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“fession, should use another, both of more effect, and also “framed according to the state and time. And the same “ended, the people to sing a psalm in metre in a plain tune, “ as was and is accustomed in the French, Dutch, Italian, “Spanish and Scottish churches: that done, the minister to “ pray for the assistance of God's Holy Spirit, and to pro“ ceed to the sermon. After the sermon, a general prayer “for all estates, and for our country of England, was “ devised: at the end of which prayer was joined the Elord's “ prayer, and a rehearsal of the articles of belief; which “ended, the people to sing another psalm as afore. Then “ the minister pronouncing this blessing, The peace of God, “&c. or some other of like effect, the people to depart. “And as touching the ministration of the sacraments, sundry “things were also by common consent omitted, as supersti“tious and superfluous.” Our learned and pious divine undoubtedly took an active part in the formation of the church at Frankfort. The pious exiles having comfortably settled their new congregation, entered into a friendly correspondence with their brethren who had settled at other places. In their letter addressed to the exiles at Strasburgh, signed by John Bale, William Whittingham, John Fox, and fourteen others, they conclude by saying: “We have a church freely granted to preach “God’s word purely, to minister the sacraments sincerely, “ and to execute discipline truly. And as touching our “book, we will practice it so far as God's word doth assure “ it, and the state of this country permit.”4 They wrote also to their brethren who had fled to other places, signifying how comfortably they were settled, and inviting them to Frankfort. Upon the arrival of Dr. Cox f and his friends,
* Troubles of Frankeford, p.3. + Ibid. p. 20.
f Dr. Richard Cox had been preceptor and almoner to King Edward, and dean of Oxford and Westminster, but was now fled from the persecution of Queen Mary. He was a high churchman, a bigot to the English ceremonies, and of too imperious a disposition. On his return home, Queen Elizabeth made him Bishop of Ely, which he enjoyed to his death. He scrupled for some time to officiate in the royal chapel, on account of the queen's retaining the crucifix, with lights on the altar; and when he consented, it was, he said, with a trembling conscience. He was violent in his opposition against the puritans, as well in his own country, as at Frankfort. He wrote to Archbishop Parker, to go on vigorously in reclaiming or punishing them, and not be disheartened by the frowns of those court-favourites who protected them ; assuring him, that he might expect the blessing of God on his pious labours. When the privy council interposed in favour of the puritans, and endeavoured to skreen them from punishment, he wrote a bold letter to the Lord Treasurer Burleigh; in which he warmly expostulated with the council, for meddling with the affairs of the church, which, he
who broke through the conditions of the new-formed church, interrupted the peace of the congregation, and, in effect, drove them from the city, they fled to other places. Dr. Bale retired to Basil in Switzerland, where he remained until the death of Queen Mary. The church at Basil was also exercised with contentions, of which our author, in a letter to one of his friends, gives a very deplorable account, severely censuring those who were of a contentious spirit.” Though we have already mentioned Dr. Bale as an
author, it will be proper to renew the subject. He published a celebrated work, containing the lives of the most eminent writers of Great Britain. It came out at three different times. He first published his “Summarium illustrium majoris Brytanniae Scriptorum,” Wesel, 1549. This was addressed to King Edward, and contained only five centuries of writers. Afterwards he added four more, and made several additions and corrections through the whole work. The book thus enlarged, was entitled “Scriptorum illustrium majoris Brytanniae, quam nunc Angliam et Scotiam vacant, Catalogus; a Japheto per 3618 annos usque ad annum hunc Domini 1557,” &c. It was completed and printed at Basil, while the author was in a state of exile. H. writers, whose lives are contained in this celebrated work, are those of Great Britain, including England and Scotland. The work commences from Japhet, one of the sons of Noah, and is carried down through a series of 3618 years, to the year of our Lord 1557. It is collected from a great variety of authors: as, Barosus, Gennadius, Bede, É. Boston of Bury, Frumentarius, Capgrave, Bostius, Burellus, Trithemius, Gesner, and our great antiquary John Leland. It consists of nine centuries, comprising the antiquity, origin, annals, places, successes,’ and the most remarkable actions, sayings, and writings of each author, in the whole of which a due regard is had to chronology; and with this particular view, “That the actions of the reprobate as well as the elect ministers of the church may historically and aptly correspond with the mysteries described in the Revelation, the stars, angels, horses, trumpets, thunderings, heads, horns, mountains, vials, and plagues, through every age of the same church.” There are said, ought to be left to the determination of the bishops. He, also, admonished their lordships to keep within their own sphere; and told them, that he would appeal to the queen, if they continued to interpose in matters not belonging to them.—Wood's Athenae Oron. vol. i. p. 161.-Biog. Britan,
vol. iv. p. 398,899. * Strype's Eccl. Mem. vol. iii. p. 243. Appen. p. 107.
appendices to many of the articles; also an account of
* Biog. Britan. vol. i. p. 533, 534. o + Fuller's Worthies, part iii. p. 61.
reformers, while in a state of exile, and living among foreign protestants, were led to examine more minutely the grand principles of the reformation; and they acted upon those principles, as we have already observed, while dwelling in a foreign land. Nor did they forget their principles on their return to their native country. Notwithstanding their want of success, they constantly ended soured, as the times would permit, to obtain a more pure reformation of the English church. This was the case with Dr. Bale, and was undoubtedly the reason of his refusing to accept his former preferment. Though it does not appear that he gave his reasons for this refusal; yet it is evident, says our author, that, while he was a zealous opposer of the Romish superstitions, he was a leading person among the nonconformists, and was against the use of the English rites and ceremonies: he opposed the divine institution of bishops, and was a zealous advocate for the discipline of the foreign reformed churches. It was a settled principle with him, that the government of the church by bishops, did not exist till the beginning of the seventh century. These are his own words:—“ In the year 607, the church “ began to be ruled by the policy and government of “bishops, which government was especially devised and “invented by the monks.” From the above facts, Dr. Bale, with great justice, stands first on the list of our puritan worthies. He was summoned to assist in the consecration of Archbishop Parker, but refused to attend, no doubt on account of his puritanical principles. He died at Canterbury in the month of November, 1563, aged sixtyeight years; and his remains were interred in the cathedral at that place.f. Several of our historians are greatly mistaken in both the time and place of his death.Ş The character of no man has been more variously represented than that of our author, as will appear from the different testimonies concerning him. Bishop Montague censures him for his unjustifiable freedom in speaking and writing; yet he thinks him of credit and weight in many things. Walerius Andreas calls him an impious wretch and a wicked apostate; but at the same time allows him his merit as a writer. Wossius charges him with disingenuity in his accounts of ancient writers. But of all the authors, who have censured Bale, no one has fallen upon him with greater severity than his follower John Pits. The following
* MS. Chronology, vol. i. p. 49. (2.) + Strype's Parker, p. 54. f Biog. Britan. vol. i. p. 534. $ Lupton's Modern Divines, p.201.-Fuller's Worthies, part iii. p. 61.
are some of those invenomed arrows which he has shot at him :—“This writer,” says he, “ did not so much enlarge Leland's catalogue, as corrupt it in a monstrous manner. For he has stuffed it full of lies and calumnies, and spoiled Leland's work, by his own barbarous style. He says many things worthy, indeed, of the mind and mouth of an heretic, but absolutely void of all civility and moral honesty, some things plainly unworthy of a christian ear.—If we except his slanders against men, and his blasphemies against God, the poor wretch has nothing of his own, which deserves our notice.—I hoped to have found at least some gem of antiquity in that dunghill; but more unlucky than Esop's cock, I was disappointed in my expectation.” He brands him with the name of Baal, and calls him an apostate Carmelite monk, and a married priest. Such are the foul accusations brought against our divine, by this bigotted papist. Wharton charges Bale with paying very little regard to truth, provided he could increase the number of enemies to the Romish church; and adds, that, for the most part, he settled the chronology of the English writers with his eyes shut. Bishop Nicolson says: “ #. groundplot of his famous work was borrowed from Leland; and the chief of his own superstructure is malicious and bitter invectives against the papists.” It will be proper on the contrary to observe, that Gesner denominates Bale “ a writer of the greatest diligence;” and Bishop Godwin gives him the character of a laborious inquirer into the British antiquities. Dr. Lawrence Humphrey says, that Wergerius, Platina, and Luther, have discovered many errors and frauds of the papists; but that Bale hath detected them all. Valentine Henry Wogler says, “it will be less matter of wonder, that Bale inveighs with so much asperity against the power of the pope, when it is considered that England was more grievously oppressed, by the tyranny of the holy see, than any other kingdom. Though he rendered himself so odious to the papists, his very enemies could not help praising his Catalogue of English writers.”4 It is generally allowed that Bale's sufferings from the popish party, is some apology for his severe treatment of them : He wrote with all the warmth of one who had escaped the flames. Granger observes, that his intemperate
* Biog. Britan, vol. i. p. 535. + Ibid. p. 534.