¶A copie of a letter wyth articles, sente from the Queenes Maiestie vnto the Bysshoppe of Lon­don, and by him and his officers at her graces commaundemente to be putte in spedye execution wyth effecte in the whole diocese, as wel in places exempt, as not exempte, whatsoeuer, accor­dinge to the tenour and forme of the same.

Sent by the Queenes Maiesties commaundement, in the Mo­neth of Marche, Anno Domini. 1. 5. 5. 3.


¶By the Quene.

RIghte reuerende father in God, righte trustie and welbeloued, we grete you well. And whereas heretofore in the time of the late reygne of our most dea­reste brother kinge Edwarde the sixte, (whose soule God pardone) diuers no­table crimes, excesses, and faultes, with sondrie kindes of heresies, simome aduoutrye and other enormities haue bene cōmitted within this oure realme, and other our dominions the same continuing yet hitherto in like disorder, since the beginning of oure reygne, withoute any correction or reformation at all, & the people bothe of the layte, & also of the clergie, and chieflye of the cler­gie haue bene giuen to mucheinsolencie and vngodlye rule, greatlye to the displeasure of almightye God, and very muche to our regrette and euill contentation, and to no litle slaunder of other Christen realmes, & in ma­net to the subuersion, and cleane defacing of this oure realme, and remembring oure duetie to almightie god to be to forsee as muche as in vs may be, that all vertue and godly liuing woulde be embraced, flourishe, and en­crease. And there with also, that all vice, and vngodlye behauiour shuld be vtterly bannished, and put away, or at the least wayes (so nighe as might be) so bridled and kept vnder, that godlines and honestie might haue the ouerhande, vnderstanding by very credible report, and publique fame to our no smal heauines and discomfort, that within youre diocese, as well in not exempted as exempted places, the like disorder, and euill behauiour hath bene done and vsed, like also to cōtinue & encrease, onlesse due prouision be hadde and made to reforme the [Page] same, (whiche earnestlye in very dede we do minde and intend) to thuttermooste all the wayes we can possible, trusting of Gods furtheraunce & helpe in that behalfe. For these causes and other most just considerations vs mouing, we sende vnto you certayne articles of suche speciall matter, as amonge other thinges be most neces­sarye to be now put in execution by you, and youre offi­cers, extendinge to thende by vs desired, and the refor­mation aforesayd, wherein ye shalbe charged with oure speciall commaundement by these oure letters, to thin­tent you and your officers may the more earnestly and boldely procede therunto, without feare of any presum­ption to be noted on your parte, or daunger to be incur­red of any such our lawes, as by your doinges, of that is in the sayd articles contenyned, mighte anye wise greue you, whatsoeuer be threatned in anye suche case. And therefore we strayghtlye charge and commaunde you & your sayde officers to procede to the execution of the sayde articles without all tracte and delaye, as ye wyll aunswere to the contrary. Geuen vnder our Signet at our Palays of Westminster, the fourth day of Marche, the first yeare of our raygne.

¶Articles sent from the Queenes Maiestie vnto the ordinarie, and by him and his officers by her graces commaundemente to be put in spe [...]ie execution with effecte in the whole Diocesse, as well in places exempte as not exempte, whatsoeuer.

1 FIrst that euerye Bisshoppe and his offi­cers, with al other, hauing Ecclesiastical Iurisdiction, shal with all spede and dili­gence, and al maner a wayes to thē pos­sible put in execution all suche Canons and Ecclesiasticall lawes, heretofore in the time of Kyng Henrye the eyght, vsed within thys realme of England, and the dominions of the same, not beyng direct and expressely, contrary to the lawes and statutes of this realme.

2 ITem that no bisshoppe or any his officer, or other person aforesayd hereafter in any of their Ecclesi­asticall writinges in processe, or other extraiudici­all actes do vse to put in this clause or sentence, Regia au­ctoritate fulcitus.

3 ITem that no Bisshop or any his officers, or other person aforesaid do hereafter exacte or demaunde in thadmission of any person, to any Ecclesiasticall promotion, orders, or office, any othe touching the pri­macie or succession, as of late in fewe yeres passed, hath bene accustomed and vsed.

[Page]4 ITem that euerye Bisshoppe and his officers with all other persons aforesayd haue a vigilant eye, & vse speciall diligence and foresight, that no person be admitted or receaued to any Ecclesiastical function, benefice, or office, beyng a Sacramentarye, infected or defamed wyth anye notable kynde of heresye, or other great cryme. And that the sayde Bisshop do staye, and cause to be stayed as muche as lyeth in him, that bene­fices and Ecclesiasticall promotions do not notably de­caye, or take hinderaunce by passing or confirmynge of vnreasonable leases.

5 ITem that euerye Bysshop and all other persons aforesayde do diligentlye trauayle for the repres­syng of heresies and notable crimes, especially in the clergie duely correcting and punishing the same.

6 ITem that euery Bisshop, and al the other persons aforesaid, do likewise trauayle for the condemning and repressing of corrupt and naughtye opinions, vnlawfull bookes, ballades, and other pernicious and hurtful deuises, engendring hatred amonges the peo­ple, and discorde amonges the same. And that Schole­maysters, Preachers, and teachers do exercise and vse their offices and dueties without teaching, preaching, or setting furth any euil corrupt doctrine. And that do­ing the contrarye, they may be by the Bisshop and hys sayd officers punished and remoued.

7 ITem that euery Bisshoppe and all the other per­sons aforesayd, proceding summarely, and with al celeritye, and spede, may, and shall depriue or de­clare depriued, and amoue according to their learning [Page] and discretion all suche persons from their benefices and ecclesiastical promotions, who contrarye to the state of theyr order, and the laudable custome of the churche haue married & vsed weomen as their wiues or otherwise notablie and slaunderously disordered or abused them selfes sequestryng also duryng the sayde processe, the fructes and profites of the sayd benefices and Ecclesiasticall promotions.

8 ITem that the sayde Bisshop and all other persons aforesayde do vse more lenitie and clemencie wyth suche as haue married, whose wiues be dead, then with other, whose weomen do yet remayne in life. And likewyse suche priestes, as with the consentes of theyr wiues, or weomen openly in the presence of the Bisshop do professe to abstayne, to be vsed the more fauourablye, in which cace after penaunce effectuallye done, the Bis­shop according to his discretion and wisdom may vpon iuste consideration receaue, and admitte them agayne to their former administration, so it be not in the same place, appoyncting them suche a porcion to liue vpon, to be payde out of their benefice, wherof they be depriued by discretion of ye sayd Bisshop or his officer shal thinke may be spared of the sayd benefice.

9 ITem that euerye Bisshop and all other persons a­foresayd do forsee, that they suffer not anye religi­ous man, hauinge solemnely professed Chastitie, to continue with his woman or wyfe, but that al such per­sons after depriuation of their benefice or Ecclesiastical promotion be also deuorsed euery one frō his sayde wo­man and due punishment, otherwise taken for the offēce therin.

[Page]10 ITem that euery Bysshop, and all other persons a­foresayd do take order and direction with the pa­rishioners of euerye benefice, where Priestes doe wante to repayre to the next parishe for diuine seruice, or to appoynt for a cōuenient time, till other better pro­uision may be made one curate to serue. Alternis uicibus in diuerse parisshes, & to allotte to the sayd curate for his la­bour some porcion of the benefice, that he so serueth.

11 ITem that al & almaner of processions of the church be vsed, frequented, and continued after the olde order of the churche in the Laten tonge.

12 ITem that al such holy dayes & fasting dayes be obserued and kept, as was obserued and kepte in the latter tyme of Kyng Henry theyght.

13 ITem yt the laudable and honest ceremonies which were wonte to be vsed, frequented, & obserued in the church, be also hereafter frequented, vsed, and obserued.

14 ITem that children be christened by the Priest, and confirmed by the Bysshop, as heretofore hath bene accustomed and vsed.

15 ITem touchinge suche persons, as were heretofore promoted to any orders after the new sort and fa­shion of order, consideringe they were not ordered in very dede, the Bisshop of the diocesse findinge other­wise sufficiencie & habilitie in those men, may supply that thinge, whiche wanted in them before. And then accor­ding to his discretion admitte them to ministre.

[Page]16 ITem that by the Bisshoppe of the Diocesse a vni­forme doctrine be set furth by Homilyes, or other­wise for the good instruction and teachynge of all people. And that the sayed Bysshopppe and o­ther personnes aforesayde doe compell the parishio­ners to come to their seuerall churches, and there de­uoutly to heare diuine seruice, as of reason they ought.

17 ITem that they examine all Scholemaysters and teachers of children, and finding them suspecte, in any wise to remoue them, and place catholike men in their comes, with a special cōmaundement to instruct their children so, as they maye be able to aunswere the priest at the masse, & so helpe the priest to masse, as hathe bene accustomed.

18 ITem that the sayd Bisshop and all other the per­sons aforesayd haue such regard respect, and con­sideration, of, and for the settinge furth of the pre­misses with all kind of vertue, godlye liuinge, and good example, with repressing also, and keping vnder of vice and vnthriftines, as they, and eueryche of them maye besene to fauour the restitution of true religion, and al­so to make an honest accompt and reckening of their of­fice and cure, to the honour of God, our good contenta­tion, and the profite of this our realme, and dominions of the same.

Excusum Londini in aedibus Iohannis Cawodi, Typographi Reginae Mariae. Anno. 1553. Mense Martio.

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