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'writers to solemnise and celebrate ... Actes and memory': Foxe and the business of textual memory.

One of the pervasive thematic interests throughout Foxe's narratives of captivity and torture is how human heroism can be memorialized adequately for succeeding generations who profess the reformist faith. In some prefatory remarks to the Pandectae locorum communium Foxe enquired: 'what can poets, what can historians, what can rhetoricians, and orators [...] provide by their art without memory [...]?'. This chapter explores a number of accounts of martyrdom across the chronological span of The Actes and Monuments. It combines detailed analysis with a more general appreciation of early modern ideas on the implications of remembering. Particular attention is devoted to the narrative strategies Foxe deploys in his accounts of captivity, torture, and execution down the ages and how these might be seen to engage with prevailing sixteenth-century cultural discourses regarding the status and function of memory and the writing of history.


Every past is worth condemning ...

(Friedrich Nietzsche) (1)

Anxieties surrounding the relationships between acts of memory and constructions of cultural power have pressed down upon the minds of writers and thinkers in more modern times as much as they did upon those seeking to frame cultural narratives in the sixteenth century for wider consumption. Some of the most urgent enquiries have focused on the very unruliness of memory--the unwillingness of the faculty to submit instinctively to discipline and to adhere to principles of discrimination: as a consequence, it has often been viewed from the writings of antiquity onwards as a worthy subject for training and mental labour. In more recent years, rather than becoming a valuable postmodern resource with which to ironize and elide the past, in the increasingly sombre world vision of those wishing to narrativize the developments of lives and selves for the twenty-first century, memory has been regarded as a key factor in the cultural power play of institutions and as a source of epistemological insecurity. The cultural theorist Jacques Le Goff, for example, has argued that,

Memory is the raw material of history [...] Because its workings are usually unconscious, it is in reality more dangerously subject to manipulation by time and by societies given to reflection than the discipline of history itself [...] The document is not objective, innocent raw material, but expresses past society's power over memory and over the future: the document is what remains. (2)

The intellectual discomfort in evidence in such enquiries (which nonetheless acknowledge the pre-eminent status of the faculty) clearly has counterparts in many of the documents dealing with the very nature of memory that survive from the Tudor period; here, memory is not only frequently linked with formulation of spiritual and political identity, but with the need for a strict mental regime in order to realize its fullest potential. At the beginning of the sixteenth century Juan Luis Vives stressed that

we be framed and facioned by these three things, knowledge, wit, & Memory, & the diligence whiche we use to the atteyning of them, is called study. Wit is quickened by exercise and memory encreased by diligent tillinge and occupienge thereof: delicate handelynge weakeneth them both [...] Whether thou rede or here ani thing, do it with attention and effectuously, let not thy mind wander, but constraine it to be there, and to do that thyng, whych is in hande, and none other. (3)

One of his contemporaries, Sir Thomas Elyot, in The Boke of the Gouernour (1531), chose to follow in Cicero's footsteps, attributing to the faculty an ethical power to shape the future direction of humanity: 'Experience whereof commeth wysedome [...] The knowledge of this Experience is called Example, and is expressed by historie, whiche of Tulli is called the life of memorie.' (4) Later in the century, amongst Foxe's own contemporaries, the translator William Fulwood declared in the dedicatory address to Robert Dudley prefacing the fruit of his labours, namely the rendering into English of a work by Guglielmo Gratarolo (The Castel of Memorie), that 'Memorie (as Seneca witnesseth) is the principall commoditie and profit that mans nature can receyueth'. (5) However, perhaps most notably for scholars of Elizabethan literature, George Puttenham argued forcefully in his Arte of English Poesie (1589) that

There is nothing in man of all the potential parts of his mind (reason and will except) more noble or more necessary to the active life then memory: because it maketh most to a sound iudgement and perfect worldly wisedome, examining and comparing the times past with the present, and by them both considering the time to come, concludeth with a stedfast resolution, what is the best course to be taken in all his actions and aduices in this world: it came vpon this reson, experience to be so highly commended in all consultations of importance, and preferred before any learning or science, and yet experience is no more than a masse of memories assembled, that is, such trials as man hath made in time before. (6)

In prosecuting his point, Puttenham clearly demonstrated the reverence in which the faculty was held in his own time; and on further analysis it becomes increasingly evident that early modern Europe had become the inheritor of a whole series of often competing discourses surrounding the ways in which memory might be interpreted.

The central positioning of the faculty of memory in pedagogic theories of the sixteenth century (and indeed later) is widely apparent in the documents of the period, and the cultural undertaking of commemoration preoccupied John Foxe in particular in diverse ways throughout his publishing career. In some prefatory remarks to the Pandectae locorum communium (1572), for example, he had enquired, 'what can poets, what can historians, what can rhetoricians, and orators [...] provide by their art without memory'. (7) In his magnum opus described in the 1583 (London) edition as the Actes and monuments of matters most speciall and memorable, happenyng in the Church with an vniuersall history of the same, wherein is set forth at large the whole race and course of the Church, from the primitiue age to these latter tymes of ours, with the bloudy times, horrible troubles, and great persecutions agaynst the true martyrs of Christ, sought and wrought as well by heathen emperours, as nowe lately practised by Romish prelates, especially in this realme of England and Scotland, (8) memory lay once again at the very heart of authorial motivations, and as the project grew in magnitude, every effort was made to ensure that no precious detail of Catholic persecution down the ages would be allowed to slip the attention of his pen.

The preliminary versions of this work were published in Latin on the continent in 1554 and 1558 during the reign of Mary I, and then expanded to twice the original length into English in 1563, when her stepsister Elizabeth was on the throne. The next edition of The Actes and Monuments was reworked for 1570 and expanded significantly once again: from 1471 folio pages in 1563 to 2314 in 1570. (The later editions in Foxe's lifetime in 1576 and 1583 also underwent further revisions.) In the editions of 1563 and 1583 Foxe appended to the main body of text a 'Kalender of Martyrs' in which Tudor Protestants who had been burnt at the stake jostled for position with New Testament figures to be commemorated on an annual basis. This additional document, together with a series of woodcut images dispersed throughout the volume (expanded in number from fifty-three in 1563 to over 150 in the 1570 edition), established the publication as the pre-eminent vehicle in English for celebrating the martyrs of the Reformed faith. (9) Both the 'Kalender' and the woodcut images were supplementary memorial devices that were deployed in The Actes and Monuments to signal crucial narratives of persecution. Given the enormous and complex operations at the presses to bring the work into the public domain, it is little wonder that John N. King terms this 'the largest and most complicated English printing venture of its age'. (10) Indeed, Foxe's work continued to be published into the seventeenth century, and it has been estimated that by the ninth edition in 1684 there were some ten thousand copies in circulation. (11) Clearly, the early career of the volume could only have been enhanced when a meeting of Convocation in 1571 decided that 'euery Archbishop and bishop shall haue in hys house The holy Bible in the largest volume, as it was lately printed at London, and also that full and perfect history, which is intituled Monumentes of Martyres', in addition to copies being 'bestowed in [...] Cathedrall Church[es], in such conuenient place, that the vicars [...] and other ministers of the Church, as also straungers and forieners may easelie come vnto them, and read thereon'. (12) By 1577 William Harrison famously observed that

euerye offyce at court hath eyther a Byble, or the bookes of the acts and Monumentes of the Church of Englande or both, beside some hystoryes and Chronicles lying therin, for the exercise of such as come into the same: whereby the straunger that entereth into the Courte of Englande vpon the sodeine, shall rather imagine himselfe to come into some publicke schoole of ye vniuersities, where many giue eare to one that readeth vnto them, then into a Princes Pallace. (13)

In the compiling of his work, Foxe was indebted to a host of earlier scholars who had worked on the history of the Christian Church, most notably to the fourth-century bishop Eusebius of Caesarea for the accounts of the sufferings of the Early Church martyrs in his Ecclesiastical History. (14) However, whilst the cultural and theological significance of Foxe's project continues to be appreciated by generations of early modern scholars, King has lamented that the narrative strategies of this undertaking are still being neglected:

Literary aspects of Foxe's Book of Martyrs have received little attention because most work, even that by literary scholars, tends to focus almost exclusively upon historical and theological issues. With few exceptions, problems concerning Foxean narrative, controversial rhetoric, prose style, and characterization have been ignored. (15)

It thus appears timely to consider Foxean narrative strategies, in this case with particular reference to early modern discourses of memory. Beginning his project during a period of Marian exile, Foxe found himself increasingly having to confront the thorny question of how a narrative (which came to extend across a chronological span from the travails of the Early Church to the final persecutions during the reign of Mary I) might resist the all too evident forces of social amnesia and neglect and renew itself effectively for succeeding generations of reformist readers. Certainly, one of the strategies he adopted in order to resolve this problem throughout the enormous undertaking of The Actes and Monuments was to represent the resistance to persecution by Catholics and tyrants and the bearing of spiritual witness (most especially that of reformists) in magnificently heroic terms. (16) More generally, he frequently attended specifically to the eternal nature of God's truth and the continuities of human experience across the centuries to the Tudor present. In his address to 'Christian Protestantes, Professours of the Gospell', for example, readers are instructed that as they subsequently leaf through the volume they are to consider 'the times that haue bene, the times that bee, and the times that may come, how we stand, and by whom we stand' (Actes, sig. [paragraph]iiv). In this way we are urged to respond to the harrowing evocations of martyrdom with the strenuous mental commitment of remembering. Indeed, with The Actes and Monuments Foxe may be seen as wanting to fashion the potentially still lively memories of the Tudor martyrs amongst sections of his early Elizabethan readership into a newly minted collective memory, a supplementary sacred space of collective commemoration. We are not only greeted with a grand birthing narrative for the reformist faith, in which the extraordinary actions and the written records of the martyrs become 'precious monuments', we are informed at regular intervals that such things are 'meet to be recorded [rather than] buried under the darknes of Obliuion' (Actes, sig. *vir).

It is clear that Foxe's authorial ambitions for the Actes and Monuments met with a great measure of success amongst later generations. Sharon Achinstein, for example, has stressed that 'aside from the Bible, this work was the key printed text that shaped English Protestantism'; and Richard Helgerson has argued equally energetically that 'no books, with the obvious exception of the English Bible and the Book of Common Prayer, have had a greater part in shaping England's religious self-understanding than Foxe's Acts and Hooker's Laws'. (17) It is all the more interesting, therefore, to ponder the frequency with which Foxe's protagonists themselves reflect on the very various spiritual, intellectual, and political obligations that the cultural pressures of remembering may impose. Repeatedly in his narratives, the reader is asked to concentrate on a martyr, attending to the figure that he or she will become in the society after death. Even apparently minor actions committed by the martyrs are often related to anxieties concerning their memorialization. In the case of Thomas Cranmer, such actions are given a characteristically moral emphasis: we learn that

In the smal tyme of respite betwene kynge Edwardes deathe, and hys owne imprisonment, he solde hys plate, and payed all hys debtes, so that no man could aske him a grote; althoughe thereby, and by the spoyle of hys goodes, after hys attainder he left his wyfe and chyldren unprouided. (Actes [1563], pp. 1478-79) (18)

Elsewhere, narratives concerning the extraordinary powers of recollection can be seen actively to feed into the ongoing celebration of the Foxean 'worthies'. In the treatment of the life of Thomas Cromwell, for example, the exceptional intellectual activity of the statesman is highlighted by way of preparing the reader for his singular spiritual commitment:

such was the actiuitie and forward rypenes of nature in him so pregnaunt in witte [...] he could not be long unespied [...] Nothyng was so hard which with witte and industrie he could not compasse. Neyther was his capacitie so good but his memorie was as greate in reteining whatsoeuer he had atteined. Which well appeared in connyng the text of the whole New Testament of Erasmus translation without booke in his iourney going and comming from Rome. (Actes, pp. 1177-78) (19)

Interestingly, these narrative strategies are frequently found to govern accounts of both the illiterate and literate in The Actes and Monuments. Figures from all sections of the community are regularly described as conning texts by rote in order to establish for the reader, amongst other things, an appreciation of their mental prowess and of their ethical powers of self-government. Indeed, Foxe is shown determined to demonstrate the 'heroic' mind of the martyr before unveiling the heroic body that endures torture and execution; and one of the principal ways he does this is through an insistence on the subject's powers of memory. In the context of such narratives, any indication of forgetfulness would constitute a moral, as well as an intellectual, deterioration for the martyr--and, it should be stressed, for the reader too.

At the beginning of his narrative of Cranmer, for instance, we learn that, like so many of his fellow scholars in the early modern period, 'he neuer came to any writers booke without penne and inke, but yet so that he exercised his memorie no lesse than his penne'. However, at this point Foxe appears particularly eager to establish Cranmer as the very model of intellectual diligence:

Whatsoeuer controuersie came, he gathered euery autors sentence briefly, & the diuersitie of their iudgementes into common places, whiche he hadde prepared for that purpose. Or els, if the matter were too longe to wryte out, he noted the place of the autor and the nomber of the leafe, whereby he might haue the more helpe for his memorye. (Actes [1563], p. 1471)

The intellectual achievements of the martyrs are often chronicled at an early stage in their narratives and married to a humanist emphasis on the crucial importance of learning and mental industry in the pursuit of human perfectibility. In this particular case, the account of meticulous mental and textual commonplacing on Cranmer's part enables the theologian to be viewed specifically as a scholar investing energetically in the business of memory. Indeed, through this careful account of systematic mental and textual annotation, Foxe maps out the thoughtful intelligence of his subject, which is going to be so crucial to the later depiction of his or her victimization by 'unruly' persecutors. Following in the footsteps of the Roman theorists of the ars memorativa such as Cicero and Quintilian, Foxe fashions a public, rhetorical identity for his chosen subject in terms of his vigorous commitment to remember; this is, of course, a virtuous identity that Foxe assumed throughout the work itself. Moreover, Cranmer is just one amongst a host of equally eminent and scrupulously attentive readers of theological matter in The Actes and Monuments who are deployed as models for reformist readers--readers who were attempting to navigate through, and to digest for future reference, the huge fund of information that Foxe was collecting together in his volumes.

A recurring narrative thrust in The Actes and Monuments is not only on the valour and faith of the martyrs, but also often on their humble beginnings, their domestic arrangements, or their personal writings in order, it seems, to establish reader intimacy and identification with these extraordinary individuals at an early stage: we must be convinced of the authenticity of their participation in a shared humanity before we can assent to their subsequent apotheoses. We learn of Ridley, for example, that 'he was passingly well learned, his memorie was great, and he of such reading withal, that of right he deserued to be comparable to the best of this our age' (Actes, p. 1717). Such praise is supplemented later in the narrative with an account of the domestic community of this paterfamilias:

Beyng at his manor at Fulham, as divers times he used to be, he read daily a lecture to his family at the common prayer, beginning at the Acts of the Apostles, and so going through all the Epistles of St. Paul, giving, to euery man that could read, a New Testament, hiring them besides with money to learn by heart certain principal chapters, but especially Acts xiii., reading also unto his household oftentimes Psalm ci., being marvellous careful over his family, that they might be a spectacle of all virtue and honesty to others. To be short, as he was godly and virtuous himself, so nothing but virtue and godliness reigned in his house, feeding them with the food of our Saviour Jesus Christ. (Actes, p. 1717)

The virtuous regime of paternalism characteristic of life at Ridley's Fulham manor is intimately connected in Foxe's narrative with the patriarch's abilities as a scholar and, equally importantly, with his ability to inspire others with his scholarly ambitions, going so far as to 'hire' others to rote-learn biblical texts. The spiritual and moral dimensions of the well-tempered memory of this moral paragon are thus clearly in evidence for the members of the Fulham household, and indeed for Foxe's readers to appreciate and to emulate.

From a more general perspective, absolutely central to the Foxean project of commemoration was, of course, the remembering of the monstrous violence of a corrupt, greedy, and conspiratorial Catholic Church, which had persecuted the Christian faithful down the generations. At no point in his chronological narrative spanning the centuries did Foxe leave his reader in any uncertainty regarding the identity of the enemy that confronted those of the Reformed faith: 'what is there almost in the pope's church, but either it is mingled, or depraved, or altered, or corrupted, either by some additions interlaced, or by some diminution mangled and mutilated, or by some gloss adulterate, or with manifest lies contaminate?' (Actes, p. 584). In the wider context of post-Reformation politics in England, R. Malcolm Smuts has underlined the important point that

Religious conflict not only posed immediate threats to the kingdom's peace. It also disrupted Elizabethans'] relations to their own past and the moral authority that the past conveyed. All across Europe the ideological underpinnings of political authority were being subjected to searching examination and polemical assault by confessional adversaries. Appeals to history had become double-edged weapons, used to attack government as well as to defend it. Protestants especially needed to reinvent the past, to justify what might otherwise appear an arrogant break with ancestral customs. (20)

The ideological 'scramble' for the past in evidence across Europe also opened equally difficult questions regarding the very epistemological status of memory and its role in the recovery or formulation of historical narrative.

Foxe clearly emerged as a pre-eminent scholar in early modern England who was determined to reclaim a spiritual past spanning the centuries to the Early Church in order to secure everlasting legitimacy for the Reformed faith. The narrative of this past was being formulated explicitly for consumption by those who resisted the national Church as well as those who counted themselves amongst the faithful. In the prefatory text to the 1563 edition, 'To the Persecutors of God's Truth, Commonly Called Papists', Foxe submitted 'O ye papistes geue me leaue by that name to call you'. These listeners were then compelled to embark on a very particular journey of remembrance, for they had to consider

the number almost out of number of so many, silly & symple lambes of Christ, whose bloud you haue sought and suckt, whose lyues you haue vexed, whose bodies you haue slayne, racked, and tormented, some also you haue cast on dunghils, to be deuoured by ffoules and Dogges wythout mercy, wythout measure. (Actes [1563], sig. B4v)

Whatever the difficulties that may surround his methodologies, his driven sense of interpretation, and his attitude to the writing of history for the more modern scholar, it is clear that Foxe found himself in no difficulties whatsoever in identifying the true villain of his exhaustive chronicles. In his painstaking engagement with the labours of earlier historians and the details of surviving documents, he showed himself determined to throw back on Catholics the familiar accusation levelled at reformists, who were thought by their enemies to have no past in which to anchor their faith: 'I aske here of the Romane Clergie, where was this Churche of theirs which now is, in the old auncient tyme of the primitiue Church of Rome, with this pompe and pride, with this riches and superfluitie, with this gloria mundi' (Actes, p. 3). Subsequently in the work, accounts of Catholic wrongdoings and papal malefactors are even seasoned with a reference to Pope Joan as 'a merry and comical spectacle' for the 'gentle reader' amongst 'a great number of lamentable and bloody tragedies':

for God hathe oftentymes by dyuerse manifest meanes deluded the crafte and subtiltie of the byshoppes and their vain hypocrisie. As for example in Joane of Mentz which being a woman & secretly dissimuling hyr kynd, ruled the bishopryke of Rome, but, by being deliuered of a childe before her tyme, euen in the myddest of open procession, she defyled that Sea, that the note or blot thereof wyl neuer be wyped out agayne. (Actes [1563], p. 621) (21)

Nevertheless, The Actes and Monuments not only constituted a very powerful form of cultural intervention by Foxe in an age of religious controversy, for it is clear that the author was also acutely aware that his production might have to fight for its position amidst other forms of textual consumption, even at the highest echelons of Tudor society:

In consideration whereof, me thinkes I haue good cause to wish, that lyke as other men, euen so the heroical wittes of Kinges and Princes, which for the most part are delited with heroicall stories, would carye about with them such monumentes of Martyrs as this is, and lay them alwaies in sight, not alonely to reade, but to follow, and would paint them vpon their walles, cuppes, ringes and gates. For undoubtedly these martyrs are much more worthy of this honor, then, 100 Alexanders, Hectors, Scipios, and warring Iulies. (Actes [1563], sig. B6r)

There was, however, one particular kind of reading matter from which Foxe wished to distinguish his work completely. As many studies have noted, Foxe's own memorializing volume has much in common with the Catholic hagiographies and religious narratives circulating during the opening decades of the sixteenth century. The most notable comparison appears to have been with the popular thirteenth-century martyrology translated into English and published by Caxton in 1483, the Legenda Aurea of Jacobus de Voragine. (22) Despite the particular textual emphasis in Voragine's Legenda on manifestations of miracles, revelations, and visions, Foxe was clearly very alert to the fact that his narrative might be perceived as harking back to such earlier forms of reading experience: 'I wish this history were "not" so true as it is, were really like their golden legend and their other lying stories. These miseries were inflicted by you, not feigned by me; we have more witness to them than we would choose.' (23) Many of the prevailing discourses of memory at work in the early modern period were often heavily influenced by Aristotelian thinking, which nourished the belief that material objects could absorb and sustain memories. Such thinking clearly had its analogues in aspects of Catholic worship and rituals of veneration and may indeed be seen to be reproduced to a certain extent in Foxe's production, whatever his protestations to the contrary. It may be all too plausible in the textual abundance of The Actes and Monuments that book (rather than relic) emerges as a conduit for the collective exercise of memory and spiritual reflection. (24)

However, it was possibly the fear of such conclusions that spurred Foxe on in his reformist zeal to differentiate his volume from Catholic hagiographies. Indeed, his narrators reveal themselves to be all too eager to insist that readers should refrain from any form of worship that relates to the heroic mortals described in the volume. When he turned to the Church Fathers, for example, Foxe was at pains to stress that,

though this cannot be denied, but that holy Cyprian and other blessed Martyrs were holy men, yet notwithstanding they were men: that is, such as might haue, & hath their falles and faultes, men I say & not aungels, nor gods, saved by God, not sauiours of men, nor patrons of grace. (Actes, p. 70)

Elsewhere, there is the notable example of the response to Bede's account of St Alban's miracles:

[...] of drying up the Riuer, as Alban went to the place of his execution: then of making a well-spring in the top of the hill, and of the falling out of the eyes of him that did behead him (with such other prodigious miracles mentioned in his story) because they seem more legendlike than truthlike: agayne, because I see no great profit, nor necessitie in the relation thereof, I leaue them to the free iudgement of the Reader, to thinke of them, as cause shall moue him. (Actes, p. 88)

Unsurprisingly, such accounts were dismissed by Foxe as 'Monkish miracles and grosse fables, wherewith these Abbey Monkes were wont in time past to deceaue the Church of God, and to beguile the whole world for their own aduantage' (Actes, p. 89). However, it is revealing that later in his descriptions of the Marian persecutors, Foxe clearly found himself in very great difficulties indeed in recording the visions of those such as the reformist Cutbert Symson: Some, I see, will not beleeue it, some will deride the same, some also will be offended with setting forth things of that sorte incertayne, esteeming all thinges to be incertayne and incredible, whatsoeuer is straunge from the common order of Nature [...] Agayne, neyther am I ignorant that the papistes, in their bookes and legendes of saintes, haue theyr prodigious visions and apparitions of Aungeles of our Lady: of Christ and other sayncts: which [...] I wil not admit to be beleeued for true [...] [I] reporte it as it hath bene heard of persons knowne, naming also the parties who were the hearers there of, leauing the iudgement there of, notwithstanding free vnto the arbitremente of the reader. (Actes, p. 2033) (25)

The very nature of his undertaking means that Foxe was often compelled to stress the exceptionalism and exemplarity of the individuals he treats, and consequently he often runs the risks of imitating earlier hagiographies rather closely, even if he does argue throughout that martyrdom relies solely on divine intervention rather than on any other agency. There are, for example, the prophetic dream visions of the martyr John Rough (1558), who wakes from his sleep with images that his deacon Symson is being led away by guards and that he himself is persecuted by the bishop (Actes, pp. 2031-32). We might also note that when Ridley and Latimer leave their final prison for the journey to the stake in Oxford in 1555, 'some plucked the pointes off [Ridley's] hose. Happy was he that might get any rag of hym' (Actes, p. 1769). In an earlier case of the arraignment and burning of one Joan Boughton (1494), Foxe recorded 'my author sayth, she was a Disciple of Wickliffe [...] The night following that she was burnt the most parte of her ashes were had awaye by suche as had a loue vnto the doctrine that she dyed for' (Actes, p. 731). (26) When taking into account the details of such narratives, David Daniell may emerge persuasive in his conclusion that 'in a crude sense, Foxe's colossal volumes are Protestant saints' lives with documentation'. (27)

In her treatment of religious culture in the earlier medieval period Catherine Cubitt has emphasized that 'both memory and the production of written texts are vital activities in the process of political change'; (28) and it is evident throughout The Actes and Monuments that the power to write and to remember are perceived as key resources at the disposal of the martyrs who wish to recover their powers of cultural intervention and to resist the cultural pressures at work that aim to shape their identities in terms of loss, denial, and submission. Foxe was eager to bring before his readers at every opportunity documentary proof from the prisoners themselves on the nature of their imprisonment and their willingness to remain faithful to their creed. At this point, in a more modern theoretical context, we may be reminded of Paul Ricour's ongoing enquiry into the slippery and illusory nature of the distinctions we choose to make between creativity and historiography:

A robust conviction animates historians. Whatever may be said about the selective aspect of the gathering, conserving, and consulting of documents, or about their relationship to the questions historians put to them, or even about the ideological implications of all those manoeuvres, the recourse to documents does indicate a dividing line between history and fiction. (29)

Nevertheless, Ricour concludes that 'to do history is to make something' (p. 150). Foxe is clearly animated by the 'robust conviction' that the proliferation of 'historical' data will render his narrative undertakings more substantial, and thus persuasive. At such moments he clearly shows himself wanting to bind martyr, author, and reader together by stressing how imperative it is to record for others (through text or memorial knowledge) the defining nature of their spiritual calling. I. Ross Bartlett makes the important point that Foxe, like many others, was clearly not content to restrict himself to the role of a compiler. He was much more interested in what his readers wanted and needed than in the troublesome quest for some abstract concept which modern historical studies might label as 'truth' divorced from the real life of his reader. (30)

Again and again, Foxe's reader is urged to view the faculty of memory in terms of responsibility, obligation, and vocation. In opposition to the martyrs, who are repeatedly shown to divest themselves and to be divested of temporal concerns, we are encouraged to possess and to cherish these memorial narratives of earthly endurance, and, indeed, to become the religious custodians of such texts and to continue the martyrs' commitment to spiritual witness and social reform. Richard Helgerson has pointed out that the martyrs 'perform as one on stage, providing both a testimony of their faith and a model for those who may be called to suffer in their turn'. (31) It is interesting in this context to note that Foxe himself appears to have had rather fixed ideas on the profile of his targeted market, and he asserted at one point that his implied readers should look to the martyrs as 'the true Conqueroures of the world, by whome we learne true manhoode' (Actes, sig. B6r).

More generally, the strategic emphasis on memory is extended further in Foxe's volume when textual voices and characters interact with each other to draw narrative attention to the cultural importance of commemoration. In his history of the Early Church, for example, Foxe exploits his source Eusebius for his arresting account of St Peter, who, 'seeing his wife going to her Martirdome (belike as he was yet hanging upon the crosse), was greatly ioyous & glad thereof. Who crying unto her with a loude voyce, and calling her by her name, bad her remember the Lorde Jesus'. (32) Thus, in The Actes and Monuments Foxe endeavours to convert cultural trauma into a corpus of spiritual knowledge, and it soon becomes apparent that the establishment of this 'collective memory', this fund of exemplary conduct, can be to no avail if it is greeted with spiritual lethargy by subsequent generations. Without an equally emphatic commitment to spiritual witness from his readers, Foxe's work would constitute little more than an extended lament. Indeed, in this instance we may wish to identify once again continuities with the Catholic cultural inheritance from the pre-Reformation period: for, as Catherine Cubitt has argued, in medieval culture 'saints were not [...] passive figures for remembrance [...] but active figures since, through their exemplary power, their actions and words informed the lives of others'. (33) Foxe's creative determination was clearly to 'rescue' or 're-create' an empowering body of narrative through which his society might secure a greater sense of religious direction. If, as some critics have argued, we are witnessing here the possibility of a shared communal identity being shaped with narratives of heroic individuals with whom the spiritual origins of this society belong, it is evident that we should not lose sight of the fact, as Ernest Renan famously declared, that acts of forgetting constitute 'a crucial factor in the creation of a nation'. (34) In turning to 'this my countrey Church of England', Foxe affirmed that 'there hathe beene no region or country more fertil or fruteful for martirs'. (35) Nonetheless, like every writer of history, Foxe placed carefully shaped lenses on the past, and his readers are only ever allowed a restricted viewing of the events he described. At certain points the historian-as-editor emerges clearly. When he chronicled the doings of Henry V, for example, he concluded that the subject of the monarch's

vertues, and great victories gotten in Fraunce, I haue not greatly to intermeddle: especially, seeing the memory of hys worthy prowesse, being sufficiently described in other writers in this our time, may both content the reader, and vnburden my labor herein. Especially, seeing these latter troubles and perturbations of the Churche offer me so much, that unneth any vacant laisure shall be left, to intermeddle wyth matters prophane. (Actes, p. 557) (36)

Elsewhere, this process is distinctly more covert. Whilst he repeatedly demonstrates his commitment to draw the narratives of martyrs from humbler origins into the public domain, Foxe was in no doubt that others would be displaced, or 'forgotten', in the process. One such figure earmarked for relegation was, it seems, Thomas Becket: 'If the cause make a Martyr (as is said) I see not why we should esteeme Thomas Becket to dye a martyr, more than any other whome the Prince's sword doth here temporally punish for their temporall desertes' (Actes, p. 205). In his Sermon of Christ Crucified (1570), Foxe had voiced a widely held sentiment amongst reformists facing Catholic persecution that there was a continuous theory of power extending from the divine patriarch to temporal princes: 'Briefly, if the wrath of a terrene king in thys earth, be death (as the wise king speaketh in the Scripture): what is it then to be under the wrath of the almighty king of all kinges, and God of all creatures.' (37) The role of the earthly ruler as potential protector for those whose beliefs brought them into conflict with the papacy was never underestimated by the reformists; and repeatedly The Actes and Monuments accuses malignant advisers and Catholic representatives of wrongdoings and deflects moral condemnation from the monarchs themselves. As a consequence, those who resist royal authority, like Becket and More, are frequently dislodged from their hitherto exalted positions of veneration and receive short shrift at the hands of the narrators. Indeed, as Andrew Escobedo has persuasively argued, 'Foxe, Dee, Spenser, and Milton are all torn, to a certain degree, between the etiological impulse to remember the past and the suspicion that the national present may require certain aspects of this past to be forgotten'. (38)

The presiding force of divine memory is an all-important factor in the cosmology that The Actes and Monuments affirmed. Its authority might prove terrifying and/or reassuring to the reformist mind, as Foxe stressed in his Sermon preached at the Christening of a certaine Iew (1578):

accordyng to Saint Paules aduertisement [...] wee shoulde duely, and with carefull consideration, exactly examine the seueritie of God: and not his seueritie onely, but his bountyfull goodnesse withall: That so through the often remembrance of the one, wee myght bee restrayned in a couenable feare, and through the dayly recordyng of the other, wee myght be raysed to thankefulnesse and duetyfull loue towardes God. (39)

Furthermore, in his earlier Sermon of Christ Crucified (1570) Foxe had argued energetically that for the true Christian,

God promiseth neuer to remember, not to impute our sinnes any more for Christes sake. Ieremy. 31. And hereof springeth the fountaine of perpetuall remission, promised in the viii. Chapter of the Prophet Zachary: where he sayth: In that day shall be open to the house of David, and to the dwellers of Ierusalem, a fountaine to the cleansing away of sinne, and monstrui. &c. (40)

Like many reformist writers of the age, Foxe summoned up a vision of history in which present experience found its echoes regularly in familiar narratives from the Old and New Testaments. Indeed, Foxe's willingness to acknowledge typological modes of interpretation in the analysis of the Bible was frequently extended to latter-day chronicles of the persecuted faithful: 'Thus the poore Christians (as ye see) like to the seely Israelites vnder the tyranny of Pharoa, were infested and oppressed in euery place, but especially heere in England' (Actes, p. 554). In this way, the biblical past becomes an interpretative lexicon for the present; and, as Sharon Achinstein has justly emphasized, 'whether reformers looked forward to a future of apocalyptic bloodshed or messianic peace, or glanced backward to a repudiated past of superstition and idolatry, time was a central coordinate to their world view. Stories of the Jews mattered in a construction of a reformed time-line'. (41)

Michael S. Pucci has proposed that 'it is a mark of [Foxe's] genius that he was able to treat history covering nearly 1600 years as if it were part and parcel of [the] personal memory of persecution'. (42) Such an experience of personal intimidation was still fresh, it seems, in his prefatory address 'To the Right Vertuous, Most Excellent and Noble Princesse Queene ELIZABETH'. Here, he recorded that 'no English Papist almost in all the Realme, thoght himselfe a perfect Catholike vnless he had cast out some word or other to geue that book a blow'; and he accused

these Catholike Phormiones [who] thinke now to dash out all good bookes, and amongst others also, the Monuments of Martyrs. Which godly Martyrs as they could not abide beyng aliue, so neither can they now suffer their memories to lyue after their death, least the acts of them beyng knowne, might bring perhaps their wicked acts and cruell murthers to detestation: and therfore spurne they so vehemently against this booke of histories, with all kind of contumelies and vprores, railing and wondering vpon it. (Actes, sig. [section]6r-v)

His work had clearly attracted a national, nay international, audience; and, as a consequence, his historical vision had become a vigorous site of contestation.

Perhaps of greater concern to the Elizabethan regime as one edition of The Actes and Monuments succeeded another was that this volume might also be raising a question of whether there remained a need for dynamic intervention in the present to resolve crises in the practice of the true faith. (43) Might not a text that nurtured all manner of creative reading strategies for the past form the basis for unwelcome scrutiny of the present? The Elizabethan authorities were never adequately to resolve the question, but in the later decades of the ageing queen's reign they clearly showed that they could be alert to the possibility of political critique lurking in texts for public consumption, even if the vigilance of the censors in question was of a rather erratic and often unpredictable nature. It is well known that history plays such as Sir Thomas More and Richard II, written for performance in the public playhouses, incurred the wrath of the Queen's Master of the Revels, Sir Edmund Tylney. In the field of more secular historiography, both the 1577 and 1587 editions of Holinshed's Chronicles attracted the attentions of the Privy Council and were heavily censured for daring to deal with events within living memory. Sir John Hayward was no safer with his Life and Reign of Henry IV (1599), with its inevitable account of the deposition of Richard II. The tome's dedication to the Earl of Essex was far from felicitous, and Hayward found himself thrown in the Tower until after the Earl's execution in 1601; and Samuel Daniel clearly fell foul of the Elizabethan authorities in the early years of the seventeenth century when his closet drama Philotas (performed in 1604) was considered to be a thinly veiled commentary on the Earl of Essex's rebellious activities. If The Actes and Monuments did not receive analogous treatment during its long gestation period, Foxe's narrators clearly left their readers in little doubt that the memorial journeyings into the past framed in The Actes and Monuments might all too often evolve into a kind of pilgrimage, a more subversive undertaking of nostalgia--in this case, for a more radical period of spiritual witness:

If kynges and Princes which haue wisely and vertuously gouerned, haue found in all ages writers to solemnise and celebrate their Actes and memory, such as neuer knew them nor were subiect vnto them, how much then are we Englishe men bound, not to forget our duetie to kyng Edward, a Prince although but tender in yeares, yet for hys sage and mature rypenes in wytte and all princely ornamentes, as I see but few to whom he may not be equall, so agayne I see not many, to whom he may not iustly be preferred. (Actes [1570], p. 1483)


University of Wales, Bangor

(1) The Use and Abuse of History, in Friedrich Nietzsche, The Complete Works of Friedrich Nietzsche, vol. 2, pt 2, ed. by Oscar Levy, trans. by Adrian Collins (Edinburgh and London: T. N. Foulis, 1909), p. 28.

(2) Jacques Le Goff, History and Memory (New York: Columbia University Press, 1992), pp. xi, xvii.

(3) Juan Luis Vives, An introduction to wysedome, made by Ludouicus Uives.Wherein is plentiful matter for al estates to gouerne the[m] selues by, to their synguler profytte and commodytye. Translated into Englyshe, by Richard Moryson (London, 1558), sig. C4r-v.

(4) Sir Thomas Elyot, The boke named the gouernour (London, 1531), iii, xxiv, sig. 243r-v.

(5) 'To the right honourable, the Lorde Robert Dudley, Maister of the Queenes Maiesties house, and knight of the most noble order of the Garter: Willyam Fulwood hartely wisheth long lyfe, with encrease of godlye honour and eternal felicitie', followed by 'The Translator to the Reader earnestlye desyreth grace, mercy, and peace'; see Guglielmo Gratarolo, The castel of memorie wherein is conteyned the restoring, augmenting, and conseruing of the memorye and remembraunce, with the safest remedies, and best preceptes therevnto in any wise apperteyning: made by Gulielmus Gratarolus Bergomatis Doctor of Artes and Phisike. Englished by Willyam Fulwood. The contentes whereof appeare in the page next folovvynge (London, 1562), sig. B4r.

(6) Opening of Chapter 19 of 'the First Booke'; see George Puttenham, The Arte of English Poesie (1589), ed. by Edward Arber (Westminster: Constable, 1895), p. 54.

(7) John Foxe, Pandectae locurum communium (London, 1572), sig. A3r.

(8) References to Actes and Monuments may hitherto appear in the text and notes abbreviated to Actes; unless otherwise indicated, the edition cited is that of 1583 (London).

(9) For these calculations I am indebted to the following studies: Warren W. Wooden, John Foxe (Boston: Twayne, 1983), pp. 20, 50; and Margaret Aston and Elizabeth Ingram, 'The Iconography of The Acts and Monuments', in John Foxe and the English Reformation, ed. by David Loades (Aldershot: Scolar Press, 1997), pp. 66-142 (pp. 79-80).

(10) John N. King, 'Religious Dissidence in Foxe's Book of Martyrs: Humanism or Heresy?', Religion and Literature, 32.2 (2000), 141-56 (p. 141).

(11) Although Patrick Collinson cautions that 'Eirwen Nicholson brings us to order by inviting us to compare the c. 135,000 copies of Allestree's Whole Duty of Man disseminated between 1660 and 1711, and she makes a very pertinent observation that the widespread dispersal of Acts and Monuments in seventeenth- and eighteenthcentury households has been assumed rather than demonstrated'; see Collinson, 'John Foxe and National Consciousness', p. 26.

(12) A Booke of certaine Canons, concernyng some parte of the discipline of the Church of England (London, 1571), sig. A3r. David Loades underlines that 'many parishes followed of their own volition [...] It was never a popular book in the sense of widespread ownership, because it was far too bulky, and far too expensive, for the average literate Englishman to buy'; see 'Introduction: John Foxe and the Editors', in John Foxe and the English Reformation, ed. Loades, pp. 1-11 (p. 4).

(13) William Harrison, 'The Description of Britaine', in Raphael Holinshed, The firste volume of the chronicles of England, Scotlande, and Irelande conteyning the description and chronicles of England, from the first inhabiting vnto the conquest: the description and chronicles of Scotland, from the first original of the Scottes nation till the yeare of our Lorde 1571: the description and chronicles of Yrelande, likewise from the first originall of that nation untill the yeare 1571 faithfully gathered and set forth by Raphaell Holinshed (London, 1577), sig. 85r.

(14) Foxe scholarship has also noted the importance of the works of Matthias Flacius of Illyria (such as the Catalogus testium veritatis) and the Magdeburg Centuries, which he edited. Also of particular influence on Foxe is the religio-historical writing of John Bale. For further reading see Wooden, John Foxe, esp. pp. 26 ff.; and V. Norskov Olsen, John Foxe and the Elizabethan Church (Los Angeles: University of California Press, 1973), esp. pp. 20 ff.

(15) John N. King, 'Fiction and Fact in Foxe's Book of Martyrs', in John Foxe and the English Reformation, ed. Loades, pp. 12-35 (p. 12).

(16) In her analysis of The Actes and Monuments Deborah Anne Meister stresses that 'the supremacy of the conscience creates a space, not for rebellion, but for resistance through self-sacrifice (as in Eusebius) and through law. Thus, the Protestants who refused to comply with Mary's religious decrees attain the status, not of rebellious subjects, but of champions of Christian belief and English liberty'; see Meister, The Burning Bush: Tudor Martyrs and the Construction of Subjectivity in the English Renaissance (unpublished doctoral thesis, University of California, Los Angeles, 1999), p. 70.

(17) See Sharon Achinstein, 'John Foxe and the Jews', Renaissance Quarterly, 54.1 (2001), pp. 86-120 (p. 87); and Richard Helgerson, Forms of Nationhood: The Elizabethan Writing of England (Chicago and London: University of Chicago Press, 1992), p. 253. See also, for example, Colin Burrow, 'The Sixteenth Century', in The Cambridge Companion to English Literature, 1500-1600, ed. by Arthur F. Kinney (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2000), pp. 11-28 (p. 18); and the discussion of Isabelle Fernandes: 'Il joua [...] un role capital dans la maturation d'un esprit protestant outre-Manche', in 'Les Representations du martyr dans The Acts and Monuments de John Foxe, ou la tentation theatrale', Revue des Sciences Humaines, 269 (2003), 135-51 (p. 135). Patrick Collinson stresses that 'for a certain class of seventeenth-century reader, Foxe was much more than a popular and, indeed, standard author. He was read formally, systematically and, in the language of the time, "thoroughly", as men read Scripture'; see Collinson, 'Truth and Legend: The Veracity of John Foxe's Book of Martyrs', in Clio's Mirror: Historiography in Britain and the Netherlands, ed. by A. C. Duke and C. A. Tamse (Zutphen: De Walburg, 1985), pp. 31-54 (p. 31).

(18) See also: 'when he was apprehended and committed by Queen Mary to the Tower, he ought no man livying a peny that coulde or would demaunde any duty of him, but satisfied euery man to the vttermost: where els no small summes of money were owyng to hym of diuers persons, which by breakyng their billes & obligations he freely forgaue and suppressed before his attainder: In so much that when he perceived the fatall end of kyng Edward should worke to him no good successe touchyng his body and goodes, he incontinenly called for his Officers, his Steward & other, commaundyng them in any wise to pay where any peny was owyng, which was out of hand dispatched. And then he sayd: Now I thanke God I am myne owne man & in conscience with Gods helpe hable els to aunswere all the world and worldly aduersities, which some men supposeth he might also haue avoided if he would have bene counselled by some of hys frendes' (Actes [1570], p. 2038).

(19) Helen C. White makes the telling point that Foxe often celebrates the martyrs in ways recalling 'the traditional grounds for honoring the martyrs, but, also, the Renaissance love of praising famous men and the Aristotelian faith in the moral value of contemplating the fates of tragic heroes'; see White, Tudor Books of Saints and Martyrs (Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 1963), p. 139.

(20) R. Malcolm Smuts, Culture and Power in England, 1585-1685 (London: Macmillan, 1999), p. 41.

(21) Given the context of his profound outrage at the papacy as an ungodly foreign force polluting the spiritual development of Christendom, Foxe is found, unsurprisingly, to insist that in the doings of the Inquisition 'all is done in hugger-mugger, & in close corners, by ambages, by couert waies, and secret counselles. The accuser secret, the crime secret, the witness secret: whatsoeuer is done, is secret, neither is the poore Prisoner euer advertised of any thing' (Actes, p. 931).

(22) Helen C. White stresses that 'when the invention of printing came to make books cheaper and so more easily available to the reading public, the Legenda Aurea led even the Bible in number of imprints, one hundred and fifty-six as against one hundred and twenty-eight for the fifteenth century'; see White, Tudor Books of Saints and Martyrs, p. 26. The last recorded publication of the Golden Legend was by Wynkyn de Worde in August 1527.

(23) Prefatory address 'Ad doctum lectorem' from Actes and Monuments (1563), trans. in Tom Betteridge, 'From Prophetic to Apocalyptic: John Foxe and the Writing of History', in John Foxe and the English Reformation, ed. Loades, pp. 210-32 (p. 210). Indeed, John N. King notes that 'except for a brief interval under Henry VIII, the only vernacular form in which English laymen could approach the Bible prior to Edward VI's reign was Caxton's translation of Jacobus de Voragine's The Golden Legend. This collection of saints' lives occupied a place in late medieval lay devotion similar to that which the Bible had held in the early Christian period'; see King, English Reformation Literature: The Tudor Origins of the Protestant Tradition (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press), p. 38. For further evidence of Foxean debunking of the Legenda Aurea in The Actes and Monuments, see Foxe's record of Edward VI's supposedly derisive response to the legend of St George (Actes, p. 1395).

(24) For further discussion see Adrian Forty, 'Introduction', in The Art of Forgetting, ed. by Forty and Susanne Kochler (Oxford: Berg, 1999), pp. 1-18; and C. Nadia Seremetakis, The Senses Still: Perception and Memory as Material Culture in Modernity (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1994).

(25) White is surely right to argue that in such cases 'Foxe seems a little reluctant to surrender the miracle, sometimes possibly because his competitive spirit is much too strong for him to resist any chance of vindicating his beliefs in any area'; see Tudor Books of Saints and Martyrs, p. 164.

(26) See also the account of Ridley in which 'euery holy day and Sonday he lightly preached in some one place or other, except he wer otherwise letted by weighty affayres and busines: to whose sermons the people resorted, swarming about him like bees, and coveting the sweete flowers and wholesome ioyce of the fruitfull doctrine, whiche he did not onely preach, but shewed the same by his life, as a glittering lanterne to the eyes and sences of the blinde, in such pure order and chastity of life (declining from euil desires and concupiscences) that euen his very enemies could not reproue him in anye one jot thereof ' (Actes, p. 1717).

(27) David Daniell, 'Tyndale and Foxe', in John Foxe: An Historical Perspective, ed. by David Loades (Aldershot: Ashgate, 1999), pp. 15-28 (p. 24). However, the affinities between The Actes and Monuments and narratives inherited from medieval Catholic writers should not unduly circumscribe the literary considerations of the work. Taking into account the breadth of this huge compendium of genealogies, national histories, biographies, letters, witness statements, sermons, interrogation records, and so on,Warren W.Wooden has pointed out, 'as an anatomy, Foxe's book includes a medley of literary forms, in prose and verse, ranging from sermons, tracts, and epistles to doggerel rimes, self-contained stories of romantic adventure [...] Thus, generically The Acts and Monuments may be considered not only as a history, martyrology, Protestant encyclopedia, and anatomy of persecution, but also as a Renaissance courtesy book teaching proper conduct. It differs from such popular examples of Renaissance conduct manuals as Castiglione's Book of the Courtier or Peacham's Compleat Gentleman in its focus not only on how to live well according to at approved code of behaviour but how to die well so as to authenticate the faith that has guided an individual's life'; see Wooden, John Foxe, pp. 42-43. See also the persuasive case for the influence of medieval romance forms on Foxe made by D. R. Woolf in 'The Rhetoric of Martyrdom: Generic Contradictions and Narrative Strategy in John Foxe's Acts and Monuments', in The Rhetorics of Life-Writing in Early Modern Europe, ed. by Thomas F. Mayer and Woolf (Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1995), pp. 243-82.

(28) Catherine Cubitt, 'Memory and Narrative in the Cult of Early Anglo-Saxon Saints', in The Uses of the Past in the Early Middle Ages, ed. by Yitzhak Hen and Matthew Innes (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2000), pp. 29-66 (p. 30).

(29) Paul Ricour, Time and Narrative, vol. 3, trans. by Kathleen Blamey and David Pellauer (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1988), p. 142.

(30) I. Ross Bartlett, 'John Foxe as Hagiographer: The Question Revisited', Sixteenth Century Journal, 27.4 (1995), 771-89 (p. 773).

(31) Helgerson, Forms of Nationhood, p. 269. For further discussion of the performative in The Actes and Monuments see Fernandes, 'Les Representations du martyr'.

(32) John Foxe, The first [& second] volume of the ecclesiasticall history contaynyng the actes, and monumentes of thynges passed in every kynges tyme (London, 1570), pp. 54-55. Interestingly, Foxe the Protestant is keen to underline in a postscript, 'such was then (sayeth Eusebius) the blessed bonde of mariage among the Saintes of God' (p. 55).

(33) Cubitt, 'Memory and Narrative', p. 34.

(34) Ernest Renan, 'What is a Nation?' (1882), trans. by Martin Thom in Nation and Narration, ed. by Homi K. Bhabha (New York: Routledge, 1990), pp. 8-22 (p. 11). And more recently than Renan, Pierre Nora has argued equally energetically that 'la memoire [...] ne s'oppose pas ... l'oubli'; see Nora, Les Lieux de memoire, i: Republique (Paris: Gallimard, 1984), p. viii. However, whereas nineteenth-century thinkers such as Nietzsche bemoaned the weight of 'the excess of history', at the end of the twentieth century Nora confides to his reader, 'On ne parle tant de memoire que parce qu'il n'y a plus'; see Nietzsche, The Use and Abuse of History, p. 38, and Nora, Les Lieux de memoire, p. xvii. See also discussion of Foxean formulations of the English nation in David Loades, 'Literature and National Identity', in The Cambridge History of Early Modern English Literature, ed. by David Loewenstein and Janel Mueller (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2002), pp. 201-28, esp. pp. 227-28; and Claire McEachern, The Poetics of English Nationhood, 1590-1612 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996), esp. pp. 30 ff.

(35) See, respectively, Foxe, Actes (1570), sig. Fiiv; Actes (1563), p. 347.

(36) V. Norskov Olsen emphasizes that 'for Foxe the past was not a dead past, for to him history was salvation history proclaiming how temporal events through God's lordship led to faith in Jesus Christ. The past was filled not only with events but with characters from which the lesson and principle of election should be learned'; see Olsen, John Foxe and the Elizabethan Church, p. 52.

(37) A Sermon of Christ Crucified, in John Foxe, The English Sermons of John Foxe (New York: Scholars' Facsimiles and Reprints, 1978), sig. C4v.

(38) Andrew Escobedo, Nationalism and Historical Loss in Renaissance England: Foxe, Dee, Spenser, Milton (Ithaca, NY, and London: Cornell University Press, 2004), p. 5.

(39) A Sermon preached at the Christening of a certaine Iew, at London, by Iohn Foxe ... Imprinted at London, by Christopher Barker, ... 1578, in Foxe, English Sermons, sig. M4r-v.

(40) A Sermon of Christ Crucified, sig. D4r-v.

(41) Achinstein, 'John Foxe and the Jews', p. 99.

(42) Michael S. Pucci, 'Reforming Roman Emperors: John Foxe's Characterization of Constantine in the Acts and Monuments', in John Foxe: An Historical Perspective, ed. Loades, pp. 29-51 (p. 33).

(43) Patrick Collinson emphasizes the disenchantment of many radical Elizabethan Protestants by the 1570s 'in a country still menaced from within and without by resurgent Catholicism, and by no means safe in the hands of a Queen whose own religious commitment appeared to be lukewarm'; see Collinson, 'Literature and the Church', in Cambridge History of Early Modern Literature, ed. Loewenstein and Mueller, pp. 374-98 (p. 383).
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