye. He sent vpon the aforesayd occasyon, into Englande in the yeare from Christes in carnacyō .CCCCC. xcvi.596. a Romy she mōke called Augustyne,Augu­stinus. not of the ordre of Christ as was peter, but of the superstycyouse seete of Benet, there to sprede abrode the Ro­myshe faythe and relygyon, for Christes faythe was there lōge afore. With hym entered Melitus, Iustus, Laurencius, Ioannes, Petrus, Rufinianus, Paulinus, and a great sort more to the nombre of .xl. all monkes Mōkes & Italyanes. Wele armed were they with Aristotles artylerye, as with logyck, Phylosophye, and other craftye scyēces,craftye scyence. but of the sacred scripturs, they knewe lyttle or nothynge. If ye beleue not me, reade in Iohan Capgraues Cataloge, Inu ita Augustini, hys interrogacyōs, Ad Gregorium per laurenciū et Petrum, and ye shall fynde thē voyde of all christen lernynge, eyther of lawe or Gospell. yea, moste in­cypyent & folyshe. Yet was the seyd Au­gustyne [Page 24] the best lerned amōge thē.Ignora­unt apostles. These toke with thē a great nombre of frenche interpretours, bycause they were all ig­noraunte of the languages there. Here was a noble christyanyte towardes, whā the preachers knewe neyther the scrip­turs nor yet the speache of the people. Well, yet they ded myracles.Myra­cles. Yea, so sayd Christ they shuld do, whā he bad vs in a­nye wyse to be ware of thē. Mat. 24. For thys storye, marke specyallye Iohan Cap­graue in Catalogo sanctorum Anglie, Sigebertus, Vincē [...]ius, Antoninus, Tritemius, Christianus Masseus, and the churche legendarye. Dyuersly were they of womē intreated

ANd as cōcernynge womē,Womē greuousslye were they vexed with them cō ­mynge hytherwarde, specyallye at a vyllage called Saye,Saye. within the coūtye of Angeu in fraunce. In the which was buylded immedyatlye after, a churche (they saye) in the honour of the seyd Augustyne, where as no women come, but are plaged with most sodayne deathe, for the dyspleasure there shewed them than,angrye sayntes yet ded thy but laugh vpō thē. Thys sheweth Alexādre the prior of Esseby in hys Annuall of Sayntes by these verses.

Cetus aput Saye uexauit eos mulierum,
Quas peccasse probat, lux noua fōs (que) nouus.
Plebs parat ecclesiā, mulieribus haud reserādā,
Introitum tentat una, sed inde perit.

[Page] Thys storye hath also Iohan Capgraue, and the olde Englysh Festyuall Festy­uall. of Sayn­tes, which was sōtyme the onlye taught Gospell of Englande. Notwithstandynge thys dyspleasure of women abrode, yet founde they womē fauorable within England. For Bertha the quene of Kent, than beynge a frenche woman, caused Kynge Ethelbert to admyt thē with all their tyr [...]erye trashe.Ethel­bert. Yet for the small trust he had vnto them at their first me­tynge, he wolde in no wyse commē with thē within anye howse (the storye sayth) least they shuld after any sorcerouse sort by wytche hym. The first poynt of Relygyō they shewed, was thys. They spred fourth a banner with a paynted crucifixe and a syluer crosse thervpon, and so co­me to the kynge in processyon,Proces­syon. syngynge the letanye. Wele myght thys be called a newe christyanyte, for neyther was yt knowne of Christ nor of hys Apostles, nor yet euer seane in Englande afore. It came altogyther from the dust heape of their monkerye.

¶Their first spirytuall prouysyons here.

AS the kynge admytted their en­teraunce, he couenaunted thus with them, and verye wyselye. That hys people shulde alwayes be at lyberte,lyberte. and no man constrayned to their [Page 25] newe founde Relygyon, sacryfyces▪ and worshyppynges. But alac that fredome con [...]yaued not longe with them, as ye shall wele perceyue here after. Than ded Augustyne get hym into Fraunce agay­ne, and caused one Etherius than Arche­byshop of Arelas,Etheriꝰ to consecrate hym the great byshop of all Englande, without eleccyon or consent of the people that we reade of. And in the yeare of our Lorde euen .DC.600 ded Gregorye sende vnto hym from Rome,Iustru­mētes. hys prymates pall, with superaltares, ch [...]lyces, copes, can­delstyckes, vestymentes, surplyces, alter clothes, syngynge bokes, relly [...]kes, and the blessynges of Peter and Paule. And so admytted hym for the fyrst metropolitane of all the whole realme, appoyntynge hys seate from thens fourth at Can­terburye, than called Doroberna, Doro­berna▪ the worthye cytie of london euer after depryued of her former tytle, and so made an vn­derlynge. But the spyrituall fathers knewe wele ynough what they ded, behol­dynge afore hande manye hydden mysteryes. They perceyued that Caunterbury was wele out of the waye,Caūterburye. and moche nygher the see than was London, and so moche the fytter for their craftye conueyaunces, ād flyghtes to their holye father yf nede shuld requyre yt, with manye other commoditees els. Marke alwayes [Page] these nombers of Syxes and their mysteryes,Nom­bers. for the age of Man and the Beast, Apoca, 13.

¶Their preparacyons for Antichrist,

THe first stodye of these fathers after they were ones satled,primitie was all aboute masse offerynges, ceremonyes, byshoppes seates, consecracyons, churche hallowynges, orders geuynge, tythes, personages, puryfycacyous of women, and soche lyke. Wherupon a Syunode was called,Syno­dus. and there comman̄ dementes were geuen that all thinges shuld be here obserued accordynge in the customes of Rome. In Englande was there afore their commynge a christya­nyte,Christyanyte. but it was all without masses, and in a maner without choyce of ey [...]her dayes or meates. The Brytaynes in those dayes had non other Gods seruyce but the Gospell.Brytaynes, Seldome admytted they any dyfference of tymes with the Iewes, eyther anye Idoll sacry [...]yces with the Gentyles, but folowed the playne rules of the scripturs. If anye superstycyons were amonge their Monkes, they had nought to do ther with, but were euermore. at lyberte. For Prynces at that tyme were not yet becomen the Beastes Ima­ges,Princes to speake out of theyr spretes, or to make lawes accordynge to theyr lustes. The labour of Augustyne with his mō ­kes, [Page 26] from the forseyd yeare of our Lorde DC.600 was to prepare Antichrist a seate here in Englande, agaynst the full tyme of hys perfyghtage, of. 666.666 For though he were first conceyued in the wycked churche of Cain, yet coude he not shewe hymself in hys owne lykenesse, that is to saye, Christes opē aduersary, tyll Christ came in the fleshe. And than he apered at all one tyme with hym, in the malyg­naunt churche of the Iewes or spyrytu­alte of Herode,Antichrist which than first began to persecute hym and to seke hys death.

¶The prouynge of Augustynes Apostleship.

IN the yeare of our Lorde .DC.602 ād ij helde Augustyne an other counsell in the west part and countye of worcestre,Synodus in a place that is yet called Augustynes oke, wherunto he called by cōmaundemēt, the vij. byshoppes of the Brytayne churche with their principall doctours. And as they were takynge their iournaye thydreward, they counselled with a serten solytarye man, which was knowne to be of amost perfight chri sten lyfe,Solytarye mā. what was to be done cōcernynge the afore seyd Augustyne. A­non he made them this christen answere: If he be a man of God (sayth he) in anye wyse folowe hys counsell. If he be not, vtterlye refuse it. How shall [Page] we know that?Christē counsell saye they. Ye shall wele perceyue yt by his gentyll sprete, sayth he agayne. For Christ bad hys scolers, lerne of him to be meke harted. If he be of that sort, he ys lyke to brynge ye non o­ther than Christes moste easye yoke. But yf ye fynde hym proude, be ware of the importable burdenes of the hygh myn­ded Pharysees.A proude mon­ke. And as they were com­men thydre, they founde hym syttynge a loft in a throue of hygh honoure, shewynge vnto them no countenaunce of gentylnesse. Wherfor they regarded hym not, but vtterlye withstode all hys enforcemē tes.

¶The Englysh churche begynneth with tyrannye.

AFter longe dysputacyons and o­ther weywarde wrangelynges, he layed vnto their charges, that they were in many thynges, contrarye to the vnyuersall Christen churche, Notwithstā dynge,Thre poyntes yf they wolde consent vnto hym in these .iij. poyntes. That ys to saye, to baptyse after the Romysh maner, to celebrate the feast of Eastre as they do the­re, and preache to the Englysh Saxons as he shuld appoynt them, he wolde we­le beare with them in all other causes. In no case wolde they graunte vnto hym, nor yet accept him for their archebyshop▪ but sayd playnelye, they wolde styll hol­de [Page 27] theyr auncyent tradycyōs, which they perfyghtlye knewe to be agreable to the holy Apostles doctryne.A ty­raunt Than sayd Augustyne furyouslye vnto them, that yf they wolde not peceably graunte to hys requestes, they shuld be enforced therunto by most cruell battayle. And so in the yeare next folowynge, were slayne of their preachers by Augustynes procure­ment,A mur­therer. to the nombre of a thousande and ij. hondred, with their great mastre Dionothus. Loke Flores Historiarum, Amandus Zierixensis, Galfrede, Ranulph, Capgraue, Cax­ton, Fabianc, their churche legendarye, and other.A car­nall Synagoge. Thus ded that carnall Synagoge (than called the Englysh churche) which came from Rome with Augustine, most cruellye persecute, at her first commyn­ge in, the Christē churche of the Brytaynes in these holye martyrs. Theyr syne­full Syon buylded they than in blood,Bloody Syon. for that theyr wycked instytutes were Godlye dysobeyed. But he they sure, yt shall be plowed vp in thys lattre age, ād lye wast lyke a uoyde felde, accordynge to Mycheas prophecye. Mich. 3

¶What the Brytayne churche was afore.

TRue is the faythfull saynge of Iohan Leylande in assertione Arturij. Iohan Leylād. fo. 35. That the Romysh Byshop sought all meanes possyble to vpholde [Page] the Englysh Saxōs in a kyngedome falselye gotten, the Brytaynes hatynge hym for yt, and he agayne of myschefe prouo­kynge those Saxons fearcelye to invade them. Marke yt hardelye, for yt ys wor­thye to be noted. Marke also the agre­ment of the Brytayne churche with the vij.Brytayne chur­che. churches of Asia in Saynt Iohans tyme. Not onlye for the iust nōbre of theyr byshoppes, but also for their obseruacy­on of Eastre afore thys Augustynes cō mynge. For in their argumentacyons a­boute that matter, they layde alwayes for themselues the vsages of that chur­che receyued first of Iohan the Euangelist, Philip the Apostle, Policarpus, Trase­as, Sagaris, Papirius, and Meliton, allegynge the saynges of Policrates, and Eusebius, in that behalfe. The churche that Augusty­ne than planted in Englande,Engly­she churche was more gouerned by byshoppes polycyes for their aduauntage, than by the expresse worde of God to hys honour, as it hath beue euer sens. And therfor yt was and is yet in outwarde obseruacyons, ra­ther a polytyque churche than a Christē churche, the Iewyshe and Heythnishe superstycyons not reckened. God graunt yt ones a shappe after his prescripte la­wes and ordynaunces. Amen.

¶Antichrist approched fast to hys full age.

[Page 28] IN the yeare of our Lorde (as I sayd afore).607 DC. and .vij. Anti­techrist fast approchynge to the fulnesse of hys age,full age grewe into a vnyuer­sall fatherhode. For than first beganne the papacye at Rome vndre the false Emproure phocas, as wytnesseth Abbas Vr­spergensis, Hermannus Contractus, Sigeber­tus, Ranulphus, Matheus Palmarius, Christia­nus Masseus, Archilles Pirminius, Ioannes Ca­rion, et Martinus Lutherus in Mundi supputa­cione. Than obtayned Bonifacius the thirde of that name,The papacye. of the seyd Phocas for moneye, in the myddes of all seysme, stryfe, myschefe, and murther, to be Sa­thans great stewarde here, & the deuyls leftenaūt. For in hys power yt was not, to make hym Christes vycar, nor yet saynt Peters successour. Thus gaue the Dragon, then hys autoryte and power to the Beast with .vij. heades, that arose out of the see, or from the superstycyouse wauerynge multytude, Apoco. 13.Apo. 13. Than wanted he nothynge els, but to sytt in the place of God, which ys the conscyen­ce of Man,2. thes. 2 that he myght there exalte hymselfe aboue all that is called God. 2 Thessa. 2. To brynge that to passe, the Monkes and the prestes sturred quyck­lye about them, and left no cautels vn­sought out to brynge all Christen real­mes vndre hys deuylysh domynyon. For than had the Monkes autoryte [Page] to preache,Mon­ [...]s autoryte. baptyse, and assoyle from synne, which they neuer had afore. How and what th [...]y wrought here in Englande, ys euydent by that hath bene shewed af [...] re, and wyll be yet more playne in that which herafter foloweth. Marke yt therfor in the name of God, for now ys the tyme, wherin he must he reueled, that the Lorde Iesus maye consume hym with the breathe of hys mouth. Esa, 11.Esa. 11 and 2. Thes, 2.

¶The chastyte of hys masmongers.

NOw conceruynge the contynencye of thys new broched broode or newlye fashyoned clergye. For so moche as they were Monkes ād came from Rome, they had professed a false chastyte,A false chastyte to apere more holye than the prestes, and therby in processe of ty­me to robbe them of their benefyces or appoynted lyuynges.Gregory. Though Gregory in hys tyme made these constytucyons, that nō shuld be admytted a prest which had marryed ij wijues[?], nor yet they be accepted that in presthode, kepte concubynes, as testyfyeth Sabellicus, yet durst he not vtterlye condempne prestes marryage,Exam­ple by reason of a most terryble example of innumerable chyldrens heades seane drowned in a ponde. But marke the spy­rytuall occupyēge of these hote fathers, for greuouslye were they than vexed [Page 29] with nyght pollucyōs. Wherupō Augustyne sēt vnto Gregory,Mōkes chastyte to knowe yf they myght wele saye masse hauyng them the nyght afore. Vnto whom after manye wordes, he maketh in effect thys answe­re. That lyke as they chaunce vnto men iiij. ways, that ys to saye, by superfluyte of nature,iij. by glottenouse eatynge & drynkynge,wayes. by intyrmyte of the fleshe, and by fylthye cogytacyons of the mynde, so ought they to haue .iiij. consyderacyons. For the first .iij. a prest ought not (he sayth) to abstayne from hys masse sayn­ge.Colou­red Sodomye. The fort he describeth by suggestyō, dylectacyon, & consent, leauynge yt without anye conclusyon. If thys be not good wholsome dyuynyte of your holye Ro­mysh dayntes, tell me. Thys hath Iohan Capgraue in Catalogo sanctorum Anglie.

¶Contempt of marryage, with tayles.

I thynke a man myght fynde as ho­nest stuffe as thys,stewes dyuynyte. in the scooles of my lorde of wynchestres rentes at the banke syde at London, yf he had nede of yt. Ye maye se by thys, the vertuouse stodye of these holye chast fathers, & the clarkelye conueyaunce of their fleshlye mouynges. Great pytie had yt bene, but yt had had place in their holy sayntes le­gendes to the ghostlye infourmacyon of other, but that we shuld not els wele haue [Page] knowne their bawdye hypocresye. If their vnuirginall vowes had not bene,Vota­ [...]yes lernynge. lyttle shuld the worlde haue neded thys lecherouse lernynge. Honest marryage hath no knowlege therof, and yet ys yt a pleasyuge seruyce vnto God. Is not that (thynke yow) a straunge kynde of chastyte, that ys thus euerye weke polu­ted? Yet maye they after thys leruynge, euerye daye saye Masse, their vowe ne­uer hyndered, but in marryage they ma­ye not so vndre payne of deathe. Now forsoth yt ys wholsom ware, & yt shulde come euen unto frome the deuyls blacke bowgett. Thys ys the reuerence these poluted wretches haue to matrymonye, be­ynge Gods clere instytucyon,Marryage contēpned[?]. that they preferre all their fleshlye knaueryes vn­to yt. For yt onlye, haue they named men laye & women lewde,Laye, with tayles appoyntynge their chyldren tayles here in Englande in dysdayne ād scorne. For nought was yt not that Saynt Paule called their lernynge Hypocresye, and the detestable doctryne of deuyls. 1. Timoth 4. Iohan Capgraue and Alexandre of Esseby sayth, that forcastyn­ge of fyshe t [...]yles at thys Augustyne, Dorsett shyre men had tayles euer after. But Polydorus applyeth yt vnto kentysh men at Stroude by Rochestre,Dorset & Stroude. for cuttynge of thomas Beckettes horses tayle. Thus hath Englande in all other landes [Page 30] a perpetuall dyffamye of tayles by their wryttē legēdes of lyes, yet can they not wele tell, where to bestowe them tru­lye.

¶Stryfe aboute the Eastre celebra­cyon.

NExt after thys Augustyne was Laurencius archebyshop of Caunterburye. And after hym Melitus. Than Iustus, Laurencius cū alijs. than Honorius, than Theoda­tus, and Theodorus, all blacke monkes and Italyanes borne to the nombre of .vij. Thys Laurence helde a great Synode with hys other prelates in the Ile of Mā ne, dysputynge there with the Scottyshe and Iryshe Byshoppes,Syno­dus. for the feast of Eastre, what daye yt shuld be yearlye ce­lebrated, writynge from thens vnto their other prelates a treatyse of the same. More thā an hondred years space, were the Papystes thā in controuersye for the daye of that Eastre celebracyon, ere they coude be quyeted.the feast of Ea­stre. Great paynes the re­lygyouse fathers toke in those dayes to strayne out a gnatt, that their lecherouse posteryte after them, myght the better swallowe in a myghtye camell. Math. 23. In thynges of small value they were thā verye scrupulose, but the wayghtyer causes they coude lete slyppe wele ynough. What so euer thys Laurence was to women by hys lyfe,Womē he was (they saye) [Page] verye cruell vnto them after hys deathe. For in a se [...]tē towne called fordune, was a church buylded in hys name, where no women myght entre with offerynge nor without offerynge, but they had euer more sore bellyes of yt.Sore bellyes. I praye God they went not manye tymes thens with chyl­de, for there were manye fatte Canons and prebendes. Thys superstyeyouse fa­ble borowe they of the paganes, whose opynyon was that no woman myght entre into the temple of Venus their great Goddesse in the mounte of Olympus,Venus with out a great vyllanye. Iacobus Zieglerus in sua Syria.

¶Great busynesse for their other tradycyons.

HEre passe I ouer the clowtynge in of their canonycall houres,Cere­monyes[?] & rytes. of their absolucyōs for synnes, their temples, their aulters, their bel ryngyn­ges, their lētes, their dyuersyte of orders and dyuysyons of paryshes, least I shuld be therin to tedyouse vnto the readers. Aidanus, Good men. Finnanus, and Colmānus, beynge all iij. byshoppes of lyndysfarne in Northunberlande one after an other, & Scottysh men borne, coude not wele awaye with the pryde and wanton toyes which they behelde in their Romyshe rytes, but per­seuered styll in the symple ordre of the prymatyue churche, not contented to chā ge [Page 31] yt. For the which in those dayes, they had moche a do with these hygh stomaked Romanes. Hilda in lyke case, that was thā abbasse of Streneshalt (that we now call Whytby) a womā lerned,Hilda et Colmā ­nus. wyse, and vertuouse, dysputed with them in their ge­nerall counsell vpon Colmannus syde, in the yeare of our lorde .DC. and lxiiij. concernynge the daye of their eastre celebracyon,664. their head shauynge, and other vnsauerye ceremonyes, and wrote after­warde an ernest treatyse agaynst Agil­bertus a frenche man and at that tyme byshop of Wynchestre.Agil­bertus. All thys myght not helpe than, but in processe of tyme they had their whole myndes, magry all their hartes. Bedas Giruuinus[?] li. 3. Ca. 25. De gestis Anglorum, Guilhelmus Malmesburye li. 3. De Pontificibus Ranulphus. li. 5. Ca. 17. Ioann es Capgraue and other.

¶Relygyouse examples dysuadynge marryage.

AFter Laurencius folowed Melitus melitus in the Archebyshoppes seate of Caunterburye, in the yeare of our lorde .DC. and .xix. whiche (they saye) both alyue & dead,619. dysuaded yonge men from christen marryage. As Saynt Co­lumbanus a Scott,Columbanus. about the same tyme, came to the sell of an holye Nonne for ghostlye counsell. She bad hym, awaye, least wanton youthe wolde brynge them [Page] togyther wylde they nylde they. Saynt Edwyne kynge of Northumberlande gaue vnto saynt Paulinus the archebyshop of yorke,Pauli­nus. hys yonge doughter Eanfleda, so sone as she was baptysed in the yeare of our lorde. DC. and. xxvi. that he shuld make her an vnholye Nonne. And the daye after the sayd Edwyne was slayne, he toke with hym both the doughter and mother, and so fled with them vnto Ro­chestre in kent be water, neuer returnynge thydre agayne.fiacrius Saynt fiacre a Scot­tysh hermyte had so greate malyce vnto women, that he plaged so manye of thē with the fowle euyll, as came within the precynct of hys monasterye, bycause one woman had ones complayned to the by­sh [...]p of hys prodygyouse charmynges. Hector Boethius. Foilla­nus. Saynt Foillanus an Iryshe Byshop with hys bretherne was verye famy [...]yar and seruysable vnto Saynte Ger [...]ruyde and her nonnes at Nigella, & made dyuerse barren women full gracyouslye to conceyue. Saynt keynwirye a Keyna. virgyne of wales, contēmpnynge mar­ryage, fled from thēs to Saynt Myhels of the mounte, to kepe her vowed virgy­nyte amonge the holye fathers there, as vower with vowers. All these storyes hath Iohan Capgraue.

¶Other relygyouse examples of that age.

[Page 32] SEbba kynge of the East Saxōs,Sebba ys monked. was so bywytched of the By­shop of London and hys caskyn­ge collygeners there for hys substaunce, that he had made hymselfe a monke, lea­uynge vnto them both hys wyfe and possessyons, yf she had bene no wyser than he.

Yet was she by their incantacyous at the last deceyued, they hauynge of hym an innumerable summe of moneye, and he nothynge of them agayne but a man­gye monkes cowle and hys buryall in Paules.Egbi­nus Whan Saynt Egbynes father was ones departed in wales, his mother resorted with hym to the abbeye of Saynt Sampson,Sāpson and there receyued of hym the habyte of a Nonne, bestowynge the rest of her lyfe amonge the good bretherne there.Eanswida. Saynt Eanswyde abbesse of folkstane in kent, inspyred of the de­uyll, dyffyned christen marryage to be barren of all vertues, to haue but transytoryouse frutes, and to be a fylthye cor­rupcyō of virgynyte. Yet ware Marye, Iohan Baptyst, and Iesus Christ swete frutes, therof,Frutes of mar­ryage. the iust fathers of the olde lawe not reckened. Saynt Paule sayth also, that by vertue of marryage, the vnfaythfull man ys sanctyfyed by the wo­man that ys faythfull. 1. Cor. 7. Neyther ded he at anye tyme teache marryage [Page] to be eyther a corrupcyon or yet an im­pedymēt of christen virgynite, whan he coupled the Corintheanes (which [...]ed styll marryed) a chaste vyrgyne to Christ. 2. Cor. Eanswida. 11. But thys gentylwoman Eanswyde was moche better acquayn­ted with the monkes lernynge than with Christes, and with a chastyte rather to their behoue than to hys. Yet droue she out all the gyantes there, yf their churche legende be true. These storyes sheweth Iohan Capgraue.

¶The wanton toyes of the holye fathers.

ABout thys same tyme sent Pope Bonyface the fift, a shyrte with a golden collor,babyshe ioyes. and a fyne petycote of straunge makynge, vnto kynge Ed­wyne with the blessynges of Peter and Paule. And vnto hys wyfe Ethelburge a syluer glasse and a combe of yvoriye with the same, to vpholde them in thys newe christyanyte. Se these wanton fa­thers what toyes they vse, to set vp their kyngedome here. Neuer shall ye reade that Christes dysciples had anye soche wyttye polycyes. Saynt Petrock an hermyte of Cornewale,Petro­nus. was fayne euerye nyght from the crowe of the cocke to the sprynge of the mornynge, to stande na­ked in a pyt, to abate the hote mouynges of hys fleshe. And neuer coude he haue [Page 33] remedye of that dysease, tyll he went on pylgrymage to Rome & Hierusalē. Here was a newe sought out salue for that so­re.Pira­nus Saynt Pyrane a Byshop also in Cornewale, had a fayre dammesell in the monasterye of hys mother wingell, called Brunett, whom the Lorde of the soyle toke vp for hys occupyēge. At the last he a greed with hym no lōgar to haue her, thā the bernacle or butture shuld breake hym of hys slepe, which chaunced sone after, & than he sent her home agayne. If these be not good honest legendes to be redd in the popes holye churche,legēdes tell me. Plentu­ouse shall ye fynde Iohan Capgraue in the rehersall of them and soche other.

The ghostly bestowynge of their vowes

A Nonne belōgynge to saynt Cota,Chastyte of [...]ar [...]es. and a monke perteyninge to saynt Pyrane, aboute the same tyme strake vp a couenaunt of loue. And as they mett in a wode for perfourmaunce of the same, a yonge pygeon fell betwixt thē ād made them both ashamed, & so they went home agayne▪ i [...] lyke matter. Soche an other pagent was played at yorke, but it was longe after.Vowes obser­ued. The monkes of saynt Marye abbeye, and the nonnes of Cle­ment thorpe mett togyther there at haye makynge, the abbottes fole beynge with them. And as the abbot enquyred of hym at supper for pastyme, where he had do­ne [Page] all that daye. He fell in a great laug­hynge and declared before all hys ges­tes, that a sore battayle had bene fough­ten that after none betwixt hys monkes and the monkes of clemēt thorpe. But he thanked God that hys monkes had the best, for they laye euer aloft. Bycause that one of Saynt modwēs maydes,Mod­wenna. had layed her best beloues shoes at her bed­des head, the spretes of heauen that were wonte to vysyte her, wolde not come there that nyght. After she had bene at Ro­me, and was comen home agayne, she dwelt at Scalesclyf,Heremite. where as an holye hermyte ded oft tymes vysyte her, and moche refreshe her with a legende boke of sayntes lyues. But no tydynges was there amonge them, of Christes holy gospell. Loke Iohan Capgraue.

¶Erkenwalde and Osith, with their Nondryes.

SAynt Erkenwalde the sonne of Vffa the first Kynge of the east ā gles,Erken­waldus abbot of Cherteseye ād Byshop of London, buylded a Nondrye at Berkynge. And bycause there were at that tyme in Englāde no Nonnes to hys mynde (for Hilda his kynswoman was to great a scripture woman in those day­es) he sēt ouer the see for an old acquayntaunce of his called Hildelitha, lerned in [Page 34] arte, but not in Christes dyuynyte, Her made he there abbasse, commyttynge vnto her gouernaunce, hys systre Ethelburge and a great sort more of yonge may­des,Ethel­burga to be taught and made nōnes there. Soche rule was kepte amonge thē with­in a short space after, that God sent vpon them a plage of pestylēce, which toke a­waye all their chaplaynes, the cruell Da [...]s folowynge and burnynge vp that was left, monasterye, nonnes and all. Saynt Osith was marryed to Sigher Kynge of the East Saxons.Ositha. But bycau­se she loued the spirytualte moche bet­ter thā hym, whyls he was on a tyme in huntynge, she sent by a preuye lettre for Accas, and Bedeuuinus, Spirituall kna­uerye. Byshoppes of the East Angles, contaynynge Northfolke and Sothfolke, causynge thē to put vpō her a nonnes aparell. So made she him to beleue in his returne, that she had professed the vowe of chastyte, and gaue him therby a most wretched occasyon to lyue all the dayes of his lyfe after, in most synnefull aduoutrie. But a iust plage folowed. For in the yeare of our Lorde .DC.liii.653 was she slayne of the Danes, and her whore howse (nondrye I shuld saye) vtterlye destroyed. Yet was she in the Popes churche allowed for a stynkynge martyr, for contempnynge marryage. Io­han Capgraue.

¶The perfyght age of the Beast.

THeodorus a Greke,Theodo [...]s was of pope vptelianus constytute the sixt ar­chebyshop of Caunterburye, frō Augustyne or sens the Papacye began, to make all sure here to Antichristes be­houe, in the sixtye and sixe yeare of hys age, and in the yeare from Christes incarnacyon six hondred, syxtie, and sixe, which is in saynt Iohans Apocalyps the full age of the Beast,Apoc▪ 13. & the full nombre of man. Marke yt good reader. For now of a Beast,The fullye complete a­ge. becometh he a kynge, ye, as Daniel calleth hym, the vnshame fast Kynge of faces. Daniel. 8. Presumynge to sitt a­boue God in euerye mannys conscyence 2. Thessa. 2. Named yt is there, the nombre of man, and the nombre of the Beast,Nōbre of the beast for so moche as yt was the tyme, wherin mā nys lernynge most stronglye withstode the lernynge of God, to the prankynge vp of that odyouse aduersarye, the verye man of synne, and sonne of perdycyon, all blasphemyes therupon folowynge. Euydent is yt, by all the Englysh Chronycles, that than this Theodorus came hyther with the seale of that execrable Be­ast, to marke vp all to that most blasphe­mouse kyngdō. For neuer afore wrought the sprete of Antichrist, the mystery of iniquite so strongelye as at that tyme. For [Page 35] hyther than brought he all vayne & craf­tye scyences,Crafty scyēces. of countinge, calkynge, me­asurynge, syngynge, rymynge, reasonynge, arguynge, dyffynynge, shauinge, oy­lynge, exorcysynge, incantynge, & coniu­rynge. Loke Iohan Capgraue, in uitis Adria­ni, et Theodori Besydes that Bedas wry­teth li. 4. Capit, 2. and Ranulphus li. 5. Ca▪ 18.

¶For the varyaunce had in supputaciōs

TO auoyde cōtrouersyes in the supputacyō of years, for so moche as some writeth hym to haue comē hyther in the yeare afore rehersed, & some .ij years after. Ye shall vnderstāde that Theodatus which was his predecessour,Theodatus departed in the yeare of our Lorde .DC.lxv. as witnesseth Hermānus Cōtractus in Chronico de sexetatibus mundi. In the yeare folo­wynge was this Theodorus admytted of V [...]elianꝰ,Theodorus & receyued his full auto­ryte of byndynge and losynge (sayth Platina) to holde the Englyshe nacyon styll in that faythe. Marke yt. But by reason of serten delayes, yt was more than a yeare after ere he entered into Englāde. One cause of hys tarryaunce (Iohan Capgra­ue sayth) was the growynge of hys hea­re concernynge his crowne,Sha­uynge which was shauē afore after a farre other sort, he beynge a Greke. Hys abydynge there for that only cause, was more thā .iiij. Mon­thes, besydes other nedye matters. So [Page] that yt was the yeare of our Lorde .DClxviij.668. the xxvi. daye of Maye, and the seconde yeare of hys consecracyon ere he came into Kēt, as wytnesseth both Bedas and Ranulphus With hym sent Vitelianꝰ a monke borne in Aphrica, called Adriā,Adria­nus. to loke to hys doctryne, least he taught anye thynge in the Englyshe churche that were not agreable to the Romyshe faythe (as the marriage of prestes, and the howselynge with leuened breade) for he ded not in all poyntes trust hym, by­cause he was a Greke borne.A scole. Anon after he sett vp a Greak scole at Caunterburye of all maner scyences, as Rhetoryck, Lo­gyck, philosophie, Mathesye, Astrologie Geometrye, Arithmetyck, and Musyck, and taught them there openly both in latyue ād Greke,Straunge scien­ces besydes the art Magyck Sortilege, Physuomye, Palmestrye, Alcumye, Necromancye, Chyromācye, Ge­omancye, ād witcherye, that was taught there also. Bedas, Ranulphus, and Iohan. Cap

¶Sealynges to the Beastes obedyence

THan constytute he the seyd Adri­ane both abbot and generall rea­der there,Adrianus whyls he cōpased aboute all the whole regyon for the Eastre celebracyon & other Romyshe rytes. This is the first archebyshop (sayth Iohan Cap­graue) that all the Englyshe churche was sworne to.Character. Marke here the Seale of the [Page 36] Beast. Apo. 13. In the yeare of our Lor­de. DC.lxxij.672 he helde a Synode at Thetforde in Northfolke,Synodus where as he enquy­red of euerye mannys faythe towardes the Churche of Rome. Than constytute he byshoppes for euerye quarter, ād deposed all them that were not confirmed by the popes auctoryte, of whose nombre Ceddas the byshop of yorke was one.Ceddas More ouer he publyshed there a boke of the churches ordynaunces,Ordi­naūces made by the forsayd Vitelianus, with permyssion of organes to make them myrye, commaun­dynge yt onlye to be obserued, Christes ordre sett a part. If this were not the de­partynge that Paule prophecyed to co­me .2. The .2. where shall we loke for any. A sayinge hath Ioannes de Molinis, Ioānes de Mo­linis in speculo carmel. Ca. 6. which (though he were a papyst) I fynde here most true. ‘From the dayes of Heraclius the Emprour (sayth he) vnto our tymes, the daye dra­wynge towardes nyght, the churche sufferinge a sore eclippes, is come to a downe goynge. Yea, she is almost at the ca­se of a full departynge, et c.’ I thynke a truer sentence coude not than be vttered all circumstaunces therupon cōsydered. Great pytye was yt, that the churches posteryte than perceyued not so many­fest a defeccyon.

¶More sealynges yet to Antichristes [Page] kingedome.

IN the yeare of our Lorde DC.680 and lxxx.Syno­dus. helde this Theodorus an o­ther coūsell at hatefelde in the west partyes. Where as he demaunded a reckenynge of the byshoppes and other cu­rates, what faythe ād fauer their peoples had than to the churche of Rome, as po­pe Agathon had commaunded hym to do by hys wrytynges,Agathō which wrote than vnto hym, to do all thynges wyselye. Ye knowe what that meaneth▪ I thynke. He­re was non enquirye made, what beleue they had than there in the Gospell of our Lorde Iesus Christ. No, yt was an other maner of matter,No Gospell. that they sought. Oh, wonderfull was the workynge of that Serpentes generacyon. Polidorus sayth, li. 4. Anglice historie, that false relygyon & counterfett presthode, was than throughlye satled and placed there, the Actes of the, iiij generall counsels receyued in ste­de of the .iiij. Euāgelies.Syno­dus ge­neralis. In the next yea­re folowinge, was a generall Synode kepte at Constātynople in Grece, where as marryage was for euer permytted vnto the Greke prestes, and vtterly for­bidden the latynes, or all other besydes thē,Masse. the latyne masse receyuynge there hys first confirmacyon. But Theodorꝰ & hys monkes were at a good indyfferēt poynt for that, which had veyled with­in [Page 37] one mounsterye in the Ile of Thanete lxx.Mildreda. Nonnes, makynge fayre Myldrede their abbasse. Loke Iohā Capgraue Ranulphe and other Englyshe autors. In spyght of the former Acte,Vitiza. ded Vitiza the kynge of Spayne, permytt hys prestes by a la­we newlye made, to kepe so manye con­cubynes as they wolde. Michael Ricius de regibus Hispanie, et Paulus Constantinus Phrigio in Chronicis regnorum.

¶Chastyte, Monkes, Monasteryes, and Penaunce.

VVernerus Cartusiensis sayth, in Fasciculo temporum, Chastyte fre. that vowynge of cha­styte was fre without constraynt, in the tyme of Saynt Gregorye & sum­what after. Bedas reporteth li. 3. Ca. 6. De gestis Anglorum, et Ioannes Maior in gestis Scotorum li 2 Ca. 11. That a monkes cowle, after they had ones vowed chastyte, was holden in soche reuerēce, that no mā wolde in a maner than iourneye, vnlesse he had their blessynges Into a most wonderfull madnesse were the people than brought,Hypo­cresye worketh by their hypocrytycall wytche­rye, the verye elect persones scant fre from that dampnable errour. Matth. 24. Marci. 13. For the vnthankefulnesse of men (sayth Iob) in settynge hys veryte lyght, doth God permytt the Hypocry­tes to reigne ouer them in all power of deceytfull wonders. Iob. 34. 2. Thessal. 2. [Page] They ded than spedelye set vp monasteryes without nōbre,Mona­steryes. all the realme ouer. Iohan Hardynge sayth in hys Chronycle, that kynge Oswye buylded within Nor thumberlande.oswius. xij. in one years space. In the yeare of our lorde. DC. and .lxxxiiij.684. helde Theodorus yet an other counsell in the North partyes at Twyforde,Syno­dus. where as he publyshed a serten boke of hys owne makynge, called A penytencyall summe, commaundynge hys clergye to put yt euerye where in practyse. Therin were contayned all maner of synnes and excesses, with aggrauacyons,Sūma peniten [...]ialis. reseruacy­ons, penaltees, sorowes, penuaunces, and ponnyshmentes. And thys was to terryfye, captyue, and snare the wretched cō ­scyences of men, euen to vttre desperacy on. And where coude haue bene sought out a practyse of more deuylyshnesses Si­gebertus, Sabellicus, Tritemius, et Scriptores ferme omnes.

¶The foundacyon of their Pur­gatorye.

AT the same verye tyme, was there one Drithelmus in Northumber­lande, whiche leauynge both wy­fe and chyldrē in the yeare of our lorde .DC. and .lxxi.Dri­thelmꝰ 671. made hymselfe a monke at Mailros, Saynt Cuthbert thā beyn­ge abbot there. The sayd Drithelmus fayned hymselfe on a tyme to be dead [Page 38] there was knauerye vpon knauerye) and reported in hys returne,Foūda­cyon of purga­torye. that he had seane by an Angels demōstracyon, both purgatorye ād paradyse, hell and heauē. After that he had subtylly declared this vnto kynge Alphrede and other great men of the contreye there, at the request of the monkes, moche people resorted vnto hym for counsell for their sowles from all quarters of Englande. So re­dye are the foles of thys worlde to hea­re lyes and illusyons,Illusy­ons. whiche neuer had loue to the veryte. Thys knaue euermo­re commended vnto them confessyon ād penaunce,Confes­syon. fastynge, prayer, and almes dedes, specyallye and aboue all other, masse saynges,Masses ād monasteryes buyldynge. Was not thys thynke yow, a vertu­ouse christyanyte of these chast fathers, to begynne their holye churche with? Were yt not pytie but they were cano­nysed sayntes, and their feastfull dayes solempnysed twyse in the yeare,Cano­nysed deuyls? with ryngynges, syngynges, sensynges, and massynges, as thys Cuthbertes were and are yet to thys daye? I thynke the Turkes churche had neuer more kna­ues to their Sayntes thā these. For thys Drithelmus ys one of their sayntes al­so. Iohan Capgraue post uitam Adriani, Sigebertus, Vincencius, Antoninus, with dyuerse other,

¶Chastyte of Cuthbert and doctry­ne of Colfride.

SO cruell was thys Cuthberte vnto women,Cuth­bertus. after he became a Saynt of theirs, that nō myght come within hys sayntuaryes (they say) at Doilwein, Coruen, and Mailros in Scotlande, nor yet at Durham, Tyn­mouth, and Lyndefarne here in Englan­de, vndre payne of sodē deathe, their chā ­bers and selles exempted alwayes. Yet was the seyd Cuthbert verye famylyar in hys tyme with Ebba,Nōnes. Elsteda, & Ver­ca .iii. holye abbasses, ād buylded for hys pleasure, a solempne nondrye at Carliell. Fynallye for the specyall good loue he had vnto Verca aboue all other,Verca. he com­maunded in hys testament, that hys bo­dye after hys departynge, shuld be wrapped in the fyne lynnen clothe that she had geuen hym. Ye maye se by thys, that the­se chast fathers had their louers, and set sumwhat by their owne precyouse body­es. Saynt Colfryde abbot of Girwin in Northumberlande,Colfri­dus. wrote vnto Athō kynge of the Pyctes, that yt was as necessarye for the vowe of a monke or degre of a prest (prestes were than no vowers) to haue a shauen crowne for restraynt of their lustes,Shauē crow­nes. as for anye christen man to blesse hym agaynst spretes whan they come vpō hym. What wyse lernynge thys [Page 39] ys, I report me vnto yow. Yet ys yt re­gettred of Bedas in hys .v. boke, De gestis Anglorum, Waldē and also of Thomas Vualden in hys volume, De sacramētalibus. ti. 9. Ca 80 to stoppe heretypkes mouthes with, besy­des that Iohan Capgraue hath sayd in yt.

¶The fallen starre, and .ij. Hornes of the Beast.

ABout thys tyme were manye wō ­derfull thynges seane in dyuerse quarters of the worlde, specyallye a great Comete or blasynge starre,A comete. which semed with flamynges of fyre to fall in­to the see, great morren folowynge both of beast and man. Not all vnlyke was thys to that ys described, Apoca. 8. And betokened than (in my opynyon) both the vttre fall of the pryncelye gouernaunce and also the christen presthode,Regnū et sacerdotium. or of both vndre one, as powers of one God. For both they heynge as starres in the firmament or powers from about. Romano. 13. most wretchedlye than declyued frō the true obedyence and faythfull ad yny­stracyon of Gods eternall veryte, vnto the beastlye subieccyon and tradycyons of that execrable Pope. Sens that tyme haue they comen from the see. They ha­ue taken their autoryte of that Beast whyche rose out of the see. Apocal. 13.Apo. 13. (tyll now of late dayes) the .ij. hornes of the other Beast, that is to saye, of hypocre­sye, [Page] pryckynge them than forewarde. Those.ijhornes .ij. hornes of that earthlye Beast were here in Englande, the .ij. monkysh sectes that in those dayes firste entered. The first of them were the blacke mon­kes of Saynt Benet, which entered first of all with the afore named Augustyne in the yeare of our lorde .CCCCC.Augu­stinus. and xcvi.696. to peruerte the South Saxons and kentysh men. The other were the blacke Chanons of the other Saynt Augusty­ne (both blacke) which came in with Be­rinus the archebyshopp of Dorcestre in the yeare of our lorde .DC.xxxvi.Berinꝰ from Pope Honorius the firste,636. to deceyue the west Saxons. For yche Pope and by­shopp preferred euermore the secte he was of.ij. sectes These .ij. wrought so their wyc­ked feates in those dayes, with lyenge sygnes in hypocresye, that they caused the afore named starres, Regnum et Sacerdocium, Regalyte and presthode, to fall clerelye from heauen. Iohan Capgraue, Ra­nulphus, et Polydorus.

¶The fall of kyngedoms, and rayse of the Papacye.

MArke in the Chronycles, and ye shall fynde thys most true.Papa­cye. That lyke as the Papacye had hys firste rayse in and of the fall of the [Page 40] Empyre, so had those kyngdomes which firste obeyed yt, their orygynall begyn­nynges of the ouerthrowe of the infery­our kyngedomes. As Englande vndre kyng Inas by the fall of the Brytaynes,Kynge­domes popysh [...] and Fraunce vnder kynge Pypyne by the puttynge a syde of the Merouyngeanes. Sens these lecherouse locustes crepte first into Englande, neuer throue that kyngedome of the auncyent Brytaynes (whose spirytuall head was God alone) but euerye daye more and more decayed,Brytaynes. tyll yt was fullye ended. Marke yt har­delye from the first commynge hyther of the seyd Augustyne,cadwal tyll the yeare of our lorde .DC.lxxxix.lader. 689. wherin Cadwallader their last kynge dyed a most desolate pylgryme at Rome, offerynge hymselfe vp there most myserablye to the Pope.

Euer sens hath yt bene to hym obedy­ent in all blasphemouse errours and doe [...]ryues of Deuylles, by the space of .DCCC. and .xliiij. years,Marke yt. 1533. tyll the yea­re of our lorde .M.D. and .xxxiij. wher­in at our noble kynges moste wholsome request, we vtterlye by othe renounced that odyouse monstre. Now ys yt Gods owne fre kyngedome agayne, and our kynge hys inmedyate mynystre. That Lorde graunte of hys infynyte mercye,englāde that lyke as we haue put a syde hys name, we maye euen frome the harte [Page] also cast ouer hys Idolatrouse yokes▪ fo­lowynge from henceforth the vncorrupt rules of the Gospell. Amen. A lyke con­paryson hath Paulus Orosius, li. 2. Ca. 4. Hi­storiarum mundi, Roma et Ba­bilon. of Babylon and Rome. Verye lyke begynnynges (sayth he) had Babylon and Rome, lyke powers, lyke prydes, lyke contynuaunces, lyke fortu­nes, and lyke ruynes, sauynge onlye that Rome arose of the fall of Babylon, and so fourth.

¶An olde prophecye of Merlyne dysclosed.

AS I was in wrytynge thys matter an olde prophecye of Merlyne ca­me vnto my remembraunce.Merlyne. That after the manyfolde irrupcyons of stra­ungers, the kynges of thys realme shuld be ones agayne crowned with the Dya­deme of Brute,Brute. and beare hys auncyent name, the newe name of straungers so vanyshynge awaye. He that applyeth vnto thys a ryght vnderstandynge, shall[?] fynde yt verye true. The dyademe of Brute ys the pryncelye power of thys whole regyō,of God inmedyatlye geuē of God without anye other meane mastrye worker to Antichristes behoue. F [...]re was that power f [...]m the great whores domyny­on (which ys the Rome churche) tyll the vyolēt conquest of the Englysh Saxōs▪ Saxōs. whiche they had of the Brytaynes for [Page 41] their iniquitees sake▪ And now (prayse be vnto that Lorde) yt is in good waye to that fredō agayne, & wold fully attayne therunto, were her heythnysh yokes in relygyō ones throwne a syde, as I doubt yt not but they will be within short spa­ce. As wele maye ye geue credēce to this Merlyne whan he vttered the veryte,Merly­ne. as vnto olde Balaam the sothsayer,Balaā ▪ which at a tyme prophecyed the commynge of Christ. Numeri 24. And as concernynge the returne of the name, marke in this a­ge the wrytinges of lerned men, and ye shall wele perceyue the change, for now cōmonlye do they write vs for Englysh men, Brytaynes.

¶The whores fleshe eaten of the x. hornes.

THe .x. hornes of the first Beast (which were kyngedomes mayn­teynynge that whore (now ioyned all into one,The .x. hornes of the Beast▪ doth mortallye hate her at this present instaunt▪ & ys makynge her desolate and naked in Englande. In the ende they shall eate her fleshe, and clere­lye cōsume her with the fyre appoynted. Englande was sumtyme into .vij. kyngedomes deuyded, by the consent of all writers, and wales into .ij. called Cambria & Demecia or north wales & South wales; Irelande makynge vp the tenth. Or yf [Page] ye holde wales but for one, lete Scotlande supplye that rowme, which oweth vnto Englande perpetuall homage. As all these are now in one most worthye & vyctoryouse Kynge but one, so wyll God put into all their hartes one consēt to fulfyll hys will, and to geue her kyn­gedome vnto the Beast, or to sende yt a­gayne to the Deuyll from whens yt first came. Apoca. Apo. 17 17 Consydre with your sel­ues the late ouerthrowe of the monaste­ryes, couentes, collegys, and chauntery­es, alleages of vncleane spretes, and hol­des of most hatefull byrdes by the manyfest worde of God. And thynke not but the fylthye habytacyons of the great mastre deuyls wyll folowe sone after. Apoc. 18.Apo. 18 Lete the gogle eyed Gardyner of wyncestre gyrde at yt tyll hys rybbes ake, ād an hondred dyggynge deuyls vpon hys syde,Wyn­ker of wyles yet shall not one Iote of the Lordes promes be vnfulfylled at the tyme ap­poynted for that blasphemouse whores ouerthrowe, hys most holye mother. Praye in the meane season (good christen readers) praye, praye, praye, that hys heauenlye wyll be done in earthe and not mannys, and fashyon your lyues to the fourme of hys most dere sonne Iesus Christes doctryne. Amen.

¶Actes of vowed virgynyte for that age.

[Page 42] NOw to returne agayne to their spirytuall actes of chastyte for that age.Sedia. Whā one Sedia the father of saynt Aidꝰ, perceyued that he by no meanes coude haue a chyld by hys wyfe, he brought her to these cōtynēt fathers for remedy of her barrennesse, & she was spedde the next nyght after by a myracle, for all were myracles they ded. Ioā Cap, Guen­hera Guenhera a Cornysh woman (whom some wryters call fayre Elyne) that made Kynge Arthure a cuckolde, was after hys death deuoutelye receyued into Ambesburye nondrye, as a penitent to their spirytuall vse.Oswaldus. Guilhelmus Malmesburye. Saynt Oswalde layed hys wyfe Bebla in bed with a relygyouse hermyte.Bebla And whan the great heate came vpō hym (as the spirytuall fathers are hastye [...]he founde the meanes that he was cast in colde water to abate hys hote corage. This is one of the holy actes whervpō the pope hath made the seyd Oswalde a saynt. Iohan Hardyng. Ebba. Saynt Ebba which was in those dayes the mother of all nonnes, was generate of an whore, as were all her fathers chyldren besydes her ij. of thē onlye excepted. This Ebba had in the monasterye of Coldyngham not farre from Barwyck, both men & womē dwel lynge togyther sell by sell) as the maner was than of all Nondryes in Englande) which exercysed the battayles of chasty­te [Page] so longe, that in their nyght metynges they went to bed togyther by couples, their relygyouse loue was than so great, tyll God sent a wylde fyre vpon them for that contempt of marryage. Ionnes Maior. libro secundo. Capittulo. 12. & Ioannes Capgraue.

¶A spirytuall conueyaunce to be marked.

ETheldred (whom ye call Saynt Audrye of helye) marryed .ij.Ethel­dreda great prynces, Tombert of the South Girwyes, and Egfride the Kynge of Northumberlande, mockynge them both by the space of more than .xiij. years, in not geuynge them due beneuolence accordinge to the holye doctryne of saynt Paule 1. Cor. 7. And in occasyonynge them to aduouterouse lyuynge. The lattre of them knowynge that she mynded wilfryde thā Byshop of yorke moche more than hym (for the storye sayth that she loued that monke aboue all the men lyuynge) requyred hym in Gods behalfe to admonysh her of her dewtye,Wilfridus. that he myght accor­dynge to hys lawes haue increase of suc­cessyon by her. And he lyke a false tray­tour knaue, not withstandynge hys pro­mes to the contrarye,Knaue­rye. persuaded her to perseuer in her obstynacye and vtterlye to resyst hym, allegynge her vowe and [Page 43] requyrynge a diuorcement from hym. Wherupon he was than compelled to marrye an other wyfe, called Ermenburgis, and Eteldrede was professed a Nonne in Coldynghā with Ebba, by the seyd wilfryde. This Kynge after that percey­uynge hys knauerye,Theo­dorus by assent of Theodorus the archebyshop of Caunterburye, bannyshed hym out of hys lande. Than folowed she after a pace, and whyls he was byshop of Eastsexe,A way­tynge hounde. she bycame ab­basse of hely, not farre from hys elboue, Marke this conueyaunce for your ser­uynge. If this were not knauerye, whe­re shall we fynde knauerye: Yet was this gētylmii cōueyer admytted for a saynte, bycause he buylded a college at Rippon, where my selfe was ones bayted of his Basan bulles,The autour. for maynteynynge the Kynges prerogatyue agaynst theyr Po­pe, as good mastre Iohā Hercye can full wele tell. Ioannes Capgraue in uitis Etheldre de, &. Vuilfridi.

¶Kynges became pylgrymes, and their wyues Nonnes.

A Verye proper cast the womē had in those dayes, by the ghostly counsell of the prelates.Pylgri­mes. They sēt theyr husbandes to Rome on pylgryma­ge by heapes, whyls they kept them spy­rituall [Page] cōpanye at home. Ethelburge made great hast and left no callynge on, tyll her husbande Kynge Inas was thydre­wardes,Inas with scrippe hatte and staffe, she lokynge for hys nomore comynge home in the abbeye of Berkynge, This Inas became a monke there, and was the first that clogged the west Saxons with pay­ment of the Rome shott, or Peter Pens to the Pope. Volateranus, and Fabiane. Af­ter hym folowed Ethelrede Kynge of Mercia in lyke fashyon of Pylgrymage,Ethelredus. and became afterwarde abbot of Bar­deneye. Iohan Capgraue. Cōredꝰ Conredus also Kynge of the same prouynce, dyed a solys he monke at Rome. So ded Kynge Offa of the East Saxons,Offa the selfe same yeare of our Lorde .DCC. and .ix.709 besydes Kē redus,Kenredus Ethelwolphus, and a great sort more. Hermannus Contractus, Platina & Polidorus. Colwolphus Kynge of Northūberlande,Colwolphus returned agayne to Gyrwyn, and there dyed a monke. Robert Fabiane, Gre­at layser wolde yt requyre, to shewe here how manye of soche Kynges, the ghost­lye fathers sent at dyuerse seasons vnto Rome, that they for the tyme myght ha­ue the spirytuall occupyenge of their wyues, and how manye of their owne ba­stardes they made Kynges for them.Bastardes. And therfor at this tyme I passe them ouer. Innumerable knaueryes wrought [Page 44] they in those dayes, and all vndre the co­loure of vowed chastyte.

¶Great experymentes of virgy­nyte.

AS Saynt Aldelmus,Adelmus. the byshop of Sherborne (that ye now call Salysburye) chaunced to be at Rome, the people there made a fowle exclamacyon vpon Pope Sergius the first, for beget­tynge a wenche with chylde, which he (they saye) by a lytle straunge workynge pacyfyed.Syno­dus In whose returne, a Synode was holden in Englande agaynst the Brytaynes or welche men, for not cōfor­mynge their churches to the Romysh obseruacyons, he there requyred to inueye agaynst them. Vpon the which mocyon, he wrote than two bokes,ij. bokes one for the Ea­stre celebracyon, and an other in the prayse of virgynes, to blemyshe the marriage of their prestes there, and also to aduaunce their newlye professed chastyte. For that he had also in commaundement of Sergius,Sergius. not withstandynge hys owne knowne lecherye. This Aldelmus neuer refused women, but wolde haue them cō mōlye both at borde and at bedde, to mocke the deuyll with. In the tyme he was abbot of Malmesbury, he appoynted oft tymes to hys fleshe this martyrdō. As he felte any sore mouynges therof, he layed by him naked, the fairest mayde he coude [Page] lōge tyme as an whole Dauids psalter was in saynge. And whan hys heate was past, he sent her home agayne as good a mayde as he left her. Is not thys (thynke you) a stronge argument to proue that all prestes maye lyue chast? This telleth Bedas, Ranulphus, Iohan Capgraue, ād manye other Englishe Autours more.

¶Images admytted, with chast examples.

ABout the same tyme,Egwi­nus saynt Egwine abbot of Euesham, and byshop of Worcestre (than called wyckes) hearynge tell that labour was made to the pope, to haue the christen temples re­plenyshed with Images,Images to promote that markett forewarde, he hyed hym apace to Rome. And there he declared to the holye father, the secrete reuelacyons and commaundementes of our ladye that he had, to sett vp an Image of her to be worshypped at Worcestre,Ladye of wor­cestre. delyuerynge hym a boke which he had wrytten of the sa­me apparycyons, besydes the lyfe of Aldelme. The pope than called Constantyne the first, hearynge this newe wondre sent hym home agayne with his bul­les of autoryte,Brithwaldus cōmaundinge Brith­walde than Archebyshop of Caunter­burye (wythe all hast) to call a generall [Page 45] Synode of all the clergye for confirma­cyon of the same,sinodꝰ the kynges requyred not to be absent that daye. And thy [...] was done in the yeare of our lorde. Dcc and .ix.709. Thys Brithwalde beynge also a monke, was the first Englysh man that was Archebyshopp of Caunterburye. Marke yt. Saynt Guthlake an hermyte of Rependon,Guthlacus. tolde a serten abbot the same tyme, that goynge homewarde, he shuld fynde in a wydowes howse .ij. of hys holye monkes whych had lyen with her the nyght afore for easement of their chastyte.Bartel­linus. Saynt Bartellyne hermyte of Stalforde, stale out of Irelande the kyn­ges doughter there. And as she was af­terwarde trauelynge of chylde in a fo­rest, whyls he was sekynge the mydwy­fe, a wolfe came and deuoured both her and her chylde. These storyes hath at large Iohan Capgraue in Catalogo sanctorum Anglie, Guilhelmus Malmesburye et Ranulphus.

¶Englysh monkes become Anti­christes Apostles.

IN those dayes the mōkes of Englande were becomen so myghtye in superstycyouse lernynge,Mōkes Dyspersed. that they were able to peruert all other chri­sten regyons, as they ded than in dede. Some of them went into Germanye, so­me into Fraunce, some into Italye and Spayne, and became the Popes instru­mentes [Page] of all falshed, falshyonynge hym vp there a newe kyngedome of all deuy­lyshnesse to withstande the manyfest glorye of God, and subduynge therunto all pryncelye Powers. Yow that are exercysed in Chronycles and Sayntes Lyues, marke for that age what ys written of Columbanus, Colomannus, Totimannus, Vue­nefridus, Vuilibrordus, The popes apostles. Vuilibaldus, Vuenebaldus, Burghardus, kilianus, Vuigbertus, Egbertus, Heuualdus the whyght and the blacke, Etto, Bertuuinus, Eloquius, Lullius, Lebuinus, Liuinus, Ioānes, Embertus, Gallus, Gaudus, Ga [...]abaldus, Gregorius, Megingolus, Sturmio, and a great sort more with their women, and ye shall se in them practyses won­derfull. I wyll geue ye out one here bre­uelye for an example, for to moche yt were to write of them all.Wene­fridus. Wenefridus was admytted of Pope Gregorye the secon­de, for the Archebyshop of Magunce & great Apostle of all Germanye, and for hys bolde countenaunce was of hym na­med Bonifacius. Bonifacius. In London was he first borne, and professed a blacke Monke at Cissancestre (now called Chichestre) vndre abbot wolfharde. After the gre­at Synode holden at London by the afore named Brithwalde,Syno­dus. about the yeare of our Lorde .DCC. and .x.710. where as prestes Marryage was iudged forny­cacyon, and the honourynge of Images [Page 46] accepted for a christen relygyon.Daniel Daniel than Byshopp of Wynchestre, sent thys wenefride to Rome with hys letters of commendacyon for hys manfulnesse there shewed. Iohannes Capgraue. et Georgius Vuicelius in Hagiologo de sanctis ecclesie.

¶The great Apostle of all Germa­nye.

THe Pope after certen conmuny­cacyons, perceyuynge hym in all poyntes fytt for hys purpose,apostle of Germanye. sent hym anon into Germanye with hys fulle autoryte (as afore ys specy­fyed) to do hys false feates there, and to brynge that styffe necked people vn­dre hys wycked obedyence, whom they call the holye Christen beleue. I thynke sens Christes incarnacyon was there neuer non that more lyuelye wrought the Propertees of the other Beaste in Saynt Iohans Apocalyps,Alia Bestia Apo. 13. whyche ry­se out of the earthe hauynge .ij. hornes lyke the lambe, yf ye marke yf wele. Apocal. in the .13. chapter. For he was next in autoryte to the Pope, by the Popes owne witnesse, soche tyme as he ca­me with the hyghe legacye from hys owne ryght syde, into all the quarters and Prouynces of the seyd Germanye. [...] [Page] hym concernynge vowed chastyte, relly­ques, Images, the Popes prymacye, Kynges deposycyons, othes breakynge, and soche lyke errours.errours Loke the workes of Nauclerus, Vuicelius, Bernardus Lutzen­burg, and Alphonsus de castro.

¶Doctryne of Bonyface, with sale of whores.

MOst dampnable was the doctryne of thys Bonyface,Doctryne. concer­nynge the Pope. In a sertē Epystle of hys we fynde thys most execrable sentence. ‘That in case the seyd Pope we­re of most fylthye lynynge, and so for­getfull of hym self and of the whole christente, that he ledde with hym to hell in­numerable sowles, yet ought no man to rebuke hys yll doynge. For he (he sayth) hath power to iudge all men, and ought of no man to be iudged agayne.’ Thys haue the Canonystes regestred in the popes decrees for a perpetuall lawe,Cano­nystes. and for a necessarye artycle of Christen bele­ue. Dist. xl Ca. Si Papa. Yet wrote he at another tyme to Pope Zacharye, to se the manyfest abusyons of Rome reformed,Rome. specyallye their maskynges in the nyght after the paganes maner,Opē sale of whores. and their open sellynge of whores in the markett there. For they were (he sayd) sore impedymentes to hys preachynges. For they that had seane those reuelynges there, mystrusted [Page 48] moche that faythe. He wrote also vnto kynge Ethelbalde and other great mē in Englande,Ethel­baldus. requyrynge them to leaue ‘the aduouterouse occupyenge of nōnes, least soche a plage fell on thē, as chaūced vpō kynge Colfrede and kynge Ofrede for lyke doynges.’ Colfre­dus. Osredus. And though thys Bonyface allowed not christē matrymonye in prestes but hated yt, yet after that one Geraldus a marryed byshop was slayne in Thuringia in tyme of the warres there,geraldꝰ he permytted hys sonne Geilepus to succede hym in that offyce.geilepꝰ Helinādus mo­nachus, Vincēcius, Antoninus, Capgraue. &c.

¶The monasteryes of fulda & floryake.

HE buylded the great monastery of Fulda in Germanye,Fulda. in the yeare frō Christes incarnacyon .DCC. & .xliiij.744. Into the which no womē myght entre, but onlye Lieba & Tecla .ij Englysh nonnes hys best beloues.Lieba. The bodye of the seyd Lieba, he commaunded by hys lyfe, of most tēdre loue, to be bu­ryed in one graue with hys owne precyouse body.Mona­sterium fuldēse. So rytche was that monaste­rye within fewe years after, that yt was able to fynde the ēprour in hys warres .lx. thousāde mē. For the which the abbot had alwayes thys pryuylege, to syt vpō the ryght hande of the seyd emproure at the hygh feastes. An other abbeye was buylden afore that at floriake in fraunce,Floria­cus. [Page] and not farre from orlyaunce, in the yeare of our lorde These .ij. monasteryes floriake and fulda with their olde inhabytauntes, wolde I counsell all Chronycle readers to marke, as they fall in their waye, for wonders whiche hath co­men from thens, as wyll apere after. A custome the holye fathers had in those dayes,To ease their vowes. to leade nonnes aboute with thē in straunge lādes where they went. As we reade of walburga, Hadeloga, Lieba and soche other. I thynke yt was to hel­pe thē to beare their chastyte, whose carryage was sumtyme verye comberouse vnto them, and they founde not than in all contreyes soche plentye of Nondryes as hath bene sens. Sigebertus, Capgraue, Tritemius, Nauclerus, Vuicelius.

¶Oxforde shurned. And Aleuinus monkes.

AShamed are not these prestygyouse Papystes, to vtter yt in their storyes and reade yt in their Sayntes legendes, in contempt of their christē gouernours, that no kynge maye entre the towne of oxforde without a myschefe,Oxforde bycause one Algar a Prynce aboute thys age wolde haue had Saynt frideswyde to wyfe.Frides­wyde. As though to be a kyn­ge were a farre vyler or vnworthyer of­fyce, than to be a pylde shytten Nonne. O blynde bludderynge Balaamytes, [Page 49] without all iudgementes godlye. Of God only ys the worthy office of a Kyng.A Kynge. Prouer. 8. where as your fystynge Nōnes, were of Antichrist ād the deuyll. Capgra­ue, Fabiane, Polidorus. Aboute the same ty­me, was Alcuinus a doctour of Englan­de, made abbot of Turonia in Fraunce by the gyft of Charles the great,Alcuinus. which on a nyght founde all his monkes dead in the dorter, by the soden stroke of God for their Sodometrye, one only excepted. Odo cluniacensis, Guilhelmus Malmesburye Vincencius, Antoninus, Ranulphus, & Capgraue post uitam Ythamari. Autours. A great matter had yt bene in the popes bokes, yf these men had had wyues. For thā he coud not haue sent them to the deuyll so fast, accordyn­ge to generall commyssyō, which he had of Sathan hys great mastre; in that vy­carshypp of hys.

¶Englyshe men ponnyshed at Ro­me.

AFter Kynge Ethelwolphe beynge subdeacon,Ethel­wolphꝰ through wanton occu­pyenge had had a bastarde, by the popes dyspensacyō he marryed Osbur­ga hys butlers doughter, and had by her iiij. sonnes, which all succeded Kynges after hym. Guilhelmus Malmesburye, & Ioan­nes Harding. As this Kynge on a tyme chaunced to be at Rome, he se manye Englysh men there wearynge fetters and gyues [...] [Page] delyuered of chylde without mydwyfe and so dyed. Wherin God declared ma­nyfestlye to the worlde, that their glytie rynge churche was altogyther an who­re,An whore. to make good that was written in the reuelacyon of Saynt Iohan. Apo. 17. Oh he that had seane the coūtenaunce of the prelates than, shuld haue beholden a great change.

¶Popes chosen from thens fourth by their. N.

SEns that tyme hath popes al­wayes bene chosen,Popes chosen by their stones as stoned horse are in a colte feyer, by their dontye dymyceryes, that they can nomo­re be deceyued that waye. For at the so­lempne stallynge of them, the last deacon Cardynall doth grope them brechelesse, at an hole made in the seate for that ghostlye purpose, and than cryeth yt out befo­re all the multytude, that he hath ware suffycyent to proue hym no woman. More ouer the strete where she was delyue­red, hath euer sens bene shurned in all generall processyons, for feare of yll hap­pes.An exā ­ple. As ys of women a sexten brydge in a Scottyshe Ile called Leuissa, where as yf but one woman shuld passe ouer (they saye) there are no salmons seane in that ryuer, all the yeare after. Hector Boethius in Scotici regni descriptione. For the hysto­rye afore reherced of this woman Pope, [Page 51] was yt partlye my desyre that ye shuld marke that monasterye of fulda.Fulda For she was one chast frute of our Englyshe clergye, yssuynge from thens, ye maye chaū ­ce after this yet to heare of more. Soche an enemye to prestes marryage was not in hys tyme, as was that Boniface, which was therof the first buylder. For euerye where ded he, in all his generall Synodes,Matri­monye cōdempned. condempne yf for aduouterye by the popes canon lawes, For the scripturs wolde not serue hym. The lyfe of this female pope sheweth more at large, Iacobus Bergomas in li. De claris mulieribus, Platina, Sabellicus, Martinus Carsulanus, Volateranus, Nauclerus, Mantuanus, Iohannes Stella, Ioannes textor, & Robertus Barnes in uitis Romanorum Pontificum.

¶Holye water, with a boke agaynst marryage.

IN the yeare of our Lord .DCCC. LVIII.858 as a serten daydeuyll at the forsayd Maguncia was hunted of the prestes with processyon and holye water,A prest. for dyuerslye vexynge the cytie, he hyd hym selfe for feare (they saye) vn­dre one of the prestes copes▪ saynge. He myght wele be bolde there, consyderyn­ge he had by hym the fleshlye occupyen­ge of the generall proctours doughter there. This relygyouse example of holye churche sheweth Sigebertus, Vincencius, An­toninus, [...] [Page] Capgraue in uita Etheldrede. Ethelstanus a monke,Ethel­stanꝰ a monke maryed at one tyme takynge presthode with Dunstane and Ethelwolde, with­in a whyle after left all hys orders and toke hym to a wyfe. Wherfor they pro­phecyed of hym that hys ende shulde be myserable. And bycause they wolde apere no false Prophetes, they inchaunted hym, charmed hym, and changed hym in to an ele,A myra­cle. and so he lyued in the water euer after with a great sort more of hys companye. Wherupon (they saye) that monasterye and towne hath euer sens bene called Elye.Elye. Guilhelmus Malmesburye et Ioannes Capgraue. A yonge infante called Brithgina,Brithgina. beynge nomore than one da­ye olde, professed Elphegus into the monasterye of wylton aboute the same ty­me. So ded he also an other called Wilf­hilda, into the nondrye of Wynchestre, so sone as she was weaned from sucke. Whom afterwarde kynge Edgare claymed in marryage,Wilfhilda. but she was to famy­lyer with Ethelwolde a monke and a bysshop, to graunt therunto. Whan he came to the howse where she was after­warde abbasse, there was no small fyl­lynge in of cuppes, Ioannes Capgraue.

¶Miracles and wonders wrought.

[Page 54] VVhan Odo the Byshopp of Salysburye [...]as elected Archeby­shopp of Caunterburye in the yeare of our lorde .DCCCC. and .xlvi.Odo. he wolde in no case be consecrated,946. tyll he was by the abbot of Floriake profes­sed a monke.Floria­cus. Partlye bycause all hys predecessours in that seate to the nombre of .xxi. had bene monkes, and partlye for that the prestes in those dayes were in hate of the people for their marryage at the monkes suggestyons. And after he had receyued hys palle with Antichri­stes autoryte from Rome,the kyn­ges con­cubines he wexed so frantyck vpon the kynges concubynes, that some of them he sealed in the faces with hote burnynge Irons most shame­fullye, and some of them he bannyshed into Irelande for euer, but vnto hys owne store he was gentyll ynough. For most haynouse heresye helde he than the christen marryage of prestes, and made synodall constytucyons agaynst yt, to enryche the mōkes through that craftye colour with their great possessyons.Consty­tucyōs. Hys neuye Oswalde founde he to scole at floryake the welsprynge of Necroman­cye,Oswalde. to lerne there all craftye seyen­ces.Flo­riacus. In hys tyme was a stryfe amon­ge the clergye at Caunterburye, for Christes fleshe and bloode in the Sa­cramente, the prestes most ernestly affyrmynge [Page] yt to remayne styll breade [...] an onlye fygure of Christes bodye,The sa­cramēt. and the monkes to be Christes essencyall bodye, yea Christ hymselfe. But whā scripturs fayled ones vpon the monkes syde▪ they were dryuen to false myracles o [...] playne experymentes of sorcerye. For Odo by a cast of legerdemayne, shewed vnto the people a broken host bledynge,Myra­cles. as a popishe prest called sir Nicolas Gerues ded a. ij. years a go in Surreye, by pryckynge hys fyngar with a pynnne.

¶Monkerye augmented by Dun­stane.

SAynt Dunstane here in Englā de beynge taught of Iryshe mō kes at Glastenburye,Dun­stanus magnꝰ. was fo­unde verye connynge in wāton musyck, in sorcerye, and in Image makynge out of all maner metals, stone, and kyndes of wode. By these and soche lyke occupyenges, he founde the meanes to augmēt and enryche the monasteryes of mōkes and nonnes euerye where whithin Englande, not withstandynge he had oft ty­mes moche a do with deuyls and with women. Yet had he at length these pry­uyleges than aboue all other spirytuall doers. He wanne by hys musyck and fayre speche,musyck the good fauer of dyuerse wo­men, yea, of some whiche had bene the kynges cōcubynes, as Alfgyne, wilfrith [Page 55] and soche other, though he afore had put them to paynes. By hys sorceryes,sorcerye he alwayes made the kynges fytt for hys ghostlye purpose, as wyll apere heraf­ter, specyallye by kynge Edmonde that was Ethelstanes brother, whom by hys necromancye he brought to the poynte, inuysysyblye to haue bene torne in pe­ces. What he gote by hys Image makynge,Caruynge. the scripture sheweth playne, whiche curseth both the hande and the instru­ment of the Image maker. Sapi. 14. and Deutro. 27. Thys storye declareth more at large Osbertus monachus in uita Dunsta­ni, Vincencius. li. 24. Ca. 74. Antoninus par. 2.autours [...]i. 16. Ca. 6. Martanus Scotus, Guilhelmus Malmesburiensis, Ranulphus Cestrensis li. 6. Cap. 10. Volateranus, Bergomas, Nauclerus, Iohan Capgraue, Iohan hardynge Vuyllyam Caxton, Iohan 1. yd gate, and Robert Fabyane.

The relygyouse Occupyenge of Dunstane.

AS Dunstane in the howse of a wydowe was fashyonynge a prestes stoole, hys harpe hangynge vpon the wall without towchynge sownded the note of Gaudent in celis. A caste or feate. Wherupon the wenches astoyned, went out of the howse with the wydowe & all her hows­holde, proclamynge yt a brode, that he had moche more lernynge thā was good. For thys & soche lyke feates, serten men tolde [...] [Page] I thynke thys playe sumwhat passed co­urse legerdemayne. After that was Dū stane the hygh stewarde of hys howse, & had ouer all the realme a iurysdycyon. Of Glastenburye was he put in perpe­tuall possessyon,Glastē ­burye. to make therof what he wolde. And so bycame yt first of all Saynt Benettes patrymonye. Antedicti Autores. Lete all the Popes armye stande vp here, and allowe thys styll for a my­racle, as they haue done hytherto in hys legende, yet do not I doubt to proue yt agaynst them all, abhomynable knaue­rye by the scripturs.

¶He vexeth kynge Edwyne, re­taynynge hys concubyne.

AS kynge Edwyne vpon the daye of hys coronacyon occupyed Alf­gina hys concubyne, hauynge thā non other wyfe,Edwi­nus. alfgina Dunstane beynge at that tyme but a mōke and abbot of Glastenburye, plucked them both vyolentlye from the bedde, and brought their befo­re the Archebyshopp Odo,Odo cā tuariensis. threttenyn­ge the woman suspensyon, ye maye call yt hangynge yf ye wyll. For the whyche the kynge after that exyled the seyd Dū stane into Flanders, & wrought the monkes manye other dyspleasurs, tyll they founde the meanes to depose hym, by the vertu of eare confessyon.Confession. Voleteranus. li. 3 Geographic, Osbertus, Vincencius, Antoninus, [Page 57] Guilhelmus Ranulphus & Ioannes Capgra­ue. Yet in the conclusyon (they saye) he delyuered Kynge Edwynes sowle, af­ter he was dead, from hell (I praye God he kylled hym not afore) and vanquys­hed all the deuyls there by vertu of a Requiem masse,Masse of requiem. so bryngynge hym into their purgatorye. This was (I trowe) no badde ware. As a serten noble womā called Alfgina (the Kynges former con­cubine I feare me) possessynge great substaunce,alfgina loueth. had ones commoned with Dunstane, she so delyghted in hys fayre wor­des (for hys aduauntage) that she wolde neuer after from hym, but dwell with hym styll for terme of lyfe.Strōge loue. She left her owne howse and buylded her an habyta­cyon by the churche, louynglye intertaynynge men of holye orders. In conclusyon whan she departed the worlde, she left her great coffers and treasure bag­ges with Dūstane to dyspose for her soule (she had hearde of Kynge Edwyne) with the which he after that buylded fy­ne monasteryes. Ioan. Cap. in Cat. sāc. An.

¶Dunstane kepeth the Kynges of Englande vndre.

DVnstane was excedyngly belo­ued with Cadina Kynge Eldre­des mother (these are the playne wordes,Cadi­na loueth. of the hystory) & he loued her excedynglye agayne. And whā he ones be­came [...] [Page] lyke vnto the tyrannye of these spirituall Antichristes, thus cruellye handelynge, a man that ys dead. This sheweth more at large, Liuthprandus Ticinensis▪ li. 2. Capi. 13.autours ac li. 3 Cap, 12. rerum Europicarum. Blon­dus Flauius, Baptista Platina, Ioannes Stella, Abbas Vrspergensis, Ptolomeus Lucensis, Vincencius, Antoninus, Bergomas & alij.

¶The chastyte of holye churche there.

THeodora a most execrable whore,Theo­ra cum filiabus and aduonterouse mother to the forsayd Marozia ād theodora the yongar (both vnshamefast whores also) so burned in concupiscens of the bewtye of one Iohan Rauennas a prest,Ioānes Rauennas, than sēt in massage to the pope by Peter the Ar­chebyshop of Rauenna, that she not only moued hym, but also compelled hym to lye with her, ād so become her peramou­re dere. This whore for hys leche­rouse occupyenge of her, made him first Byshop of Bononye, than Arche­byshop of hys owne natyue cytye Rauē ­na, and fynallye Saynt Peters vycar in Rome, called Iohan the .x.Ioan the .x pope of that name, that she myght at all tymes haue hys companye nygher home. This was done in the yeare of our Lorde. DCCCC. and. xv.915 and he gouerned the papacye there .xiij. years and more. Liuthprandus Ticinensis li. 2. Dap. 13. rerum per Europam gestarum. It is easye to se by this open experiment, [Page 59] that she and her .ij. doughters myght do moche in the holye college of cardynalles.whores rule all. He that iudgeth not that churche to be whoryshe, which was so depelye vndre the rule of whores, that they at their pleasure myght appoynt thervn­to what head rulers they wolde, hath lytle good iudgement in hym, I thynke.

¶A popes bastarde ys made pope

GVido the marques of Thuscia,Guido & Mazozia. at the lattre marryed Pope Sergi­us whore Marozia. Which wyllynge to preferre vnto Saynt Peters seate, the bastarde whom she had by the seyd Pope, caused hym to enpryson her mothers dere peramoure Iohan the .x. and to stoppe vp hys breathe with a pyl­lowe. Immedyatlye after, which was the yeare of our Lorde .DCCCC. ād xxix.929 was he constytute pope, and called Iohā the xi.Ioā. xi but the same self yeare he was de­posed agayne. Wherupon she clerly left all spirytuall occupyenge, and in displeasure of the prelates, marryed her self loue after her husbandes deathe to one hugh the Kynge of Italye,Hugo rex Ita­lie. which was her o­ther husbandes brother by the mothers syde, and made hym the monarke of Ro­me to recouer agayne this lost dignyte for her bastarde. Thus shewed she her self to be a playne Herodias, besydes her other vnshamefast whoredomes in the spity­ [...] [...] [Page] Thys holye successour of Peter and vȳ ­car of Christ (as they call popes) was ac­cused of hys Cardynalles and Byshop­pes vnto the Emprour Otho in the ge­nerall Synode at Rome, that he wolde saye no seruyce,Synodus Ro­me. he massed without consecracyon, he gaue holye orders in hys stable, he made boyes Byshoppes for mo­neye, he wolde neuer blesse hymself, he forced not to be periured, and made the holye palace of Laternense a verye ste­wes. For he kepte therin Raynerathe[?] wyfe of hym that was knyght for hys owne bodye,rainera and gaue her great possessyons, with benefyces, goldē chalyces, and cros­ses. He helde also Stephana and her sy­stre,Stephana (which had bene hys fathers concubyne) and had by her a bastarde not longe afore. He occupyed at hys pleasure An­na a freshe wydowe,Anna her doughter also and doughters doughter. He spared neyther hygh nor lowe, olde nor yonge, poo­re nor rytche, fayre nor foule (they sayd) so that no women durst come vnto Rome on pylgrymage in hys tyme.Rome sacryfyce. Neyther reuerenced he anye place, but wolde do yt euerye where, yea, vpon their verye aulters. He wolde hawke, hunte, daun­ce,, leape, dyce, sweare, fyght, ryot, roune, straye abrode in the nyght breakynge vppe dores and wyndo­wes, and burne manye mennys howses, [Page 61] One of hys Cardynalles he gelded,He myght be chast he put out an others eyes whyche had bene hys godfather. Of some he borowed an hande, of some a tunge, a fynger, a nose, an eare. In hys dyce playnge wolde he call vpon yll spretes, and drynke to the deuyll for loue. Thus was he in the ende deposed,Their spirytu­all fa­ther. tyll hys dere dyamōdes sett hā ­des vnto yt (for they ruled all) ād caused the Romaynes to sett hym in agayne.

¶Dunstanes autoryte agaynst mar­ryed prestes.

THe papacye helde thys Iohā the .xij.Ioā. xij. for the space of .ix. years .iij. monthes, and .v. dayes, and was s [...]kē of the deuyll (they saye) as he was lyenge in bedde with a mannys wyfe, & so dyed within .viij. dayes after without howsell or shrift, they saye. All thys wri­teth of hym the foreseyd Liuthprandus Liuth­prādus. li. 6. Ca. 6. and so fourth .v. chapters more to the ende almoste of hys boke, whiche at the same selfe tyme dwelt at Ticina in Italye. Thys ys he of whome the byworde ryse, As myrye as Pope Iohan.By worde. Ʋnto thys holye vycar of Sathan & successour of Symon Magus, went Dunstane out of Englande in the yeare of our lorde. DCCCC. and .lx.960. to be cōfyrmed archebyshop of Caunterburye.Dunstanus. And there re­ceyued therwith for a great summe of moneye, autoryte & power of the Beast, [Page] Apoca. 13. vtterlye to dyssolue prestes maryage, that hys monkes by that meanes, myght possesse the cathedrall churches of Englande, as within a whyle after they ded. Thys Dunstane (as witnesseth Iohā Capgraue) was the first that in thys real­me compelled men and women to vowe chastyte and to kepe claustrale obedyen­ce,the first compulsyon. agaynste the fre doctryne of Saynte Paule. 1 Cor. 7. et Gala. 5. Forbyddynge marryage instytuted of God, whiche ys the verye doctryne of deuils.Foundacyon of chastyte 1. Timoth. 4 Thys ys the worthye orygynall and first foundacyon of monkes and prestes pro­fessed chastyte in Englande. marke yt with the sequele, and tell me herafter, whether yt be of the deuyll or naye.

¶Dunstane executeth hys deuylyshe commyssyon.

THys craftye merchaunde Dūstane,The deuyls cō ­myssyo­ner. as he was returned agayne into Englāde, by autoryte of this most execrable monstre and wycked Antichrist, gaue a strayght commaundemēt that prestes out of hāde shuld put awaye their lawfull wyues (whō that brēt con­sepenced[?] hypocryte called the vessels of fornycacyon) els wolde he (he sayd) ac­cordynge to hys commyssyon,A thefe put them both from benefyce and lyuynge. And where as he perceyued the benefyces most welthye, there was he most gredye [Page 62] vpon them, and shewed most vyolence & tyrannye. For whan the hygh deanes of cathedrall churches,A tyra­unt. masters of colleges, prebendes, persones, and vycars wolde not at so beastly a commaundement, leaue their wyues and chyldren so desolate without all naturall ordre, he gote vnto hym the great power of kynge Edgare,Kynge Edgare to assyst that creull commyssyon of hys, procured for moneye of the former An­tichrist of Rome, and by force therof in manye places most tyrannouslye expel­led them. Ioānes Capgraue in Catalogo sanc­torum Anglie. Reade all the Byble and Chronycles ouer, of Nemroth, Pharao, Antiochus, Nero, Decius, Traianus, with other lyke,Tyran­nye spi­rytuall. and I thynke, ye shall not fynde a more tyrannouse example. No, not in cruell Herode hys selfe. For though he slewe the innocent babes, yet demynyshed he not the lyuynge of the fathers and mothers, but thys tyraunt toke all with hym. If he had sought a Godlye reformacyon where marryage was abused, yt had bene sumwhat com­mendable. But hys huntynge was to destroye yt all togyther,Maryage con­dēpned. as an horryble vyce in prestes, and in place therof to sett up Sodome and Gomor by a sort of Hypocryte monkes, so changynge all godlye ordre.

¶Kynge Edgare ys brought vndre therby.

THus bycame the face, first of the Brytonysh and than of the En­glysh churche sore changed,Facies ecclesia­rum. ble­myshed, and by whorysh commyssyons frō the whorysh byshoppes of the who­rysh Synagoge of Rome, was made all togyther whoryshe. Proue me herin a lyer and an heretyke yf ye can, for I wyll, by the helpe of God, stāde by that I write here to the ende of my lyfe. If ye can not (I speake onlye to yow papystycall byshoppes and prestes) graunt your sel­ues to be the most theues, herety­kes,Herety­kes and theues. and seducers of the people, that euer yet reigned vpon the earthe, for maynteynynge for holynesse so deuylysh a knauerye. Immedyatlye after thys be fell a sore chaunce, as God walde. Kynge Edgare which was euer a great whore mastre and a tyraunte (as the Chronycles report hym) had a do with a yonge mayde called wilfrith,wilfrith brought vp in the nondrye of wyl­ton (parauenture to their vse) wherupon by force of the former commyssyon, he was condempned of Dunstane to .vij. years penaunce, and myght in no wyse be dyspensed with,Penaū ­ce. tyll he had buylded for their commodyte the great nondrye of Shaftesburye with .xij. other monasteryes besydes. Specyallye tyll he had [Page 63] fullye graunted to the vtter condempnacyon of prestes maryage through out all hys realme, and fyrmelye promysed to put the monkes in their rowmes in the great cathedrall churches,An apyshe liaue writynge to the pope for the same. For as witnesseth both Vuyllyam of Malmesburye, Ranulph of Chestre, Guido de columna, and Robert saby­ane, he was not crowned tyll the .xij. yea­re of hys reigne.

¶Dunstane fashyoneth the kynge to hys purpose.

IN the ende, thys aduoutrye of the kynge made greatlye for their purpose. For whan yt was ones openlye knowne, Dunstane with hys Bulle went by and by vnto hym, and by force therof denounced hym accursed.The be­astes autoryte. The kynge of gentylnesse, as he was cō ­mynge towardes hym, arose out of hys regall seate to take hym by the hande ād geue hym place. The hystorye sayth, that he than dysdayned to geue hym hys hande. And lokynge vpon hym with bende browes and most spyghtfull countenaunte, he sayd thus vnto hym. Thu that hast not feared to corrupte a vyrgyne made handefast to Christ,A prou­de kna­ue presumest to towche (a knaue) the consecrate handes of a by­shopp? Thu hast defyled the spowse of thy maker (a monkes wanton) and thynkest by flatterynge seruyce, to pacyfye (a [...] [Page] But what matter maketh yt whiche of them yt was, whan all they are allowed now for canonysed Sayntes in the po­pes whoryshe churche.All sayntes Yea, the whore­monger, the whore, the whoryshe bastarde and all, to sett whoryshnesse forewar­de and make yt apere holye, where mar­ryage ys thought vnholye. And as for the mother of Edwarde,The mother. Iohan Hardynge nameth her Elflede, Polydorus Elfrede, Wyllyam of Malmesburye, Ranulphe, & Fabyane calleth her whyght Egelflede, & Caxton dare geue her no name, and ther­fore the matter ys doubtfull.Dunstane. As Dun­stane was on a tyme hallowynge of a churche in the honoure of Saynt deuyll, saynt Deuys I shuld saye, he behelde the ryght thombe of the foreseyd Edithe,Editha. thā beynge abbesse of wylton, as she was crossynge ād blessynge her forhead. And moche delyghtynge therin, he toke yt in hys hande, and sayd. Neuer myght thys thombe peryshe. Immedyatlye after he beynge at Masse and dolouroussye we­pynge, sayd vnto the deacon that serued hym. Alas thys floryshynge floure will fade,Great loue shewed. thys redolēt rose wyll be gone, this dayntye Dyamonde wyll peryshe, thys swete byrde wyll awaye for euer. And after her deathe he founde all her bodye resolued into ashes, except that thombe and the secrete part vndre her bellye, for [Page 65] those .ij. partes of her, he had blessed afo­re. In dede he was verye homelye to ser­che so farre.A nar­rowe sercher. But the cause of thys (they saye) she afterwarde declared vnto hym in a secrete vysyon. Thys storye sheweth Vuillyā of Malmesburye. li. 2. de pontificibus. Ranulphus in polychronico, li. 6. Ca. 9. Vincencius, li. 25. Ca. 33. Antoninus. par. 2. ti. 16. Ca. 8 Iohannes Capgraue in uita Edithe.

¶Kynges become th Beastes Images.

Ʋ Ʋhan Kynge Edgare had ones perfourmed hys .vij.Edgare years pe­naūce for hys aduowterye with fayre Wilfrith (whom Dūstane parauē ture prepared for hys owne store) he be­came altogyther the dumme Image of the Beast,Imago Bestie. and myght not vtter frō thens fourth, but as they gaue hym sprete. Apo. i [...]. Than caused they hym to call a gene­rall counsell (at London some saye) in the yeare of our lordeSyno­dus. .DCCCC. and .lxix.969 by the vngracyouse autoryte of the aforeseyd pope Iohan. And there was yt ful­lye enacted, and establyshed for a lawe euer to endure, that all canons of cathe­drall churches, collygeners, persons, cu­rates, vycars, prestes, deacons,An Ac­te for sodome. and sub­deacons shuld eyther lyue chast, that ys to saye, become Sodomytes (for that hath bene their chastyte euer sens) or els be suspended from all spirytuall iurysdyccyon. [Page] Thys more than Pharaonycall con­stytucyō,Tyran­nye. was the kynge sworne to ayde, maynteyne, and defende with the mate­ryall swerde, by the popes antoryte. Thā were there chosen oute .ij. pryncypall vy­sytours, Ethelwolde the Byshopp of Wynchestre (that nest ys euer vngracy­ouse) & Oswalde the Byshopp of Wor­cestre, both monkes, to se thys throughe out the whole realme executed.Ʋysy­tours. Vincencius li. 24. Cap. 83. Antoninus par. 2. li. 16. Cap. 6., Guilhelmus Malmesburye, Ranulphus, Guido de columna, Ioan Capgraue. et opus nouum De utra (que) potestate. fo. 57.

¶Dunstane ys accused of yll rule.

IN thys counsel were some wyse men (as all these writers wytnes­se, though yt be sumwhat fayntly) which layed for their marryage the scripturs,For maryage. and substancyallye proued themsel­ues the maynteyners of vertu therin, ād not of aduouterye as they were there vncharytablye noted. But that wolde not serue thē. The holye Ghost myght in no wyse preuayle,Bulles the popes bawdye bulles beynge in place, but they must nedes ha­ue the preferment, no remedye. An other sort were there which accused Dunstane of yll rule in the darke.Dun­stane accused For Petrus Equili­nus sayth in Catalogo Sanctorum li. 8. Ca. 49. that he was put to hys purgacyon of manye thyngs there layed agaynst hym. Of [Page 66] a lyekelyhode therfore they had smelled oute sumwhat that was not all to hys spi­rytuall honestye. Neyther wolde these accusacyons helpe, the popes Power ones so largelye publyshed. The kynge durst vtter nothynge that was agaynst hym,Edgare for feare of newe penaunce, and for as moche as yt was wele knowne that in the tyme of hys olde penaunce he had oc­cupyed one mynyon at Wynchestre, an other at Andouer,alfreda. besydes alfrede whō he at the lattre gote to wyfe by the craf­tye mourther of her husbāde Ethelwol­de an earle.

¶The kynge defendeth Dunstane & destroyeth wolues.

BƲt to pacyfye and please thys Dunstane,Oratio ad clerū kynge Edgare in hys oracyon there to the clergye, rebuked the prestes verye sore, for banketyn­ge with their wyues, for slacknesse of their masse saynges, for pretermyttynge their canonycall houres, for their crow­nes shauynges with their vnprestlye aparellynges, and soche other lyke. More ouer he alleged vnto thē in the seyd ora­cyon the lamentable complayntes (good knauerye I warāde yow) of hys fathers sowle aperynge to Dunstane,Knaue­rye. and reprouynge the wantō behauer of the prestes with their wyues. He also tolde them, in repressynge their former accusementes, that [...] [Page] by hys peramoure Stephana) of hys breames and vysyons for the tyme of hys progresse,Stephana desyeryng hys power agaynst the prestes also, with manye other won­ders. Iohānes Capgraue in Catal. Guilhelmus Malmesburye, Vincencius, Antoninus, Ranulphus, Guido de columna▪ et Polydorus.

¶Oswalde with hys Beastlye autoryte.

ON the other syde went Oswalde with hys autoryte frō that wyc­ked counsell,Oswal­dus magus. which had stodyed necromancye with other vnpure scyēces at floryake besydes Orleaunce in frāce, where he was first made monke, and af­terwarde in Englande bycame byshopp of Worcestre.Floria­ [...]us. Thys fellawe so wele ar­med with deceytes as euer were Phara­oes sorcerers, was thought a man mete to deceyue with lyenge sygnes the com­mō sort. So trudged he fourth with hys craftye ca [...]kynges, and first expelled the Canons of the cathedrall churche of worcestre with their carefull wyues and chyldren,Prestes expelled and out of .vij. other churches more within that hys dyoces, and there placed for them the laysye leane locustes, which not longe afore had leaped out of the bottomlesse pytt. Apoca. 9.Apoc. 9 the monkes which at that tyme were bare and nedye. Thā went he farther abrode, and wrought there lyke masteryes, wherof Englāde hath­depelye [Page 68] felt euer sens. Hys suggestyons were lyke the other,a colour[?] as that the prestes lyued wantonlye, and wolde not masse in due forme. For hys trauayle in thys, was he made archebyshop of Yorke by the laboure of Dunstane. To tell hys o­ther feates yt wolde axe to moche tyme, and therfor I passe yt ouer.iij. false knaues. These .ij. pro­moted the seyd Dūstane aboue all other, as men hauynge most wylye craftes, to assyst hym in hys busynesse. These .iij. Monkes brought the Kynges so vndre, that they had than all the realme at their pleasures. Ioannes Capgraue, Malmesburye, Vincencius, Antoninus, Ranulphus, Guido de Columna, et Polydorus.

¶Dunstane maketh a Kynge at hys pleasure.

AFter the decease of Kynge Ed­gare, in the yeare of our lorde. DCCCC. and .lxxv.975. was a wonderfull varyete and scysme through out the whole realme,Scisma partlye for hym that next shuld succede Kynge, and partlye for the great iniurye done to the marryed pre­stes.Alphe­rus. The quene Alfrede with Alpherus the duke of Mercia and other great lor­des fauorynge her quarell worlde nedes haue Ethelrede Kynge whiche was her sonne by Edgare,Ethelredus. on the one syde. Dun­stane and hys mōkyshe byshoppes with the earle and Eastsexe and serten other lor­des [...] [Page] part both of the nobles and commons, iudged the prestes to haue great wronge, and sought euerye where by all meanes possyble,Ba [...]ka­re, sir monke. to brynge them agayne to their olde possessyōs and dygnytees. Yea, sum where with good ernest blowes and buffettes. Robertus Fabyane cum antedictis Au­toribus.

¶Dunstane maketh an Idoll to speake.

THys caused Dunstane in the ye­are of our lorde .DCCCC. and lxxv.975. to call an other solempne counsell.Syno­dus. But that was where they thought themselues most stronge, and myght best do their feates, at Wynche­stre. Where after great wordes had be­twen the duke of Marche and the earle of Eastsexe (which were than appoynted as arbyters) Dunstane perceyuynge all to go with the prestes, broughte fourthe hys former commyssyō,Cōmys­syon. thynkynge ther­by to stoppe their mouthes. And whan that wolde not serue, they sought out a practyse of the olde Idolatrouse prestes, which were wont to make their Idolles to speake, by the art of Necromancye, wherin the monkes were in those dayes expert. A roode there was vpon the frayter wall in the monasterye where the co­unsel was holdē,Aroode & (as Ʋyncēt & Antoninus testyfyeth) Dunstane required thē [Page 70] all to praye therunto, which was not thā ignoraunte of that spirytuall prouysyon.Knaue­rye. In the myddes of their prayer, the roode spake these wordes, or els a knaue mōke behynde hym in a truncke through the wall, as Bonyface ded after for the papacye of Celestyne. God forbyd (sayth he) ye shulde chāge thys ordre takē.The roode spea­keth. Ye shuld not do wele, now to alter yt. Take Dun­stanes wayes vnto ye, for they are the best. At thys worke of the deuyll all they were astoyned, that knewe not therof the craftye cōueyaunce. If thys were not cleane legerdemayne, tell me. Oh, that the­re was not a Iohā Boanerges at that tyme, to proue the spretes of that workemā shyp. 1. Ioan. 4.1. Ioā. 4 If there had bene but one Thomas Cromwell,Tho­mas crō well. they had not so cle­relye escaped with that knauerye. Polydorus Vergilius, which alloweth thē in ma­nye other lewde poyntes, smelled out their bouerye in thys, and reporteth dy­uerse other to do the same at the daye.

¶That Idoll ys crowned Kynge of Englande.

IN remēbraunce of thys knauerye (myracle, they saye) were afterwarde writtē vpō the wall vndre that roodes fete,Ʋerses these verses folowynge.

Humano more, crux presens edidit ore,
Coelitus affata, que perspicis hic subarata,
Absit ut hoc fiat, et cetera tunc memorata.

[Page] Wyth lye and all.Capgraue. Whom Iohan Cap­graue reporteth that he se there more thā CCCC. years after, the roode transla­ted from thens into the churche for hys myracles sake. Aboute the yeare of our lorde a. M. and .xxxvi.1036. as kynge Canu­tus beynge at Southampton was boa­sted of one of hys knyghtes to be the great lorde of the see,Canutꝰ he thought to proue yt by a commaundemēt of obedyence. And as he wele perceyued that yt wolde obe­ye hym in no poynt,The crowne. he toke the crowne from hys owne head, acknowlegynge that there was a lord moche hygher & of more power thā hymself was. And therfor he promysed neuer more to weare yt, but to rendre yt vp vnto hym for euer. With that,Egel­nothus. Egelnothus than archeby­shopp of Caunterburye, infourmed hym of thys roode whiche had dysolued pre­stes matrymonye ād done manye other great myracles. Whiche prouoked hym anon after to go to Wynchestre, and to resigne vnto hym hys regall crowne, cō ­stytutynge hym than kynge of thys real me.An Idol made kynge. Was not thys (thynke yow) good wholsom counsell of thys Idolouse by­shopp. Zacha. 11. yf a man had nede of yt? A playne token ys yt that they were thā the Images of the Beast.Image of the Beast. Apoca. 13. & no godlye gouernours, yea, verye Idolles [...] no kynges, that were vndre soche ghostly [Page 71] fathers. Henricus Huntyngtonensis Archidia conus. li. 6. Ranulphus li. 6. Ca. 20. Fabianus. li. 1. Ca. 206. et Polydorus li. 7. with other autours more.

¶An example of Claustrall virgynyte.

MArianus Scotus & serten other writers besydes, do testyfye in their Chronycles, that whan thys Canutus coude haue no frute by hys wyfe Elgyne of hampton,Canutꝰ Elgius. and was not througlye contented therwith. She fearynge that he shuld eyther caste her vp, or els resort to some other, gote her a­monge relygyouse chast women, to kno­we what good chere was amonge them. And anon she founde one to her mynde,Clan­strall chastyte whiche was bygge with chylde by a mō ke, not withstandynge the great chastyte that was boasted afort. But Marianus sayth, she was a presbyteresse or a prestes [...]e [...]an, to saue the honoure of that ordre, bycause he was a monke hys selfe. Algyne bad thys nonne be of good chere, and yf she wolde agre vnto her, yt shuld be to her great honoure.A mon­kes bastarde. But yt must (she sayd) be kept wonderfully close. Imme­dyatlye after the quene fayned herselfe to be great with chylde, and by the con­ueyaunce of a mother. B. goynge be­twixt them both, as the tyme appoynted of labourynge, she was delyuered of the [Page] nonnes chylde, makynge the kynge to be leue yt was hys, to no small reioyce of them both.Sweno This chylde was called Swe­no, and the yeare afore Canutus dyed, was constytute kynge of Norweye. So­me writers haue thought that Heraldus the first (whiche after succeded kynge of Englande) to come fourth also the same waye,Heral­dus. ād hys owne brother harde Canu­tus reporte yt not farre otherwyse. Ra­nulphus li 6. Ca. 20. cum ceteris autoribus.

¶Dunstane dysputeth with sorcerye and murther.

NOw let vs returne vnto Dūstane agayne.Dun­stanus. Though the afore­sayd controuersye betwen the prestes & the mōnkes ceased for a tyme, by reason of their legerdemayne in the roo­de,Knaue­rye. yet was yt not all fynyshed. For some men of wysdome there were in those dayes, which smelled somwhat (as Polydorus reporteth) iudgynge yt to be as yt was in dede, verye subtyle knauerye. And playnelye Ranulphus sayth, that the spech came frō the wall. Marke yt bardelye. Wherupon Alpherus the duke of Marche with hys companye,Alphe­rus. in the yeare fo­lowynge (whiche was from Christes in­carnacyon .DCCCC. and .lxxvi.)976. sent into Scotlande for a certen lerned By­shop,a lerned byshop. which was knowne both eloquent [Page 72] & wytty, to dys [...]te the matter with thē. Than was the place appoynted in a stre­te or vyllage of the Kynges, called Cal­ua, for they trusted no more close howses in the monasteryes. And whan the By­shopp had layed for the marryed prestes soche invyncyble scripturs,Dun­stane an asse. reasone, and argumentes as Dunstane and hys dodypoll monkes were not albe to auoyde, the blynde asse had non other shyft but to laye these faynte excuses for hymself. As that he was an aged man, sore brokē in the labours of holye churche, and that he had at that tyme geuen ouer all sto­dye,A blyn­de beast and onelye addycted hymself vnto prayer. But for as moche (he sayd) as they wolde not leaue the dysquyetynge of hym, but styll vexe hym with olde quarellynges, they myght wele seme to haue the vyctorye, yet shuld they not haue their myndes. And with that he arose in a great furye, for a coloure com­myttynge hys cause vnto Christ,A lym­me of the de­uyll. but he sett the Deuyll by hys necromancye to worke. For so sone as he was gone, with soche as yt pleased hys pontyfycall pleasure to call with hym, sodenly (sayth Fabyane, Antonyne, Vyncent, and Iohan Cap­graue) the ioystes of the loft fayled, and they that were vndre yt, peryshed there.

¶Dunstanes prouysyon in Englande for Sathan.

THus haue thys most cruell and wycked generacyon contynual­lye buylded their synnefull Sy­on in blood. Michee. 3.Mich. 3 and are not yet a­shamed of these their manyfest knauery­es. For these belly founders, theues, and mourtherers of theirs yet aduaunce they for their princypall Sayntes.sayntes And whā their feastfull dayes come, they are yet in the papystych churches of Englande with no small solēpnyte, mattensed, [...]assed, candeled, lyghted, processyoned, sen­se [...], smoked, perfumed, and worshypped, the people brought in beleue, that the la­tyne readynge of their wretched actes there in their legendes, ys Gods dyuy­ne seruyce,Gods seruyce. beyng without fayle the most dampnable seruyce of the deuyll. Lyke as holye Iohan Baptyst by preachynge repentaunce, prepared a playne pathwaye, to Christ and hys kyngedome, Luce. 3. So ded thys vnholye Dunstane by so­wynge of all superstycyons,Precursor An­tichristi. make redye the waye to Sathā and hys fylthye kyn­gedome agaynst hys commynge fourth from the bottomlesse pytt, after the full thousande of years from Christes incarnacyon. Apoca. 20.Apo. 20 Myra­cles. which ys the sprete of Antichrist, He raysed vp in Englāde the pestylent ordre of monkes, he buylded [Page 73] them monasteryes, he procured them substaunce innumerable, fynally he brought into their handes the cathedrall churches with the free eleccyon of byshoppes, that nothyng shuld there be done within that realme, but after their lust and pleasure. Thā was Chrystes kyngedome clerelye put a syde, and hys immaculate spouse, or churche vpon hys worde onlye depen­dynge,The churche Apo. 12. compelled to flee into the desart. Apoca. 12. Men and womē that ryghtlye beleued, durst not than confesse their faythe, but kept all close within them. For than was Sathan abrode,Sathan these monkes euerye where assystynge hym in the four­nyshynge out of that proude paynted churche of Antichrist. Superstycyon, hy­pocresye, and vayne glorye, were afore that tyme soche vyces as men were glad to hyde,Vyces. but now in their gaudyshe cere­monyes, they were taken for Gods dy­uyne seruyce.

¶Sygnes and plages folowynge these myschefes.

BƲt now se what folowed of these afore rehersed myscheues. In the yeare of our lorde .DCCCC. & lxxxviij.988 (which was the .xij. yeare before that full thousande) departed thys Dunstane, a swarme of deuyls frequētynge hys tumbe,Deuyls. as I shall in the next boke she we more playnelye. Within the same [Page] yeare appered a bloodye cloude in the skye,A bloo­dye cloude. which couered all Englāde, as witnesseth Iohā Hardinge with dyuerse other Chronyclers, and yt rayned blood ouer all the lande.Danes. After that entered the Danes so fast (sayth Ranulphe) at euerye porte, that no where was the Englyshe nacyon able to withstande them. And the monkes to helpe the matter wele fo­rewarde, by counsell of their Archeby­shop Siricius,Sirici­us. gaue them .x. thousand pounde to begynne with, that they myght lyue in rest and not be hyndered. For ly­tle cared they what became of the reest, so their precyouse bodyes were safe. Af­ter thys by dyuerse compulsyons they augmented that summe, from .x. to .xvi. to .xx. to .xxiiij. to .xxx. and so fourth tyll they came to the sharpe payment of .xl. thousande pounde,Mōkes were Englandes de­struccy­on. and tyll they had no­more moneye to geue.The Danes stregth­ned. For the more the Danes had, the more couetouse and cru­ell they were euermore. Thus ded they to the lande innumerable harme, in sekynge their owne pryuate commodyte, and so brought their owne natyue people in most myserable thraldome. For by that meanes were the Danes made stronge, and the Englyshe nacyon bycame feble and weake, yea, so wretched at the last, that they were fayne to call euerye vyle slaue amonge the seyde Danes,Lorde Dane. their [Page 74] good lorde. But now marke the ende cō ­cernynge these monkes. In the yeare of our lorde a thousande & .xij whiche was the .xxiiij.1012. yeare from Dunstanes departynge. and the .xij. from the deuyls goynge fourth, the Danes after manye gre­at vyctoryes within the realme,Caōterburye. fyered the cytie of Caunterburye and enpriso­ned the Archebyshopp than Elphegus.Elphe­gus. And as he and hys monkes were able to geue no more moneye, they tythed thē after thys sort. They slewe alwayes .ix. and reserued the tenth to perpetuall so­rowe and seruytude, tyll they had mourthered of them to the nōbre of more thā ix.Tythynges. hondred, there and in other quarters abrode. And the moste part of them they hynge vp by the members,A iust Plage. which was a playne sygnyfycacyon, that plage to co­me than vpon them for their Sodometrye and most vyolent con­tempt of christen marryage. Ranulphus Cestrensis li. 6. Ca. 13. et. 15. Fabianus Par. 1. Cap. 199.

¶The Conclusyon of thys fyrst boke.

HEre haue I paynted oute before your eyes (most de­relye beloued contreye mē) the chast,Extent of thys boke holye, consecrate, and spirituall actes of your Englyshe votaryes, prestes, Monkes, & Byshoppes, frō the worldes begynnyn­ge, to a full complete thousande years sens Christes incarnacyon. Not all haue I here rehersed, for that were a laboure without ende, they beynge so innumera­ble, but a serten of them for euerye age, that ye maye by them perceyue what the rest hath bene.The o­ther bo­ke. In the next part or boke, which shall begynne at Sathans goynge fourthe at large, after hys thousande years tyenge vp. Apoca. 20. and so conty­nue to thys yeare of our Lorde a .MD. and .xlvi.1546. that ye maye knowe what che­re hath bene amonge them, what occu­pyenge they haue had, what masteryes they haue played, ād what myracles they haue done, for that tyme ād space also. I thynke yt wyll apere an other maner of thynge, than that which hath gone afore.Sathan at large For so moche as Sathan their ghostlye gouernoure hath for that tyme wrought [Page 75] most strongelye. Nomore wyll I be ashamed to reherse their fylthye factes (lete them trust vpon yt) than they haue bene to do them in effect, and to sett them fourthe for holye, spirytuall, cōsecrate, chast, honorable,Good workes and ghostlye good workes, beynge abhomynable and most stynkynge knaueryes.

The worlde shall wele knowe what Sodomytes and Deuyls they are,Sodo­mites. that haue all thys tyme contempned christen marryage instytuted of God, and do not yet repent their most dampnable doyn­ges in that behalf, but contynue styll the saint, leadynge their lyues in vnspekea­ble fleshlye fylthynesse. Christ promysed ones to all soche as they are, that all their hydden myscheues shuld come to lyght, yf they wolde not at the call of hys most holye Gospell, repent. Nothynge (sayth he) ys so closelye hydden amonge those spirytual murtherers, but wyl be clerely opened, neyther yet so secretlye couered, but shall apere manyfest and be knowne to the worlde. Math. 10.Mat. 10 Marci. 4.Mar. 4. Luce. 12. Christ suffered verye longe the Phary­sees and Byshoppes,Luc. 12▪ the lewde predecessours of our proude spirytualte. But whan he ones perceyued non other in thē but contempt of hys veryte with wylfull resystaunce of the holye Ghost,Christ rebu­keth. he went fearcelye vpon them with wo vpon wo, [Page] callynge them all that nought was. As hypocrytes, dyssemblers, dodypolles, fooles, blynde beastes, bellygoddes, scorners, false prophetes, periures, vypers, serpentes, deuourers, rauenours, bry­bers, theues, tyrauntes, murtherers, and fyre brandes of hell.

Loke the .xxiij. chapter of Mathew,Mat. 23 & ye shall fynde that he poured all thys vpon them, and doubled yt in the capty­uyte of Hierusalem, whan the great vengeaunce of all innocent blood lyght gre­uouslye vpon them. For in the syege of that cytie were slayne by vespasianus & Titus,Ʋespa­sianus et Titus to the nombre of .x. hondred thou­sandes of Iues. Not onlye of the inhabytauntes of that regyon there, but from all quarters of the worlde aboute, which at that tyme came thydre to their Eastre celebracyon. Besydes there, were there ledde fourth from thens captyue .xcvij. thousande,Capty­ues. of whome some were solde to the Romanes to become their conty­nuall seruauntes and slaues, and the re­sydue geuen vnto the Lyons and wylde beastes, that they shuld daylye deuoure them and be fed with their fleshe. All thys witnesseth Egesippus Iudeus, li. 5. Ca. 49. De Hierosolimorum excidio. Exāple And now after hys most manyfest example, Christ wylleth vs also extremelye to rebuke [Page 76] these cruell corrupters of the christya­nyte, for their most spyghtfull contempt of hys wholsom warnynges, the Chri­sten magistrates hereafter,Magy­strates. or els some other enemye of theirs, folowynge with double vengeaunce vpon the heades of them. Apoca. 18. Thys plage, whan yt shall fall, as yt ys not farre of, wyll be the most ryghtouse hande of God, vpon the malygnaunte generacyon.

Great wondre wyll yt be vnto ma­nye (I know yt wele) to beholde their chefe Englyshe sayntes thus rebuked.englysh Sayn­tes. And parauēture they wyll thynke, that I myght as wele speake agaynst Peter and Iohan, Paule and Iames, with the other Sayntes, Apostles and Martyrs of the prymatyue churche, as agaynste these vngodlye hypocrytes of theirs. But I tell those men afore hande,The Autour. that they are wretchedlye blynde, for want of lyuelye knowlege in the sacred scrip­turs. They haue no true iudgement in them to dyscerne the fallen starre,starres. from the starre so fyermelye fixed in the fyr­mamēt as neuer coude be yet from thēs remoued. Neuer shall he that declyueth to mennys inuencyons, be all one with hym whyche onlye folowethe the pure woorde of God.

But vndoubtedly of no small tyme, [...] [Page] great honoure wyll yt now be to yow (yea, rather moche greatter) to flee the sede of the Serpent by the worde of God, as euer yt was to Saynt George that noble captayne,Saynt George to slee the great hydre or Dragon at Silena, as Baptista Man­tuanus specyfyeth. I speake not thys for that I wolde ye to fall vpon that sorte with materyall weapon, but with the myghtye stronge worde of the Lorde. For as Esaye, Daniel, and Paule reporteth, they shall be destroyed without hā ­des. Esa. 11. Dani. 8. et. 2. Thes. 2. Onlye ys yt Gods true knowlege,What maketh noble. that nobleth yow before hym, be therfor no longar ne­glygent. An vnrecurable dyshonoure were yt vnto yow, from hens fourth to be led blynde felde of these bushardes in the darke. The most of yow are all re­dye verye plentuouslye entered (that lorde be praysed) thynke hym only blessed which perseuereth to the ende. Ha­uynge the gouernaunce of Christes dere herytage,Lawes. drawe not your lawes out of Antichristes rules now that ye knowe Christes wholsom doctryne.Doctryne. Neyther yet fatche the breade that ye shall feade your commons with, oute of hys baw­dye beggerlye bowgettes, but lete them haue the pure purueaunce of God out of the vndefyled scripturs. Be ones so mercyfull to that christen flocke, that ye [Page 78] clerelye delyuer them from that vyle generacyon, Lete them no longer worshyp deuyls as they haue done, in these dead monkes and theues,deuyls. but lete thē loke frelye towardes their eternall & ly­uynge God, both to their sowles helthe and yours. Amen.

¶Thus endeth the first parte of thys worke, called. The Actes of Englyshe votaryes. Col­lected by Iohan Bale. Anno. 1546.

¶The Auto­urs names both Englyshe and other, out of whom thys present Boke ys collected.

  • Abbas Vrspergensis.
  • Achilles Pyrminius.
  • Alphonsus de Castro.
  • Alphredusbeu [...]rlacēsis
  • Amandus Zierixensis.
  • Antoninus Florētinus.
  • Baptista Platina.
  • Baptista Mantuanus.
  • Bartholomeus Anglus.
  • Bedas Girnuinus.
  • Bernardus Lutzēburg
  • Berosus Chaldeus.
  • Biblia Sacra.
  • Blondus Flauius.
  • Caius Iulius.
  • Christianus Masseus.
  • Clemēs Alexandrinus.
  • Colfridus Abbas.
  • Conradus Gesnerus.
  • Cornelius Tacitus.
  • De utra (que) Potestate.
  • Diodorus Siculus.
  • Edgari Oratio.
  • Egesippus Iudeus.
  • Epiphanius Cyprius.
  • Eusebius Cesariensis.
  • Festiuale Sacerdotum.
  • Flores Historiarum.
  • Franciscus Lābertus.
  • Freculphus lexouiēsis.
  • Galfredus Monemu­tensis.
  • Gēnadius Massiliēsis.
  • Georgius Ioye.
  • Gorgius Vuicelius.
  • Gildas Britannus.
  • Giraldus Cambrensis.
  • Guido de Columna.
  • Guilhelmus Malmes­buriensis.
  • Guilhelmus Caxton.
  • Guilhelmus Tyndale.
  • Guilhelmus Turner.
  • Hartmannus Shedel.
  • Hector Boethius.
  • Helinādus Monachus.
  • Henricus Huntyngto­nensis.
  • Hemānus Contractus.
  • Hermānus Torrētinus
  • [Page 79] Honorius Augustudu­nensis.
  • Iacobus Vorago.
  • Iacobus Bergomas.
  • Iacobus Zieglerus.
  • Iodocus Badius.
  • Ioannes Capgraue.
  • Ioannes Hardyng.
  • Ioannes Stella.
  • Ioannes de Molinis.
  • Ioannes Annius.
  • Ioannes Nauclerus.
  • Ioannes Lydgate.
  • Ioannes Textor.
  • Ioannes Tritemius.
  • Ioannes Pomeranus.
  • Ioannes Carion.
  • Ioannes Maior.
  • Ioannes Lelandus.
  • Isidorus hispalensis.
  • Legendariū Ecclesie.
  • Liuthprandus Ticinē ­sis.
  • Marcus Sabellicus.
  • Marianus Scotus.
  • Martinus Carsulanus.
  • Martinus Lutherus.
  • Matheus Palmarius.
  • Merlinus Ambrosius.
  • Michael Ricius.
  • Nauclerus, Ioannes.
  • Nennius Britannus.
  • Odo Cluniacensis.
  • Osbertus Cātuariēsis.
  • Osuualdus Myconius.
  • Otto Phrisingensis.
  • Paulus Orosius.
  • Paulus Aemilius.
  • Paulus Constantinus.
  • Petrus Equilinus.
  • Philippus Melāchton.
  • Plinius Secundus.
  • Polycrates Ephesius.
  • Polydorus Vergilius.
  • Pomponius Mela.
  • Prosper Aquitannus.
  • Ptolomeus Lucensis.
  • Ranulphus Cestrensis.
  • Raphael Volateranus
  • Robertus Fabyane.
  • Robertus Barnes.
  • Sigebertus Gēblacēsis.
  • Strabo Cretensis.
  • Thomas Braduuardin
  • Thomas Vualden.
  • Thomas Scrop.
  • Vincēcius Beluacēsis.
  • Vtra (que) potestas.
  • VVernerus Cartusiensis.
  • VVilibaldus Anglus.

The holye Gost shall rebuke the worlde of synne, and of ryghtousnesse, and of iudgement.

Ioan. 16.

Into the newe Hierusalem shall en­tre no vncleane thynge, neyther that which worketh abhomynacyon, nor yet what maketh lyes. But they only which are written in the lambes boke of lyfe.

Apoca. 21.

The man of synne shall be opened, before the Lordes commynge, euen the sonne of perdycyon, whiche is an aduer­sarye, and ys exalted aboue all that ys called God, whom he shall consume with the sprete of hys mouthe.

2. Thes. 2.

❧ Printed at Wesel In the Yeare Of our Lorde God. 1. 5. 4. 6.

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