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“U.—I do acknowledge that there never was any work so perfect, but there have been imperfections in it. There may, therefore, be some faults in the manner, but, surely, none in the matter. For the bishops themselves will confess, that they may fail in their actions, and be partial, as they are men, in the manner of handling any thing; so also the author of this book, being assured that the matter is without reproof, may err in the manner, by being over zealous in the handling of it. This fault I will easily confess to be in the book, my lords ; but I am sure the author never had any malicious intent against her highness, or any of her subjects.
“C.-This book hath made you to come within the compass of the statute, though your intent were not so. For I am sure there was Mr. Stubbs, well known to divers here to be a good subject, and an honest man; yet, taking upon him to write a book against her majesty, touching Monsieur, he thereby came within the compass of law, which he intended not in making the book; and I am persuaded that he did it of a good affection towards her majesty; and yet, if this law had then been made, which has been made since, he had died for it; so you, though you intended not to come within the statute; yet the law reacheth to your fact as that did to his.
“U.-My good lords, his case and mine are not alike. His book concerned her highness's person; but the author of this book teacheth only of the corruptions of the bishops, and, therefore, not of the person of her majesty.
“C.-But I will prove this book to be against her majesty, who, being the supreme governor of all persons and causes in these dominions, hath established this kind of government in the hands of bishops, which thou and thy fellows so strive against ; and they being set in authority for the exercising of this government by her majesty, thou dost not strive against them, but her majesty's person, seeing they cannot alter the government which the queen hath laid upon them.
“U.—My lords, we are not ignorant of this, that her majesty is careful that all things might be well ordered, and hath given bishops in charge, on consideration of these controversies, to see that nothing be amiss; and because she hath a good opinion of them, for their gravity and learning, she believeth them when they say all is well, and in good case; whereas, if they had the grace to look into these things, and to make them known as they are indeed, her majesty and the state, I doubt not, would quickly redress them, and therefore was it that the author did so charge them.
“C.-But, sirrah, thou canst not so excuse thyself, as though it touched not the queen and the state. Is it not written in the book, that this saying will not serve their turn, The queen and council will have it so;' whereby it is plain that thou didst speak against the queen and state?
“U.--My lord, the author only meaneth, that when we are called before the bishops, they are often driven to use this argument, when they had nothing else to say for themselves, that they could be content to have many things amended, but it must be ordered by the queen and council, for they will have it so; and, surely, herein methinks they slander her highness; and we tell them, that however they bear it before men, yet, before God, that excuse will not serve their turn.
“C.-Thou canst not carry it away so. Dost not thou plainly say, that they are not safe, though they have human authority on their side ; but he that is on our side is mightier than they? whereby thou both abusest her majesty, and threatenest them with some force and violence.
“U.-It is true that whosoever doeth unjustly is not safe in it, though all the princes in the world should defend him; and that is the meaning of the author: bat to say that force and violence is threatened them, is doubtless further from his mear ing. For it is known to all the world, that we desire by all good means to commend this holy cause of reformation to her majesty and the state, and do not anticipate that
ever it should by any force prevail; but that it would please God to honour her majesty with the advancement of the same.
“C.—No, no ; these are but excuses. These malicious speeches proceed from thee, and were the ground-work of all those libels that have been dispersed; and thou art known to be the ringleader of this faction!
“U.—There is no reason to charge me with other men's doings. Every man must answer for himself. As for me, alas ! I am nobody. There are five hundred ministers in this land of my judgment, the meanest of whom I acknowledge to be far better learned than I am. But I pray your lordships give me leave to say, what I was about to speak before, but was interrupted. I pray you hear me, though it be out of time, concerning the felony whereof I am accused.
“C.-What is it? Let us hear what you can say.
“U.—When I was before the lords of her majesty's council, at the time of my commitment, amongst other things that are alleged against taking an oath to accuse myself, I said the thing was accounted criminal; therefore, by law I was not to answer. My lord Anderson declared, that I said true, if the case had concerned either the loss of life or limb; whereby it is manifest that my case was not then esteemed felony.
“C.—Though the judges had not then concluded it; yet it was law before, or else it could not be so determined after. The violent course of others hath caused your case to be more narrowly sifted."
The judge then gave instructions to the jury to find Mr. Udal guilty of being the author of the book; but they reserved to themselves that the offence was felony. The judge, addressing Mr. Udal, said, “Go thy way: we will hear thee no longer.” When Mr. Udal was pressed to submit himself unto the judges, he wished not to be troubled with any such matter; and, since his conscience acquitted him, he could not be induced to accuse himself. Mr. Udal being brought to the bar on the morning following, was called upon to say why he should not receive judgment to suffer death, when he addressed the court as follows:
“U.—My lords ; notwithstanding my earnest pleading and protesting my innocency yesterday, which I could and would have done more clearly, but I was interrupted, yet it hath pleased the jury to find me guilty of that which, I thank God, never entered into my heart. I must now use another plea ; and I crave of your lordships to grant me the benefit of pardon bestowed the last parliament.
"C.-I think you can have no benefit by it ; for I am deceived if it be not excepted.
“U.—I pray your lordships to consider the ground of my plea. Your lordships confessed yesterday, and I showed it from lord Anderson's speeches to me, that it was not thought of felony till of late; therefore, the things that be excepted are those which are punishable in the ecclesiastical courts : so, my lords, I refer to your consciences and favourable consideration.
“C.-What say you? Are you contented to submit to the queen ? “U.-Yes ; or else I am not worthy to live in her dominions.
“C.-But, will you acknowledge yourself to have offended her majesty in making this book; for she is gracious and full of mercy. It may be that we reporting your submission unto her majesty, may procure your pardon. “U.-May it please your lordships to hear me. The cause for which I am called in N. S. VOL. V.
question, I cannot in any sort forsake; for I hold it to be the undoubted truth of God; but here he was interrupted.
“PUCKERING.–Nay, stay there. You cannot go away with that speech unanswered, to bring such a conceit in the ears of the people, that what you hold is an undoubted truth; for I hold it to be an undoubted falsehood...
“U.—It is diversely debated, my lords; and the greatest number of learned mea in Christendom profess the same.
“C.--How do you know that? Have you been beyond the seas to know the greatest number of learned men to be of this judgment ?
“U.—Your lordships know that all the churches of France, of Holland, and of Scotland, maintain the same, together with many hundreds of learned men in this land.
“C.-Have you been in all those churches, that you can tell so much?
“U.-I know it to be true, my lords ; for their practice showeth them to be of this judgment.
“C.-Well, if you can allege no more; will you submit to the queen's mercy, then hear your judgment ?
“U.-I was beginning to speak, but you interrupted me. I pray you hear what I wish to say, and then do as God shall move you. As I said before, so I say now; I believe the cause to be the undoubted truth of God; and, therefore, in the matter I cannot by any means yield. Seeing by your law I am found guilty, neither can I take any exception against you, nor the jury; but that which you have done, I ackuowledge to be done in all equity and right; and seeing you have found me guilty, I cannot live without her majesty's gracious and special favour. I acknowledge that whatsoever I have done in the advancement of the cause, if I have offended, it may be in the manner, and I willingly submit myself, and heartily crave her majesty's pardon.
“C.-But, are you sorry that you have offended the queen's majesty ?
“U.-I am sorry that the course of the law have found me to have offended, if in the manner of handling so good a cause, there be found in me any offence against her majesty's laws; and I acknowledge that, in the manner of handling it, her majesty may be justly offended; for which I am sorry. And I protest that I have not attempted to advance this cause by any other means, than by manifesting it to all men, and tendering it to those in authority; and that by such means as are not contrary to the laws of this land, it might be received by her majesty and the state; and this is our true case, howsoever we are charged with factions.
“P.—You say you use no unlawful means; what can be meant but unlawful means in the words of your book! If it come in by means that will make all your hearts ache, blame yourselves. What good means can be meant by these words?
“U.-My lords, I showed you yesterday what I took to be the meaning of the author in some places of the book alleged against me in the indictment, and I would have spoken unto all; but you cut me off. I pray you, therefore, let me show you the meaning of the author in these words.
“C.--Let us hear how you expound them.
“ U.-Your lordships must understand, that the author taketh it for granted that the cause is God's, and must prevail; therefore, seeing God hath used all the means of his mercy to bring it in, by giving us a gracious prince, long peace and abundance, and stirring up some to exhibit supplications to the parliament ; these things not prevailing, he will bring it in by some national judgment, as the manner of God's dealing.
“C.-You cannot expound it so; for the words import another thing.
“U.--My lords, the author himself expoundeth it so in the words following: "It must prevail, for such a judgmen will overtake this land as will make all cars
tingle:' so that he meaneth only, that God will bring it in by his own hand; by judgment, if mercy do not prevail.
"C.—No, no. Your meaning was that it should be brought in by force and violence.
“U.-God forbid! Far be it from any of us to conceive any such imagination. The author of that book doth plainly show that he meant no such thing; and the words in the end of the epistle declare the same. There he showeth by whom it is to be brought in; namely, by her majesty and her honourable counsellors, who are to establish the same.
"CNay, the meaning is, that, if the queen will not, you say it shall come in, whoever stands against it.
“U.-No, my lords, the words are notwithstanding the malice of all that may stand against it.'
“P.-Well, Mr. Udal; you had best submit yourself to the queen's mercy, and leave these courses. I tell you that your book is most seditious and slanderous against her majesty and the state; yet I assure you that your book had been passed over, if there had not come forth presently after it such a number of slanderous libels, as Martin Marprelate, Martin's Epitome, Martin Junior, and others, of which your book was judged to be the ringleader.
“U.-My lords, those that are learned do maintain this cause, and do judge this book to be written very impartially, however hardly it may be construed. Martin and the rest of those books were never approved by the godly learned ; and I think there is no minister that knows who Martin is.
“ C.-You will not acknowledge yourself faulty in any thing; therefore, it is in vain to stand any longer with you.
“U.-I confess that in manner the author hath offended: and no man can handle a cause without faults. It is easier to handle a bad cause cunningly, than a good one well.
“C.-Nay, but you have maliciously offended in publishing this book, which tendeth to the overthrow of the state, and moving rebellion.
“U.—My lords, that be far from me. We teach that, in reforming things amiss, if the prince will not consent, the weapons subjects are to fight withal, are repentance and prayers, patience and tears. God forbid but that we should give unto her majesty all that honour which is justly due unto her. We have not taught the people to reform the state without the prince, and our practice proves the same.
“C.-Well, will you submit yourself or not? For else I must proceed to judgment, neither will I stay sentence of death ; therefore, shortly submit yourself, or I shall pronounce sentence of death.
“U.-And I am ready to receive it. I protest before God, not knowing that I am to live an hour, that the cause is good; and I am contented to receive sentence; so that I may leave it to posterity, that I have suffered for this cause. The cause excepted, I will submit to any thing ; but I may not in any case yield the cause. I was a preacher of the Gospel, and a professor of it, therefore, I cannot deny that which I believe.
*C.-Let the cause alone, and say what you will do.
“U.-I must needs profess it, and mention it, lest it should be thought that I have started from it; but for any thing I have done in the manner against law, I am heartily sorry. More than this I cannot say, do with me what you will.
"C.-But are you sorry for having offended her majesty and her laws, and are you contented to amend, and to live in obedience, as becometh a good subject.
“U.--I am contented to seek the advancement of this cause by no other means, than according to the laws of the land, and the duty of a good subject.
“ C.-I came not here to entreat you submit, but you shall do it willingly upon your knees, and crave her majesty's mercy."
Mr. Udal then falling down on his knees, said, he refused not any submission to her majesty. On being dismissed, he entreated their lordships to intercede for him to her majesty; and that his papers, if deemed worthy, might be laid before her majesty or the privy council. Here the conversation ended ; and Mr. Udal was re-committed to the White Lion prison, in Southwark, whence he addressed the following submission “to the queen's most excellent majesty :"
“Most gracious and dread sovereign. The present lamentable state wherein I stand, being found guilty, by verdict, to be the author of a book, entitled, “A Demonstration of Discipline;' and being, without your gracious pardon, to die for the same, I humbly prostrate myself at your majesty's feet, submitting myself in most humble manner, as becometh a dutiful subject, to such order as it shall please your highness to appoint, to whom God hath given so high and sovereign power as is able both to kill and quicken, to bring to the gates of death, and to cause to return to the comforts of life. Before whom, standing thus convicted, I am not to plead my innocency; yet I most humbly desire it may not offend your excellent majesty, that I protest, of the truth whereof I call God to witness, who knoweth all secrets, and will judge both the quick and the dead, that I had never any thought or imagination to publish any writing, or do any thing maliciously, or tending to the dishonour or slander of your majesty's royal person or princely estate, under whose gracious government 1 bave attained to so many benefits and blessings : amongst which I most highly esteem the true knowledge and fear of God; in regard whereof I have been always ready even to adventure my life, for the preservation of your most royal person, and defence of you princely estate, and the same I have also taught others, as a thing specially conmanded by God. Notwithstanding, fearing the severity of justice unto death, I fice for life unto your majesty's most gracious mercy, most humbly desiring your highness of your merciful compassion for relief of my poor miserable state, to grant me your gracious and comfortable pardon, whereby I may be discharged both of the offence and punishment which the law hath laid upon me. Other hope than this have I none, but the trust I have in God according to his promise, that your majesty, by a special gift of God, is gracious and merciful, and has vouchsafed to show mercy, even to such as were not only by imputation of law, but indeed malicious and mortal enemies to your highness ; and, therefore, I hope that the same goodness of so princely a nature may be moved and show forth itself in like gracious compassion on my behalf; which gracious pardon on my knees I most humbly crave your excellent majesty to grant unto me, by which special favour, being raised, as it were, from the dead, I promise and vow to lead the rest of my life in all humble and dutiful obedience unto your majesty : praying continually for the preservation of your highness's precious life and happy government, to the honour of Almighty God, and the comfort of all obedient and dutiful subjects."*
This document, the reader will perceive, was not a recantation of his principles, but a submission to her majesty, and a supplication of pardon and deliverance ; yet it was utterly unavailable. At the assizes in Southwark, February 19, 1590—1, Mr. Udal was again arraigned, when the following conversation, between the judges and the prisoner, was commenced by the former :
* New Discovery of Old Pontifical Practices.