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SOMETIME BISHOP OF LONDON,
LIEUTENANT'S TABLE IN THE TOWER.
A CONFERENCE, &c.
It was declared a little before, how Doctor Ridley was had from Fremingham to the Tower; where, being in durance, and invited to the Lieutenant's table, he had certain talk or conference with Secretary Bourn, Mr Fecknam, and other, concerning the controversies in religion: the sum whereof, as it was penned with his own hand, hereafter ensueth.-Fox.
Master Thomas of Bridges said at his brother Master Sir Thomas Lieutenant's board, "I pray you, Master Doctors, for my learning, tell me what an heretic is?" Mr Secretary Bourn said, "I will tell you who is an heretic: whoso stubbornly Who is an and stiffly maintaineth an untruth, he is an heretic." "Ye mean, Sir," said I, "an untruth in matters of religion and concerning our faith." "Yea, that is true," said he and in this we were soon agreed. Then said Master Fecknam, sitting at the upper end of the table, whom they called Mr Dean of Paul's, "I will tell you by St Augustine who is an heretic: Qui adulandi principibus vel lucri gratia falsas opi- An heretic niones gignit vel sequitur, hæreticus est, saith St Augustine'." Saint AuAnd then he Englished the same. Sir," said I, "I ween St Augustine addeth the third member, which is vel vanc gloriæ causa." "Ye say even true, Mr Doctor," said he; and thus far we did agree all three2.
Mr Fecknam began again to say, "Whoso doth not believe Fecknam that the Scripture affirmeth, but will obstinately maintain Master Rid
[He who for the sake of flattering princes, or of gain, invents or follows false opinions is an heretic. ED.]
[Or for the cause of vain glory. Vide S. Aug. de utilitate credendi, cap. 1, Op. Ed. Ben. Par. 1685, tom. viii. col. 45. The words are: Hæreticus est, ut mea fert opinio, qui alicujus temporalis commodi, et maxime gloriæ principatûsque sui gratiâ, falsas ac novas opiniones vel fingit vel sequitur. ED.]
the contrary, he is hæreticus. As in the sacrament of the altar, Matthew doth affirm there to be Christ's body, Mark doth affirm it, Luke affirmeth it, Paul affirmeth it, and none denieth it therefore to hold the contrary is heresy. It is the same body and flesh that was born of the virgin and Unity, anti- this is confirmed by unity, antiquity, and universality. For
none before Berengarius did ever doubt of this; and he
Marry, Sir," said Master Secretary, "Master Fecknam hath spoken well. These be great matters: unity, antiquity, and universality. Do ye not think so, Master Doctor?" said he to me.
Here while I strained courtesy, and pretended as nothing to talk, said one of the commissioners: "Peradventure Master Ridley doth agree with Mr Fecknam, and then there needs not much debating of the matter."
"Sir," said I, "in some things I do and shall agree with him; and in some things which he hath spoken, to be plain, I do not agree with him at all.—Masters,” said I, “ye be (as I understand) the Queen's commissioners here, and if ye have commission to examine me in these matters, I shall declare unto you plainly my faith; if ye have not, then I shall pray you either give me leave to speak my mind freely, or else to hold my peace."
"There is none here," said Mr Secretary, "that doth not favour you."—And then every man shewed what favour they bare towards me, and how glad they would be of an agreement.
But as I strained to have licence of them in plain words to speak my mind, so methought they granted me it, but vix or ægré. Well, at the last I was contented to take it for licensed, and so began to talk.
To Mr Fecknam's arguments of the manifold affirmation where no denial was, I answered, Where is a multitude of affirmations in Scripture, and where is one affirmation, all is goeth not by one concerning the truth of the matter: for that any of the
Bishop Ridley answering to Fecknam. Truth in Scripture
affirmation, Evangelists spake inspired by the Holy
Ghost, was as true
It is as true that
is sufficient, as that which was spoken of them all.
[Testify, i. e. take to witness.
John saith of Christ, Ego sum ostium ovium, I am the John x. door of the sheep, as if all had said it. For it is not in Scripture as in witness of men, where the number is credited more than one, because it is uncertain of whose spirit he doth speak. And where Mr Fecknam spake of so many, affirming without any negation, &c., "Sir," said I, "all they do affirm the thing which they meant. Now, if ye take their words, and leave their meaning, then do they affirm what ye take, but not what they meant. Sir," said I, "if Words in in talk with you I should so utter my mind in words, that must be ye by the same do and may plainly perceive my meaning, their meanand could, if ye would be captious, cavil at my words, and writhe them to another sense, I would think ye were no gentle companion to talk with; except ye would take my words as ye did perceive that I did mean.”
"Marry," quoth Mr Secretary, "we should else do you plain injury and wrong."
Mr Fecknam perceiving whereunto my talk went, "Why," quoth he, "what circumstances can ye shew me that should move you to think of any other sense, than as the words plainly say, Hoc est corpus meum, quod pro vobis tradetur? Luke xxii. This is my body which shall be betrayed for you."
Hoc est corpus meum expounded.
Sir," said I, "even the next sentence that followeth ; Hoc facite in meam commemorationem, Do this in my remembrance. And also by what reason ye say the bread is turned into Christ's carnal body; by the same I may say, that it is turned into his mystical body. For as that saith Reasons of it, Hoc est corpus meum quod pro vobis tradetur; so Paul words ought which spake by Christ's spirit saith, Unus panis et unum not literally. corpus multi sumus omnes, qui de uno pane participamus. being many are all but one bread, and one body, in as much as we are partakers of one bread."
to be taken
We 1 Cor. x.
"Here he calleth one bread, one loaf," said Mr Secre
Yea," said I, one loaf, one bread, all is one with me." "But what say ye," quoth Master Secretary, "of the universality, antiquity, and unity, that Master Fecknam did speak of?"
"I ensure you," said I, “I think them matters weighty, Unity with and to be considered well. As for unity, the truth is, before allowed.