Henry Martyn Dexter.

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skorne to our neighbour nations ; And for succeeding ages, it would
cut of all hope of a learned Ministerie, and of that grounded learning,
which as yet is, and heretofore hath beene, the glorie and honour of
this kingdome.

A few clays after this " Answere " was published, Cambridge
sent over a Latin letter ^ endorsing the Oxford scorn. The Ox-
ford men got out a new edition of their pamphlet, adding tliese
contributions from Cambridge, and so between them public con-
tempt was put upon the movement. One of the best modem
English historians says : - —

Their demands were treated with that cool insolence which scarcely
deigns to argue with an opponent, and which never attempts to un-
derstand his case. It was taken for granted that no concessions could
be made by the King, unless he were prepared for the establishment
of Presbyterianism, and it was argued that the hearts of the jieople
would be stolen away from their Sovereign by preachers who would
be sure to teach them that the King's " meek and humble clergy have
power to bind their King in chains and their Prince in links of iro,
that is (in their learning) to censure him, to enjoine him penance, to
excommunicate him ; yea (in case they see cause) to proceed against
him as a tyrant."

In only three respects was the king prompted towards action
by this petition. First, in May be instructed the Primate to
ascertain how many ministers in the land could preach, with the
number of communicants and of recusants in every parish.
Secondly, early in Jidy he advised the universities to adopt the
recommendation of the third clause of the memorial,-^ and devote
part of the impropriated tithes to the maintenance of ministers
who could preach. But "Whitgift objected so strongly that no-
thing was done. Thirdly, he caused the famous Hampton Court
Conference to be held.

The proclamation convoking this announced that the king
had decided that he could best show his thankfulness to God by
redeeming the Church from such scandals as existed in it. But
it was his business to find out what they were ; and he wanted
the matter left to him. He particularly cautioned " reformers,"

* Introd. to second ed. of Answere, 1604. - Gardiner, i : IfiG.

« Wilkina, Concilia, iv: 363-369. Strype, Whitgift,i\: 470. S. P. Dom. ii : 38-


who, " uuder pretended zeal, affected novelty, and so confusion in
all estates." lie intended to " preserve the estate, as well ecclesi-
astical as politic," reforming only " abuses apparently proved."

Accordingly he summoned the Primate,^ eight bishops, seven
deans, one archdeacon and one royal chaplain ; and, to re-
present the Puritans, Drs. Rainolds and Sparks and Rev.
Messrs. Knewstubs and Chaderton.^ It is plain that these
divines were summoned^ less for any purpose of debate than
for some outward seeming of fairness, and that they might be
snubbed and silenced. Dr. William Barlow, Dean of Chester,
afterwards published an official account"^ of the Conference.
The insolence which the reformers had to endure will become
evident by a glance at some things which occurred, supplement-
.ing Barlow by others.

^ Strype, Whit'jift, 4So, 492. These members were Arch. Whitgift, Canterbury.
Bbbs. Bancroft, London ; Matthew, Durham ; Bilson, Winchester ; Babington,
Worcester ; Rucld, St. Davids ; Watson, Chichester ; Robinson, Carlisle ; and
Dove, Peterborough. Deans Montagu, Chapel Royal, London ; Ravis, Christ
Church ; Edes, Worcester ; Andrews, Westminster ; Overall, St. Paul's ; Barlow,
Chester ; and Bridges, Salisbury. Archdeacon King, Nottingham. Dr. Field,
Chaplain to the king.

2 John Rainolds was fifty-four, had been educated at Corp. Christ., Oxford, had
made special study of the Romanist controversy, had been Dean of Lincoln and
Master of Queen's, and now was President of Corp. Christ. An expert Greek and
Hebrew scholar, the next year he was appointed by the king a translator of the
new version of the Bible. Thomas Sparks took B. A. at Magdalen. Oxford, in
1570, became rector of Bletchley, Bucks, and later chaplain to the Bishop of Lin-
coln and Archdeacon of Stow. He became a noted Puritan. The king is said
to have converted him back to conformity at this Conference. At all events,
Sparks published, in IGOT, A Brotherly Perswaaion to unitie and uniforinitie in judg-
ment and practise, etc., 4to. John Knewstubs, then sixty-three, had been fellow of
St. John's, Cambridge, where he had united in the weekly conferences for Bible
study. In l-JTO he became rector of Cockfield, Suff., and was suspended in 15S3.
He subscribed the Book of Discipline, and labored privately for reform. Laurence
Chaderton, also sixty-three, was a fellow of Christ's, Cambridge. In 15T<i he dis-
puted on Arminianism with Baro. He preached the famous Fruitful Sermon at
Paul's Cross, Oct. 2t), 1578, subsequently was preacher at the Middle Temple, and
in lyS4 became the first Master of Emanuel, which position he held thirty-eight
years. He also was a translator of the new Bible.

* See Brook, Lives of Purs, ii : 447 ; Barlow, Sum and Subs. 2.3.

* TTie Svmme and Svhstance of the Conference Which it pleased his excellent Ma-
iestie to haue with the Lords Bishops, and others of his Clergie, (at which the most of
the Lords of the Counctll were Present) in his ^[aiesties Privie Chamber, at Hampton
Court, Jan. 14, iG03, 4to. Reprinted, 1707, in the Phenix (i : 139-lSO). See also
Fuller (v: 2i36) ; Dodd (ii: 326) and Letter of Toby Matthew, Strype, Whitgift
(iii: 402).


The parties assembled at Hampton Court on Saturday,
Jan. 14-24, 1603—1. The four Puritans sat down upon a bench
in the Presence Chamber, where they were left during the whole
day ; their only consolation being that three deans, the arch-
deacon and the chaplain shared their exclusion. The king made
" an excellent oration of an hour long." lie wanted no innova-
tion in ecclesiastical order, but complaints had been made. If
the alleged evils were dangerous, he would cure them. If frivo-
lous, he would deal with those factious Puritans so that they
would neither boast nor glory. He was holding this prelimi-
nary private interview with the bishops, so that, if anything
needed to be done, it could be arranged beforehand.

He then referred to three subjects upon which he wanted
light ; the Prayer-book, excommunication, and the religious
state of Ireland. Under the first head he asked whether confir-
nM,tion implied that baptism were invalid without it, whether
baptized infants needed to be examined in adult years, what
absolution meant, and whether private baptism by women and
laics were tolerable. As to the second, he inquired if men were
excommunicated for too light causes and too often. As for Ire-
land, he wanted it planted with schools and ministers. The
archbishop on his knees blessed God " for setting ouer vs a
King so wise, learned and iudicious." and went on to " enforme
his ]Maiestie of all these pointes." A general discussion of some
hours followed, the king " disputing," as Dean Montagu ^^Tote,l
" with the Bishops so wisely, wittily and learnedly, with that
pretty patience, as I think never man living heard the like."

On Monday forenoon the foin- Puritans were called in. Only
the Bishops of London and Winchester,^ with the deans and
doctors, were present, excepting Prince Henry and Mr. Patrick
Galloway ,3 sometime of Perth. The king repeated part of his
speech of Saturday, and informed the Puritans that he would
hear them. They kneeled down and Painolds spoke a " short
preamble gi-atulatory," and then explained their desires in these
four points : —

1 E. Law, Hist. Ilamp. Ct. Pal. li : 35.

" Toby Matthew in Strype, Whitgift. iii : 404.

• One of the king's Scotch chaplains.


1. That the Doctrine of the Church might be preserued in purity,
according to God's Word. 2. That good Pastors might be planted in
all churches, to ]»reach the same. 3. That the Church gouernment
might be sincerely administred according to God's Word. 4. That
the Book of Common Prayer might be titted to more increase of pietie.

He had not proceeded far when Bancroft, Bishop of London,
interrupted him, begged the king to enforce the ancient canon
that schismatics are not to be heard, and sneered at the four
Puritans for coming before the king •' in Turlcy gounes, not in
their Scholastical habites, suiting to their degrees." The king,
however, had the justice to rebuke the bishop.

"Without following the discussion, it is enough to notice that
Rainolds and Knewstubs, who spoke for the Puritans, were sub-
jected to a rimniug fire of sneers and invective. One of their
objections was " a meere cauil." Another suggested the remark,
" a Puritane is a Protestant frayed out of his wits." Knew-
stubs was informed by James that he did not know what Knew-
stubs meant, and the lords, when appealed to, politely declared
themselves ecpially uncertain. The king himself went rampant.^
He repeatedly aired his favorite saying: "No bishop, no king;"
and said : " If these be the greatest matters you be grieued with,
I neede not haue bin troubled with such importunities and com-
plaints." He joined in the sneers. He did not want the " f^nh-
scriptioii of Laikes & Idiots." Speaking of Christian liberty,
he declared : " I will none of that ; I will haue one doctrine
and one discipline, one Religion in substance, and in ceremony."
He said of the objecting Puritans : —

I haue liued among this sort of men . . . euer since I was ten yeares
old, but I may say of my selfe, as Christ did of himselfe : Tliough I
liued among them, yet since I had ability to iudge, I was neuer of
them ; neither did anything make me more to condemne, and detest
their courses, then that they did so peremptorily disallow of al things,
which at all had been vsed in Popery.

And, in reply to some plea about the presbyters of the churches,
he blazed out : —

A Scottish Presbytery wliich . . . as wel agreeth with a Monarchy,
as God and the lievill. Then Jack & Tom, & Will & Dick, shall

J Sum and Subs. 3G, 47, GO, 71, 72, 7i">-S3.


meete, and at their pleasures censure me, and my Councell, and all
our proceedinges : Then Will shall stand vp, and say, it must be thus ;
then Dick shall reply, and say, nay, mary [marry], but wee -will liaue
it thus. And therefore, here I nmst once reiterate my former speech,
Le Boy s'ainsera : Stay, I pray you, for one seuen yeares before
you demaund that of mee, and if then you find me purseye and fat,
and my winde-pipes stutfed, I will perhaps hearken to you : for let
that gouenieiaent bee once vp ; I am sure I shall bee kept in breath ;
then shall we all of vs, haue worke enough, both our hands ful. But
Doctor Reyn[olds]. till you finde tliat I grow lazy, let that alone.

Barlow adds that, as James withdrew, he tartly remarked :
" If this bee al that they haue to say, I shall make them con-
form themselves, or I wil harrie them out of the land, or else
doe worse."

Even as smoothed over by the courtly phrasing of this pre-
judiced chronicler, the record renders it clear that the king
and the prelates gave the Puritans no fair chance ; and, indeed,
treated them with discourtesy. And, according to more im-
partial reporters, his Majesty and the bishops appear to even
less advantage. After this second meeting, Sir John Harring-
ton, of the Privy Council, wrote : i —

The King talked much Latin, and disputed -with Dr. Reynolds ; but
he rather used upbraidings then arguments ; told them they wanted to
strip Christ again, and bid tliem " away with their snivelling." jMore-
over he wished those who would take away the surplice, '' might want
linnen for their own breech." The Bishops seemed much pleased, and
said his Maiestie spake " by the power of inspiration." I wist not
what they mean ; but the [inspiring] spirit was rather foul-mouthed.

The final session was on Jan. 18. The bishops and deans all
were present, reinforced, by royal order, by the five Knights
and Doctors of the Arches : ^ the four Puritans being left sole
tenants of the bench in the Presence Chamber. After the re-
port of the archbishop and the bishops, recominending three or
four trifling changes in the rubrics, discourse turned to the
High Commission, and the king defended the oaths compurga-
tory and ex officio in ease of certain offences. It will illustrate

^ Harring-ton's Briefe Notes in Nujae Antiqune. i : 181.

2 Sir Daniel Donne, tjir Tliomaa Crumpton, Sir Richard Swale, Sir John Bennet
and Sir Drew Drury.


the extent to wbieli flattery could, be carried by grave men in
high station to cite Barlow's account of what followed the king's

All the Lords and the rest of the present Auditors, stood amazed
at it: the Archbishop of Canterbury said, that undoubtedly his
Majesty spake by the speciall assistance of God's spirit, The Bisliop
of London upon his knee, protested, that his heart meked within him,
(and so bee doubted not, did the hearts of the whole Company) with
ioy, and made haste to acknowledge unto almighty God, the singular
mercie wee haue receiued at his hands, in giving us such a King, as
since Christ his time, the like he thouglit hath not beene, whereunto
the Lords, with one voyce, did yeeld a very affectionate acclamation.
The Ciuilians present, confessed, that they could not in many houres
warning, haue so judiciously, plainly, and accurately, and in such a
briefe described it.

The king then requested the lords and bishops to consult fur-
ther on some minor matters, and, finally, the four Puritans
were called in and told what had been determined. A little
questioning and disuniting was about to follow, when

his Majesty shut vp all with a most pithy exhortation to both sides
for unity, perswading diligence in eacli mans place, without violence
on the one party, or disobediece on the other and willed them [the
Puritans] to deale with their frieds abroad to that purpose : for his
Majesty feared, and had some experience, that many of them were
ticklish and humorous [capricious] ; nor that only, but laborers to per-
vert others to their fancies ; he now saw, that the exceptions against
the Comunion Booke were matters of weaknesse.

Under the circumstances Rainolds and his colleagues felt
that no more could be said ; excepting that Chaderton begged
that the wearing of the surplice and the use of the cross in
baptism miglit be remitted to some ministers in Lancashire,
who feared lest, were they driven to use them, some of their
people would slide back into Popery. The king promised to
inquire and that, if he received good testimony about these
ministers, be would instruct the Bishop of Chester to be con-
siderate with them.

Knewstubs then pleaded for a similar favor for " some lioTiest
Ministers in Si/Jfolkc." Whitgift had half uttered an answer
1 Sum and Subs. 90, 100, 104, 106.


when James said sharply : " Let me alone wdth him," and went
on: —

Sir, saith the king, you shew your selfe an uncharitable man, wee
haue here taken paines, and in the end haue concluded of an unitie,
and uniformity, and you, forsooth, must preferre the Credits of a few
private men, before the general! peace of the Church.

Thus ended, in disappointment, injustice and insult, what
easily might have been the brightest and most hopeful day
which England yet had seen, to say nothing of its relation to
the new reign from which so many had hoped so much. It was
decided that that pohey of brute force over the souls of men,
which many hoped would be left to the darkness of past years,
shoidd be kept alive to distract England for years to come.
Whitgift, who had many noble qualities, although usually unfair
and severe towards the Puritans, was near his end, and it may
not be strange that his essentially narrow mind helped to shape
what took place. But Bancroft was in his prime.

James disclosed his o^^ti spirit in a letter remaining in his
own handwriting, ajDparently written the next day : ^ —

"We haue kept suche a reuell with the Puritanis heir [here] these
two dayes, as was neuer harde the lyke, quhaire [where] I haue pep-
perid thaime as soundlie as ye haue done the papists thaire ; it waire
no reason tliat those that will refuse the airie signe of the crosse after
baptisme should haue thaire pursis stuffid with any mOe solide and
substantial! crossis. Thay fledde me so from argument to argument
without euer ansouring me directlie, ut est eorum moris, as I was
forcid at last to saye unto thaime, that if any of thaime hadde bene in
a colledge disputing with thair skoUairs, if any of thaire disciples had
ansoured thaim in that sorte, thay wolde haue fetchid Mm up [tied
him up for a flogging] in place of a replye, and so shoulde the rodde
have plyed upon the poore boyes buttokis. I haue such a booke of
thairs as maye uell conuerte inlidellls, but it shall neuer conuert me,
except by turning me more earnistlie against thaim.

^ Cot. Ms. Yespaxian, F. iii : 71. This letter bec;'ins : " My honest blake, I darre
not saye faced 3 " — which seems nonsense — and usually has been said to have
been ■written to some unknown Mr. Blake in Scotland. But Gardiner {Hist. Eng.
174) notes that in James's cipher '" 3 " always means '' Northampton." lie there-
fore refjards the letter as written to Henry Howard, E.arl of Xorthampton. who,
although a Catholic, was a favorite with James, and had taken part in Cecil's
Becret correspondence with him while he was still in Scotland. Gardiner reads the
line thus : " My honest black, I dare not say [black-] faced Northampton."


As for tlie State Church, the net results of the Conference ^
were these : the forbidding of baptizing by women ; the inser-
tion of " remission of sins " in the rubric of absohition : the
dilution of the terra "confirmation" by the phrase "an exam-
ination of children : " the alteration of a few words in the Do-
minical Gospels ; and a resolution that there be a revision of
the Bible, which Riiinolds has the credit of proposing. These
gains only made a bad matter worse for the Puritans by con-
vincing them that they had nothing else to hope for from the
new reign. A few years more elapsed, however, before they
reached the sad conclusion that even the most blameless and
useful Christian life would not be permitted outside of the Es-
tablishment. And these continued to be years of discussion.

From the statesman's side came out, in 1604, a powerful vol-
ume ^ by Prof. William Stoughton, who had troubled Dr. Cosin
and others, twenty years before, by his " Abstracte of certain
Acts of parlement." It answers passages in AVhitgift's reply to
the " Admonition." It argues that the planting of a new ecclesi-
astical government will not subvert existing laws, because the
whole Papal law is abolished by the twenty-fifth statute of
Henry VIII. It insists that the Crown cannot give to prelates
any power properly called si)iritual : that the common manner
of election in the old churches was by the people ; and that
there need be no fear lest the return to that practice work harm.
As to the great ([uestion in what manner the proposed polity
would affect the king, it says : —

Neither is there any cause for anie Monarch in the world, to fears
the making of christian commo people, by familiar experience, to
haue tl)e sence & feeling of the principles and reasons oi Aristocracie.
For if a people haue once submitted their necks to the yoke of Clu-ist
they can Hue a peacable & godly life, vnder all kinds of powers,
because they knowe all kind of powers, to be the ordenance of God.
But especially, there is not, neyther euer was, neyther euer can there
be, any cause for any King, or Monarch of England, greatly (as the

^ Fuller, V : 30 1 ; R vmer. xvi : 565, 574.

^ An Assertion for true and Christian Church-Policie. Wherein certaine politike
obiections made against the planting of Fastours and Elders in Erery Congregation,
are sufficientlie aunswercd. etc., 1G04, Klmo, 40-81, 50, 205, 235, 350, 363. A
second edition was published in 4to in 1042 by the autlior's sou.


Admonitor insinuatetli) to feare, that the common people, will very
easely transferre tlie principles, and reasons of Aristocracie, to the
gouerment of the common weale ; and therevpon bee induced to tliinke
that they haue iniurie, if they haue not as much to doe in civill mat-
ters, as they haue in matters of the Church.

Later it ingeniously tin-ns this consideration end for end, urg-
ing that the people Anil not feel aggrieved if they have not as
much to do with the Church as with the State. It was not in
the power of books, however, to alter the king's intense dislike
of Presbyterianisni.

The old direct controversy with the Papists kept droning
on. In 1602 a rei)ly i to the Preface of the Rhemish Testament
appeared, reprinted sixteen years afterwards by Brewster in its
place in the folio which it introduces. It makes this point at
the outset : —

The true religion being like the heaiienlie bodies which neuer change :
the Popish religion resemlileth the earth, Avhich as the potters clave is
readie to receaue any forme. . . . Hereof it is that they which some-
tyme did so deadly liate the instruction of the youth, in the groundes
& principles of religion ; that they coulde not heare the worde of
Catechisme with patient eares : nowe in feare of a generall falling
from them through opinion either of their blockish ignoraunce or
sluggishe negligence ; are constrayned both to wi'ite and teach their


In 1G03 Dr. John Dove, a Christ Church, Oxford, man and
rector of St. Mary Aldermary, London, published a volume,^
reprinted the next year, seeking to reconcile English Papists to
the Church of England. He added a final word to Pi-otestants,
reminding them that the way " to restore them which haue
fallen " is " by gentlenesse." Sir Francis Hastings, also an Ox-
ford man, "a severe Puritan and Presl)yterian,"' had published
several small treatises in the Papal controversy which in 1002
called out a reply ^ from Robert Persons, the famous Jesuit,

^ Sun Tfteo en Cliristo : The Ansvvere to the Preface of the Rhemish Testament. By
T. Cart Wright, 1002, lUnio. 03.

2 A Persu-asion to the English Recusants, to Reconcile themsehtes to the Church of
England, etc., 1G03, 4to. The Brit. Museum coi)y has on its title-page tlie auto-
graph of some ''Jo: Robinson." The d.ite and authorship of the book make it
likely that he w.as the Pilf;r;m. and the Library authorities so believe.

* The Warn-Word to Sir Fr Hastinges Wast-word, 11)02, Svo. 2J encounter, 33
"verso, loT verso.


sometimes known as Nicolas Dolman. It terms Jolm Foxe " the
most famous Iyer that euer perhaps took pen in hand ; " and
claims the Koman Catholic Church to be a unit wliile the Pro-
testants are divided scandalously.

In the same year Gabriel Powel, also of Oxford, sought to
strike Kome and possibly to stimulate the king against Papists.
His little book ^ balances opposite considerations on confronting
pages, thus a2)pealing to the common mind with force. In 1604
many Roman Catholics memorialized the king, although not
addressing him directly but circulating their memorial^ for
popular effect. They asked only for license to practise their
religion privately, and suggested that such permission would
aid the king against the "• presuming, imperious " Puritan, and
streng-then the throne by propitiating " all the Catholike Kings
and Rulers in Christendome,'' who far outnmnbered the Pro-
testant sovereigns. This tb-ew out an immediate reply,'' wliieh
urged reasons of State against what was asked, and objected
also on "grounds of true Christian Religion ; " following the
appeal section by section and almost line by line. In 1605 John
Radford, who had been ordained priest at Douay in 1587 and
sent home in 1589 to labor privately, printed a volume^ which
evidently aided in recruiting for the Pope in England.'^ It be-
gins well, with declarations that there is but one truth, to be
learned only of Christ. But, in answering the question, " How
may I then an vnlerned man discerne the light of the truth,"
it artfully suggests that the Papal church is the only one of
which Christ knows anything, and that " to goe to the heretiks

Online LibraryHenry Martyn DexterThe England and Holland of the Pilgrims → online text (page 34 of 65)