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(1550— 1641)




C. F. CLAY, Manager

animtmrBl) : loo, PRINCES STREET

eerlin: A. ASHER AND CO.

Itipjifl: F. A. BROCKHAUS

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First page of Henry Jacob's Copy of his Subscription,
April 4, 1605. {Facsimile.) See Vol. i., page 285 and
Vol. II., pages 151-3.




(1550— 1641)



Hon. M.A. (Brown University), B.Litt. (Oxon.)



Cambridge :

at the University Press


Camtnlrgf :



rpHE documents herein brought together illustrative of the
history of early English Dissent cannot of course claim
the dignity of forming a complete " Corpus " of the literature
relating to the subject, but they have been carefully selected
from the mass of material now available for investigation. My
aim in publishing these particular texts has been to present to
the reader a number of the more inaccessible or historically
valuable writings, many of which have as yet been only im-
perfectly or partially reproduced. Others have remained
entirely, or almost entirely, unnoticed. The contents of this
volume are likewise intended to supplement the narrative of
volume I,, as well as to illustrate it.

Such a selected Corpus has long been needed, for students,
it is to be feared, have generally been much more familiar with
what has been said by writers and historians of diifferent points
of view concerning this literature than with the manuscripts
themselves, with resultant misunderstanding, or only partial
understanding. Such papers, too, as are herein reproduced are
all, with one exception, carefully located, whereas often in earlier
works the location was not stated, thus sometimes requiring
long search before the originals could be found. Further, in
some cases only an imperfect translation of a document has up
to this time appeared in print, so that students have been
dependent for information upon the skill or candor of a



vi Preface

Special mention should be made of the texts of a number
of papers procured in Holland which are now for the first time
reproduced in England as nearly as possible in their original
form. Some of these were most difficult to decipher accurately
even with the occasional help of the ablest Dutch manuscript
specialists in the University Libraiy, Amsterdam. No doubt
my copies contain minor mistakes and imperfections which
keen-eyed critics will be quick to detect. Even so, however,
in case any injury should ever befall the originals themselves,
approximately accurate texts of these manuscripts ought now
to be preserved.

A typographical error may here be corrected. On page 309
Boberti Baffam should read Roberti BaflFam.

C. B.


16 December 1911.



I. Historical Data relative to the English Conventiclers at ^

Booking and Faversham in 1550 and 1551.
Various Depositions made about 1550 . . . •
Extracts from the "Privy Council Eegister" of 1550-

1553 relating to the year 1551 ^

II. Information concerning the Life and Character of Robert

Part of a Letter of John Parkhurst, Bishop of Norwich,
to Dr. Rodolphus Gualtherus (Gualther), dated June

29, 1574 '

Part of another Letter from the same to the same, dated

Feb. 6, 1574/5

HI. Documents pertaining to the Puritan Plumbers' Hall Con-
gregation and to the Separatist " Priuye Churche"
of Richard Fitz, which " seceded " from it.
A List of the members of the Plumbers' Hall congre-
gation taken prisoner on March 4, 1567/8
"A promyse made by William Bonam precher", 1569,
together with the names of twenty-four members of
the Plumbers' Hall Congregation who were discharged
from Bridewell on April 22, 1569 ....
"The trewe markes of Christes churche, &c." by " Richarde

Fytz, Minister "

The Separatist Covenant of Fitz's Congregation
A written Petition commencing " Englande ", etc., and
signed by twenty -seven members of Fitz's Congre-
gation in the year 1571

IV. Miscellaneous Documents relating to the early Barrowists.

The names of certain Brownists (Barrowists) taken at

a Conventicle in Henry Martin's House, October 8,

1587, and examined in the Episcopal Palace, Loudon,

on the same day









Infommtion conceruing the Barrowists in 1590

Part of a Letter from John Smith to Dr [Jolin] Reynolds,

dated February 20, 1592/3

The names of several Barrowists who were willing to

conform and were evidently bailed some time after

April 5, 1593

Part of a Letter of John Chamberlain to Mr Dudley

Carleton at "Eaton", dated London, October 22, 1608
Early Manuscript Information concerning the Marprelate

Press and the Activities of some of the early Puritans
Some of the early Barrowist Depositions.
Of Clement Gambell and John Dove, March, 1588/9
Of Abraham Pulbery, March 7, 1592/3
Of John Nicholas, March 8, 1592/3 .
Of William Gierke, March 8, 1592/3
Of Richard Hawton, March 8, 1592/3
Of John Barn.s, March 8, 1592/3
Of Daniell Bucke, March 9, 1592/3 .
Of John Penryn [Penry], March 26, 1593
Of sundry pereons abiding in the prisons in »& about

Loudon, April 3, 4, 5, and 6, 1593
Of William Clerke, April 2, 1593
Of John Nicholas, April 2, 1593
Of George Johnson, April 2, 1593
Of John Dalamore, April 3, 1593
Of Robert Abraham, April 3, 1593 .
Of Abraham Pulbery, April 3, 1593 .
Of Roger Waterer, April 3, 1593
Of Robert Aburne, April 3, 1593
Of George Kniveton [Knifton], April 4, 1593
Of William M;ison, April 4, 1593
Of Henry Withers, April 4, 1593
Of Thomas Hewet, April 4, 1593
Of Christopher Bowman, April 4, 1593
Of John Penry, April 5, 1593 .
Of Christopher Simkins, April 5, 1593
Of Francis John.son, April 5, 1593
Of John Edwards, concerning John Penry, April 5, 1593
Of William Smythe, April 5, 1593 .
Of Arthur Billet, April 5, 1593
Of Quintin Smyth, April 6, 1593
Of William Weaver, April 6, 1593 .
Of Thomas Settle, April 6, 1593
Of George Smelles, April 10 [?], 1593














Contents ix


VII. Documents other than Depositions relating to John Penry.

An undated Petition of Helen Penry's to Sir John
Puckering in her Husband's Behalf, written in
April, 1593 •

A Note by Penry in defence of Mr. Gittens, Keeper of the
"Cownter in the Poultrie in London", dated April,

1593 •

A Subscription of Penry's concerning the Authority of
the Queen, of the Privy Council, and of Civil Magis-
trates, and three other articles which he declined to
subscribe . • • • • • • " *

" The offers & requestes " of Penry

A Letter concerning Penry's Confession of Faith and
Apology, dated, " Mon. 6. 12. 1593"

Penry's Answer to Fifteen Slanderous Articles, written
not long before his death

Penry's Confession of Faith and Apology prepared not
long before his death in 1593

A Letter of Penry's to Lord Biu-ghley, written May 28,

VIII. Documents relating to Henry Barrowe.

An undated Letter of Barrowe's asking for a "christian
and peaceable conference" for the settlement of
"theis Ecclesiasticall controuersiea " ... 97

Another undated Letter of Barrowe's, requesting a
"peceable disputacion " for the settlement of "sondrie
Ecclesiasticall differences" . ■ • • • ^^

" Reasons against Publike disputacion with barow " . 99

An extended Letter written by Barrowe a little before

his death ^^^

IX. Three early Barrowist Petitions.

That of March, 1592/3 to " the high Court of Parlament " 109
That of 1593 for "mercy & vnitie", directed to "the
Magistrates of our ^lost mercifuU soueraigue Lady
Queene Elizabeth in their seuerall places " . .113

That of 1597 to the Privy Council . . • . . 125
X. Hitherto unnoticed Testimony confirming Robert Browne's
opinion of the Reformation in Scotland as published
in Richard Kancroft's Sermon preached at Paul's
Cross: together with some of the Grounds on
which Archbishop Whitgift recommended Bancroft's
appointment as Bishop of London.
A Letter of Sir Robert Naunton to Dr. J. Copcoat, Master
of Corpus Christi College in Cambridge, relating to the

X Contents


publication of Bancroft's famous " Sermon preached

at Pavles Crosse", and dated November 12, 1589 . 127

A Letter of Bancroft's, dated December 23, 1589, also

relating to his Sermon at Paul's Cross . . .130

Some of the "Reasons alledged by the Arch Bishop of
Canterbury, for Dr Bancroft's being promoted to the

Bishoprick of London " 132

XL The Names of various Persons who had been members of
Francis Johnson's Congregation before 1613, includ-
ing the names of some who had withdrawn from
it or been Excommunicated, and of others who had

become Wanderers 134

XIL Two Documents relating to the Controversy between the
Barrowists and Thomas Drakes.

The "Seven Demands" of Francis Johnson and his

followers, 1595 138

The "Ten Covnterdemavnds propounded" by Drakes

(Draks) 140

XIIL Papers of Henry Jacob's written during the years 1603-1 605.

A copy of the text of Jacob's Letter to the Puritan
preachers, sent from Woodstreet, London, on June
30, 1603, with the accompanying form to be signed
for use in connection with the presentation of the
Millenary Petition to King James I . . . .146

The text of a later, undated, general Letter, also sent
from Woodstreet by Jacob with an abbreviated text
of the earlier form of subscription and a list of abuses
which the Puritans wished removed . . . .147

An undated Petition written by Jacob to the Bishop of
London, requesting that he may be released from
imprisonment in the Clink . . . . .148

Jacob's copy of his Subscription of April 4, 1605 . . 151

The earliest completely developed Independent, or Con-
gregational, Puritan (non-separatist) Catechism in
existence, written by Jacob 153

A detached Definition by Jacob of a " true Visible or

Ministeriall Church of Christ" .... 161

"A third humble Supplication of many faithfuU Subjects
in England, falsly called Puritans directed to the
Kings Maiestie. 1605." [Corrected by Jacob] . 161

Part of a paper apparently written by Jacob nearly a year
after his Release from the Clink, and defending his
book published in 1604 against the five principal
criticisms which had been brought against it . . 165


Contents xi


XIV. An unnoticed Letter of Thomas Helwys's.

"A note sent by [Thomas] Ellwes [Helwys] one of thelders

of the Brownest Churche.,.", September 26, 1608 . 167

XV. Papers relating to William Sayer.

"The opinions defended & published by William Sayer
imprisoned in the gaole for the Countie of Norff[olk]"
in 1612 169

Part of a Letter of Archbishop Abbot to Bishop Jegon of

Norwich concerning Sayer, dated December 1, 1612 . 170
XYI.J Documents relating to the History of the earliest English
Anabaptist Congregations.

An undated Letter sent by "Hughe and Anne Bromhead"
to their cousin, (Sir) William Hammerton, at London,
probably written some time in 1609 .... 172

A List of the names of those English people who formed
the Remnant of John Smyth's Congregation, and
who, probably about February, 1609/10, petitioned
that they might be received as quickly as possible
into the "true church of Christ 177

A Short Latin Confession of Faith probably written early

in 1609/10 by Smyth 178

An undated Latin Letter from Thomas Helwys's Congre-
gation to the Waterlanders at Amsterdam, probably
written in 1609/10, urging them not to admit Smyth's
Congregation into their membership . . . . 181

A Latin " Synopsis " of the Faith of the " true English
Christian Church" at Amsterdam under the Leader-
ship of Thomas Helwys, delivered (probably between
February and March 12, 1609/10 to the Waterlanders
there, with thanks for the teaching they had given
them 182

A Letter from Thomas Helwys, William Pigott, Thomas
Seamer, and John Murton at Amsterdam to the
Waterland Church there, dated March 12, 1609/10,
dealing chiefly with the cause of their so-termed
ejection of John Smyth and his followers . . 184

A short Confession of Faith evidently prepared and
,-' .<i partially signed by the Remnant of Smyth's Con-
'^-^ gregation early in 1610 187

A Copy of a Letter sent in April, 1610, by the Waterland
Church at Amsterdam to the Waterland Congrega-
tions outside the city, concerning the admission of
the Remnant of Smyth's Congregation into their
church membership 200

xii Contents

A Letter from the Waterland Congregation at Leeu-
warden to the Waterlanders at Amsterdam, dated
May 5, 1610 (Old Style), urging that a union with
the Remnant of Smyth's Congregation be not too
quickly consummated ...... 203

A Letter of Yeme de Ringh at Harlingen to Lubbert
Qerritsz., Hans de Ries, and Reynier Wybrantsz.,
dated May (15), 1610, and expressing the wish that
the Confession of Faith of the Remnant of Smyth's
Congregation (in 38 articles) might be sent to Fries-
land for the perusal of the Waterlanders there . . 205

A Letter of Willem Janszoon, Teacher at Rynsburg, to
Reynier Wybrantsz. at Amsterdam, dated May 18,
(1610), concerning the proposed meeting on May 23
for discussion of a union with the Smyth Remnant . 207

A Letter from Dirk Pieters at Hoorn to Lubbert Qerritsz.
at Amsterdam, dated May 21, 1610, in which he
excuses himself and three others from attending the
meeting on May 23 concerning a union with the
Remnant of Smyth's Church 208

The Draft of a Letter sent by the Waterlanders at Am-
sterdam to the congregation in Leeuwarden, dated
July 16, 1610 (New Style), asking for an early answer
as to their opinion of the enclosed Confession of
Faith in 38 articles, and also of the value of the
baptism of Smyth's followers ..... 209

A Letter, dated July 18, 1610, from the Waterlanders
in Leeuwarden (Friesland), stating their disapproval
of the proposed union with the Remnant of Smyth's
Congregation, whose baptism they term something
unheard of 211

A Memorandum made by Claes Claeszoon Anslo at Am-
sterdam on January 17, 1611/12 stating the wish of
Lubbert Qerritsz., expressed on his death-bed, that
a union between the Waterlanders and the Remnant
of Smyth's Congregation might be speedily effected . 213

An early English Anabaptist Petition, probably written

in 16U(by Thoma.s Helwys?) 215

An undated Latin Confession of Faith by Richard Overton,

probably written in 1615 . . . . . .216

"A Copie...of an Anabaptists Letter, written to his
, sometimes accounted Christian Bretheren, shewing the

, »/ ' causeof his separation from the Church of England...",

O ^ signed H.X., and dated London, May 10, 1622 . . 219



Contents xiii


A Letter from the " teachers and Ministers of the dutch
and engUsh Churches" in Amsterdam, dated May,
1624, to the Congregation of Elias Tookey, which had
been excommunicated by John Murton and the then
existing Five English Anabaptist Congregations . 222
A Letter from Ehas Tookey and his Congregation at
London to the Dutch and English united (Waterland)
Church at Amsterdam, dated June 3, 1624, in answer
to the preceding communication, and expressing the
hope that they may be received into the membership

of that Church, etc 229

A Letter, dated November 12, 1626, from the Five Early
English Anabaptist Congregations to Hans de Ries,
Reinier Wybrantsz., and their Congregations in
Holland, expressing the wish that they might be
imited with them in one religious communion . . 233
A Letter of Cornelis Claesz. Anslo of Amsterdam to
Hans de Ries announcing the arrival of the two
Representatives of the Five English Anabaptist Con-
gregations, and dated November 13, 1626 . . • 239
Questions asked by Hans de Ries, about November, 1626,
of the two Representatives of the Five English Ana-
baptist Congregations, with their Answers . • 241
A Letter of the early English Anabaptist Congregation
at Lincoln to the Congregation of Waterlanders at
Amsterdam, dated September 5, 1630 . . . 243
A Letter written by James Toppe and Israel, his wife,
of the early English Anabaptist Congregation at
Tiverton, to Hans de Ries in answer to a letter of

his dated September 13, 1630 248

A Letter from Leonard Busher to Abram Derikson, dated
Delft, December 8, 1642, giving certain facts con-
cerning Rusher's old Age ... . , 257
XVII. Documents chiefly relating to the early Brownist (Barrowist)
and Independent Congregations on the Continent.
A Letter of "G(eorge Abbot, Archbishop of) G&nterhury",
probably written to Sir William Boswell, and dated
"From Croyden Sept: 4: 1622" .... 260
An interesting Letter written by John Cotton to the
" Lord Bishop of Lincolne, Lord keeper of the great
Seale ", dated " Boston [England]. lanuary 31. 1624 " 260
A Petition of English and Scottish Ministers in the
Netherlands to King Charles I of England against

xiv Contents


six articles exhibited by D.(udley) Carleton. Dated
Rotterdam, June 4, 1628 264

Information concerning the English Congregations in

the Netherlands between 1621 and 1633 . . 270

A Letter of Alexander Browne to Sir William Boswell,

dated Rotterdam, November 1, 1633 . . . 272

A Letter of Henry Elsynge's to Sir William Boswell,

dated Amsterdam, June 6, 1633 .... 273

Part of a letter probably written by Stephen Goffe, of

the date 1633 274

Mr Pagetts 20 Proposicions to Mr [Thomas] Hooker

with his answere thereto 274

English Proachei-s in the Netherlands [in 1633] . 276

A Letter of Stephen Goftb's to Sir William Boswell,

dated Leyden, Feb. 28 (New Style), 1634/3 [?] . . 278

A Letter of Stephen GofFe's to Sir William Boswell,

dated Leyden, March 9(1634/3?) .... 281

A Letter of John Davenport's to Sir William Boswell,

dated Amsterdam, March 18, 1634[/3 ?] . . . 282

A Letter of Stephen Goflfe's to Sir William Boswell
concerning the difficulties between John Davenport
and John Paget, of the year 1634/3 .... 284

A Letter of Griffin Higgs' to Sir William Boswell, dated

The Hague, April 9 (Old Style), 1634 . . . 285

A Letter of John Paget's to Sir William Boswell, dated

Amsterdam, March 13, 1636 (New Style) . . 286

A true Relation of the first Erection of an English Church

in Utrecht, with the proceedings since . . 286

A Letter of Robert Crane's to his Cousin, Sir Robert
Crane, Knight and Baronet at Chilton, Suffiilk,
dated Utrecht, 1640, concerning the English Church

at Arnheim 291

XVIIL Selected Documents from the Gould Manuscript illus-
trative of the History of Separatist and Inde-
pendent Congregations in England before 1642.

The so-called Jessey Records or Memoranda . . . 292

The so-called Kiffin Manuscript 302

("Numb: 23") The Historj' (before 1641) of a Separatist
Congregation which usually met in Southwark, and
which was composed partly of Paedobaptists and

partly of Antipsedobaptists 305

XIX. The Names, Tnides, and Poor Estate of all the Separatists

living in Great Yarmouth about July 17, 1630 . 309



XX. Reports relating to the Appearance of certain Separatists

before the Court of High Commission between
April 19 and June 21, 1632

XXI. Notice of a Separatist Conventicle taken at a house in

"Rederiffe" in December, 1638 . . . .

XXII. Documents relating to the Prison Life and Death of the

Separatist, Samuel Eaton.
A Petition concerning him which was probably sent to

Archbishop Laud m 1638

An Account of his Burial, evidently written on August

31, 1639

XXIII. A Broadside which mentions the Excommunication of

Samuel How, and the place and date of his burial
in 1640











First page of Henry Jacob's Copy of his Subscription,

April 4, 1605 Frontispiece

Title-page of John Smyth's "A Paterne of Trve Prayer",

1605 To face page 66

Thomas Helwys' Autograph Inscription to King James I,

1612 „ 132

Title-page of Robert Cleaver and John Dod's "The

Patrimony of Christian Children ", 1624 . . „ 198

Title-page of the second Impression of "A vei'y plain
and well grounded Treatise concerning Baptisme"
[?1648] „ 264

AND 1551

[Various Depositions made about 1550.]

Here Folowithe the deposytions

of lohn Grey william Forshall Laurence

Ramsey and Edmonde Morres productid

apon the firste x*''* and xj'^'^ articles /


lohn Grey:
Item Examyned apon the firste article
Saythe that Cole of Fauersham apon /
Lammas daye laste paste saide and affirmed
that the doctryne of predestynation
was meter for divilles then for christian men /

Item Examyned apon the x'^''" and xj*''^
Articles saithe that henry harte aboute
bartholomewetide laste saide and affirmed
in the presence of divers that ther was
no man so chosen but that he mighte dampne
hime selfe Nether yet anye man soo/
reprobate but that he mighte kepe goddes

He saide that Saincte paule mighte haue
dampnid hime selfe if he listed
And deposithe that harte saide that~/
Learned men were the cause of grete errors /

1 Harl. MS. 421, fol. 133-34 verso, in the British Museum.
B. II. 1

Early Enc/Iish Dissenters

Laurentius Ramsaye

Item Examyned apon the x'^'' article
saithe that henry harte saide and affirmed
as it is conteyned in tharticle that is
that ther is no man so chosen or predesty
nate. but that he maye condempne hime
selfe. Nether is ther anye so reprobate but
that he maye if he will kepe the commande
mentes and be salvid prout liquet in suis

Item Examyned apon the x'^'^ article
saythe that harte saide that lemyd men
were the cause of grete Errors /

WilleZmus Forstall
Item Examyned apon the x^** article he
dothe agree in his deposytion withe the
foresaide Laurence Ramsey e

Item Examyned apon the xj^*^ article
saythe that henry harte saide the same tyme
that his faithe was not growndid apon
Lemyd men for all errors were broughte
in by Lemyd men c>c- ///.

The depositions of m' Thomas

Broke Roger Lynsey and Rycharde

Dynestake Clarke productid apon the

xiij and xnij^'' articles of the Interrogatories


Item Examyned apon the xxj[?]''' article
he saithe that aboute xij monethes Sythen
George Brodebridge saide and affirmed
that goddes predestynation is not reteyne
but apon condytion &c

Item Examyned apon the xxxix^*^ and
xl^*" articles he deposithe and saithe that the
contentes of those articles hathe byn affirmed
amonge them for a generall doctryne

4J, .'a.

The Coiiventiclers at Bocking mid Faversham 3

Item Examjmed apon the xlj'^ and xlij'^''

articles he deposithe and provithe the congregation

and the fame And ther goyng into Essex

Item Examyned apon the xlvj* article
he deposithe that Cole of Maidestone
saide and affirmed that children were
not borne in originall Syne

WilleZmus grenelande
Item in aunsweringe to the xP** article
he saithe that to playe at annye game for
money it is Synne and the worke of the

Item in aunsweringe to the xlj'*^ xlij*^*^
and xliij'^'^ articles he confessithe
the congregation and their Meatinges at
diuers places and ther going into Essex
And also that he hathe contrybuted

lohn plume de leneham

Item Examyned apon the iiij"''''^ and v***
articles apon his othe Saithe that he
beynge emonge the congregators he hathe
herde it diuers tymes affirmed as a
generall doctryne that they oughte not to
Salute a Synner or a man whome they
knowe not And that Luste after Ivill
was not Synne, if that were not committed

Item Examyned apon the xuj'''' and xnij'^''

articles he saithe that vmfrey Middilton

beyng in Coles house at fauersham apon

Lammas daye he saide that Adam was

elected to be salved And that all men/

being then in Adams Loynes were

predestynate to be salvid and that ther

were no reprobates and in his defence

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