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398 [398]

Actes and Monumentes
The English wherof is this.
¶ Vnto the reuerende father, the Lord Eneas Cardinal of Sene Martin Meir Chaunceloure to the bishop of Mentz, wisheth health.

I Haue vnderstand by certain of my frendes letters, that you are created Cardinall. I am glad for your part, that you haue receiued so worthy rewardes for your vertues. I reioyse also for my own part, that my frend is attained vnto such a dignity wherin he may in time to come both help me and my frendes, but this is a griefe vnto me, that you haue happened in those daies, which seme to be troublesome to the Apostolike sea. For there are many complaintes made vnto my Lord the Archbishop vppon the pope, that he will neither keepe the decrees of the councels of Constance, neither of Basell, neyther yet thinketh him self bound to the couenants of his predecessors, and semeth vtterly to contemne our nation, and to seke the vtter ruine there of. For it is euident that the election of prelates is euery wher reiected: benefices and dignities of what sort so euer they be, are reserued for the Cardinals and chiefe notaries. And you your self haue obtained the reseruation of iii. prouinces of Germany vnder such a forme as hath not bene accustomed or hard of. Vowsons or giftes of benefices are graunted without nomber, yerely stipendes, & halfe the reuenues are exacted without delaye, and it is euident, that there is more extorted then is due. The regimentes of churches are not committed vnto suche as best deserue them, but vnto such as offer most mony for them, & new pardons are graūted out daily to scrape and gather together monye. Tithes are commaunded to be exacted vpon oure prelates for the Turkish warre and those matters whiche were accustomed to be debated and determined at home, are now caried vnto the Apostolike sea of Rome. A thousand waies are inuēted and deuised, how the sea of Rome may bysubtilty and by craft extort and get golde and treasure from vs, euen as it were of the Turkes or Barbariās, wherby our nation, which was somtime famous and valiaunte, whiche by their power and bloud conqnered the Romaine Empire, and was once the Ladye and Quene of all the world, now beyng broughte vnto pouerty, is made a handmaid, & become tributory, and being now in extreme misery, hath by a longe time bewailed her cruell fortune & pouerty. But now our nobles beynge as it were weakened out of their sleape, haue begon to consider and deuise with thē selues, by what meanes they might withstande thys calamity, and vtterly to shake of this yoke & bōdage, & haue determined with them selues to chalenge again their former liberty. Thys will be no small losse vnto the court of Rome if the princes of Germany bring to passe that which they haue deuised. Wherfore as much as I do reioyce of your late obtained dignity, so much also am I moued and greued þt theese thinges happen in your daies. But peraduenture Gods determination is otherwise, and his will shall surelye take place. You in the meane time be of a good chere, and deuise accordinge to your wisdome, by what meanes, theese flames of fyre maye bee resysted. Thus moost reuerent fare you wel, from Hasthaffebirge, the day before the Kalendes of September. An M.CCCCLVII.

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And thus to end the second parte or sectyon wherin we haue declared and discoursed touching the order of the two councels before mētioned, with suche other histories appertayninge vnto the Bohemians, and other alien Churches, Now to retourne vnto oure country of England again, this next part or Section folowing shallbe to adde to the nombre of them whiche here in the countries of England, especially of Norfolke and Suffolke, partly by compulsyon and feare of the cruell prelates haue abiured, and partly did suffer and were afflicted for the defence of the true doctrine of the Gospell.

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