The titlepage is surrounded by a border containing framed vignettes. In the top two corners lions are jumping towards a single seal which is centered at the top of the page. Surrounding this seal are the French words “Honi Soit Qui Mal y Pense”, &c. The right and left sides of the page have columns with two figures each, depicting biblical scenes. From top left and moving clockwise around the page, they show a woman kneeling with arms stretched toward the sun with the caption “Genesis III”, an angel approaching a kneeling figure from behind with the caption “Lucke I”, a crowd of people surrounded by grass or flames with the caption “Mathewe XXV”, and A crowd of people being blessed by a crowned Christ with the caption “S. Mathewe XXV”. In the bottom center is a figure of a woman with candles and book; by the candles is the word “Watch”, by the book is the word “Praye”, and by her head is written “Take Heede”. Surrounding the picture is a biblical quotation: “Hir Lamps of Love are Coles of Fire and A Verye Vehement Flame of the Lorde.”INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to wwp@neu.edu that regMe is unmatched.Canti. VIII Chap.

“Honi Soit Qvi Mal Y Pense”

INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to wwp@neu.edu that regMe is unmatched.Genesis III chap

INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to wwp@neu.edu that regMe is unmatched.Lucke 1 Chap.

INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to wwp@neu.edu that regMe is unmatched.Mathewe XXV

INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to wwp@neu.edu that regMe is unmatched.S. Mathewe XXV

“Hir Lamps of Love Are Coles of Fire and a Verye Vehement Flame of the Lorde.” Canti. VIII Chap. INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to wwp@neu.edu that regMe is unmatched.Canti VIII chap

Take Heede



Monument of

conteining seven severall Lamps
of Virginitie, or distinct treatises;
whereof the first five concerne praier
and meditation: the other two last, precepts
and examples, as the woorthie works
partlie of men, partlie of women; compiled for the
necessarie use of both sexes out of the sacred
Scriptures, and other approoved authors, by
Thomas Bentley of
Graies Inne Student.

INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to wwp@neu.edu that regMe is unmatched.Luke. 12, 35.

Let your loines be girt about, and your
lampes burne cleerelie.

INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to wwp@neu.edu that regMe is unmatched.2. Tim. 2, 19.

Let everie one that calleth upon the
name of the Lord depart
from iniquitie.

Printed by H. Denham

The dropped initial capital A is actually a figure, the large A flanked by two young cupids. Between the legs of the capital A are the letters E and R. Beneath the letter is a label which reads “Semper Eadem”


“Semper Eadem”

Almightie God and most merciful Father, who in
mercie hast ordeined these lamps for damaged chosen virgins,
and commanded that with our loines girt about, and our
lamps burning bright, we should take heed and be readie
to execute the charge, which is committed unto us, and
watch full warilie and continuallie in our several callings
by fervent and instant praier for the comming of thy
sonne our spiritual Spouse, sovereigne Lord, and sweet
Saviour Jesus: giving us in the meane season diverse gifts
and talents to occupie and imploie till he come; and setting
dailie before our eies the just judgement, that he shall
execute and give in that dreardull daie of his sudden comming,
both upon the quicke and dead; doo thou vouchsafe
even thine owne selfe (we praie thee) to gird and compasse
our loines about, that no iniquitie have power over
us, nor we decline or bow to anie sinne. Oh suffer us not to take that contentation or vaine delight
and pleasure of anie thing in this wretched world, that may lull or bring us fast asleepe in
the cursed cradle of senselesse securitie: nor with the foolish virgins to neglect the houre and
daie of our last visitation, or to forget to wait and attend for thine appearing in the clouds. But
so direct us (we beseech thee) in this short race of our perilous pilgrimage by thy holie spirit.
our heavenlie loadesman, that in the lawfull use of thy good gifts whatsoever bestowed upon
us, our cheefest care may alwaies be to depart from all iniquitie, and how with them wee may
live soberlie to our selves, holilie to thee, and uprightlie to the world, and thereby gaine much
profit and fruit to the better increase of thy kingdome.

Moreover, make thou our lampes to burne cleere and bright in the sight of men and Angels;
and keepe thou them light and ever burning: that our love towards thee wax never key cold,
nor our charitie towards our neighbour be quite extinguished, nor yet our faith, devotion,
zeale, and gifts of the spirit be utterlie quenched in us. But being evermore both within and
without kindled, inlightened, and inflamed by thee, which art a consuming fire, and a purifieng
flame of unspeakable fervent heate: let all our thoughts, words, and works be alwaies directed
to doo thy holie will and righteous judgements, that in all our works begun, continued, and ended
in thee, we may ever glorifie thy holie and reverent name.

Finallie, make us verie carefullie to keepe this castle of our soules and temple of the holie
Ghost (our bodies I meane) pure, holie, and undefiled: and to watch continuallie in all maner
of well dooing unto the end: that when thy Sonne our heavenlie bridegroome shall come to
judge the world, to condemne the wicked, to reject the reprobate, to cast awaie the unprofitable,
and to shut the gates of heaven against all unbeleevers and retchlesse virgins; he finding us
heedfull, watchfull, praieng, well occupied and readie, as those that have beene verie well content
with our estates here for the time, and having our lamps filled brim full of the oile of his
righteousnesse, grace, mercie, and merits, may (thereby onelie) escape the heavie judgement
and direfull doome of the dreadfull daie: and not perish in that common destruction and generall
desolation of the wicked worldlings, and unprofitable servants; but be received to himselfe
as those that are made woorthie onelie by him, joifullie to enter with him and all the elect and
chosen wise virgins, into the celestiall wedding chamber of thine eternall kingdome: there and
then to possesse that mansion place, which before all worlds thou hast prepared for thy chosen,
and to receive (of his gift) that which here now with deepe sighes and groanes we greatlie long
for: that is, even the salvation of our soulse, and the coronation of thy gifts in us: that
both with thee (o Father) and with him thy Sonne, in the unitie of the holie
Ghost, we may live and reigne in the full perfection, holinesse and
puritie of his everlasting virginitie, to blesse, praise, and
glorifie thee, o glorious and blessed Trinitie,
with all virgins, angels, and creatures,
by all ages, throughout
all eternitie, Amen:


To the most vertuous Ladie and Christian Princesse,
Queene Elizabeth, grace and peace
from God the Father through Christ
our Saviour.

This large T is actually within a framed figure depicting a man in a ship in a sea near a cliff. Neptune rides a sea creature, stars are in the sky, a personified cloud blows wind into the sails, and the moon (personified) is full, with a crescent shape etched in on the left.

The King of eternall glorie,
who hath thus loved England
in setting your Highnesse
on the throne of his majestie
to execute justice and judgement,
to instruct his people in
Jacob, and to feed his inheritance
in Israel, be blessed and
magnified therefore for ever
and ever, Amen.

This long and blessed peace
wherin we your loiall subjects
doo presentlie live (most noble
Queene) everie man
sitting under his vine and fig-
tree throughout all your dominions,
dooth give just occasion
to the godlie to bee no
lesse thankfull to God, and to your Majestie, than free harted and studious to
benefit his church and their countrie, by offering in the temple, some gold, some
silver, some one thing, some another, according to the measure of those graces,
which god the giver of all good things hath bestowed upon them, or by his spirit
hath incouraged & made them willing to further the worke of the Lord. Which
mooved me also among the rest (although of all other the meanest, & in everie
respect the unwoorthiest) to offer some thing, wherin I might bring profit to that
mysticall bodie, wherof I trust I am a member. And persuading my selfe, I could
not better employ my labour to the good of the church, nor present your Highnesse
the mightie defender thereof, with anie thing of greater price and estimation
in this world, than (after a sort) with that wherewith God the King of kings
acknowledgeth himselfe to be so highlie pleased and glorified both of Prince
and people (praise and invocation I meane) whereby in this life we obteine at
his hand all things needfull for our bodies, and in the life to come everlasting
joie, rest, and comfort both of bodie and soule: I have undertaken in the name
and feare of God, love of his church, obedience of your Majestie, and hartie good A2v damaged
good will of my countrie, oudamaged monuments of your owne Honourable
works, and some odamaged, famous Ladies, and vertuous
Gentlewomen of our timdamageds, to addresse and make readie these
seven Lamps of your perpetuall virginitie, to remaine unto women as one entire
and goodlie monument of praier, precepts, and examples meet for meditation,
instruction, and imitation to all posteritie. And now in most dutifull maner
commending and appropriating so divine exercises of the church, unto your
Majestie the most naturall mother and noble nursse thereof; the cause of a virgine
to a Virgine, the works of Queenes to a Queene; your owne praiers to
your selfe (to whom indeed the particular interest and due praise and honour
therof justlie belongeth) I here prostrate on my knees, in most humble maner
meekelie beseech your excellent Majestie, gratiouslie of your woonted clemencie,
to pardon and forgive this my too rash and bold enterprise; attempted both
with bashfulnesse, feare, and trembling: and favourablie (as in like cases you
are accustomed) to accept these your liege subject his great labors and painfull
travels in good part, which he (not to instruct your Highnesse (of whose notable
learning I am not able to speake) but onelie for a monument of the hartie love
he beareth both to the church his deere mother, and to your Majestie his dread
Sovereigne) hath in a godlie zeale and conscience, bestowed to the good and
profit of his countrie. That (by your Graces good liking and princelie approbation)
they may be both patronized against the wicked, and practised of the godlie.
And so manie (by that means) with due reverence and great honour to so honourable
works, may receive these lamps as from your bountifull hand to inlighten
them by your good industrie in all vertue: and to prepare them by your
holie example, like wise virgins to perseverance in all good works of the spirit.
And that therein manie may often looke and labour mightilie for your Highnesse
as they are bound, in fervent praier; and manie mo thanks, I saie, be given
of manie faithfull harts on your Majesties behalfe for the benefit of such and so
manie needfull and readie helps, ministred and afoorded by your painfull hand
and princelie affabilitie to your everlasting comfort and renowme, the praise of
God, and glorie of his deerest sonne Jesus Christ your sweet spouse. Whom now
for a conclusion as I began, I most entirelie beseech, that as of his owne good
will he first loved his church my deere mother, and gave himselfe freelie for
hir to sanctifie and clense hir in the most holie fountaine of water, through the
word to make hir unto himselfe a beautifull virgine, and glorious spouse without
spot or wrinkle, that she should be holie, pure, perfect, and without blame
before him: so he will vouchsafe in like mercie, still both to cherish, defend, and
maintaine the same in his continuall grace, religion, and holinesse, that she may
yet bring foorth more fruit in hir age, and members, to his glorie: and also as
your spirituall spouse to set your Majestie (a most woorthie and mightie governor
of the same) ever as a seale upon his hart, to tie you fast as a signet or bracelet
upon his arme, to beare you still in his owne bosome, to set his eie over you
continuallie for your health, wealth, and prosperitie, to bend his desires alwaies
toward you, to doo you good; that so your Highnesse may be kept in his
continuall grace, peace, and favour long to reigne over us: and also defended
and preserved evermore from all bodilie and ghostlie perils and enimies, to
your everlasting comfort, and the rejoice of all christian harts. Finallie, the
Lord blesse your Majestie even out of Sion with all his heavenlie gifts and spirituall
graces, that having the principall & heroicall spirit of your holie father good A3r
good king David, doubled (yeadamaged in your ndamaged
may as in numbers of yeeres bedamaged
nes far surmount & excell youdamaged progdamaged
of you our good Josias, may to all posterities be likedamaged
pretious perfume of the Apothecarie, and as sweetdamaged oniedamaged
as harmonicall musicke at a banket of wine; that in you our zealous Hezechias,
I saie, we may still remaine in happie peace, and have an hiding place from the
wind, and a refuge from storms and tempests, and rivers of waters to quench
our thirst, and temperate shadowes to shrowd us from parching heate in a drie
land: so shall the harts of manie thousand virgins in England and else-where,
be joifull and thankfull to God and your Majestie; so shall the daughters of Jerusalem
sing joifullie the sweet songs of Sion in their owne land, with great triumph
to their celestial King, reigning on high over all; yea so shal all your faithfull
and loving subjects, I saie, in all humble obedience and dutifull service
both towards God, your Majestie, and their countrie, resound by all
possible meanes to all posterities your most excellent and
woorthie praises, untill the comming of our Lord
and Saviour Jesus Christ: to whom with
the Father and the holie Ghost be
all empire, honor, dominion
and praise, now and
for ever, Amen.

Your Majesties humble, faithfull
and obedient subject,

Thomas Bentley.


damagedmpas Virginitatis

damagedssima, lampas:

damagedgressus dirigat illa tuos,

Siquæris librum cur lampada virginis istum

Inscribam: causas dico fuisse duas.

Vna est, quòd talem præfert ecclesia lucem,

Expectans sponsum virgo pudica suum.

Altera, quòod manibus virgo reginea librum

Sumit, cui veræ lampadis instar erit,

Dum Domino litat, & sacris indicit honorem,

Nuncupat & Christo vota secunda suo.

Anna sibi lucem, sibi Debora prætulit istam:

Inq suis Princeps Elizabetha malis.

Sic didicit lenire suas, sic fallere curas,

Præsentémq; sui poscere regis opem;

Quem non plena sacris placant altaria donis,

Non oblatorum corpora cæsa boum:

Ille Deus, Deus ille humili libamine vocum

Iræ deponit iusta flagella suæ.

Illecebras carnis vincunt mundíq; furores,

Et sathanæ faciunt fulmen inane preces.

Afflictis illæ præstant solatia rebus,

Illis cælestes effodiuntur opes.

Hoc oleo plenam Domino qui lampada præbet,

Ille sacrificio nobiliore litat.


To the Christian Reader, grace and
truth in Christ.

Having my selfe taken no small comfort (good Christian
Reader) by the reading and perusing of divers
verie godlie, learned, and divine treatises, of meditations
and praier, made by sunrie right famous
Queenes, noble Ladies, vertuous Virgins, and godlie
Gentlewomen of al ages (who to shew themselves
woorthie paternes of all pietie, godlinesse, and religion
to their sex, and for the common benefit of their
countrie, have not cesed, and that with all carefull
industrie and earnest indevour, most painfullie and
diligentlie in great fervencie of the spirit, and zeale of
the truth, even from their tender & maidenlie yeeres,
to spend their time, their wits, their substance, and also their bodies, in the studies
of noble and approoved sciences, and in compiling and translating of sundrie most
Christian and godlie bookes: a tast whereof you have here in the second Lampe)
as namelie among the rest, the godlie and learned treatise called The lamentation of a
, written long since by the vertuous Ladie Queene Katherin, which for the excellencie
thereof was first published in print by Sir William Cicill, now the
right honourable Lord Treasurer of England, as by his verie godlie, learned,
and eloquent Epistle thereunto prefixed, and here also in this edition now inserted,
to Gods glorie, and his high commendation doth and may appeere: but especiallie
and above all, the most divine, learned, and godlie treatise intituled The
Queenes meditation
, written first in French by the vertuous Ladie Margaret Queene
of Navar
, and after verie exactlie and faithfullie translated by our most gratious
sovereigne, and learned Ladie Queene Elizabeth, who among manie Queens,
virgins, and women, through the feare of the Lord hath doone verie vertuouslie,
and gotten thereby great renowme. And thereupon considering with my selfe
what great profit, and singular pleasure might thereby come also to other of like
mind to my selfe, if the same their excellent and rare works (dispersed into severall
pamphlets, and in part some thing obscured and worne cleane out of print, and so
out of practise) were by some painefull hand collected togither, and revived, or
brought againe to their former good and godlie use in the church: mee thought I
could not better spend my time, nor emploie my talent, either for the renowme of
such heroicall authors and woorthie women, or for the universall commoditie of
all good christians: than in, and by some apt treatise or collection, to reduce these
their maniford works into one entire volume, and by that meanes, for to register
their so rare and excellent monuments, of good record, as perfect presidents of
true pietie and godlinesse in woman kind to all posteritie. Whereupon, God working
in me both the will and consent, I undertooke the same in his feare: which
when after a sort I had doone, and perceived that there wanted yet manie things
to make the same an absolute and perfect booke for the simpler sort of women, according
to my mind: to satisfie my selfe further in this my purposed collection, I
fell to the perusing of the holie Bible, and manie other good bookes as well of
praier, as of other divine matter, such as from time to time have beene penned by
divers godlie learned men: out of the which (that I might now particularlie applie
that unto them, women I meane, which generallie heretofore was written
of them, or by some other for them, as also to the intent that all godlie and devout
women readers might have in some measure, wherewith to exercise their faith, to
stir up their devotion, and to satisfie their godlie desires: and also verie readilie
find without tediousnesse, or distraction of the mind vertuouslie inclined, whatsoeverB.1. uer B1v
damaged either by praier aske, by meditation damaged, by precepts learne, or
damagedunitare, or avoid to damaged edification) I indeavoured for their
damagedall possible damagedto cull and bring out of the rich store and treasurie
damagedprootted damagednie learned men, things both old and new concerning
damaged for private and publike use, adding thereunto such plentie of
damagedand spirituall helpes, both for profit and pleasure, as the diversities of so
divine matter, and varietie of so honourable inventions would affoord. Besides,
to avoid confusion and disorder (a thing verie prejudiciall to so holie an exercise) I
have carefullie digested the same into such a plaine, easie, familiar, and certeine
method, order, and direction, both for matter and maner, as I could possiblie devise.,
or was requisite for such a worke, to make it profitable to the simple and unlearned
reader. Lastlie, bicause the diversitie of matter forced a distinction of the treati7 obscured obscured
ses, I fitly, as I could, have divided and contrived the whole booke into seven severall
parts or Lampes: all which for divers good and approoved considerations I
terme or intitle by this generall name, The Monument of Matrones.
And now make bold, yet under the deliberate view, and carefull correction of
manie verie grave, wise, learned, and godlie Divines, thereunto appointed by authoritie:
as also with the approbation and allowance of the right reverend father
in God my Lord the bishop of London, to publish the same abroad in print, as a
booke, in the judgement of them that are learned, not unprofitable to the church:
but verie necessarie, and in some respect, more proper and peculiar for the private
use of women, than hertofore hath beene set out by anie. Which I have doone not
for that there lacked praier bookes sufficient for women to read, but onelie to increase
the plentie of heavenlie comforts, wherewith this our church and realme
of England (thanks be to God) floweth: as also to make this treatise heretofore
(in part) private to my selfe, and a few of my freends, now publike and common also
to you good christian readers. For behold (I protest) I have not laboured for my
selfe, but for you, and all them that seeke knowledge, feare God, be devout, and
would (not by fits and starts, as those that can find scarse anie leisare to attend upon
the Lord and his service as they ought: but) daie and night continuallie and
incessantlie, either silentlie in hart with Hanna, or openlie in mouth with Marie,
as they are bound, spend their whole life, and make it their whole worke to
praie, meditate, and read Gods word with other such good bookes, or at the least
to allow to themselves some little portion or part of the daie and night, to prostrate
themselves apart from all companie in praier and meditation before the
Lord of heaven and earth their creator, redeemer, and saviour, and that in all christian
perfection, and humble obedience to his word and commandements. So have
you good reader, by the goodnesse of God, who worketh all our works for us, here
now at the length in this Monument or collection conteined (if you list so for distinction
or names sake to call or intitle them) not onelie a burning Lampe for virgins,
but also a christiall Mirrour for Matrones: as also a delectable Diall for to direct
you to true devotion, with a perfect President or register of holie praier for all
women generally to have recourse unto as to their homelie or domestical librarie.

First, a Lampe, readie replenished and prepared of the wise virgins, with that
fragrant oile, pretious perfume, and odoriferous incense of holie invocation, pure
praier, divine sacrifice, and heavenlie worship, wherewith God is so highlie pleased,
and whereby at his holie hand the virgine or single woman, through the intercession
of Christ, obteineth the gift of puritie, modestie, shamefastnesse, and chastitie:
the deflowred woman findeth grace to repent, and to be restored to favour both
with God and men: the naturall or stepdaughter to reverence and obeie hir parents
in all childlike duties: the wooed woman not to be by anie meanes cosined
or abused in marriage: the yoong married wife to consecrate hir selfe to live holilie
in that honourable estate: the elder married woman, to live lovinglie, faithfullie,
and quietlie with hir husband: the woman with child, to escape the pit of
so great perils, and to be thankfull for hir mightie deliverance after childbirth:
the midwife, and women assistants, dutifullie and diligentlie to aid, comfort,
and cherish the travelling woman: the mother carefullie to bring up hir children:
the daughter naturallie to cherish and obeie hir mother: the mother in
lawe, to live charitablie and lovinglie with the daughter in lawe: againe, the
daughter in lawe to behave hir selfe christianlie and curteouslie to the mother in lawe: B2r
lawe: the dame or mistresse, to intreate hir handmaids well: the handmaids to
shew all dutifull and faithfull service to their mistresse: the widowe, to comfort hir
selfe in all sorrowes: the old woman to number hir daies, that she may applie hir
hart unto wisedome: both yoong and old, one and other to consider their creation,
condition, vocation, and salvation, the better to live to learne, to learne to live, and
to live to die. To conclude, a Lampe (I saie) for all estates and degrees of women
generallie, to carrie ever in their hands and hart by the burning light and flaming
fire of the reading whereof, their faith, knowledge, zeale, devotion, perseverance in
praier, almes deeds, fasting, with the love of God and their brethren, the desire of
verture, and all maner of godlinesse shall be thoroughlie kindled and increased in
them, so oft as they wax cold, heavie, drowsie, slouthfull, dull, negligent, and remisse,
by too much bodilie ease, worldlie prosperitie, vaine pleasures, pomps, and delights
of this wretched life: and they at all times made readie, like wise and prudent
virgins, to meet the bridegroome whensoever he commeth, to be received of
him, and to enter with him joifullie into the celestiall wedding chamber of his
eternall happinesse, there to glorifie and praise him for ever and ever.

Secondlie, a Mirrour for all sorts of wicked women, as in a cleere glasse with
Athalia, Jezabell, Herodias, and such like, perfectlie to see their shamelesse pride,
crueltie, idolatrie, and contempt of religion, with Putiphers wife, to behold their
incontinencie and infidelitie towards their husbands: with Appam their shamelesse
impudencie: with Cozbi, their manifest whoordome and adulterie: with the
witch of Endor, their abhominable sorceries: with Queene Vashthy their disobedience
ence to their sovereigne: with Bethshemah and Judith their rebellious stubbornesse
to their loving parents in lawe: with Hagar their contempt of their mistresse:
with Miriam their murmuring against their onelie brother: with Heva their subtiltie and covetousnes to beguile their husbands: with Zipporah, Michol,
Jobs wife, old Anna, Tobit, &c. their unsemelie upbraidings and bitter taunting,
or chiding of their godlie husbands, &c. least that for their great impietie and
ungodlinesse with Queene Maacha, they be desposed from their seate of majestie:
or with Baara, and Q.Queen Vasthy, they be divorced from their husbands: or with Athalia,
they be slaine without the temple: or with Cozbi, be thrust through with
a sword, or with Jezabel, in all their braverie they be throwne headlong downe into
the street out of their owne windowe, and be eaten and devoured of dogs, and so
want the honour of christian buriall: or with Saphyra be stricken with sudden
death at the Apostles feet: or with the Levites wife be shamefullie abused to
death, and after chopt in peeces: or with Samsons wife be burnt to ashes in the
house where they dwell: to conclude, least with the whoore of Babel they be cast
quicke into the bottomlesse pit of perdition: or with the five foolish virgins they
be shut cleane out of heaven, and go alive downe into hell, there to be damned for
ever, if in time they call not for grace to beware and repent them of their former
wickednesse. Againe, a Mirrour contratiwise for all godlie and vertuous women
plainlie to behold the faith, religion, modestie, sobrietie, sinceritie of life and conversation
of Sara, Ruth, Q.Queen Candaces, Bernice Susanna, Elizabeth, the blessed
virgine Marie, &c. The holinesse, devotion, feare of God, justice, uprightnesse, &c. of
Hanna, Q.Queen Hester, &c. The rare wisedome, excellent knowledge, great learning, politike
governement, courage, magnanimitie, with the memorable vertues of Deborah,
Abigael, Bethsheba, Huldah, Jael, the women of Tekoah, Philips foure
daughters, the Ladie commended by saint John, &c. The famous cities, and statelie
territories and towers built by Sherah that noble Gentlewoman to hir perpetuall
renowme. The bountifull hospitalitie, great liberality, and often almes
deeds of the Shunainitesse that vertuous Gentlewoman, of Dorcas, Lydia, Joanna,
Judith, &c. The constant and faithfull love towards their husbands of Sara,
Michol, Susanna, &c. The motherlie and carefull affection towards their children
of Sara, Hannah, Bethsheba, the blessed virgine Marie, the widowe of Sarepta,
Samson’s mother, &c. The dutifull obedience towards their parents, of Q.Queen Hester,
Jepthas daughter, Orpha, Ruth, Sara, &c. The good intreatie and chistian behaviour
towards their handmaids, of Sara, Lea, Judith, &c. The fidelitie and obedient
service towards their mistresse of Hagar, Abia, Rhode, &c. The great kindnesse
and curtesie towards their freends, kindred, and aliance of Bethsheba, Elizabeth,
Q.Queen Hester, Jehosheba, Rizpah, &c. The womanlie pitie & tender harted compassion B.2. and B2v
and affection toward the distressed and persecuted members of Christ, of Puah,
Shiphrah, Rachel, Pharaos daughter, Rizpah, Q.Queen Hester, Jehosheba, Pilates
wife, Marie Magdalen, Martha, &c. The sore labour and paines taking to get
their owne living, of Anna Tobit, Lydia, Naomy, Ruth, Dorcas, &c. finallie, the
admirable humilitie, and invincible patience and constancie in all adversities and
persecution even to the death and martyrdome, of Jepthas daughter, Susanna, the
mother of the seven brethren, and women of the Machabites, and manie other:
that looking in this glasse of the holie lives of their foremothers, they may chritianlie
conforme and adorne themselves after their good examples, and become
for their rare vertues verie beautifull spouses in the sight of their spirituall bridegroome
Jesus Christ: to whom, as the kings daughters, they may appeere all
glorious within, and of whom with the lambes wife they may be marked in the
forehead with the testimonie of his name Jesus, to the end that being clothed
with the sunne of righteousnesse, and crowned with the twelve stars of God and
his word, and treading the moone of this worldlie affections under their feet, they
may evermore be delivered by him their valiant Michael, and his angels from
the power of the red dragon, which so greedilie gapeth to devoure them: and possesse
their soules in patience, in the restfull place of the presence of God, long since
prepared for the elect, where they shall be nourished and preserved for time & times,
and together with all holie virgins, matrones, martyrs, and elect people of God,
joifullie triumph and be glad for the gift of their everlasting happinesse.

Thirdlie, a Diall of devotion to direct you by the glorious globe and shine of
the bright sunne of righteousnesse, which inlighteneth all things in the world, verie
readilie and plainlie at all feasts and seasons of the yeere, and at all houres and
times of the daie and night continuallie unto the holie mount of heavenlie contemplation
and to the christian meditation and consideration of everlasting felicitie
in celestiall things, the better to contemne and forget all terrene, base, vile, momentanie,
and earthlie vanities.

Fourthlie and lastlie, a domesticall librarie plentifullie stored and replenished
both of the best approoved presidents of christian praiers and divine meditations,
made from time to time by manie right godlie authors, men and women of all
ages: and also of the chosen sentences or perfect precepts of holie scripture concerning
the christian duties of all degrees and estates of women in their severall
callings, together with the pleasant histories and memorable acts, lives, and death
of all maner of women good and bad, by name or without name, mentioned in the
old and new testaments of the bible, where among, for the better understanding of
the text, I have inserted some notes out of the Geneva bible with some difference
by parenthesis, verie necessarie for the simple reader. All which treatises, though
not so portable, yet so delectable, profitable, and readie prepared to lie in your secret
chamber or oratorie to use: howsoever intituled or called, God grant they may as
diligentlie be read and fruitfullie practised of you, good readers, as they and everie
of them (I am sure) were painfullie compiled and faithfullie purposed of the authors.
And for these, and all other such good helpes and furtherances to faith, devotion,
and godlinesse, God make both you and me alwaie thankfull unto his majestie,
who by all meanes, at all times, and through all ages, most gratiouslie useth
both the ministerie of men and angels, to doo us good continuallie, that through
our unthankfulnesse and wilfull contempt of his good gifts and graces dailie offered
by so manie high, learned, and painfull hands, we may not loose the same
and the profit thereof, by loathing that, which we ought most to love and imbrace,
but rather in good time by our grateful acceptation and approbation of that which
deserves good liking, gaine to our selves comfort and consolation, and encourage
others (which as yet of anie singular affection for their private use conceale or deteine
the woorks of anie godlie authors men or women) to take good opportunitie
by this occasion offered even for the common benefit of Christs congregation,
to publish the same abroad, for the perfection of this good worke, to the glorie of
God, and the authors everlasting praise and commendation both with God and
men: that full deservablie it may be said of them, as most woorthilie it is of these
my right christian and heroicall authors. Etsi mors indies accelerat,Viuit tamen post funera virtus. Thus B3r
Thus being awaked by last of adamaged as one that gathereth after them the vintage,
I have laboured as you see (good readerdamageda poore gleanenr grape gatherer
with restlesse Ruth to go after the maidens in damagede harvest as to gleane and gather
for my mother Naomi certeine handfuls of corn, damagedrter the reapers and painfull
labourers among the sheaves, let fall of devotion in the fruitfull feelds of charitable
Boaz: and have assailed, as you well perceive, to replenish my wine presse
with the grapes of the Lords plentifull vintage, and to fill my lampes brimfull
with the oile of Gods good blessing and rich store, left behind by the wise virgins
in the holie vessels of his increase. Here therefore if I might be so bold without
offense, as in the name of the foresaid blessed Boaz, I would gladlie exhort and
persuade Ruth, and in hir all other godlie women of the simple sort, to followe this
his good counsell (who saith: heare me, my daughter, and go to none other feeld
to gather, neither depart from hence to gleane, but abide here by my maidens, let
thine eies be on the feeld that they doo reape in, and go thou after the maidens:
and when thou art athirst go also to the vessels, and drinke of that which the servants
and handmaids have drawne, and when thou art hungrie, come hither and
eate of the bread, and dip thy morsell in the vineger, and sit by the reapers, and thou
shalt be satisfied to the full.) So now least you should gather by anie method, order,
division, title, direction, or application, that you shall find in this booke, or anie part
therof that I go about nicelie, curiouslie, or strictlie to injoine you to observe hours,
daies, feasts, times, or seasons, or to bind you unlawfullie to an impossibilitie, as of
necessitie to use all or everie of these praiers and meditations, in place, maner, and
forme as they are set downe (although it is to be wished that for the most part they
might, if it were possible, or the necessities of this turbulent life would permit)
that you should not mistake me, I saie, and judge that my purpose is in anie respect
to hinder common praier, or interrupt the ministration of the word and sacraments
in the church, where & at what time I knowe we ought all to glorifie God
together with one hart, spirit, and mouth, and to be no otherwise occupied, either
in reading or in praieng, than the publike minister is, unlesse we would be deemed
meere superstitious, and under the pretense of severall devotion to commit manifest
ungodlinesse: I thinke it verie necessarie for me to let you understand (gentle
reader) that my meaning herby was and is, simplie first to plaie the part of a faithfull
collector, by following my copies trulie, and placing their works and praiers
together as I found them referred by the authors for private or publike use: secondlie,
for order and memorie sake, after the good example of the learned fathers
of our time, to intitle, reduce, and applie those other godlie meditations and praiers,
which for the matter I found woorthie the more often use in the church, or
elsewhere, unto some more speciall place, apt time, and peculiar purpose, than heretofore
(to my knowledge) by anie others have beene intituled, referred, or applied.
But thirdlie and principallie by the meanes of some plaine forme and easie method
of praier and meditation, to prepare for the unlearned at all times, and in all
places such and so manie sorts, as to avoid ignorance and tediousenesse might convenientlie
serve to further their godlie desires, to the glorie of God, the confusion
of sathan, and their owne eternall comfort in Christ Jesus: referring them notwithstanding,
which you shall find proper for the church to be used there onelie at
convenient times by the ordinances of the church lawfullie permitted: the rest
which are more private to be used elsewhere at your discretions, when and so often
as opportunitie shall serve, and Gods spirit by his heavenlie motion give you anie
occasion. For as I would not have you thinke hereby, that I my selfe doo in all respects
observe this order here prescribed (although I assure you I strive to doo it
either within booke or without: and repent from the bottome of my hart the often
omission of it in times past) so I wish you good readers, which christianlie have
consecrated and vowed to give your selves to this holie exercise (as the Lord, I
saie, in mercie shall give you grace, leisure, time, and occasion, and not suffer you to
be tired with anie worldlie necessitie) in the name and feare of God, to observe this
or that order, method, forme, or direction, which he in his word dooth allow of, or
you knowe best will keepe you in the continuall faith, feare, and favour of God.

For trust me, if you will but a little together with me call these ten memorable
things to your christian remembrance in this so holie an exercise. First, the 1
commandements of almightie God himselfe, whom in consideration of our owne B.3. great B3v comandment
great miserie an necessitie, and comdamagedacke of the christian congregation, hath
willed us to call upnupon him, saieng: “Praie alwaies with all maner of praiers and supplicatipromises
2 ons in the spirit, and wake thereunto damagedwith all perseverance.”
Secondlie, his most sweet and
comfortable promises made gratiouslie both to heare and grant our godlie and
lawfull requests, saieng: “Aske, and ye shall have; seeke, and ye shall find; knocke, and it shall be
opened unto you: for everie one that calleth upon the name of the Lord, and departeth from iniquitie,
manifold sinnes 3 shall be saved, &c.”
Thirdlie, our great and manifold sinnes, whereof we are guiltie,
which will not suffer us to sit still without care, but driveth us of necessitie to beg
weake nature
do any good
4 his most gratious pardon. Fourthlie, our feeble flesh and weake nature unable in
everie respect to doo anie good thing, which requireth continuall praier to aid and
sutheltie of sathan 5 strength it. Fiftlie, the wilie subtiltie of our spirituall enimie sathan, who privilie
lurketh in the inward parts, wating even in our best actions to trip and over
obscured 6 throwe us, against whom we must by fervent praier vehementlie strive. Sixtlie,
our owne greevous assalts and cruell temptations, which never give us truce, rest,
zeale of good glory 7 nor quietnesse, but hasten us verie much unto God for helpe. Seventhlie, the zeale
of the glorie of God, and advancement of his kingdome, which ought wholie to
drawe and moove us continuallie to exercise our selves in the service of God.
obscured 8 Eightlie, the dailie dangers and continuall calamities that hourelie hang over our
heads, which give us all cause enough, yea even the most holie, and that with sighs
and grones continuallie to flie unto God our heavenlie father, and call upon him
obscuredgoodness 9 by fervent praiers. Ninthlie, the infinite benefits and greatr blessings of God so
bountifullie and plentifullie everie waie powred continuallie upon us, which give
us both ample matter, and just occasion, hourelie by thankesgiving, even from the
obscured of praise 10 bottome of our harts to praise and magnifie him for the same. Tenthlie and lastlie,
the great excellencie, woorthinesse, necessitie, vertue, fruit, and profit of true and
christian praier, consisting partlie in the dignitie of God the commander, and partlie
in the effect of obteining of whatsoever we aske according to his will. These
things I saie, good reader, well considered, I suppose you will saie here is nothing
superfluous: but all little enough to so needfull and profitable an exercise of our
faith, praier I meane, as wherein the peace of conscience, yea our whole salvation
consisteth, and whereby God himselfe is said to be present with us, not onelie by
his providence to watch over us, but also by his power to susteine and succour us,
and by his goodnesse and mercie to receive us into his fatherlie grace and favour.

Yea I doubt not, but you will willinglie confesse with me, I saie, that all sorts
of devout women have great cause, and that continuallie, to take these lamps into
their hands, thereby either with banished Hagar to acknowledge Gods graces towards
them: or with desolate Naomi to praie that God would blesse their children
to be staies and staves of their age to their comfort: or with hevie Hanna to
powre out their harts before the Lord in teares for a sonne, and for his mercie and
favour towards them: or with wise Abigael, by praier to prevent the mischeefes
that hang as well over their heads, as their families: yea or with hir often on
their knees to praie for the good prosperitie and preservation of their gratious governour
Queene Elizabeth: or with the church and faithfull soule of all christians,
to long for the kisses of the peace of Christ their spirituall spouse, and never
to cease daie nor night to seeke him, whom their soule loveth, till by praier and meditation
they have found him: or with the wofull daughter of Sion, to lament and
mourne pitiouslie for their sinnes, till their miseries be mitigated, and they comforted;
or with sorrowfull Sara Tobit in fasting, and teares to be delivered from
dailie reproches and slanderous toongs: or with vertuous Judith in sackcloth
and ashes to obteine strength and courage mightilie to destroie and ouuvercome
proud Olophernes, with all the huge host of his bloudie ruffians: or with noble
Queene Hester to proclaime a fast, and call their virgins, families, and people together,
to praie daie and night to the hazarding of their owne lives also, if need so
require for their owne further preservation, and their peoples and subjects safetie
and deliverance out of the hands of cruell Haman, and all his seditious conspirators:
or with chast and innocent Susanna to appeale to God the high judge of judges,
to be acquitted from a violent death by false accusation, and more unjust condemnation:
or with the afflicted church in exile, to acknowledge their sinnes, and
call for mercie to be delivered from distresse: or with the woman of Canaan to flie
unto Christ in all necessities, to be releeved both bodilie and ghostlie: or with our most B4r
most gratious Sovereigne Ladie Queene Elizabeth, to muse damagedinelie of the
inward love of the soule towards Christ their spouse, their Lord and father, mother
and brother: or with the vertnuous Ladie Queene Katherine, to bewaile
the ignorance of their blind life led in superstition: and with hir also in all their
troubles to stir up their godlie minds patientlie to suffer all afflictions for the love
of everlasting felicitie: or with the right godlie Ladie Jane Dudley to endure the
crosse to death most patientlie: or with good Ladie Tirwit to exercise themselves
morning and evening in fruitfull and godlie praiers, psalmes, hymnes, and meditations:
or with the honourable Ladie Aburgaivennie by the like, to tread the
path to paradise for the health of their soule: or with holie Agunus and Eulalia
the martyrs, to triumph in the victorie of Christs death: or with Anne Askew the
martyr to praie hartilie for their enimies: or with maister Bradfords mother to
be petitioners unto God for the constancie in faith to death of their children: or
with mistresse Dorcas Marten carefullie to instruct their whole familie in the
principall points of christian religion: or with other grave and godlie matrones
unknowne, to exhort others to mortification and holinesse of life, and to flie unto
God in all troubles for releefe as he hath commanded.

That so with the five foolish virgins it be never too late for them to crie, “Lord,
Lord, open to us”
: but that to their comforts and the praise of God, with Miriam
they may evermore upon their timbrels sing the song of Moses, for their mightie
and miraculous deliverance from sathan their spirituall Pharao: and with Debora
give great thanks for the victorie got by our Jahel against Sicera: and with
holie Hannah rejoise from the hart, and praise God in the temple for the birth of
their children, and safe deliverance: and with the women of Israel triumph upon
timbrels for the famous victories of Davids daughter our noble Queene
had against all hir enimies: and with the spirituall spouse at the
marriage daie sing the sweet song of songs to the glorie of the bridegroome Christ
: and with Sara Tobit blesse the name of God for their deliverence from
slanderous reproches, and the evill spirit Asmodeus, that enimie of holie matrimonie:
and with holie Judith highlie praise God for hir and hir peoples mightie
preservation out of the hands of their cruell enimies: and with the blessed virgine
Marie continuallie magnifie the Lord their Saviour, for their high exaltation
and favour with God, with men, and with angels: and with our most gratious
Queene Elizabeth, incessantlie to yeeld all possible praise and hartie
thanks for their so often, mightie, and marvellous preservation and deliverance
from so manie kinds of dangers, yea deaths and destruction pretended by sathan
and his bloudie ministers dailie against them.

Finallie, that all godlie women (taking hereby good occasion with these their
holie foremothers continuallie to make their petitions for the preventing of
evils: their supplications, for the obteining of all things needfull for soule and
bodie: their intercessions as well for others, as for themselves: and their thanksgivings
for corporall and spiritual benefits received) may shew themselves daughters
woorthie such mothers: virgins woorthie such lamps of perpetuall virginitie:
and women woorthie such ghostlie weapons of their right christian ministration
to helpe their weakenesse (praiers, precepts, and meditations I meane)
by following their vertues wiselie in the perfect feare of God: by bearing the same
in the hand of their harts carefullie in the due obedience of their prince: and by
fighting therewith in Golgatha the field of this spirituall warfare, the good fight
of faith couragiouslie in the pure love of their countrie, and christian charitie towards
their neighbours: and at the last in the world to come to the glorie of God,
& their everlasting comfort togither with the wise virgins, and all the elect people
of God, joifullie triumph over all weaknesse, infirmitie, and corruption: yea over
sinne, death, hell, and damnation, and saie: “Oh death, where is thy sting? Oh hell, where is thy

But now if in wading so far in this argument of praier, and in making this
volume so big, anie shall thinke or saie, that I, by mine idlenesse and time thus
spent, am verie chargeable unto them: and considering the plentie of praier books
more portable alreadie extant, shall judge me to have taken a verie needlesse or
bootlesse travell, or to have laboured in vaine, and spent my strength for nothing,
as he that would adde stars to the skie, or light a lampe at noone daie, and thereforeB.4. fore B4v
shall deeme me woorthie in their opinions to loose both Oleum & operam. Oh
forgive me this wrong I praie you: and considering that I could not otherwise
either satisfie my selfe to go forward in my determined purpose, according to the
prescript order of this collection, or pleasure the simple reader with such plentie
and varietie of profitable matter, especiallie in so good paper and faire usuall letter,
a thing to the aged and feeble sighted reader verie gratefull and much desired.
Let me intreate you whosoever you be, to measure the same rather by the goodnesse
or deerenesse of the volume, which to the willing and desirous mind are
ever best cheape. So no doubte shall the pleasure and profit of the one at the least
countervaile, if not far surmount, the paine and charges of the other.

As for my selfe (good reader) who have rudelie as you see undertaken this
great labour, I protest, I have doone it neither of presumption, as he that would
usurpe the office of a Divine, and intrude himselfe into the studies of other professions:
nor of arrogancie, as he that would boast and make great brags of other
mens labours: nor of envie, as he that went about to make frustrate and insufficient
the painfull and godlie works of better learned: neither yet of ambition or
vaineglorie, as he that gaped after the praise and commendation of anie, or that
would faine seeme to be approoved and registred of anie Chronicler for an author,
or one that knoweth somewhat, who in deed knowes nothing, much lesse for all
this deserves to be thought of above that, which anie either of their owne knowledge,
or by true report doo, or shall see in me, knowe me to be, or heare of me.
Therefore I saie (good reader) my judgement, howsoever it please others to judge
of me, and of mine intent herein, is, I knowe with the Lord that formed me from
the wombe, to be his servant: for he is the eie witnesse of mine integritie and simple
meaning herein, I saie, in whom my life in hid, and to whom I am made manifest,
doo live, and must die.

As for my worke (so honourable for the verie authors, so godlie for the matter,
so necessarie for the time, so profitable for the persons, so excellent for the use,
and so convenient to increase pietie and christianitie in the simpler sort, howsoever
otherwise with some carping heads, and evill disposed readers, with Aesops dog
in the manger never given either to doo well themselves, or to judge rightlie and
speake truth of others) it is I am right well assured with my God, who first put me
in mind to take it in hand, and in, by, and through whom onelie I confesse with
humble and hartie thankesgiving after manie a yeeres sore travell, in studie much
sweet, long watching, and great expences, I have now at the length finished the
same I trust to his glorie, your profit, and mine owne comfort.

Therefore leaning to all and everie of the woorthie works of other godlie
men or women howsoever here or elsewhere extant, their particular use in the
church of God, as they were published: and to the honourable authors themselyes
their due deserved praise and perpetuall commendation to all posteritie, with exhortation
to all godlie christians reverentlie, willinglie, and thankfullie to read,
receive, and imprace the same, as wherein to the better fulfilling of so heavenlie an
exercise of our faith most agreeable to Gods good will and word is perfectlie supplied
and accomplished, by the rare gifts, ornaments, and graces of the holie
Ghost in the compilers, whatsoever otherwise through ignorance, wanteth both
in me, and perhaps in you also (good readers) if you be unlearned. (Give them
therefore, O give them, I saie, and that woorthilie of the fruit of their owne hands,
and let their owne works praise them in all the world.) I to conclude humbly submit
my selfe unto the grave judgements of the godlie learned, and mine heroicall
authors living, of whom I meeklie crave pardon for this my bold enterprise attempted
both with bashfulnesse, doubtfulnesse, and feare to become a writer in this
so learned an age, or to trouble your studies with my rude labours. And here lastlie
I offer these my labours such as they are unto the good liking and favourable
correction as well in matter, as in maner of you my right christian learned readers,
of whom in full recompense and satisfaction of anie fruit, that either you or the simpler
sort shall hereby reape, I onelie now make this request, as dutifullie to reverence
the divine works of so noble and learned authors, by whose holie travels
you perceive your selves to enjoie most inestimable benefits: so freendlie to take
in good part these first fruits of my poore studies, proceeding from a well meaning mind, B5r
mind, and built upon so good foundations, as from him that did that hee could
though not that he ought to benefit all, and to hurt or offend none. That they being
now as lamps well esteemed of in the opinion of the rich in vertue and knowledge,
and gratefullie accepted and approoved of the learneder sort, as the monuments
of so famous matrones, may yet at the least for their sakes become welcome
and aprooved of all other simple christians, and I by that meanes greatlie
incouraged to go forward in vertuous studies for the benefit of my countrie, with
hartie thankesgiving unto God both for his mercie, and your great curtesie and
goodnesse towards me, in whom I bid you farewell, and unto whose heavenlie defense,
almightie protection, divine favour, and continuall blessing, I finallie commend
and betake both these my labours, my selfe, and you deere and welbeloved
readers, beseeching you to love me, as I love yon unfainedlie, to speake of me and
my worke, no woorse than I doo of you and yours christianlie, and that for his
sake alone that loved us all most deerelie, & in that love for us all enured all maner
of reproch and slanders that might be most patientlie, even to the effusion of
his most pretious bloud often and sundrie times trulie, as well as fervent praier as in sweat, and otherwise on the crosse for our eternall glorie: to whom
therefore, and for all the inestimable benefits of his bloudie praiers,
dririe death, and bitter passion be evermore rendred and given
as of writers and readers, so of angels, men, and all
creatures in heaven, in earth, or in the deepe,
all possible praise and perpetuall glorie
that hart can thinke, hand
can worke, or toong can
speake, Amen.

Yours as his owne in him that is
all in all, and our owne for ever,

Thomas Bentley.


Facies militantis Ecclesiæ.

Iam propè sexagies redijt centesimus annus,

Quùum læso æternum seruans sub pectore vulnus,

Incensis animis gerit implacabile bellum

Cum serpentino mulièris femine femen.

Nam pater omnipotens (neciam pater: improbus ex quo

Seduxit serpens primos errore parentes)

Nullus amor natis, dixit, nec fœdera sunto.

Exoriare aliquis pura de virgine vindex,

Cuius dextra caput serpentis conterat, & cui

Iratus serpens leniter calcanea tundat.

Nunc olim stirpem pono, & genus omne futurum

Exercendum odijs vtrinq;: atq; impero tolli

Infestas aquilas aquilis, contraria pilis

Pila, alas alis, & signa minantia signis.

Hæc Deus ex illo struere & malè nectere serpens

Arte dolos cœpit, bellíq; opponere molem.

Nulla quies: ætas, quæ tempore fluxit ab illo,

Militia est; hostis factum iam grande periclis

Ingenium, & longo creuit solertia bello.

Effrendétq; draco ruber immortalibus iris,

Crudelis, repar´tq; nouas in prælia vires,

Audet & à nobis sumptis confligere telis.

Nam peccatorum, benè quæ numerantur ab illo,

Vel numero miseras animas vel pondere terret.

Tunc aptè mortem peccati ostendere stipem,

Tunc stygias turmas, totúmq; Acheronta ciere

Promptus, & hijs hominem petit exitialibus armis:

Non par lex huius, non ius æquabile pubnæ:

Nos sumus in terris, est in cœlestibus hostis.

Non pede congreditur pes, densúsq; viro vir:

Sed micat in tenebris, & spiritualibus armis

Vtitur, & nocet, & non vult nocuisse videri

Improbus, infligit vulnus, neq; vulneris author

Extat: sic pugnat, sic est metuendus Abaddon.

Adde alios hostes, quos intùs habemus & extra.

Hinc caro nos blandis odijs, affabilis hostis

Enecat, & leni peccati imbuta veneno

Strangulat, inclusas animas & conficit intùs.

Extra alias scelerum faces, diráasq; cohortes,

Et coniuratum cernas obsistere mundum.

Quacunq; aspicimus, timor vndique & vndique terror,

Infernæq; ruunt acies prædámq; requirunt

Christicolas. Quem das finem, rex magne laborum?

Nos tua progenies cœli quibus annuis arcen

Perdimur, ac cœli longè disiungimur oris.

Hæc est illa fides, potis est quæ vincere mundun,

Inferníq; fores? Sic nos in sceptra reponis?

Ollis subridens Christus, qui cuncta serenat,

Oscula libauit natis, dein talia fatus:

Nata B6r

Nata Deo proles ex viui femine verbi,

O multum dilecta mihi, dilecta parenti,

stáne per tantos semper iactabere fluctus?

Nec quæ sit tua spes, quæ sit victoria, noris?

Tu sathanam? Tu tela times ignita gehennæ?

Esto: tuos quondam potuit superare parentes,

Nec dum animo exciderint iræ sæuóq; dolores,

Et veteres verset fraudes, ac pectora tentet,

Atque omne secum Phlegetonta in prælia ducat,

Idcircóne tuo poteris diffidere Christo?

Nec venit in mentem, quam crux ferat alma salutem?

Ille, vides? Leo terribilis, quíque omnia sæuus

Circuit, immanis rugit, prædámque futuram

Faucibus expectat siccis, quem pessima ventris

Exigit impransum rabies, exutus, inermis,

In cruce confossus iacet: en victor Leo Iudæ,

Inferni fregit portas, & contudit omnes

Peccati vires, & mortem morte peremit.

Hæc spolia æterna, has lauros ex hoste reporto.

Ecce Deum summum medijs est cernere terris,

In cœlis hominem, tibi sese æterna reseruant

Gaudia, cum superis homini benè conuenit, actum est,

Vicisti, pepigit cum terra fœdera cœlum.

Iam Cherubinorum vaginæ includitur ensis,

Atque iterum tibi se tradit para disus habendum.

Námque ego, quem gremio tellus absorpsit iniquo,

Vincula perrupi mortis, cœlúmque petitui.

Et cupis hijs mecum pariter considere regnis?

Regnum quod teneo vestrum est: hîc meta laborum.

Iudáque, génsque mihi nullo discrimine agétur.

Pugnat adhuc sathanas & confert agmina: pugnet,

Iusti materiem præbet tibi pugna triumphi:

Per varios casus, per multa pericula rerum

Tenditur in cœlum, sedes vbi fata quietas

Ostendunt, illic fas læta pace potiri,

Durato, & temet rebus seruato secundis,

Sic placitum: dum ín te pietas excocta periclis

Splendeat, & viua formetur imagine Christus.

Tempus erit, quùm me, paucis labentibus annis.

Cernes in densis venientem nubibus, & quùm

Regnabis mecum, & victo dominaberis hosti.

To modò posce Deum veniam, sacrísque litatis,

Arma assume Dei, causásq; innecte morandi.

I, bona, simplicitas animi tibi baltheus esto,

Quo stes contra ictus omnes circundata lumbos;

Indue iustitiæ thoracem, & pectora muni,

Tum pro calceolis cœlestis nuncia pacis,

Aptato pedibus certis: super omnia viuæ

Sume manu scutum fidei, galeámque salutis

Spem capiti imponas, lateríque accingere ferrum

Spirituale B6v

Spirituale pares, & in hostem stringe rebellem:

Quicquid & aduersum verbo est, interfice verbo.

Sic vbi iam mundi decursa volubilis ætas,

Post exantlatæ diuersa pericula pugnæ,

Non arescentis folijs redimita coronæ,

Fœlix cœlestem patriam Hierosolyma cernes.

Dixerat: extemplo mœstos attollere vultus

Cœpit, & afflictis lætari ecclesia rebus;

Infusóq; oleo manibus sua lumina portans,

Præstolánsque suum patiens & læta maritum,

Vota Deo supplex animo solennia sundit.


Rob. Marbeck ad

Avscultas nostris diuina potentia votis;

Et prece, non pretio flecitur ira Dei.

Perlege scripturas, & sancta volumina patrum;

Assiduis precibus nos vigilare iubent.

Si malè te morbus prostratis viribus vrat;

Si te paupertas inuidiosa premat;

Per steriles saltus, per dura & inhospita saxa

Passibus ambiguis, si vel inermis eas,

Si mare te iactet, si tempestatibus actus,

Et cœlum, & terras, mox ruitura putes:

Si te circunstet vel mille pericula mortis;

Inuoca, nil dubitans numina, saluus eris.

Ergo si precibus vis tanta putetur inesse,

Præponi precibus, nil (mihi crede) potest.

Hic labor, hic liber est, tibi quem Bentleius offert,

Nil aliud resonans, quàm pietate preces;

Et pius est Author: pius & conatus: vtrunq;

Cur perames, causam candide lector, habes.

Argumentum libri.

Vin; tibi quid portent hæc sciere volumina septem?

Occurunt animo lumina sparsa tuo.

Nulla quidem frustra est prælata a virgine lampas:

Ostendit varias illáq;, & illa preces.

1 Prima docet Myriam, quas olim & Debora fudit,

Quas Domino Judith fudit & Anna preces.

2 Altera reginis quas a nostratibus vsquam

Legimus in medijs incaluisse malis.

Hîc Katherina suas, mulieribus æmula sanctis,

Hîc cernit Princeps Elizabetha suas.

3 Tertia habet psalmos, quos pro solamine nostræ

Reginæ docti composuere viri.

Hîc modo de nostri loquitur moderamine regni,

Excipit hîc votum principis ore Deus.

Quarta B7r

4 Quarta alias fusè complectitur omnibus aptas

Personis, rebus, temporibúsq; preces.

5 Quinta precum formas narrat, quas fœmina quæuis

Seu virgo fuerit, five marita, legat.

6 Sexta locos recitat sacris e fontibus haustos,

Possit us officium fœmina scire suum.

7 Continet historias illarum septima, quarum

Vel bona vita fuit, vel mala vita fuit.

Hinc Saram propone tibi, castámq; Rebeccam;

Et subeat menti sancta Maria tuæ.

Illinc ante oculos infamis Iezabel adsit,

Occurrátq; tibi labe notata Thamar.

Sic exempla pares illustria, turpia vites:

Historiæ fructus maximus ille sacræ.

Interea Bentlee, tuo de lumine lumen,

Qui facis accensum fratribus esse tuis:

Hîc æterna pij cernis monumenta laboris,

Hî zeli laus est non peritura tui.


A breefe catalog of the memorable names of sundrie right famous
Queenes, godlie Ladies, and vertuous women of all ages, which in their
kind and countries were notablie learned, and whereof some marked
with this marke “*” were the authors of a great part of this booke, as
shall appeere: set foorth in alphabeticall order.

  • A.

    • Abigael Queene.
    • Agnes martyr.
    • Agrippina.
    • Anna.
    • Anne Askew martyr.
    • Anne Bacon.
    • Anne Basset.
    • Angelia virgine.
    • Argentaria.
    • Assiothea.
    • Aspatia.
  • B.

    • Bridgit.
    • Bundivica.
  • C.

    • Cambra.
    • Cassandra virgine.
    • Catherina Cellia.
    • Catherina Senensis virgine.
    • Catherina Parre.
    • Claudia Ruffina.
    • Cleobula virgine.
    • Cleopatra.
    • Corinna.
    • Cornelia Affrica.
  • D.

    • Damma.
    • Danophila Pamphia.
    • INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to wwp@neu.edu that cb is unmatched.
    • Deborah prophetesse.
    • Demetria.
    • Diodorus five daughters.
    • Diotima.
    • Dorcas Marten.
  • E.

    • Edesia Syria.
    • Egitha Q.Queen of England.
    • Elizabeth Queene of England.
    • Elizabeth Queene of Syria.
    • Elizabeth Tirwit Ladie.
    • Elizabeth an Abbesse.
    • Erinna.
    • Eudoxia Theodosia.
    • Eustasia.
    • Eulalia martyr.
  • F.

    • Fabrola.
    • Francis Aburgavennie LaLadie.
    • Furia.
  • G.

    • Genebria.
    • Gysla.
  • H.

    • Hagar.
    • Hannah Eleanah.
    • Helena Flavia.
    • Helizabeth Cenobia.
    • Helpis Boetia.
    • INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to wwp@neu.edu that cb is unmatched.
    • Herophila.
    • Hester Queene.
    • Hierontia.
    • Hilda.
    • Hildizarda virgine.
    • Hipathia.
    • Hortensia.
    • Huldah prophetesse.
  • I.

    • Jane Dudley Ladie.
    • Joan Philippa Queene.
    • Isota virgine.
    • Isabel Q.Queene her foure daughters.
    • Judith Bethulia.
    • Juno Chissa virgine.
  • K.

    • Katherine Q.Queene of England.
  • L.

    • Ladie commended by s. John
      with hir daughters.
    • Lasthemia.
    • Leontium.
    • Leta.
    • Lucretia.
  • M.

    • Mantinea.
    • Marcella.
    • Marie the blessed virgine.
    • Marie Queene of England.
    • Marie B7v
    • Marie Ladie Cicil.
    • Margaret Q.Queene of Navar.
    • Margaret Countesse of R.
    • Martia Q.Queene of England.
    • Maximilla prophetesse.
    • Myriam prophetesse.
    • Moera.
  • N.

    • Naomi.
    • Nossidis.
  • O.

    • Olympiades.
  • P.

    • Paula.
    • INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to wwp@neu.edu that cb is unmatched.
    • Panothea.
    • Phemono virgine.
    • Philips foure daughters.
    • Polla.
    • Portia.
    • Priscilla.
    • Proba Romana.
    • Pythagoras daughter.
  • R.

    • Richthruda.
    • Rosewyda.
  • S.

    • Salina or Salma.
    • Sappho poëeta.
    • INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to wwp@neu.edu that cb is unmatched.
    • Sarra Tobit.
    • Sibyls ten.
    • Susanna.
  • T.

    • Tecla.
    • Theaneo Metaponta.
    • Thesseles or Thelestilla.
    • Theodosia.
    • Thragelia.
  • V.

    • Valeria proba.
  • Z.

    • Zenobia Queene of Syria,

Thus, good Readers, I have set downe the names of some
notable learned women to your consideration, referring
such as desire to knowe further of their severall works to this
treatise following, and to Gesnerus, Bale, Ludovicus Vives,
the Chronicles, and such other writers of our time. Which I
have doone, not like a Sycophant to currie favour by flatterie
with women; but simplie, God is my witnesse, & for good
purpose: partlie, for that I well perceive these and manie other
not here named, for their well deserving and excellent
works (a tast wherof you have here in this booke) have heretofore
beene had, and that right woorthilie, in great veneration
of the godlie learned fathers and writers in all ages: and
therfore are no lesse of us also to be reverentlie regarded and
had in honourable remembrance, to the perpetuall recordation
and further continuance of their heroicall names and
fames, as it were by some inrollment of their condigne praises
and memorable dooings to all posterities: but especiallie
for that I might hereby, as much as in me lieth, incourage,
provoke, and allure all godlie women of our time, in some
measure, according to their several gifts given them of God,
to become even from their youth more studious imitators,
and diligent folowers of so godlie and rare examples in their
vertuous mothers, that as they either in sex, name, or estate
are equall with them: so in learning, wisedome, good industrie,
and in all holie studies and vertuous exercises commendable
for women, they would dailie endevour themselvesselues B8r
to become like them, that so being lightened by their
good examples both of life and doctrine, they may shine also
together with them on earth, as burning lampes of verie
virginitie; and in heaven, as bright starres of eternall glorie:
which God, for his owne name sake, grant, Amen.

What ceremonie everie woman ought by Gods
word to use in the time of praier,
publike or private.

INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to wwp@neu.edu that regMe is unmatched.1. Corinth. chapter 11, verse. 4, &c.

“Everie man praieng or prophesieng, having anie thing on his head, dishonoureth” (God)
“his head: but everie woman that praieth or prophesieth bare headed, dishonoureth” (hir
husband) “hir head. For it is even one verie thing as though she were shaven.

Therefore if the woman be not covered, let hir also be shorne; and if it be a shame for
a woman to be shorne or polled”
(as in deed it is) “then” (for shame) “let hir be covered (and
keepe hir haire trussed up under a kercher.)

For a man ought not to cover his head (but ought to be polled and bare, forsomuch as he
is the image and glorie of God, in whom his majestie and power dooth shine, concerning his
authoritie over his wife, and other of Gods creatures subjected under his dominion and

But the woman is the glorie of the man” (or receiveth hir glorie in commendation of man,
and therefore is subject:) “for the man is not of the woman; but the woman of the man: neither
was the man created for the womans sake; but the woman for the mans sake.

Therefore ought the woman to have power on hir head (that is, some thing to cover hir
head in signe of subjection, bicause of the angels, to whom also they shew their dissolution and
shame, and not onelie to Christ and his church, or congregation where they praie.)

Judge you in your selves also, is it comelie that a woman praie unto God bareheaded?
Dooth not nature it selfe teach you, that if a man have long haire like a woman, it is a shame
unto him: but if a woman have long haire, it is a praise unto hir: for hir haire is given unto
hir for a covering
(and to the end she should trusse it up about hir head: to declare that
she must cover hir head.)

But if anie man list to be contentious, we have no such custome,
neither the church of God.”

excerpt49-50 pages

Figures surround the entire titlepage. Top center, surrounded by heavenly clouds and flanked by wreathed books are hebrew letters which are, from right to left, a chaf, resh, or dalet, followed by a chet, followed by a mark which may or may not be a yud, followed by a resh or dalet, followed by a hay. Along the sides of the page are four human figures, all praying, labeled -- beginning with the upper left and moving clockwise around the page -- “Q. Elizabeth”, “Q. Hester”, “Q. Margaret”, and “Q. Katherine”. At the bottom center of the page, sitting on a throne and flanked by wreathed books, is a skeleton, left arm raised.

Q. Elizabeth

Q. Hester

Q. Margaret

Q. Katherine

Second Lampe of

Conteining divers godlie Meditations,
and Christian Praiers made
by sundrie vertuous Queenes, and
other devout and godlie women
in our time:
and first,

Godlie Meditation of the inward
love of the soule towards Christ
our Lord: composed first in French
by the vertuous Ladie Margaret Queene
of Navarre
: aptlie, exactlie, and fruitfullie
translated by our most gratious Sovereigne Ladie
Queene Elizabeth, in the tender and
maidenlie yeeres of hir youth and virginitie,
to the great benefit of
Gods church, and comfort
of the godlie.

Imprinted at London by Henrie Denham,
dwelling in Pater noster Rowe,
at the signe of the Starre.
Cum priuilegio Regæ Maiestatis.


Certaine godlie Sentences
out of the 13. Psalme, written
by the Queenes Majestie, in
Latine, French, and


Stultus dixit in corde suo: Non
est Deus. Illi corrupti sunt, & abhominabiles
in sua impietate, nullus
est qui alquid boni facit.


Le fol dit en son cœur: Il n’y a point
de Dieu. Ils sont corrompus & abhominables
en leur impieté, il n’y a nul
qui face aucun bien.


Lo stolto diffe ne’l suo cuore: Egli non
vi è Dio. Essi son corrotti & abomineuoli
ne la lor’impietà, non vi è nessuno che
faccia alcun bene.


A godlie meditation of the inward love
of the Christian soule towards
Christ our Lord.

The first Chapter,
Of the soules slaverie by sinne: and redemption
by Christ his passion.

The dropped initial capital is part of a framed figure which depicts a man raising a club toward another man who is his victim. In the foreground there is a bull, head in the bottom left corner of the figure. In the bottom left corner there is also an R, presumably a signature.

Where is the hell,
full of travel, paine,
mischiefe, and torment?
Where is
the pit of cursednesse,
out of which
doth spring all desperation?
Is there
any hel so profound,
that is sufficient to
punish the tenth part
of my sinnes, which
in number are so
manie, that the infinit
swarme of them so shadoweth my darkened senses,
that I can not account them, neither yet well see
them? And I so farre am entred among them, that I
have no power to obteine the true knowledge of the
deepe dangers of them. I perfectlie feele also, that the
roote of sinne is so graffed in me, that in my selfe I find
none other effect, but all is, either branch, leafe, or fruit
that it bringeth foorth in me.

And if I looke for better, a branch therof shadoweth
mine eies: and in my mouth doth fall, when I would
speake, the bitter fruit of cursed sinne. If my spirit be
stirred to harken, then the noise of hir leaves stoppeth
mine eares, and filleth my nostrils with the smell of F.iij. hir F3v 2
hir flowers. Behold now therefore how in paines my
soule, a slave, and prisoner without light, or comfort, lieth
crieng and weeping, having hir feete bound with
the chaine of concupiscence, and hir armes fast tied
thorough evill use. Who then hath power to helpe or
remedie it? Not I: neither have I power to crie for
succour. And as I can perceive, there is no helpe of
hope for me, but by the speciall grace of God, which of
my selfe I can not deserve, but by Christ his onelie
sonne, whose brightnesse giveth light to my darknesse:
whose power examining my fault, breaketh the vaile
of ignorance, and giveth mee cleare understanding
what thing abideth in mee, where I am, and wherefore
I labour.

He it is, whom I have offended: he it is, to whom I
did obeie so seldome: wherefore it is convenient that
my pride be suppressed. With weeping hart and sorowfull
sighs, I humblie therefore confesse that I am
much lesse than nothing. Before my birth, mire; after
a dunghill, having a bodie prompt to all evill, not willing
other studie: subject to care, sorowe and paine,
short of life, the end uncertaine, and under sin by Adam
sold, and by the lawe condemned. For of my selfe, I never
had yet the power to observe one onelie commandement
of God, the force of sinne was such in me, and
therefore is my sinne no whit the lesse to be hidden:
and the more I cloaked and dissembled my sinne outwardlie,
the more it increased within my hart. For
what God would, that could I not will: and what hee
would not, I oft times desired to performe: which
thing doth constraine mee by importable sorowe, in
this wearie and raging life, to wish the end of this
miserable bodie, through a desired death.

Quis Liberabit

Who shall he then be, that shall deliver, or recover
anie good for me? Alas, it can be no mortall man. For
his power and strength is not such as can deliver me. Who F4r 3
Who then? The onlie grace of the almightie God,graciaflawed-reproduction
who never is slacke to helpe the penitent with his
mercie. Oh what a maister is that, which without deserving
will shew his mercie on sinners! I served him
slothfullie, and without ceasing offended him everie
daie: yet is he not slacke in helping me.

He doth see the evill that I have, what and how
much it is, and that I of my selfe can doo nothing that
is good: but with hart & bodie so inclined I am to the
contrarie, that I feele no strength in me, unlesse it be
to doo evill. Yet doth he not tarie till I humblie praie
him, or that seeing my hell and danmmnation, I doo crie
upon him: but his spirit whurling in my hart, greater
than I can declare, asketh for mee a gift, whereof
the verture is unknowne to my little power.

And this the same unknowne gift or whurling in
my hart, doth bring mee a new desire, shewing the good
that I have lost by my sinne, and given me againe thorough
his grace and bountie, that which hath overcome
all sinne.

O my Lord, what grace and goodnesse is this, which the mercy of god
doth put out so manie sinnes? Now may I see that
thou art full of all godlie love, to make me of a sinner,
thy servant and child. Alas, my God, I did not seeke
thee, but fled and ran awaie from thee: and here beneath,
thou camest downe to mee, which am nothing
but a woorme of the earth all naked. What doo I saie?
A woorme? Naie, woorse than a woorme, full of pride,
deceit, malice, and treason. The promise which my
friends made when I was baptised, is such, that I alwaies,
thorough faith in thy passion, should feele the the promisse made
in Baptisme.

mortification of my flesh, and dwell alwaies with thee
in the crosse, where thou wast fast nailed as I beleeve,
and yeelded death dead, as I also should yeeld all sinne.

This have I oftentimes untied, taken downe, and
set at large; I have broken, denied, and falsified my this promise nflawed-reproduction
have broken.
F.iiij. promise, F4v 4
promise, and through pride I have lifted up my will in
such maner, that through sloth, my dutie towards
thee was forgotten, and that much more is, as well
the profit, or value, which I had of thee in the daie of
my baptisme, as also thy saving love and promises folowing,
I have all alike neglected? What shall I saie
more? Albeit that oftentimes thou perceiving mee
wretched, and unhappie, hast given me so manie warnings
in faith and sacraments, admonishing mee by
preachings, and comforted mee by the receiving of thy
blessed bodie and sacred bloud, promising by the same
to put me in the number of them that now are adorned
with perfect innocencie: yet have I all these high
benefits throwne into forgetfulnesse.

Oftentimes, O Lord, have I with thee broken covenant,
& partlie for that my poore soule was too much
fed with the evill bread or damnable doctrine of hypocrites,
I despised such succour and ghostlie physicke in
Gods word, as would have helped mee, if I had beene
willing to looke for it: yet knew I at that time no teacher
convenient. For there is neither man, Saint, nor
Angel, that can without thy spirit change the hart of
a sinner. Alas, good Jesus, thou beholding my blindnesse,
and that at my neede I could have no succour of When we could have
flawed-reproductionfurious, christ did
flawed-reproductionen the way of

men, didst open the waie of my salvation. O how great
is thy goodnesse, and how inestimable the sweetenesse
which thou hast shewed therein! Is there anie father
so naturall to the daughter, or brother to the sister,
which would ever have done as thou hast done? For
thou camest downe into hel to succour my soule, where
against thy will shee was, intending to have perished,
bicause she did not love thee.

Alas, sweet Lord, thou hast loved hir, yea even to the
verie outshedding of thy most pretious bloud. O charitie
fervent and incomparable! Nothing slacke art
thou in love, that so lovedst everie sinner, yea and also thine F5r 5
thine enimies, not onelie in forgiving their offences, christ his infinite
love to synners
his enemies.

but also in giving thy selfe for their salvation, libertie,
and deliverance to the death, crosse, travell, paine, and
sufferance. When I cast in mind what should be the
occasion of thy love towards mee, I can see nothing
else but a love woonderfull, which moveth thee to give
me that, which I can not deserve. Then as far foorth
as I can see, I ought to give no thanks for my salvation,
but onlie to thee my Lord Jesu, to whom I owe
the praise thereof, as to him which is my Savior and

The second Chapter,
Of the soules affinitie with Christ.

What thing is it, O God, that thou hast
done so much for me? Thou art not onelie christ not only forgyveth
synnes, but
gyveth unto us, and
his graces also.

contented to have forgiven me my sinnes,
but also hast given unto mee the right fortunate
gift of grace.

For it should suffice mee, I comming out of such a
danger, to be like a stranger used. But thou doest handle
my soule, if I durst so say it, as a mother, daughter, how god intreted
our soule, being flawed-reproduction

sister, and wife: notwithstanding, my Lord, I am the
trespasser, which am not woorthie to come neere the
doore of thy right high place, to asle bread, where thy
dwelling is. Oh what grace is this, that so suddenlie
thou vouchsafest to drawe my soule into such highnes,
that she feeleth hir selfe ruler of my bodie! She poore,
ignorant, and lame, doth find hir selfe with thee rich,
wise, and strong, bicause thou hast written in hir hart,
the roote of thy spirit and holie word, giving hir true
faith to receive it, which thing made hir to conceive
thy sonne, in beleeving him to be man, God, Saviour,
and also the true forgiver of sinnes. Therefore doest
thou assure hir, that shee is mother to thy Sonne, of
whome thou art the onlie father.

And F5v 6

And furthermore, O my father, here is a great love
of thy well dooing, that thy holie sonne hath taken on
him the bodie of a man, & hath mingled himselfe with
our ashes, which thing we may not understand, without
a most true faith. It hath pleased thee to put him
so neere us, that he did joine himselfe to our flesh, and
I seeing him to be called man, am bold to call him brother.
Now sith my soule may saie of hir selfe, that shee
is the sister of God, ought she not to have hir selfe assured
in him? Yes trulie. For thou doest declare with
great love, that hir creation was onlie of thy good wil,
which it pleaseth thee alwaies to have towards hir,
giving assurance, that before hir first daie, or time of
being provided for hir, thou thorough love hast made
hir, as thou of power along canst well doo it, and also
didst put hir within this bodie, not for to slacke with
sloth, but that both of them should have none other
exercise, but only to thinke how to doo some service unto

Then this truth maketh hir to feele that there is in
thee true paternitie. O what honor, what sweetnesse,
and what glorie hath the soule, which doeth alwaies
remember that she is thy daughter, and that in calling
thee father, shee doth thy commandement! What is
there more? Is that all? No, it doth please thee to Christ is the husband
of the sowle

give hir another name, to call hir thy wife, and that
she againe doo call thee husband, declaring therby how
thou hast freelie manifested the mariage of hir. By
baptisme hast thou made a promise, to give hir thy baptisme, Ive put
flawed-reproductiont us, all the goodes
flawed-reproductionriches of christ,
he taketh uppon
hym all over formes

goods and riches, and to take on thee hir sinnes: for she
hath nothing by heritage but sinne of hir first father
Adam. All hir treasures that she hath of nature, are
nothing else but sinnes, which thou hast tied upon the
Crosse, and paid all hir debts with thy goodes & lands.

Thou hast made hir so rich, and with so great a jointure
endued hir, that she knowing hir selfe to be thy wedded F6r 7
wedded wife, doth beleeve to be quit of all that she oweth,
esteeming verie little that shee hath heere beneath.
She forsaketh hir old father, and all the goods
that he giveth hir, for hir husbands sake. For surelie,
O my God, it hurteth my soule to be fed with such
good: and againe releeved in leaving the pleasures of
this world, for that which is eternal, and where peace
is without warre. Father, alas, what ought I to
thinke? Shall my spirit be so bold as to take upon him
to call thee father? yea, and also our father, for so hast
thou taught in the Pater noster. But to call me daughter,
hast thou so said? I praie thee tell me. Alas, yea
Lord, when with great sweetnes thou saidest: “Daughter,
lend me thy hart”
: and againe, thou saidest, “Daughter
thy faith hath saved thee.”

O my soule, in stead of lending, my Lord is readie to
give himselfe wholie unto thee: receive him then, and
do not permit that anie creature put him from thee, so
that for ever with faithfull stedfastnesse he may love
thee, with a daughterlie love. Now my Lord, if thou be
my father, may I thinke that I may be thy mother?
Indeede I can not well perceive, how I should conceive
thee that createdst me: but in this matter, thou
diddest satisfie my doubt, when in preaching and in
stretching forth thy hands, thou didst saie, “Those that
shall do the will of my father, they are my brethren, my
sister, and my mother.”
I beleve then, that hearing, and beleving sovol
is the mother of

reading the words that thou hast taught, and uttered
by thy holie Prophets and Apostles: the same also
which through thy true Preachers thou dost dailie declare
unto men, in beleeving it, and stedfastlie desiring
to fulfill the same, I conceive thee, and beare thee by

Therfore without anie feare I wil take upon me the
name of a mother. What? Mother of Christ? O sweet
virgine Marie, I beseech thee be not angrie that I take F6v 8
take up such a title: I do neither steale, nor usurpe anie
thing upon thy priviledge, for thou onelie above all
women, receivedst of him so great honour, that no
man can in himselfe comprehend, how he hath beene
willing to take in thee our flesh: for thou art the mother
and perfect virgine, before, and after, and in his
holie birth. In thy blessed wombe thou didst beare him
and nourish him, thou didst followe him in his tribulations,
and also in his teachings. Now brieflie to conclude,
thou hath with God found such grace, as the enimie
through malice and deceit had caused Adam and
his posteritie to lose: by Eve, and him we have lost it,
and by thy Sonne hath it been yeelded unto us againe.

Therefore hast thou bene rightfullie called full of
grace, as one to whome the Lord hath shewed aboundant
favour. Sith then that he, which is the best among
them that be good, and also the spring of all goodnesse
and power, hath created in thee so pure innocencie,
endued thee with such grace, & exalted thee to such
dignitie, that he in thee, of all other the example of vertue,
hath builded his dwelling and temple: he through
love did confirme himselfe with thee, and thou through
grace art confirmed in him, therefore no man can give
thee greater praise, then God himselfe hath given
thee, for there is no such praise, as is the same, which
commeth from God. Thou also hath had so firme and
constant a faith, that thou by the holie Ghost wast filled
with all godlinesse. I will not take upon me therefore
to give to thee greater praise, than the honour
which thy sonne and soveraigne Lord hath given thee. faithfull soule
is spirituall
mother of christ

And as thou art his corporall mother, so art thou thorough
faith his spirituall mother: and I following the
faith with all humblenesse, am his spirituall mother

Alas, my God, the brotherlinesse that thou hast towards
me, thorough thy humblenesse, in calling me sister,ster, F7r 9
is great, for thou hast broken the kindred of mine
old father, calling me daughter by adoption. Seeing
then that we have both one father, I will not feare to
call thee my brother. For thou hast so reported it by the
wise Salomon in his Canticle, saieng: “My sister and
spuse, thou hast wounded my hart with the sweete
looke of one of thine eies”
, &c. Alas my brother, I wish
for nothing else, but that in wounding thee, I might
finde my selfe wounded with thy love, to that would I
give over my selfe. And likewise, thou didest call mee
wife, speaking to me these amorous words: “Arise my
deere dove, and come hitherward my delectable spouse.”

Wherefore I may saie with loving faith, Thou art
mine and I am thine, bicause thou hast called me thy
love and faire spouse. If I be so, such hast thou made
me. Alas, doth it please thee to give me such names?
Trulie they are able to breake the hart, and cause it to
burne through love unspeakable, when it thinketh
upon the honour that thou doest unto the soule, which
is much greater than it hath deserved. A mother, a
mother? Alas, but of what child is it? My God, my
sonne? O Jesus what speech is this! Mother, daughter,
sister, and brother. O happie kindred! O what
sweetnesse doth proceede out of that paternitie! But
what daughterlie and reverent feare ought I to have
towards him, my father, yea and my creator, my protector,
and saviour, to be my brother? Alas, heere is a
great love: I will therfore saie with Salomon, Now
can my hart no longer refraine, but breake in sunder,
to make roome for the same so sweete a brother, so that
none other name be written in the same, but onlie the
name of my brother Jesus the sonne of God. None other
creature will I give place to, for all the scurging
and beating that can be done unto me: keepe my hart
then my deere brother and love, and let not thine enimie
enter into it.

The F7v 10

The third Chapter,
Of the soules infidelitie or apostasie
from God.

Omy sweete Father, my child, my brother,
and spouse, with hands joined, humblie upon
my knees I yeeld thee thanks and praises,
that it pleaseth thee to turne thy face
towards me, converting my hart, and covering
me with such grace, that thou doest see no more
my evils and sinnes. So well hast thou hidden them,
that it seemeth thou hast put them in forgetfulnesse:
yea and also they seeme to be forgotten of me, which
have done and committed them. For faith and love so
working in me, causeth me to forget them, wholie putting
my trust in thee alone.

Then my Father, in whome lieth unfeigned love,
whereof can I have feare in my hart? I confesse that
I have done all the evill that one creature can doo, and
that of my selfe I am naught. Also, I have offended
thee, as did the prodigall child, following the foolish
trade of the flesh, wherewith I have prodigallie spent
the substance and aboundance of goodes, which thou
heere hast given me to use to thy glorie: and for the mispending
of them, povertie hath taken me, and hath
withered me awaie, even as haie, and yeelded my spirit
dead for hunger, compelling me to eate the reliefe of
swine: but in such meates I found verie little savour.
Then I seeing my life to be so miserable, did returne
to thee my father againe, saieng: “Alas deere father, I
have sinned against heaven, and before thee, I am
therefore no more worthie to be called thy child.”
O bountifull and mercifull father, do thou no worsse
to me, than to one of thy houshold servants. Alas, deere
father, what love and zeale is this, that thou wouldest
not tarie my comming and praier, but speedilie stretching F8r 11
stretching foorth thy hands, receivedst me, when I did
thinke thou wouldest not looke on me: and so receiving
me, in stead to have punished me, thou didst assure me
of my salvation? Where is he then that shall punish
me, when my father shall denie him my sinne? There is
no Judge that can condemne me, unlesse God himselfe
will damne me: the want of goodnesse I feare not, for
I have my God for my father: my enimie shall do me
no harme, for my father will take all his strength awaie
from him. If I owe any thing, he shall paie it for
me: if I have deserved death, he as a king shall pardon
me, and deliver me from prison and death.

But heere is the woorst, what maner of mother have
I beene? For, after that I by faith had received the
name of a true mother, I became verie rude unto thee
my Sonne: because that after I had conceived and
brought thee foorth, I left reason, and being subject to
my will, not taking heed unto thee, I fell asleepe, and
gave place to my great enimie, the which, in the night
of ignorance, I being asleepe, did steale thee from me
craftilie, and in thy place she did put hir child, which
was dead, and so I did leese thee, which was a sorowfull
remorse for me. Thus did I loose thee my sonne, by
mine owne fault, because I tooke no heed to keepe thee.
Sensualitie my neighbour, I beeing in my beastlie
sleepe, did steale thee from me, and gave to me hir child,
which had no life in him, named sinne, whome I said
I would not have, but utterlie did forsake him.

She affirmed, that he was mine owne, but I knew
him to be hirs. For as soone as I came to the light of
grace, which thou hadst given me, then I knewe my
glorie to be changed, when I saw the dead child not to
be mine. For the same which was alive, whom she had
taken awaie, was my child: so apparant was the
change betweene Jesus and sinne. But now heere is a
strange thing, this old woman causeth me to keepe this F8v 12
this dead child, whome she reporteth to be mine, and
so will she mainteine. O Salomon, thou true and wise
Judge, thou hast heard this lamentable processe, and
ordeined to content the parties, that the child should
be divided in two parts. The false woman agreeth it
should be so, but I remembring him to be mine owne
sonne, which was alive, was rather content to leese
him, than to see his bodie parted in twaine. For true
and perfect love is never content with the one halfe
of that it loveth: rather I had therefore to weepe for
the whole, than to recover the one halfe without life.
Alas noble Salomon, give her the child which is alive.
For better it is for me to die, than to see my sonne
divided. But my Lord, thou didst better looke to it, than
I. For thou seeing the anguish that I did suffer, and
how I rather did forsake my right, than to behold such
cruelnesse, thou saiedst, “This is the true mother,” and
so caused them to give me my child againe, for whome
before my hart was sorowfull.

O sweete Jesus, thus hast thou proved me, how
much I loved thee: yea and when by sinne I had lost
thee, yet didst thou returne unto me. Alas, how gentlie
doest thou vouchsafe to come againe to hir, which being
let by sinne, could not keepe thee my sweete child,
my sweete sonne, my helper, my nourisher, of whome I
am an humble creature? Do not permit that ever I
do leave thee againe, for I do repent the time past.

Now come sensualitie with thy rablement of sinnes,
thou hast no power to make me to receive thy dead
child. For my sonne is strong and will defend me, he
shall not permit that thou take him anie more awaie
from me, his strength is greater than anie others,
therefore may I sleepe and take rest neere him. For all
things well considered, he shall keepe me from thine
assaults. O sweete rest of the mother, and the sonne together,
my sweete child, my God, onlie unto thee be the honour G1r 13
honour and praise, for that everie creature may see,
how it hath pleased thee to call me (lesse than nothing)
a mother: and the more it is strange and hard
to be done, the more ought thy goodnesse to have praise
for it. And further, thou hast retained me for thy sister,
wherefore I acknowledge my selfe more bound, than
to anie other creature.

Now I am sister unto thee, but so naughtie a sister,
that better it were for me that I were without the
name, than I to forget the name of adoption in so
noble a kindred, and also thy good and brotherlie behaviour
towards me. I with pride did rise against thee,
and not remembring my faults, but going astraie
from thee, did agree with Aaron my brother, being in
will to give judgement against thy works; and folowing
the example of Miriam, privilie I grudged against
thee, which thing caused me to have remorse in
my conscience. Alas right bountifull brother, and true
Moses, which doest all with goodnesse and justice, I
have esteemed thy workes to be even sinne, being so
bold to speake even rashlie, saieng: “Wherefore hast
thou maried a strange woman?”
Thou givest us a law,
and punishment, if we do not fulfill it, and then thou
wouldest not be bound to it, forbidding us the thing
which thou thy selfe doest.

For thou forbiddest us to kill anie man, and thou doest
kill, and sparest none, of three thousand, which thou
commandedst to be slaine. Further, God gave us in
commandement by thee, that we should not marrie
the daughter of a stranger, yet thou tookest thy wife
from among them. Alas my deere brother Moses,
with a great name of these words, which I knowe to
be foolish, with Aaron and Miriam, which is mine
owne wit, I imbraided thee, wherof I repent. For the
livelie voice of God, rebukinglie tooke me up before I
went out of the place. What wouldest thou then of G.j. my G1v 14
my sinne? Thou wouldest not have me punished, but
rather wouldest my salvation and health, in asking for
me this great benefit, that it might please God to mitigate
his judgement, the which thing thou couldest
not obtaine. Wherefore I became a Lazar, so that
all that looked on mee might well saie, I had not beene
wise: and for mine uncleannes and leprosie, I was put
out from the tents and tabernacles, from among the
people, because the sicke should not infect such as were
whole. Oh what soule can have a greater punishment,
than to be banished out of the companie of them
which are holie in God! But what didst thou my sweet
love and brother, seeing my repentance? Thou providedst
that my penance was soone at an end, and with
true love madest meanes for me, whereupon I returned
to thee. O what brother would, in stead to punish
his foolish sister, so naturallie cleave unto hir? For injurie,
grudge, and great offence by hir committed,
thou givest hir grace, and love in recompense. Alas
my brother, how exceeding is this thy love? Much
more is it than brotherhoode is bound to give, to so
poore and wretched a woman as I am. I have done
thee evill, and thou givest me good for it. I am thine,
and thou saiest, thou art mine: even so I am, and ever
will. I feare no more the great foolishnesse of Aaron
and Miriam, for no man may separate me from thee;
and now that we are together, as brother and sister,
I care little for all other, for thy land is mine inheritance.

Let us then keepe, if it please thee, but one houshold,
sith it hath pleased thee to humble thy selfe so much, as
to joine thy hart with mine, in making thy selfe a livelie
man. I do right hartilie thanke thee, and to thanke
thee as I ought, lieth not in my power. Take my meaning
then I praie thee, & excuse mine ignorance, seeing
I am of so great a kindred as to be thy sister. O my God, G2r 15
God, I have good cause to love, to praise, and to serve
thee unfeignedlie, and not to feare, nor desire anie
thing save thee onlie. Keepe me well then I humblie
praie thee, for I will aske none other brother nor friend
to helpe me. If anie father have had anie pitie upon
his children; if anie mother have taken anie care for
hir sonne; if anie brother have hid the sinne of his sister,
it is thou.

The fourth Chapter,
Of the entier affection and love of God towards
the sinfull soule of man.

Inever sawe, or else it was kept wondrous
secret, that ever anie husband would thoroughlie
forgive his wife, after she had
him once offended, and did returne unto

There have been manie of them, which for to avenge
their wrongs, have caused the Judges to put
them to death. Other, beholding their sinnes, did not
spare their owne hands to kill them. Other also, seeing
their faults to appeare, did send them home again
to their owne friends. And some, perceiving their evill
dispositions, have shut them up in prison. Now brieflie
to conclude upon their divers complexions, the end of
their pretence is punishment, and the least harme that
ever I could perceive in punishing them, is this, that
they would never see them againe. But I do wish, that
all of this mind should rather helpe to turne them,
than to forsake them. And therfore my God, I can find
no man comparable unto thee: for of love thou art the
perfect example. Now therefore I confesse with lowlie
hart, that I have broken to thee mine oth & promise.

Alas, thou hadest chosen me for thy wife, and didst
set me up in great state and honour. For what greater
honour may one have, than to be in the place of thy G.ij. wife, G2v 16
wife, which sweetelie taketh hir rest so neere to thee,
and not onlie in suretie of soule and bodie, but also of
all thy goodes, Queene, Mistresse, and Ladie? O what
great favour is it, that I so vile a creature, am so ennoblished
by thee to so honourable an husband! Now
to speake it brieflie, I have more by possessing of thee,
than anie man mortall can desire. Yet, when I remember
mine unwoorthie deserving, my hart doth sob
and sigh, mine eies let fall abundance of teares, my
mouth can not make too manie exclamations. For
there is neither new nor ancient writings, that can
shew so pitifull a case as the same is which I tell now.
Shall, or dare I tell it? May I pronounce it without
shame? Yea, for it is my confusion, not to shew the
great love of my husband: and for his worship to declare
my fault.

O my saviour, which wast crucified on the crosse for
my sinnes, this deede of thine is not such, as a father
to leave his sonne, or as a child to offend his mother,
or as a sister to chide and grudge. But alas, my fault is
such, and far greater. For the more familiaritie I have
with thee, and the more benefits I receive of thee, the
greater is mine offence, when I with thee dissemble;
speciallie that I should so doo, which am called thy
spouse, and loved of thee as thy soule. Shall I now tell
the truth? O my spouse, I have left thee, forgotten
thee, and am run awaie from thee; I did leave thee,
for to go at my vaine pleasure: I forsooke thee, and
chose me another: yea I refused thee the welspring of
all goodnesse, and faithfull promise. I did leave thee.
But whither went I? Into a place where nothing
was but cursednesse.

I have left thee my trustie friend and lover, worthie
to be beloved above all others: I have put thee aside,
O welspring of all healthsomnes, by mine owne wretched
will: yea I have forsaken thee, full of beautie, goodnesse, G3r 17
goodnesse, wisedome, and power, and sought to withdrawe
me from thy love. I have accepted thy great
enimies, that is, the divell, the world, and the flesh, against
whome for my sake thou foughtedst so sore on
the crosse, to set me at libertie, which was by them of
long time a prisoner and slave, and so bound, that no
man could cause me to humble my selfe. And as for the
love and charitie that I should have had towards
thee, they did quench it; so that the name of Jesus my
deare husband, which before I had found so sweet, was
to me tedious and hatefull, so that oftentimes I did
jest at it: and when I have heard the Gospell preached
or taught, the word which I have hard, hath not
tarried with me, but as a feather doth in the winde.

I went never yet to heare thy word preached, but
for a fashion onlie, which was a worke of hypocrisie: I
was also annoied, when I hard speake of thee, because
I was more willing to go at my pleasure. Now brieflie
to conclude, all that thou didst forbid me, I fulfilled:
and all that thou commandedst me to do, I did eschue,
and this was the cause why I loved not thee. But yet
Lord, for all that I did thus hate thee, and forsake
thee, ran awaie from thee, and betraied thee, should I
give place to anie other? Hast thou suffered, that I
should be mocked, either yet beaten, or killed? Hast thou
put me in darke prison, or banished me for ever, setting
naught by me? Hast thou taken awaie thy gifts and
pretious jewels againe from me, to punish me for my
unfaithfull fruits? Have I lost my jointure, which
thou promisedst me, through mine owne offence done
against thee? Am I accused by thee, afore the eternall
father, for a naughtie woman? Hast thou forbidden
me thy presence, as I have deserved, and that I should
never appeare in thine house?

O most true husband, pure and perfect friend, the
most loving among all lovers! Alas, thou hast done otherwiseG.iij. therwise G3v 18
for me. For thou hast diligentlie sought for
me, when I was going into the most deepe place of
Hell, where all evils are done. When I was farther
from thee, both in hart and mind, and directlie out of
the waie, then didst thou lovinglie call me backe, saiend,
“My deare daughter, hearken and see, and bow
thine eare toward me: forget that strange nation,
with whome thou hast run astraie, and also the house
of thine owne father, where thou hast dwelt so long,
and then shall the King of all faithfulnesse desire thy
But when thou Lord sawest, that thy sweete
and gratious calling did not profit me, then begannest
thou to crie to me with a lowd voice, saieng: “Come unto
me all you which are wearilie loden with labour,
for I am he that shall plentiouslie refresh you, and feed
you with the bread of life.”

Alas, sweet Lord, unto all these sweet words would
I not hearken, but rather doubted whether it were
thou, that so spake unto me, or else a fabulous writing
that so said. I was so foolish, that without love I read
thy word: I considered not the comparison of the
Vineyard, which brought foorth thornes and briers in
stead of good fruit, and that it signified me, that so had
done. I knew also, that when thou didst call the barren
wife, saieng, “Returne Shulamite,” that thou didst
speake it, that I should forsake my sinnes. Yet for all
these words did I, as though I had understood never
a whit. But when I had perused the Prophet Jeremie,
I confesse that I had in the reading thereof,
feare in my hart, and bashfulnesse in my face. I will
tell it, yea with teares in mine eies, and all Lord for
thine honor, & to suppresse my pride. Thou hast said by
that holie Prophet: If a woman have offended hir
husband, and is so left of him, for going astraie with
other: if he thereupon refuseth hir, is she not to be esteemed
polluted, and of no value?

The G4r 19

The lawe doth consent to put hir in the hands of
justice, or to drive hir awaie, and so never to take hir
againe. “Thou hast made a separation betweene thy
bed and mine,”
saith he unto me, “and placed forren lovers
in my roome, committing with them fornication:
yet for all this, thou maist returne to me againe, for I
will not alwaies be angrie against thee. Lift up therfore
thine eies, and looke about thee on everie side, and
then shalt thou well see, into what place thy sinne hath
lead thee, and how filthilie thou liest in the earth. O
poore soule, looke where thy sinne hath put thee, even
upon the high waies, where thou didst waite, and tarie
to beguile them that came by, even as a theefe
doth, which is hidden in the wildernesse. Therefore
thou, in fulfilling thy wicked pleasure, hast with fornication
infected all the earth, which was about thee:
thine eies, thy forehead, and thy face, have lost all their
good maner, for they were such as an harlot hath, and
yet thou hadest no shame of thy sinne.”

And the surplus that Jeremie saith, constreineth
me to knowe my wretched life, and to wish with sorowfull
sighes, the houre, the moneth, the daie, the
yeare, and time that my life might have an end, yeelding
my selfe condemned, and worthie to lie for ever in
the everlasting fire. The same feare which proceedeth
of thee, and not of my selfe, putteth me rather in hope,
than in despaire, as often as I do remember my sinne.
For as soone as thou knowest my will, bowing under
thine obedience, then putting in me a livelie faith,
thou didst use great clemencie, so that after I knewe
thee to be that same Lord, Maister, and King, whome
I ought to have feared, then found I my feare not
quenched, but mixed with love, beleeving that thou
art so gratious, gentle, and sweete, and so pitifull an
husband, that I which should rather have hid me,
than to have shewed my selfe, was not then in feare to G.iiij. go G4v 20
go foorth, and to looke for thee, & so seeking, I found thee.

But what didst thou then? Didst thou refuse me? No
Lord, but rather hast excused me. Hast thou turned
thy face from me? No, for thine eie so sweetlie penetrated
my hart, that wounding it almost to the death, it
did give to me remorse of my sinnes. Thou hast not
put me backe with thy hand: but with both thine
armes, and with a sweet and manlie hart, thou didst
meete with me by the waie, and not once reproving
my faults, embracedst me. I could not see in beholding
thy countenance, that ever thou didst once perceive
mine offences: wherefore thou hast done so much for
me, as though I had never broken promise with thee.
For thou didst hide my fault from everie bodie, in giving
me againe the part of thy bed, and also in shewing,
that the multitude of my sinnes are so hidden and
overcome by thy great victorie, that thou wilt never
remember them more: so that now thou seest nothing
in me, but the graces, gifts, and vertues, which it
hath pleased thy free goodnesse to give me.

O charitie most pretious! I do see well, that thy
goodnesse doth consume my lewdnesse, and maketh me
a new, godlie, and joifull creature. The evill that was
mine, thou hast destroied, and made me so perfect a
creature, that all the good a husband can do to his
wife, thou hast done it to me, in giving me a faithfull
hope in thy promises. Now have I through thy good
grace, recovered the place of thy wife. O happie, and
desired place! O gratious bed! O thou right honourable
seate of peace, rest from all warre, high sleepe of
honour, separate from the earth! Doest thou receive
this unworthie creature, giving hir the scepter and
crowne of thine Empire and glorious Realme? Who
did ever heare of such a storie, as to raise up one so
high, which of hir selfe was nothing; and maketh of
great valure, which of it selfe was naught?

The G5r 21

The fift Chapter,
Of the union of death and life in the
faithfull soule by Christ.

Alas, what is this? For casting mine eies
on high, I see thy goodnes, thine unknowne
grace, and thy love so incomprehensible,
that my sight is woonderfull in beholding
thee: but looking downeward, I might see
what I am, and what I was willing to be. Alas, I do
see in it the lewdenesse, darkenesse, and extreme deepenes
of mine evils. My death, which by humblenes closeth
mine eie: the admirable goodnesse of thee, and the
unspeakable evill, which is in me: thy right highnes, &
pure majestie, my right fragill and mortall nature: thy
gifts, goods & beatitude, my malice & great unkindnes.

O how good art thou unto me! and how unkind have
I bene unto thee? this that thou wilt, and this that I
pursue? Which things considered, causeth me to marvell,
how it pleaseth thee to joine thy selfe to me, seeing
there is no comparison betweene us both. Thou art
my God, and I am thy worke: thou my creator, and I
thy creature. Now to speake brieflie, though I cannot
define, what it is to be of thee; yet know I my selfe to
be the least thing that may be compared unto thee. O
most happie love! Thou madest this agreement, when
thou didst joine life & death together, but the union hath
made alive death; life dieng, and lufe without end, have
made our death a life. Death hath given unto life a
quickening, that through death I being dead, may receive
life; and by death, I am ravished with him which is alive.
I live in him, otherwise of my self I am dead. And
as concerning bodelie death, to me it is nothing, but a
comming out of prison: death is to me life, for through
death, I am alive. And as this mortall life filleth me
full of care and sorowe, so death yeeldeth me content.

O G5v 22

O what a godlie thing is it to die, that the soule may
live! For in delivering hir from this mortall death, she
is delivered from the death miserable, and matched
with hir most mightie lover. Is not then the soule
blamelesse, which faine would dy to have life? Yes trulie,
and ought to call death hir welbeloved friend. O
sweet death, pleasant sorowe, mightie king, delivering
from all wickednes! O Lord, those which trust in thee,
and in thy death, are mortified by the hope they have
in thy passion.

Thus with a sweet sleepe dost thou put them out of
that death, which causeth manie to lament. O how
happie is the same sleepe unto him, which when he awaketh,
doth find through thy death, life everlasting!
For death is none other thing to a Christian man, but
Mors quid? a libertie or deliverance from his mortall band: and
the death which is fearefull to the wicked, is pleasant
and acceptable to them that are good, bicause that
death through death is destroied.

Therefore my God, if I were rightlie taught, I
should call death life, the end of labour, and beginning
of everlasting joie. For I knowe that long life doth let
me from the sight of thee. O death come and doe thine
office on me, that I may see my spouse: or else sweet
love, transforme me in thee, and then shall I the better
tarie the comming of death! O sweet Lord, let me die,
that I may live with thee! For there is none other
that can deliver me, but thou onelie. O my Saviour,
through faith I am planted and joined with thee. O
what union is this, sith that through faith I am assured
to thee, and may call thee father, brother, sonne,
and husband!

O my father! what paternitie? O my brother! what
fraternitie? O my child! what delectation? O my
spouse! what conjunction is this? A father full of humilitie,
a brother having our similitude, a sonne engendredgendred G6r 23
through faith and love, a husband loving and
releeving in all extremitie. But whom dost thou love?
Alas, it is she whom thou hast withdrawne from the
snare, wherin through malice she was bound, and hast
put hir in place, name and office of a daughter, sister,
mother, and wife. O my Saviour, it is a great favour
of sweetnesse, right pleasant, and delectable; when a
soule after the hearing of thy word, shall cal thee without
feare, his father, his brother, child and spouse: such
a soule doubtlesse may continuallie burne in love.

Is there anie love, unlesse it be this maner of love,
but it hath some evill condition? Is there anie pleasure
to be hereto compared? Is there anie honour to
this, but may be accounted shame? Yea, is there anie
profit equall to this? Moreover to conclude, is there
anything, that I could more earnestlie love? Alas no.
For he that unfeinedlie loveth God, reputeth all these
things worldlie, of lesse value than the dunghill. Pleasure,
profit, and honour of this world, are all but vanitie
and trifles unto him which hath found God. Such
love is so profitable, honourable, & abundant in grace,
that I dare saie, she onlie sufficeth the hart of a godlie
soule, and yeeldeth hir so constant, that she never desireth,
or would have other. For whosoever hath God,
as he ought to be had, accounteth all other things superfluous
or vaine.

Now thanked be my Lord, and my father; through
faith I have gotten the same love: wherfore I ought
to be satisfied and content, Now have I thee my father,
for defence of my wanton foolishnes, and my long
youth. Now have I thee my brother, for to succour my
sorowes, wherein I find no end. Now have I thee my
sonne, for my feeble age, as an onlie staie. Now have I
thee a true and faithfull husband, for the satisfieng of
my whole hart. And now, sith I have thee, I will, and
doo forsake all them that are in the world, holding thee fast, G6v 24
fast, that thou maiest no more escape me. Seeing now
that I have possessed thee, I will look upon none other
thing, that might keepe me backe, from the beholding
of thy divinitie. Seeing that I doo heare thee, I will
heare nothing that letteth me from the fruition of
thy voice. Seeing that I may freelie talke with thee,
I will common with none other. Seeing it pleaseth
thee to put me so neere thee, I will rather die, than to
touch anie other: and seeing I serve thee, I will serve
none other. Seeing that thou hast joined thy hart
with mine, if it depart from thee, let it be punished for
ever. For the departing from thy love is harder than
any damnation. I doo not feare the paine of ten thousand
hels, as I doo feare the once loosing of thee.

Alas my God, my Father, and Creator, doo not thou
suffer that the enimie, inventer of all sinne, have anie
power to make mee to loose thy presence. For whosoever
shall feele the losse of thy love, shall saie, he would
rather be bound for ever in hell, than to feele the paine
thereof one moment of time. O my Saviour, doo thou
not permit, that ever I depart from thee againe; but
that it may please thee, to put me in such a place, that
my soule, through wantonnesse of sinne, be never separated
from thy love.

The sixt Chapter,
Of the longing of the soule, by death to
feede with Christ.

In this world I can not perfectlie have
this my desire; which thing maketh mee
ferventlie to desire the departing from
this bodie of sinne, not fearing death, nor
anie of hir instruments. For what feare
ought I to have of my God, which through love offered
himselfe, and suffered death, not of debt, or dutie; but G7r 25
but onlie bicause he would, for my sake, under the power
of mortall death? Now is Jesus dead, in whom we
are all dead, and through his death we all shall live: I
meane those, which through faith are partakers of
his passion. For even as the death, before the great
mysterie of the crosse, was hard to everie man, & there
was no man but was feared therewith, considering
the copulation of the bodie, and the soule, their order,
love, and agreement; so were their sorowes extreme,
in departing of the one from the other.

But since it hath pleased the sweet Lambe to offer
himselfe upon the crosse, his great love hath kindled
a fire within the hart, so vehement, that everie true
beleever esteemeth the passage of death but a plaie, or
pastime, and so provoketh other constantlie to die. And
even as the feare of death doth retrograde us: so
ought love to give us a desire to die. For if true love be
unfainedlie within the hart of man, he can feele non
other thing; bicause love is so strong of it selfe, that she
keepeth all the room, and putteth out all other desires,
suffering nothing there but God onlie. For wheresoever
true and perfect love is, there is remembred neiobscured
ther feare, nor sorowe: yet our owne pride to attaine
honour, causeth us to seeke death by manie strange
waies. As if a man, to have his foolish pleasure, putteth
himselfe in jeopardie of life: if a merchant, to obtaine
riches, doth danger himselfe somtime for a small
value: if the theefe, conceiving of roberie, or murther,
crueltie, or deceit, doth so blind a man, that he doubteth
nothing the danger of death, neither yet misfortune,
when he seeketh to advenge himselfe, or doth any
other evill: if the furie of sicknesse, or the rankenesse of
melancholie, causeth a man fiercelie to wish for death,
or oftentimes to drowne, hang, or kill themselves.
Such evils are sometimes so great, that they cause
their pained patient to choose death for libertie. If it so G7v 26
so be then, that these paines full of evils and imperfections,
cause them not to feare the hazard of death,
but rather to thinke that death tarieth too long: alas,
what ought true & laudable love to doo? What ought
the love of the eternall creature to wish? Should she
stir a hart in such wise, that she being maistered with
such affections, should feele none other thing in hir?
Alas yea. For death is a pleasant thing to the soule,
which is in love with God, and esteemeth the passage
easie, thorough the which she commeth out of prison.
For the hard waie, where through she commeth, can
be no let for hir to embrace hir husband. O my Saviour,
how good and pleasant is the same death, through
whom I shall have the end of all sorowes: & by whom
I shall enjoie thy sight without impediment, and be
transformed into the likenesse of thy majestie!

O death, through thy force I trust to have such honour,
as upon my knees with crieng and weeping I
dailie doo desire. Therefore come quicklie, and make an
end of my sorowes. O happie daughters, right holie
soules, joined to the citie Jerusalem, open your eies,
and with pitie looke upon my desolation! I beseech
you, that for me, and in my name, ye doo shew unto my
deere and best beloved, my God, my friend, & my King,
how that everie houre of the daie I doo languish for
his presence. O sweet death, come unto me, and lovinglie
bring me unto my Lord God. O death, where
is now thy sting and dart? Alas, are they vanished
from mine eies? Is not rigour changed into sweetnesse,
seeing that for my sake, my friend did
suffer upon the crosse, whose death
doth so encourage me, that
death I wish to followe

The G8r 27

The seventh Chapter,
Of the trust the soule hath in the merits of hir Redeemer,
against the dread of hell and desperation.

Sith then that death is so pleasant to me,
that it pleaseth me more than it feareth
me; then ought I to feare nothing, but
onlie the right judgement of God. My
sinnes with his just ballance shall be weied,
and all that I have done, openlie shall be shewed:
my thoughts and words shall be better knowne, than
they were written in a roll. Wherefore I may not
thinke, that charitie would offend justice and truth.
For certaine it is, whosoever liveth unfaithfullie, shall
be punished in everlasting paine. For God is just, and
his judgement righteous, and all that he doth is perfect
in all things. What am I then, considering mine
owne righteousnesse? A wretch and poore creature.

I knowe that all the works of just men, are so full the workes of the just
men, ar full of im
perfection, oobscured
than ar impertaobscured

of imperfection, that afore God, they are more filthie
than mire, or other vilenesse. What will it be then
concerning the sins which I have committed, whereof
I feele the burden importable? I can nothing else
saie, but that I have woon by them damnation. Is
this the end? Shall despaire then be the comfort of
my great ignorance? Alas my God, no? For the invisible
faith causeth me to beleeve, that all things, which Faith doth cōonvert er
synnes into good.

are impossible to man, are possible unto thee; so that
thou doo convert my worke, which is nothing, into
some good worke of thine in me, which is speciallie
faith. Then my Lord, who shall condemne me? Or
what Judge will damne me? Sith that thou, which If christ acquit
who can cōondemdamaged

art my Judge, art also my father, my spouse, and my
refuge. Alas, what father? Such as doth never condemne
his child: but alwaies doth excuse and defend him. G8v 28

Then I perceive to have none other excuser, but
Jesus Christ, which is my spouse, and my redeemer,
whose death hath restored me my lost inheritance. For
he made himselfe my man of lawe, shewing his so worthie
merits afore his father, wherewith my great
debt is so aboundantlie recompensed, that in judgement
it is nothing. O redeemer, here is a great love: I
find but few such men of lawe. O sweete Jesus, it is to
thee that I am a debtor, yet doest thou both praie and
speake for me. And moreover, when thou doest see that
I am poore, with the aboundance of thy goods thou doest
paie my debts. O imcomprehensible sea of all goodnesse!
O my deare father, doest thou vouchsafe to be
my Judge, not willing the death of a sinner? O Jesus
crucifier and saviour of the soule, friend above
all friends: thou being my man of law, didst excuse and
speake for me, where thou couldst justlie have accused

I feare no more therefore the crueltie of mine enimie,
for the lawe by thee is satisfied for all: the paiment
is so made by my sweete spouse, that the lawe can aske
nothing of me, but it is paid by him. For as I beleeve,
that he hath taken all my sinnes upon him, and hath
given me in place of them his owne goodes in aboundance:
so, O my Saviour, thou presenting thy vertues,
doest content the lawe. And when she will rethe law cōondemming us
of synne is satisfied
through christ

proch me of my sinnes, thou doest shew hir how willinglie,
in thine owne flesh, thou hast taken the discharge
of them, through the conjunction of our mariage.
Also upon the Crosse, through thy passion, thou
hast made satisfaction for it. Morover, thine onlie charitie
hath given me this, that thou hast for me deserved.
Therefore, seeing thy merite to be mine, the lawe
can aske nothing of me. Now then will I feare no
more the judgement, but with desire, more than with perforce, H1r 29
perforce, I will tarrie the time that I shall see my
Judge, and heare a just judgement of him.

I knowe that thy judgement is just, and that there
is no fault therein, though mine infidelitie is woorthie
to suffer the cruelnesse of hell. For if I do onlie consider
my deserving, yet I can see nothing in it that can
keepe me from the fire of hell. For true it is, that the hell prepared for
the divell & his

torment of hell was prepared for the Divell and his
children. So if anie man have set his minde, to be like
to the Divell, by sensuall appetite, then ought he, as
the Divell, to be paid with a like reward. But if a man
through contemplation of the soule, do hold of thee, his heven purchaseddamaged
christ for the elect

Angell of counsell, vertue, and perfection, he is sure to
obtaine heaven, which is a place of thy deserving for
him: then shall the wicked be punished, with the same
punishment, which they ought to have, to whom they
have joined themselves. For sith they folowed Satan,
they must enjoie such place as is for him, and his Angels

Now I, considering the diversitie of both the sorts,
am little comforted in spirit by this. For I cannot denie,
but that I am more like the Divell, than the Angell
of light: wherefore I feare and tremble. For as
the Angell is pure and perfect, so am I unpure and
unperfect, and am nothing like unto him. But thus I
confesse, that to the other I am so like in my dooings,
and so accustomed in his waies, that of his paine and
torment I ought to be partaker. For the cruell sinne
which hath bound me in hell, is so great, and his force
so strong, that it letteth nothing to come from it, neither
feareth it the contrarie assault. But he, whose
force lieth in this kind of strength, knoweth not how
his strength goeth awaie, when a stronger than he
commeth in place.

I could never yet see, that anie man by merite, or
paines taking, could ever yet vanquish that hell, save H.j. onlie christ H1v 30
onlie he, which did the great assault through his unspeakable
charitie, when he humbled himselfe to the
crosse, whereby he hath vanquished and overcome his
enimie, and robbed hell of his power: so that now, it
hath no more force and strength to keepe that soule,
which putteth hir trust in God. Then beleeving in the
great strength that my saviour hath, I do not set by
hell and sinne. For sinne can have no hold of me, unles
it be to shew how my God is mercifull, strong, mightie,
and a puissant vanquisher of all the evils within
my hart. If by sinnes forgivenesse, is the glorie of my
most loving saviour: then ought I also to beleeve, that
my glorie is increased by his love, and that I am planted
and graffed in him.

His honour onlie doth honour all his, and his riches
doo replenish everie one with his goods. Then death,
hell, and sinne are overcome by him. O gluttonous
hell! where is thy defence? Thou cruell villaine sinne,
where is thy tyrannous power? O Death! where is Death in steade of
death gyveth life, &
synne though it worke
to condemne us, reacheth
flawed-reproduction ladder wherby we
clime to heven.

thy sting, and victorie, which are so much spoken of? In
stead of death, thou death givest me life, and so doest
thou contrarie to thy will. Also, thou sinne covetest to
drawe each creature to damnation. Thou givest me a
ladder, to reach thereby that godlie Citie Jerusalem:
yet wouldst thou of thy cursed nature, that mine eternall
maker should loose his creature: but through his
love and grace, the sorie remembrance of thine uncomlinesse,
doth cause hir by repentance againe to come,
and submit hir selfe unto God, whose inestimable goodnesse
causeth thee to loose thy whole labour, which thou
takest in hand. For the number that thou pretendest to
have, thou shalt not have, because that the comforshaddow of christes
passion is a mightie
protection to the sowle

table shadowe of Christ his passion, is such a mightie
protection to the soule, that he needeth neither to
doubt death, sinne, nor hell. Is there anie thing then,
that can pull me backe, if God be willing, through the gift H2r 31
gift of faith to drawe me to him? I meane such a faith,
as we must needes have, to obtaine the high graces
from above: and also such a faith, as through charitie
doth joine the humble servant to his maker. Now I
being joined unto him, ought to have no feare of travell,
paine, nor sorowe. For whosoever doth willinglie
suffer anie maner of death, paine, or sorowe, for the
truth, as Christ did, he shall feele in such torment, great
comfort & consolation for his soule: knowing all this,
I my self am weake, yet with God I am right strong.

Through his comfort I may do all things, and his
love is so constant, and permanent, that it varieth not
for anie worldlie thing. Who can then withdrawe me
from his grace? Surelie the great height of heaven,
the depth of hell, the breadth of the whole earth, neither
death, nor sinne, which dailie doth warre against
me, can separate me one minute from the great love
and charitie, that my heavenlie father, through Jesus
, hath unto me. His goodnesse is such, that he loveth
me, which hath not all times loved him; and if I
now love him, then shall I feele his love increase in
me. But because my love is not a worthie love to him,
I desire his love to be mine, which I feele such as it
were mine owne: his desire is to love, and his love inflameth
my hart with a heavenlie love.

And through such love, he findeth himselfe, that his
owne deede yeeldeth him well content, and not my love
or strength: thus contenting himselfe, his love doth
more increase in me, than I can of him desire.

The eight Chapter,
Of the incomprehensible love of Christ to the sinfull
soule: and benefits that come of a true faith.

Otrue lover, the fountaine or welspring of all
charitie, and onlie purse of the heavenlie treasure!
Ought I to thinke, or dare I saie what H.ij. thou H2v 32
thou art? May I write, or can anie mortall man comprehend
thy goodnesse, or love? And if thou print in
mans hart, can he expresse it? No surelie. For the capacitie
of man cannot comprehend the unmeasurable
goodnesses which are in thee. For naturall reason doth
shew us, how there is no comparison betweene an eternall
and a mortall thing: but when through love
the mortall is joined with the eternall, the mortall
thing is so filled with the eternall, that it cannot find
the end therof: for it hath more good thereby, than it
can conteine or hold. Therfore doth man thinke, which
hath one sparke of the love of God, that he hath all the
world therewith: even as we see the Sunne, with one
onlie sparke of his light, doth blinde the eie, and yet
doth he withhold from it his great light. If then you
should aske the eie, what it hath seene, he would saie,
that it hath beholden the whole brightnes of the same.
Neverthelesse, he is so content, that it seemeth unto
him as though he had so much light as the Sunne
conteineth, which if he had more than the said sparke,
he were not able to suffer it. Even so the soule, which
through faith doth feele one sparke of the love of God,
doth finde therewith the heate so great and marvellous,
so sweet and delicious, that it is impossible to hir
to declare what thing the same love is. For the little
thereof, that she hath felt, doth yeeld hir mind satisfied,
and yet desiring more, whereof she hath ynough: thus
doth the live, languishing and sighing in hir selfe.

The hart that doth feele that he hath received too
much, hath conceived such a desire in this too much,
that he alwaies desireth to receive the thing which he
cannot have, neither is he worthie to receive it. He
knoweth not the good that he hath alreadie to be unspeakable,
yet would he have more of that, whereof he
cannot skill: trulie he cannot feele or thinke the good
which is in him. Then lieth it not in my power, to tell what H3r 33
what thing the love of God is, sith I have no knowledge
of the ferventnesse thereof. He that thinketh to
have all this love within his hart, can not truelie declare
what thing it is: happie is he therefore which
hath such aboundance of this love, that he may saie,
“My God, I have ynough of it.”

He which hath this love within him, dare not much
boast thereof, least in much speaking he do loose it, unlesse
he do it, to edifie his neighbour to salvation. The
impossibilitie then of the declaration of this love, shall
make me hold my peace. For there is no sainct so perfect,
if he will speake of the love of the high God, of his
goodnes, sweetnes, graces, and of all things else, which
pertaine to him, but looking a lowe, shall find himselfe
unworthy, and so stop his mouth. I then, a worme
of the earth, lesse than nothing, ought to cease, and not
to speake of the incomparable highnesse of this love:
yet were it too much unkindnesse to be noted in me, if I
had written nothing, having that done unto me, which
would satisfie a much better wit than mine is. For hee
that would hide the goodnesse of God, so good a maister,
should commit a sin worthie to be punished with
everlasting paine.

Therefore come O happie Paule, which hast tasted
so much of the same sweet honnie, beeing blind for the
space of three daies, and rapt up into the third heaven,
and satisfie (I beseech thee) mine ignorance, and tell me
what in such vision thou hast seene? Harken then what
he saith. O the unspeakable highnes of the aboundant
riches or treasure, both of the wisdome and knowledge
of God! How incomprehensible are his judgements,
and how unsearchable are his waies unto our
weake wits? O holie Paule, thy words cause me much
to marvell, that thou having knowledge, and so heavenlie
secrets, wouldest speake no further in them. At
the least yet tell thou me, what thing I may hope to H.iij. have, H3v 34
have, throgh such godlie love, as grace hath wrought
in me; and I will give eare unto thy words: neither
hath the eie seene, nor yet the eare heard, neither yet
hath it ever entred into the hart of man, what God
hath prepared for them that love him. O blessed Paul,
all this yet that thou hast said, is for none other purpose,
but to provoke me earnestlie to love, willing me
by thy words to thinke, that thou canst none otherwise
declare of it, and so give mine hart to patience,
and hope of that thing, which never man yet could see,
or yet deserve, although manie through love have died.

O excellent gift of faith, whereof so much good commeth,
that it causeth man to possesse the things which
he can not comprehend! For faith, joined with truth,
bringeth foorth hope, whereby perfect charitie is engendred:
and charitie is God, as witnesseth the Apostle.
If we have charitie, then have we also God therewith,
and then is God in us, and we in him; and all
this commeth of the benefit of faith. For he dwelleth
in all men, which have true faith. Thus have we a
greater treasure than we can tell of, nor yet anie man
expresse unto us.

Now to conclude, sith that so great an Apostle, as is
S. Paule, will speake no further of God, and his inestimable
love; I will (according to his righteous example
and doctrine) hold my peace and be still, following
neverthelesse his teachings. Notwithstanding,
though herein I acknowledge my selfe but earth and
dust, yet may I not faile to yeeld thanks to mine eternall,
and living God, for such great graces and benefits,
as it hath pleased him to give me. Unto that
everlasting king of heaven, immortall, invisible,
incomprehensible, mightie and wise, onlie to
him be all honour, praise, glorie, magnificence
and love, for ever
and ever: Amen.

¶These H4r 35

These foure clauses or texts of Scripture,
are added to the worke by the
Queenes Majestie.

INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to wwp@neu.edu that regMe is unmatched.Ecclesiasticus. 25, verse. 17. “There is not a more wicked head, than
the head of a Serpent: and there is no
wrath above the wrath of a woman.
But he that hath gotten a vertuous woman, hath
gotten a goodlie possession: she is unto him an
helpe and piller, whereupon he resteth.
It were better to dwell with a Lion and Dragon,
than to keepe house with a wicked woman.”
INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to wwp@neu.edu that regMe is unmatched.Ecclesiasticus. 7, verse. 19. “Yet depart not from a disecreete and good woman,
that is fallen to thee for thy portion in the
feare of the Lord: for the gift of hir honestie is
above gold.”

The Christian praiers of our Sovereigne
Ladie Queene Elizabeth, which hir grace
made in the time of hir trouble, and imprisonment
in the Tower, and after
hir Coronation.

Helpe me now, O God, for I have none other
friends but thee alone. And suffer mee
not (I beseech thee) to build my foundation
upon the sands: but upon the rocke, wherebyH.iiij. by H4v 36
all blasts of blustering weather may have no power
against mee, Amen.

Another praier made by hir Majestie, when she was in
great feare and doubt of death, by murther.

Grant, O God, that the wicked may have no
power to hurt or beetraie me; neither suffer
anie such treason and wickednesse to proceed
against me. For thou, O God, canst mollifie
all such tyrannous harts, and disappoint all such cruell
purposes. And I beseech thee to heare me thy creature
which am thy servant, and at thy commandement,
trusting by thy grace ever so to remaine, Amen.

Another praier and thankesgiving made by hir
grace, as she rode in hir Chariot from the
Tower, to be crowned Queene at

O Lord almightie, and everlasting God, I give
thee most hartie thanks, that thou hast beene
so mercifull unto me, as to spare mee, to behold
this joifull daie. And I acknowledge,
that thou hast dealt as woonderfully with me, as thou
didst with thy true and faithfull servant Daniel the
Prophet, whom thou deliveredst out of the den from
the crueltie of the greedie raging lions: even so
was I overwhelmed, and onelie by thee
delivered. To thee therfore be onlie
thanks, honour and praise
for ever and ever,

The rest of the praiers belonging to hir Majestie to use,
are to be found in the beginning of the third Lampe.

H5r 37

The Lamentation or Complaint of a
sinner, made by the most vertuous and right
gratious Ladie Queene Catherine, bewailing
the ignorance of hir blind life, led
in superstition: verie profitable to the
amendment of our lives.

The first Chapter,
Of an humble confession of sinnes to the
glorie of God.

When I consider, in the bethinking
of mine evil and wretched
former life, mine obstinate, stonie,
and untractable heart, to have so
much exceeded in evilnesse, that it
hath not onelie neglected, yea contemned,
& despised Gods holie precepts
and commandements: but
also imbraced, received, and esteemed vaine, foolish, and
feined trifles, I am partlie by the hate I owe to sinne,
who hath reigned in me, and partlie by the love I owe
to all Christians, whom I am content to edifie, even
with the example of mine owne shame, forced and constrained
with my hart and words, to confesse and declare
to the world, how ingrate, negligent, unkind, and
stubborne I have beene to God my Creator: and how
beneficiall, mercifull, and gentle he hath been alwaies
to me his creature, being such a miserable and wretched

Trulie I have taken no little small thing upon me,
first to set foorth my whole stubbornesse, and contempt in H5v 38
in words, the which is incomprehensible in thought
(as it is in the INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to wwp@neu.edu that regMe is unmatched.12. Psalme) “Who understandeth his
Next this, to declare the excellent benefiGods mercies, over
all his workes,
INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to wwp@neu.edu that regMe is unmatched.Psal. 195. 9.

cence, mercie and goodnesse of God, which is infinite,
and unmeasurable. Neither can all the words of Angels,
and men, make relation thereof, as apperteineth
to his most high goodnesse. Who is he that is not forced
to confesse the same, if he consider what he hath received
of God, & doth dailie receive? Yea, if men would
not acknowledge and confesse the same, the stones obscured
would crie it out. Trulie I am constrained and forced
to speake and write thereof, to mine owne confusion
and shame; but to the glorie and praise of God. For he,
as a loving father, of most abundant and high goodobscured
nesse, hath heaped upon me innumerable benefits: and
I contrarie, have heaped manifold sinnes, despising
that which was good, holie, pleasant, and acceptable
in his sight; and choosing that which was delicious,
pleasant, and acceptable in my sight.

And no marvell it was that I so did. For I would
not learne to knowe the Lord, and his waies; but loved
darknesse better than light, yea darknesse seemed
to me light. I embraced ignorance, as perfect knowledge;
and knowledge seemed to me superfluous and
vaine. I regarded little Gods word, but gave my selfe
to vanities, and shadowes of the world. I forsooke him
in whom is all truth; and followed the vaine foolish
imaginations of my hart. I would have covered my
sinnes with the pretence of holinesse: I called superstition
godlie meaning, and true holinesse errour. The
Lord did speake manie pleasant and sweet words unto
me, and I would not heare: he called me diverslie, but
through frowardnesse I would not answere.

Mine evils and miseries be so manie, and so great,
that they can accuse me even to my face. Oh how miserablie
and wretchedlie am I confounded, when for the H6r 39
the multitude and greatnesse of my sinnes I am compelled
to accuse my selfe! Was it not a marvellous
unkindnesse, when God did speake to me, and also call
me, that I would not answere him? What man so
called would not have heard? Or what man hearing,
would not have answered? If an earthlie Prince had
spoken, either called, I suppose there be none but
would willinglie have done both. Now therfore, what
a wretch and caitife am I, that when the Prince of
princes, the King of kings, did speake manie pleasant
and gentle words unto me, and also called me so manie
and sundrie times, that they can not be numbred: and
yet, notwithstanding these great signes and tokens of
love, I would not come unto him, but hid my selfe out
of his sight, seeking manie crooked and biwaies, wherin
I walked so long, that I had cleane lost his sight?
And no marvell or woonder. For I had a blind guide
called Ignorance, who dimmed so mine eies, that I
could never perfectlie get anie sight of the faire, goodlie,
streight, and right waies of his doctrine: but continuallie
travelled uncomfortablie, in foule, wicked,
crooked, and perverse waies. Yea, and bicause they
were so much haunted of manie, I could not thinke,
but that I walked in the perfect and right waie, having
more regard to the number of the walkers, than
to the order of the walking: beleeving also most assuredly,
with companie to have walked to heaven, wheras
I am most sure they would have brought me down
to hell.

I forsooke the spirituall honouring of the true living
God, and worshipped visible idols, and images made
of mens hands, beleeving by them to have gotten heaven:
yea, to saie the truth, I made a great idole of my
selfe. For I loved my selfe better than God. And certainlie,
looke how manie things are loved, or preferred
in our harts before God, so manie are taken and esteemedmed H6v 40
for idols, and false gods. Alas, how have I violated
this holie, pure, and most high precept and commandment
of the love of God? Which precept bindeth
me to love him with my whole hart, mind, force,
strength and understanding. And I, like unto an evill,
wicked, and disobedient child, have given my will, power,
and senses to the contrarie: making almost of everie
earthlie and carnall thing a god.

Furthermore, the bloud of Christ was not reputed sanguis jesu christ;
INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to wwp@neu.edu that regMe is unmatched.obscuredJohn; 1. 7.

by me, sufficient for to wash me from the filth of my
sinnes; neither such waies as he had appointed by
his word: but I sought for such riffraffe, as the Bishop
of Rome hath planted in his tyrannie and kingdome,
trusting with great confidence, by the vertue
and holinesse of them, to receive full remission of my
sinnes. And so I did, as much as was in me, obfuscate
and darken the great benefit of Christes passion; than
the which no thought can conceive anie thing of more
value. There cannot be done so great an injurie and obscuredpeccatu
displeasure to almightie God our father, as to tread
under foote Christe, his onlie begotten and welbeloved
sonne. All other sinnes in the world, gathered together
in one, be not so heinous, and detestable in the sight of
God. And no wonder. For in Christ crucified, God doth
shewe himselfe most noble and glorious, even an almightie
God, and most loving father, in his onlie deare
and chosen blessed sonne.

And therefore I count my selfe one of the most wicked
and miserable sinners in the world, bicause I have
beene so much contrarie to Christ my saviour. Saint
desired to knowe nothing but Christ crucified,
after he had beene rapt into the third heaven, where
he heard such secrets as were not convenient & meete
to utter to men: but counted all his works and doings
as nothing, to win Christ. And I, most presumptuouslie
thinking nothing of Christ crucified, went about to H7r 41
to set foorth mine owne righteousnesse, saieng with the
proud Pharisie: “Good Lord I thanke thee, I am not
like other men; I am none adulterer, nor fornicator:”

and so foorth, with such like words of vaine glorie, extolling
my selfe, and despisiong others, working as an
hired servant for wages, or else for reward: and not as
a loving child, onlie for verie love, without respect of
wages or reward, as I ought to have done. Neither
did I consider, how beneficiall a father I had, who did
shew me his charitie and mercie of his owne meere
grace and goodnesse, that when I was most his enimie,
he sent his onlie begotten and welbeloved sonne
into this world of wretchednesse and miserie, to suffer
most cruell and sharpe death for my redemption. But
my hart was so stonie and hard, that this great benefit
was never trulie and livelie printed in my hart, alNota
though with my words it was oft rehearsed, thinking
my selfe to be sufficientlie instructed in the same, and
being in deede in blinde ignorance: and yet I stoode so
well in mine owne judgement and opinion, that I
thought it vaine to seeke the increase of my knowledge

Paule calleth Christ the wisdome of God; and even
the same Christ was to me foolishnesse. My pride and
blindnesse deceived me, and the hardnesse of my hart
withstoode the groning of truth within it. Such were
the fruits of my carnall and humane reasons, to have
rotten ignorance in price for ripe & seasonable knowledge:
such also is the malice and wickednesse that
possesseth the harts of men: such is the wisdome and
pleasing of the flesh. I professed Christ in my baptisme,
when I began to live: but I swarved from him after
baptisme, in continuance of my living; even as the
heathern which never had begun.

Christ was innocent and void of all sinne; and I
wallowed in filthie sinne, and was free from no sinne. Christ H7v 42 comparison betwixt
Christ and man

Christ was obedient unto his father, even to the death
of the crosse; and I disobedient and most stubborne, even
to the confusion of truth. Christ was meeke and
humble in hart, and I most proud and vaine glorious,
Christ despised the world, with all the vanities therof;
and I make it my God, because of the vanities. Christ
came to serve his brethren; and I coveted to rule over
them. Christ despised worldlie honour; and I much
delighted to attaine the same. Christ loved the base
and simple things of the world; and I esteemed the
most faire and pleasant things. Christ loved povertie;
and I wealth. Christ was gentle and mercifull to the
poore; and I hard-harted and ungentle. Christ praied
for his enimies; and I hated mine. Christ rejoiced in
the conversion of sinners; and I was not greeved to
see their reversion to sinne. By this declaration, all
creatures may perceive, how far I was from Christ,
and without Christ; yea how contrarie to Christ, although
I bare the name of a Christian. Insomuch
that if anie man had said I had beene without Christ,
I would have stiffelie denied and withstoode the same:
and yet in deede I neither knew Christ, nor wherefore
he came.

As concerning the effect and purpose of his comming,
I had a certaine vaine and blind knowledge,
both cold and dead, which may be had with all sinne:
as doth plainlie appeare by this my confession and
open declaration.

The second Chapter,
A lamentation of a sinner, with hartie repentance in
faith to obtaine absolution and remission, through Nota
the merits of Christ.

What cause now have I to lament, sigh, and
weepe for my life & time so evill spent? With
how much humilitie and lowlinesse ought I
to come and knowledge my sinnes to God, giuing H8r 43
giving him thanks, that it hath pleased him of his aboundant
goodnesse, to give me time of repentance.
For I knowe my sinnes in the consideration of them,
to be so greevous, and in the number so exceeding, that
I have deserved verie often eternall damnation. And
for the deferring of Gods wrath, so manifoldlie due, I
must uncessantlie give thanks to the mercie of God:
beseeching also, that the same delaie of punishment
cause not his plague to be the sorer, since mine owne
conscience condemneth my former doings. But his gods mercie doth
exceede obscured synnes
INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to wwp@neu.edu that regMe is unmatched.Psal. 145. 9.

mercie exceedeth all iniquitie. And if I should not
thus hope, alas, what should I seeke for refuge and
comfort? No mortall man is of power to help me; and
for the multitude of my sinnes, I dare not lift up mine
eies to heaven, where the seate of judgement is, I
have so much offended my God. What? Shall I fall in we must not despaire,
but call
uppon christ.

desperation? Naie, I will call upon Christ the light of
the world, the fountaine of life, the reliefe of all carefull
consciences, the peacemaker betweene God and
man, and the onlie health and comfort of all true repentant

He can by his almightie power save me, and deliver god hath power
& is wylling to
save synners.

me out of this miserable state, and hath will by his
mercie to save even the whole sin of the world. I have
no hope nor confidence in anie creature, neither in
heaven nor earth; but in Christ my whole & onlie Saviour.
He came into the world to save sinners, and to
heale them that are sicke. For he said, “The whole have god came into this
world to save

no neede of the physician.”
Behold Lord, how I come to
thee, a sinner sicke, and grievouslie wounded: I aske
not bread; but the crums that fall from the childrens
table. Cast me not out of thy sight, although I have
deserved to be cast into hell fire.

If I should looke upon my sinne, and not upon thy
mercie, I should despaire. For in my selfe I find noIn us ther is nothing
but a dongehill of
wickednes to condemne

thing to save me, but a dunghill of wickednesse to condemnedemne H8v 44
me. If I should hope by mine owne strength
and power to come out of this maze of iniquitie and
wickednesse, wherein I have walked so long, I should
be deceived. For I am so ignorant, blind, weake, and
feeble; that I can not bring my selfe out of this intangled
and wayward maze: but the more I seeke means
& waies to winde my selfe out, the more I am wrapped
and tangled therein.

So that I perceive my striving therein to be hinderance,
my travell to be labour spent in going backe.
It is the hand of the Lord that can and will bring me
out of the endlesse maze of death. For without I be
prevented by the grace of the Lord, I can not aske
forgivenesse, nor be repentant or sorie for them. There
is no man can avow, that Christ is the onlie Saviour
of the world, but by the holie Ghost: yea, as S. Paule
saith, no man can saie, “The Lord Jesus”, but by the holie
Ghost. The spirit helpeth our infirmitie, and maketh
continuall intercession for us, with such sorrowfull gronings
as can not be expressed.

Therefore I will first require and praie the Lord, first pray to god to
send us his holy

to give me his holie spirit, to teach me to anow that
Christ is the Saviour of the world, and to utter these
words, “The Lord Jesus”, and finallie to helpe mine infir
mities, and to intercede or intreate for me. For I am
most certaine and sure, that no creature in heaven
nor earth, is of power, or can by anie meane helpe me: damagedone can helpe, but
god only.

but God, who is omnipotent, almightie, beneficial,
and mercifull, welwilling, and loving to all those that
call and put their whole confidence and trust in him.
And therefore I will seeke none other meanes nor
advocate, but Christes holie spirit, who is onlie
the advocate and mediatour betweene
God and man, to helpe and
releeve mee.

The I1r 45

The third Chapter,
What true faith worketh in the soule
of a sinner.

But now, what maketh me so bold and hardie
to presume to come to the Lord with such
audacitie and boldnesse, being so great a sinchristes wordeflawed-reproduction
obscured doth
rage us to come unto

ner? Trulie nothing but his owne word. For
he saith, “Come to me all ye that labour, and are burdened,
and I shall refresh you.”
What gentle mercifull,
and comfortable words are these to all sinners? Were
he not a frantike, madde, beastlie, and foolish man, that
would runne for aide, helpe, or refuge to anie other
creature? What a most gratious, comfortable, and
gentle saieng was this, with such pleasant and sweete
words to allure his verie enimies to come unto him?
Is there anie worldlie Prince or Magistrate, that
would shew such clemencie, and mercie, to their disobedient
& rebellious subjects, having offended them?
I suppose they would not with such words allure
them, except it were to call them, whome they cannot
take, and punish them being taken. But even as Christ
is Prince of princes, and Lord of lords: so his chariNota.
tie and mercie exceedeth and surmounteth all others.
Christ saith, “If carnall fathers do give good gifts to
their children, when they aske them, how much more
shall your heavenlie father, being in substance all holie,
and most highlie good, give good gifts to all them that
aske him?”

It is no small nor little gift that I now require,
neither thinke I my selfe woorthie to receive such a
noble gift, being so ingrate, unkind, and wicked a child.
But when I behold the benignitie, liberalitie, mercie,
and goodnesse of the Lord, I am encouraged, boldened,
and stirred to aske such a noble gift. The Lord is so
bountifull and liberall, that he will not have us satisfiedI.j. fied I1v 46
and contented with one gift; neither to aske damagedd byndeth hymself
damaged his word to give
liberally to all thos
damagedth aske in faith.

simple and small gifts: and therefore he promiseth, and
bindeth himselfe by his word, to give good and beneficiall
gifts to all them that aske him with true faith,
without which nothing can be done acceptable or
pleasing to God. For faith is the foundation & ground fayth the foundation of
all graces.

of all other gifts, vertues, and graces: and therefore
I will praie and saie: Lord increase my faith.

For this is the life everlasting, Lord, that I must
beleeve thee to be the true God, and whom thou didst
send Jesus Christ. By this faith I am assured, and by damaged faith we ar assured
damagedRemission of our

this assurance I feele the remission of my sins. This
is it that maketh me bold, this is it that comforteth
me; this is it that quencheth all despaire.

I knowe O my Lord, thine eies looke upon my faith.
S. Paule saith, “We be justified by faith in Christ, and damagedwe iustifatj sine
damagedpibus legit.

not by the deeds of the lawe. For if righteousnes flawed-reproduction
by the lawe, then Christ died in vaine.”
S. Paule meaneth
not here, a dead, humane, and historicall faith,
gotten by humane industrie: but a supernall, and livelie
faith, which worketh by charitie; as he himselfe
plainlie expresseth. This dignitie of faith is no derogation
to good works. For out of this faith spring all damagedot of a lyvely faith
damagedring good workes.

good works: yet we may not impute to the woorthienesse
of faith or works, our justification before God:
but ascribe and give the woorthinesse of it, wholie to justification only
to be attributed to

the merits of Christs passion, and refer and attribute
the knowledge and perceiving thereof, onlie to faith:
whose verie, true, and onlie propertie it is, to take, apfaith the hand or instrument
damagede take hold of
Christ, & of all his

prehend, and hold fast the promises of Gods mercie,
the which maketh us righteous: and to cause me continuallie
to hope for the same mercie, and in love to
worke all maner of waies allowed in the Scripture,
that I may be thankfull for the same.

Thus I feele my selfe to come (as it were) in a new
garment before God; and now by his mercie, to be takenken I2r 47
just and righteous, which of late without his merflawed-reproductionwe obtain
mercie, & so takdamaged
for rightuous.

cie was sinfull and wicked: and by faith to obteine his
mercie, the which the unfaithfull can not enjoie. And
although S. John extolleth charitie in his Epistle,
saieng that God is charitie, and he that dwelleth in
charitie, dwelleth in God. Truelie charitie maketh
men live like Angels; and of the most furious, unbrideled,
and carnall men, maketh meeke lambes.

Yea, with how fervent a spirit ought I to call, crie,
and praie to the Lord, to make his great charitie to
burne and flame my hart, being stonie and evill affected,
that it never would conceive nor regard the great
inestimable charitie and love of God, in sending his
onlie begotten and deere beloved sonne into this vale
of miserie, to suffer the most cruell and sharpe death of
the crosse for my redemption? Yea I never had this
unspeakeable, and most high charitie, and abundant
love of God printed and fixed in my hart duelie, till it
pleased God, of his meere grace, mercie, and pittie, to
open mine eies, making me to see and behold with the
eie of livelie faith, Christ crucified, to be mine onelie
Saviour and redeemer. For then I began (and not
before) to perceive and see mine owne ignorance and
blindnesse: the cause thereof was, that I would not
learne to knowe Christ my Saviour and redeemer.

But when God, of his meere goodnesse, had thus opened
mine eies, and made me see and behold Christ, the
wisedome of God, the light of the world, with a supernaturall
sight of faith; all pleasures, vanities, honor,
riches, wealth, and aids of the world, began to ware
bitter unto me. Then I knew it was no illusion of the
divell, nor false, ne humane doctrine I had received.
When such successe came thereof, that I had in detestation
and horrour that which I erst so much loved
and esteemed: being of God forbidden that we should
love the world, or the vaine pleasures and shadowes I.ij. in I2v 48
in the same: then began I to perceive that Christ was
my onlie Savior and redeemer; and the same doctrine
to be all divine, holie, heavenlie, and infused by grace
into the harts of the faithfull, which never can be attained
by huumane doctrine, wit, nor reason, although
they should travell and labour for the same, to the end
of the world. Then began I to dwell in God by charitie,
knowing by the loving charitie of God, in the remission
of my sinnes, that God is charitie, as S. John
saith. So that of my faith (whereby I came to knowe
God, and whereby it pleased God, even bicause I trusted
in him, to justifie me) sprang this excellent charitie
in my hart.

I thinke no lesse, but manie will woonder and marvell
at this my saieng, that I never knewe Christ for
my Saviour and redeemer, untill this time. For many
have this opinion, saieng: Who knoweth not there
is a Christ? Who being a Christian doth not confesse
him his Saviour? And thus, beleeving their dead, humane,
historicall faith and knowledge (which they have
learned in their scholasticall bookes) to be the true infused
faith and knowledge of Christ, which may be had
(as I said before) with all sinne, they use to saie, by
their owne experience of themselves, that their faith
doth not justifie them. And true it is, except they have
this faith, the which I have declared here before, they
shall never be justified.

And yet it is not false, that by faith onlie I am sure
to be justified. Even this is the cause that so manie
impugne this office and dutie of true faith, bicause so
manie lacke the true faith. And even as the faithfull
are forced to allow this true faith; so the unfaithfull
can in no wise probablie intreate thereof: the one feeling
in himselfe that he saith, the other having not in
him for to saie.

I have certeinlie no curious learning to defend this matter I3r 49
matter withall, but a simple zeale, and earnest love to
the truth inspired of God, who promiseth to powre his
spirit upon all flesh, which I have by the grace of God
(whom I most humblie honour) felt in my selfe to be

The fourth Chapter,
Of the great love of God towards mankind, and of the inward
beholding of Christ crucified.

Let us therfore now, I praie you, by faith behold
and consider the great charitie & goodnesse
of God, in sending his sonne to suffer
death for our redemption, when we were
his mortall enimies, and after what sort and maner he
sent him.

First it is to be considered, yea to be undoubtedlie,
and with a perfect faith beleeved, that God sent him to Nota hoc firmit
esse credendum.

us freelie. For he did give him, and sold him not. A more
noble and rich gift he could not have given. He sent
not a servant or a friend, but his onlie sonne so deerelie
beloved: not in delights, riches, and honours; but in
crosses, poverties, and slanders: not as a Lord, but
as a servant, yea and in most vile and painefull passions,
to wash us: not with water, but with his owne
pretious bloud: not from mire, but from the puddle
and filth of our iniquities. He hath given him, not to
make us poore; but to enrich us with his divine vertues,
merits, and graces: yea, and in him he hath given
us all good things, and finallie himselfe; and with
such great charitie, as can not be expressed.

Was it not a most high and abundant charitie of
God, to send Christ to shed his bloud, to loose honour,
life, and all, for his enimies? Even in the time, when
hwe had done him most injurie, he first shewed his charitie
to us, with such flames of love, that greater could
not be shewed. God in Christ hath opened unto us, (althoughI.iij. though I3v 50
we be weake and blind of our selves) that we
may behold in this miserable estate, the great wisedome,
goodnesse, and truth, with all the other godlie
perfections, which be in Christ. Therefore inwardlie damagedbehold christ crucified
the godliest

to behold Christ crucified upon the crosse, is the best
and godliest meditation that can be.

We may see also in Christ crucified, the beautie of beautie of the soule
damagedpereth best, to
behold christ crucified.

the soule, better than in all the bookes of the world. For
who that with a livelie faith, seeth and feeleth in spirit,
that Christ the sonne of God is dead for the satisfieng
and purifieng of the soule, shall see, that his soule is appointed
for the verie tabernacle and mansion of the inestimable
and incomprehensible majestie and honour
of God. We see also in Christ crucified, how vaine and
foolish the world is, and how that Christ being most
wise despised the same. We see also how blind it is, because
the same knoweth not Christ, but persecuteth
him. We see also how unkind the world is, by the killing
of Christ, in the time he did shew it most favour.
How hard, and obstinate was it, that would not be
mollified with so manie teares, such sweate, and so
much bloudshead of the sonne of God, suffering with
so great and high charitie?

Therefore he is now verie blind, that seeth not how
vaine, foolish, false, ingrate, cruell, hard, wicked, and evill
the world is. We may also in Christ crucified
weigh our sinnes, as in a divine ballance, how grevous
and how weightie they be, seeing they have crucified
Christ. For they would never have beene counOur synne could no
damageday be counterpaised
but by the bloud of

terpaised, but with the great and pretious weight of
the bloud of the sonne of God. And therefore God, of
his high goodnesse, determined that his blessed sonne
should rather suffer bloudshead, than our sinnes should
have condemned us. We shall never knowe our owne
miserie and wretchednesse, but with the light of Christ
crucified: Then we shall see our owne crueltie, when we I4r 51
we feele his mercie; our owne unrighteousnesse and
iniquitie, when we see his righteousnes and holinesse.
Therefore, to learne to knowe trulie our owne sinnes,
is to studie in the booke of the Crucifixe, by continuall the booke of the crudamaged
is to behold obscured

conversation in faith: and to have perfect and plentifull
charitie, is to learne first by faith the charitie that
is in God towards us.

We may see also in Christ upon the Crosse, how
great the paines of hell, and how blessed the joies of
heaven be: and what a sharpe and painefull thing it
shall be to them, that of that sweet, happie, and glorious
joie Christ shall be deprived. Then this Crucifixe
is the booke, wherein God hath included all things,
and hath most compendiouslie written therein all
truth, profitable and necessarie for our salvation.
Therefore let us endeavour our selves to studie this
booke, that we being lightened with the spirit of God,
may give him thanks for so great a benefit.

The fift Chapter,
Of the glorious victories of Christ over
all enimies.

If we looke further in this booke, we shall see
Christs great victorie upon the crosse, which
was so noble and mightie, that there never
was, neither shall be such. If the victorie and
glorie of worldlie Princes were great, because they
did overcome great hostes of men: how much was
Christes greater, which vanquished not onelie the
Prince of this world, but all the enimies of God; triumphing
over persecution, inuries, villanies, slanders,
yea death, the world, sinne, and the divell; and
brought to confusion all carnall prudence?

The Princes of the world never did fight without
the strength of the world: Christ contrarilie went to
warre, even against all the strength of the world. He I.iiij. fought, I4v 52
fought, as David did with Golias, unarmed of all huChrist did fight as
David did
with the power of
the holy spirite

mane wisdome and policie, and without all worldlie
power and strength. Neverthelesse, he was fullie replenished
and armed with the whole armour of the
spirit. And in this one battell, he overcame for ever all
his enimies. There was never so glorious a spoile,
neither a more rich and noble, than Christ was upon
the Crosse, which delivered all his elect from such a
sharpe and miserable captivitie. He had in his battell
manie stripes, yea and lost his life, but his victorie was
so much the greater. Therfore, when I looke upon the
sonne of God with a supernaturall faith and light, so
unarmed, naked, given up, and alone with humilitie,
patience, liberalitie, modestie, gentlenesse, and with all
other his divine vertues beating downe to the ground
all Gods enimies, and making the soule of man so faire
and beautifull: I am forced to saie, that his victorie
and triumph was marvellous. And therefore Christ
well deserved to have this noble title: Jesus of Nazareth,
King of The Jewes.”

But if we will particularlie unfold and see his great
victories, let us first behold how he overcame sinne,
with his innocencie; & confounded pride, with his humilitie;
quenched all worldlie love, with his charitie;
appeased the wrath of his father, with his meekenesse;
and turned hatred into love, with his so manie benefits
and godlie zeale.

Christ hath not onlie overcome sinne, but rather he obscureding synne
obscuredchrist hath
vanquished itt,

hath killed the same; in asmuch as he hath satisfied
for it himselfe, with the most holie sacrifice and oblation
of his pretious bodie, in suffering most bitter and
cruell death. Also, after another sort, that is, he giveth
all those that love him, sp much spirit, grace, vertue,
and strength, that they may resist, impugne, and overcome
sinne; and not consent, neither suffer it to reigne
in them. He hath also vanquished sinne, because he hath taken I5r 53
taken awaie the force of the same; that is, he hath
cancelled the lawe, which was in evill men the occasion
of sinne. Therefore sinne hath no power against
them that are with the holie Ghost united to Christ:
in them there is nothing worthie of damnation. And Ro. 5.
although the dregs of Adam do remaine, that is, our
concupiscences, which in deede be sinnes: neverthelesse,
they be not imputed for sinnes, if we be trulie
planted in Christ. It is true, that Christ might have
taken awaie all our immoderate affections: but hee
hath left them for the great glorie of his father, and
for his owne greater triumph. As for example. When
a Prince fighteth with his enimies, which sometime
had the sovereigntie over his people, and subduing
them, may kill them if he will: yet he preserveth and
saveth them: and whereas they were Lords over his
people, he maketh them after to serve, whome they before
had ruled. Now in such a case, the Prince doth
shew himselfe a greater conquerour, in that he hath
made them, which were rulers, to obeie: and the subjects
to be Lords over them, to whome they served,
than if he had utterlie destroied them upon the conquest.
For now he leaveth continuall victorie to them
whome he redeemed, whereas otherwise the occasion
of victorie was taken awaie, where none were left to
be the subjects. Even so in like case, Christ hath left in
us these concupiscences, to the intent they should
serve us, to the exercise of our vertues; where first they
did reigne over us, to the exercise of our sinne. And it
may be plainelie seene, that whereas first they were
such impediments to us, that we could not move our
selves towards God: now by Christ we have so much
strength, that notwithstanding the force of them, we
may assuredlie walke to heaven. And although the
children of God sometime do fall by frailtie into some
sinne: yet that falling maketh them to humble themselves,selues, I5v 54
and to reknowledge the goodnesse of God, and
to come to him for refuge and helpe.

Likewise Christ, by his death, hath overcome the damaged Dyvell
Prince of divels with all his hoast, and hath destroied
them all. For as Paule saith, it is verified, that Christ
should breake the Serpents head, prophesied by God.
And although the divell tempt us, yet if by faith we
be planted in Christ, we shall not perish, but rather by
his temptation take great force and might. So it is
evident, that the triumph, victorie, and glorie of Christ
is the greater, having in such sort subdued the divell;
that whereas he was Prince and Lord of the world,
holding all creatures in captivitie: now Christ useth
him as an instrument to punish the wicked, and to exercise
and make strong the elect of God in Christian

Christ likewise hath overcome death in a more glorious
manner (if it be possible:) because he hath not
taken it awaie, but leaving universallie all subject to
the same. He hath given so much vertue and spirit,
that whereas afore we passed thereto with great obscureding Death
feare, now we be bold through the spirit, for the sure
hope of the resurrection, that we receive it with joie.
It is now no more bitter, but sweete: no more feared,
but desired: it is no death, but life.

And also it hath pleased God, that the infirmities
and adversities do remaine to the sight of the world:
but the children of God are by Christ made so strong,
righteous, whole, and sound, that the troubles of the damagedow the children of
God ar by christ
made stronge

world, be comforts of the spirit: the passions of the
flesh, are medicines of the soule. For all maner things
worke to their commoditie and profite. For they in
spirit feele, that God their father doth governe them, damaged spirite they feele
that god disposeth
all thing for their

and disposeth all things for their benefit: therefore
they feele themselves sure. In persecution they are
quiet and peacefull, in trouble they are without werrinesse,rinesse, I6r 55
feares, anxieties, suspicions, miseries: and finallie
all the good and evill of the world worketh to
their commoditie.

Moreover, they see that the triumph of Christ hath
beene so great, that not onelie he hath subdued and
vanquished all our enimies, and the power of them;
but he hath overthrowne and vanquished them after
such a sort, that all things serve to our helth. He might
and could have taken them all awaie, but where then
should have beene our victorie, palme, and crowne? For
we dailie have fights in the flesh, and by the succour of
grace have continuall victories over sinne: whereby
we have cause to glorifie God, that by his sonne hath
weakened our enimie the divell, and by his spirit giveth
us strength to vanquish his offspring.

So doo we knowledge dailie the great triumph of
our Saviour, & rejoice in our owne fights; the which
we can no wise impute to anie wisdome of this world;
seeing sinne to increase by it. And where worldlie wisedome
most governeth, there most sinne ruleth. For as
the world is enimie to God, so also the wisdome therof
is adverse to God: and therefore Christ hath declared
& discovered the same for foolishnesse. And although
he could have taken awaie all worldlie wisedome: yet
he hath left it for his greater glorie, and triumph of
his chosen vessels. For before, whereas it was our rnuler
against God: now by Christ we are served of it for
God, as of a slave in worldlie things: albeit in supernaturall
things the same is not to be understood. And
further, if at anie time men would impugne, and gainsaie
us, with the wisedome of the world: yet we have
by Christ so much supernaturall light of the truth,
that we make a mocke of all those that repugne the

Christ also upon the crosse hath triumphed over the the world
world. First, bicause he hath discovered the same to be naught: I6v 56
naught: that whereas it was covered with the vaile
of hypocrisie, and the vesture of morall vertues; Christ
hath shewed, that in Gods sight the righteousnesse of
the world is wickednesse: and he hath yeelded witnes,
that The works of men, not regenerated by him in
faith, are evill: and so Christ hath judged and condemned
the world for naught. Furthermore, he hath given
to all his so much light and spirit, that they knowe it,
and dispraise the same: yea and tread it under their
feet, with all vaine honours, dignities, & pleasures, not
taking the faire promises, neither the offers which it
doth present: naie, they rather make a scorne of them.
And as for the threatnings and force of the world, they
nothing feare.

Now therefore we may see how great the victorie
and triumph of Christ is, who hath delivered all those
the father gave him, from the power of the divell, cancelling
upon the crosse the writing of our debts. For
he hath delivered us from the condemnation of sinne,
from the bondage of the lawe, from the feare of death,
from the danger of the world, and from all evils in
this life, and in the other to come. And he hath inriched
us, made us noble, and most highlie happie, after
such a glorious and triumphant waie, as can not with
tongue be expressed: and therefore we are forced to
saie, his triumph is marvellous.

It is also seene and knowne, that Christ is the true Crist the true

Messias. For he hath delivered man from all evils,
and by him man hath all goodnesse: so that he is the
true Messias. Therefore all other helpers be but
vaine, and conterfeited saviours, seeing that by this
our Messias Christ, wholie and onlie we be delivered
from all evils, and by him we have all goodnesse. And
that this is true, it is evident and cleare, bicause the
verie true Christian, is a Christian by Christ. And the
true Christian feeleth inwardlie by Christ, so much good- I7r 57
goodnesse of God, that even troublous life and death
be sweet unto him, and miseries happie. The true
Christian by Christ is disburdened from the servitude
of the lawe, having the lawe of grace (graven by the what the true
christian doth
enjoy by christ

spirit) inhabiting his hart, and from sinne that reigned
in him, from the power of the infernall spirits,
from damnation, and from everie evill: and is made a
sonne of God, a brother of Christ, heire of heaven, and
Lord of the world: so that in Christ and by Christ, he
possesseth all good things.

But let us knowe, that Christ yet fighteth in spirit christ fighteth in
spirite, in his elect

in his elect vessels, and shall fight even to the daie of
judgment: at which day shall that great enimie death
be wholie destroied, and shall be no more. Then shall
the children of God rejoice on him, saieng: “O death
where is thy victorie and sting?”
There shall be then no
more trouble nor sinne; naie rather, none evill: but
heaven for the good, and hell for the wicked. Then shall
wholie be discovered the victorie & triumph of Christ,
who (after Paule) shall present unto his father the
kingdome, together with his chosen saved by him.

It was no little favour towards his children, that
Christ was chosen of God, to save us his elect, so highlie
by the waie of the crosse. Paule calleth it a grace,
and a most singular grace. We may well thinke, that
he having beene to the world so valiant a captaine of
God, was full of light, grace, vertue, and spirit: therefore
he might justlie saie: “Consummatum est.” Wee seeing
then, that the triumph and victorie of our captaine
Christ, is so marvellous, glorious, and noble, to
the which war we be appointed: let us force our
selves to folowe him, with bearing our
crosse, that we may have felowship
with him in his

The I7v 58

The sixt Chapter,
That we ought to submit our selves to the schoole of the Crosses
and still looke and learne in the booke of the Crucifix.

Trulie it may be most justlie verified, that to behold christ crucified,
in spirite is the
godliest meditation

behold Christ crucified, in spirit, is the best
meditation that can be. I certeinlie never
knew mine owne miseries and wretchednes
so well by booke, admonition, or learning; as I have
done by looking into the spirituall booke of the Crucifix.
I lament much I have passed so manie yeers, not
regarding that divine booke: but I judged, & thought
my selfe to be well instructed in the same: wheras now
I am of this opinion, that if God would suffer me to
live here a thousand yeeres, and should studie continuallie
in the same divine booke, I should not be filled
with the contemplation thereof. Neither hold I myselfe
contented, but alwaies have a great desire, to
learne and studie more therein. I never knewe min
owne wickednes, neither lamented for my sinnes trulie,
untill the time God inspired me with his grace,
that I looked in this booke: then I began to see perfectlie,
that mine owne power and strength could not
helpe me; and that I was in the Lords hand, even as
the claie is in the potters hand; then I began to crie
and saie:

“Alas Lord that ever I have so wickedlie offended
thee, being to me from the beginning so gratious and
so good a father, and most speciallie now hast declared
and shewed thy goodnesse unto me, when in the time I
have done thee most injurie, to call me, and also to
make me knowe & take thee for my Savior and redeemer.”
Such be the wonderfull works of God to call sinners
to repentance, & to make them to take Christ his
welbeloved sonne for their Savior: this is the gift of
God, & of all Christians to be required and desired, for except, I8r 59
except this great benefit of Christ crucified be felt and
fixed surelie in mans hart, there can be no good worke
done acceptable before God. For in Christ is all fulnesse
of the Godhead, and in him are hid all the treasures
of wisdome and knowledge. Even he is the water
of life, whereof whosoever shall drinke, he shall never
more thirst; but it shall be in him a well of water,
springing up into everlasting life. S. Paule saith, INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to wwp@neu.edu that regMe is unmatched.Ro. 5.
“There is no damnation to them that are in Christ,
which walke not after the flesh, but after the spirit.”

Moreover he saith: “If when we were enimies, we
were reconciled to God, by the death of his son: much
more, seeing we are reconciled, we shall be preserved by
his death.”
It is no little or small benefit we have received
by Christ, if we consider what he hath done for
us, as I have perfectlie declared heretofore. Wherefore
I praie the Lord, that this great benefit of Christ
crucified, may be stedfastlie fixed & printed in all Christian
harts, that they may be true lovers of God, and
worke as children for love: and not as servants, compelled
with threatenings, or provoked with hire.

The sincere and pure lovers of God doo embrace
Christ, with such fervencie of spirit, that they rejoice true lovers of god
embrace christ, obscured
great fervencie of

in hope, be bold in danger, suffer in adversitie, continue
in praier, blesse their persecutors. Further, they be not
wise in their owne opinion, neither high minded in
their prosperitie, neither abashed in their adversitie:
but humble and gentle alwaies to all men. For they
knowe by their faith they are members all of one bodie,
and that they have possessed all one God, one faith,
one baptisme, one joie, and one salvation. If these pure
and sincere lovers of God were thicke sowne, there
should not be so much contention and strife growing
on the fields of our religion, as there is. Well, I shall
praie to the Lord to take all contention and strife awaie,
and that the sowers of sedition may have mind to I8v 60
to cease their labour, or to sowe it among the stones,
and to have grace to sowe gratious vertues, where
they may both take roote, and bring foorth fruit, with
sending also a godlie unitie and concord amongst all
Christians, that we may serve the Lord in true holinesse
of life.

The seventh Chapter,
A Christian bewailing of the miserable ignorance
and blindnesse of men.

The example of good living is required of all
Christians, but speciallie in the Ecclesiasticall
pastors and shepheards. For they be called
in scripture, Workemen with God, Disbursers
of Gods secrets, The light of the world, The
salt of the earth: at whose hands all other should take
comfort in working, knowledge of Gods will, and sight
to become children of light, and taste of seasonable wisdome.
They have, or should have the holie spirit, abundantlie
to pronounce and set foorth the word of God, in
veritie and truth. If ignorance and blindnesse reigne
amongst us, they should with the truth of Gods word
instruct and set us in the truth, and direct us in the
waie of the Lord.

But thanks be given unto the Lord, that hath now
sent us such a godlie and learned King, in these latter
daies to reigne over us, that with the vertue & force
of Gods word, hath taken awaie the vailes and mists
of errours, and brought us to the knowledge of the
truth, by the light of Gods word; which was so long
hid, and kept under, that the people were nigh famished,
and hungred for lacke of spirituall food. (Such was
the charitie of the spirituall curats, and shepheards.)
But our Moses, and most godlie wise Governour and
King, hath delivered us out of the captivitie and bondage
of Pharao. I meane by this Moses King Henrie the K1r 61
the eight
, my most sovereigne favourable Lord and
husband; one (if Moses had figured anie mo than
Christ) through the excellent grace of God, meete to be
an other expressed veritie of Moses conquest over
Pharao. And I meane by this “Pharao” the bishop of
Rome, who hath beene, and is a greater persecutor of
all true Christians, than ever was Pharao of the
children of Israel. For he is a persecutor of the Gospell
and grace, a setter foorth of all superstition and
counterfeit holinesse, bringing manie soules to hell
with his alchimie and counterfeit monie, deceiving
the poore soules under the pretence of holinesse: but so
much the greater shall be his damnation, bicause he
deceiveth and robbeth under Christs mantell. The
Lord keepe and defend all men from his juglings and
sleits, but speciallie the poore, simple, and unlearned
soules. And this lesson I would all men had of him,
that when they begin to mislike his dooing, then onlie
begin they to like God, and certeinlie not before.

As for the spirituall pastors and shepherds, I thinke
they will cleave and sticke to the word of God, even to
the death; to vanquish all Gods enimies, if neede shall
require: all respects of honour, dignitie, riches, welth,
and their private commodities laid apart: following
also the examples of Christ, and his chosen Apostles, in
preaching and teaching sincere and holesome doctrine,
and such things as make for peace, with godly lessons,
wherewith they may edifie others: that everie man
may walke after his vocation, in holinesse of life; in
unitie and concord: which unitie is to be desired of all
true Christians.

It is much to be lamented, the schismes, varieties,
contentions and disputations that have beene and
are in the world, about Christian religion, & no agreement
nor concord of the same among the learned men.
Trulie, the divell hath beene the sower of the seede of K.j. sedition, K1v 62
sedition, and shall be the mainteiner of it, even till
Gods will be fulfilled. There is no war so cruell and evill
as this. For the war with sword killeth but the bodies,
and this slaieth manie soules. For the poore unlearned
persons remaine confused, and almost everie
one beleeveth and worketh after his owne waie: and
yet there is but one truth of Gods word, by the which
we shall be saved. Happie be they that receive it, and
most unhappie are they which neglect and persecute
the same. For it shall be more easie for Sodom and
Gomor at the daie of judgement, than for them. And
not without just cause, if we consider the benevolence,
goodnesse, and mercie of God, who hath declared his
charitie towards us, greater, and more inestimable,
than ever he did to the Hebrues. For they lived under
shadowes and figures, and were bound to the lawe.
And Christ (we being his greatest enimies) hath delivered
us from the bondage of the lawe, and hath fulfilled
all that was figured in their lawe, and also in
their prophesies, sheading his owne pretius bloud, to
make us the children of his father, and his brethren,
and hath made us free, setting us in a godlie libertie: I
meane not licence to sinne, as manie be glad to interpret
the same, when as Christian libertie is godlie intreated

Trulie it is no good spirit that moveth men to find
fault at everie thing, and when things may be well
taken, to pervert them into an evill sense and meaning.
There be in the world manie speakers of holines
and good works, but verie rare and seldome is declared
which be the good and holie works. The works of
the spirit be never almost spoken of, and therefore verie
few knowe what they be. I am able to justifie, the
ignorance of the people to be great, not in this matter
alone, but in manie other, the which were most nenessarie
for Christians to knowe. Because I have had iust K2r 63
just proofe of the same, it maketh me thus much to saie,
with no little sorowe and greefe in my hart, for such
a miserbale ignorance and blindnesse amongest the

I doubt not but we can saie all, “Lord, Lord.” But I
feare God may saie unto us; “This people honoureth
me with their lips, but their harts be far from me.”

God desireth nothing but the hart, and saith, He will
be worshipped in spirit and truth. Christ condemned
all hypocrisie and feigned holines, and taught sincere,
pure, and true godlinesse: but we worsse than frantike
or blinde, will not followe Christs doctrine, but trust to
mens doctrines, judgements, and saiengs, which dimmeth
our eies, and so the blind leadeth the blind, and
both fall into the dich. Trulie, in my simple and unlearned
judgement, no mans doctrine is to be esteemed or
preferred like unto Christs, and the Apostles; nor to
be taught as a perfect and true doctrine of the Gospell.

But yet those that be called spirituall pastours (although
they be most carnall, as it doth verie evidentlie
and plainelie appeare by their fruites,) are so blinded
with the love of themselves, and the world, that they
extoll mens inventions and doctrines, before the doctrine
of the Gospell. And when they be not able to
mainteine their owne inventions and doctrines, with
anie jot of the scripture, then they most cruellie persecute
them that be contrarie to the same. Be such the
lovers of Christ? Naie, naie: they be the lovers of the
wicked Mammon, neither regarding God nor his honour.
For filthie lucre hath made them almost mad, but
frantike they be doubtlesse. Is not this miserable
state of spirituall men in the world, much to be lamented
of all good Christians? But yet I cannot allowe,
neither praise all kind of lamentation, but such as may
stand with Christian charitie.

The K2v 64

The eight Chapter,
Of the fruites and rules of true Christianitie for
men to followe.

Charitie suffereth long, and is gentle, envieth obscuredorritatis bis.
not, upbraideth no man, casteth frowardlie
no faults in mens teeth, but referreth all
things to God: being angrie without sinne,
reforming others without slanders, carrieng ever a
store-house of mild words to pearce the stonie-harted
men. I would all Christians, that like as they have
professed Christ, would so endevour themselves to folowe
him in godlie living. For we have not put on
Christ, to live anie more to our selves, in the vanities, They that have put
damagedchrist must
walk in the spirite.

delightes, and pleasures of the world, and the flesh, suffering
the concupiscence and carnalitie of the flesh to
have his full swinge. For we must walke after the spirit,
and not after the flesh. For the spirit is spirituall,
and coveteth spirituall things: and the flesh carnall,
and desireth carnall things. The men regenerate by
Christ, despise the world, and all the vanities and pleaRegenerate despise
the world

sures thereof. They be no lovers of themselves. For
they feele how evill and infirme they be, not being able
to do anie good thing, without the helpe of God, from
whome they knowledge all goodnesse to proceede.

They flatter not themselves, with thinking everie
thing which shineth to the world, to be good and holie.
For they knowe all externe and outward works, be
they never so glorious and faire to the world, may be
done of the evill, as well as of the good. And therefore
they have in verie little estimation the outward shew
of holinesse, because they be all spirituall, casting up
their eies upon heavenlie things: neither looking nor
regarding the earthlie things, for they be to them vile
and abject. They have also the simplicite of the dove,
and the policie of the serpent. For by simplicitie they haue K3r 65
have a desire to do good to all men, and to hurt no man,
no though they have occasion given: and by policie
they give not nor minister anie just cause to anie man,
whereby their doctrine might be reproved. They be
not also as a reede shaken with everie winde: but
when they be blasted with the tempests and stormes of
the world, then remaine they most firme, stable, and
quiet, feeling in spirit, that God (as their best father)
doth send and suffer all things for their benefit and
commoditie. Christ is to them a rule, a line, an example
of Christian life. They be never offended at anie
thing, although occasion be ministred unto them.
For like as Christ, when Peter would have withdrawne
him from death, answered and said, “Go backe
from me Sathan, for thou offendest me”
: that is, “As
much as lieth in thee, thou givest me occasion with thy
words, to make me withdrawe my selfe from death, although
I yeelded not thereto. For this thy procurement
can not extinguish the burning desire I have, to
shed my bloud for my chosen.”
Even so the perfect men
are never offended at anie thing. For although the
world were full of sinne, they would not withdrawe
themselves from doing of good, nor waxe cold in the
love of the Lord. And much lesse they would be moved
to do evill: yea rather, they be so much the more moved
to do good.

The regenerated by Christ are never offended at
the works of God, because they knowe by faith, that
God doth all things well: and that he can not erre, neither
for want of power, nor by ignorance, nor malice.
For they knowe him to be almightie, and that he seeth
all things, and is most aboundantlie good. They see and
feele in spirit, that of that will most highlie perfect,
can not but proceede most perfecte works. Likewise,
they be not offended at the works of men. For if they
bee good, they are moved by them to take occasion to K.iij. followe K3v 66
folowe them, and to reknowledge the goodnes of God,
with giving of thanks, and praising his name dailie
the more. But if they be indifferent, and such as may
be done with good and evill intents, they judge the best
part, thinking they may bee done to a good purpose, and
so they bee edified. But if they bee so evill, that they can
not bee taken in good part by anie meanes; yet they
bee not offended, although occasion bee given, naie rather
they be edified, in asmuch as they take occasion to
be better, though the contrarie bee ministred to them.

Then begin they to thinke and saie thus: “If God had
not preserved me with his grace, I should have committed
this sin, and worsse. O how much am I bound
to confesse and knowledge the goodnesse of God!”
go also thinking and saieng further: “He that hath sinned,
may be one of Gods elect: peradventure the Lord
hath suffered him to fall, to the intent he may the better
knowe himselfe. I knowe he is one of them that
Christ hath shed his bloud for, and one of my Christian
brethren: trulie I will admonish and rebuke him; and charitatis

in case I find him desperate, I will comfort him, and
shewe him the great goodnesse and mercie of God, in
Christ: and with godlie consolations I will see if I can
lift him up.”
And thus ye may see, how the men regenerated
by Christ, of everie thing win and receive fruit.

The ninth Chapter,
Of the fruits of infidelitie, and offence of

And contrariwise, the yonglings and unperfect
are offended at small trifles, taking everie
thing in evill part, grudging and murmuring
against their neighbor: and so much
the more, as they shew themselves fervent in their so
doing, they are judged of the blind world, and of themselves
greate zeale-bearers to God. If this were the greatest K4r 67
greatest evill of these yonglings, it were not the most
evill. But I feare they be so blind and ignorant, that
they are offended also at good things, & judge nothing
good, but such as they embrace and esteeme to bee good,
with murmuring against all such as folowe not their
waies. If there be anie of this sort, the Lord give
them the light of his truth, that they may increase and
growe in godlie strength. I suppose, if such yonglings
and unperfect, had seene Christ and his Disciples eate
meate with unwashen hands, or not to have fasted
with the Pharisies, they would have beene offended,
seeing him a breaker of mens traditions. Their affections
dispose their eies to see through other men, and
they see nothing in themselves: where charitie, although
it be most ful of eies to see the faults of others,
whome it coveteth to amend, thinketh none evill, but
discreetlie and rightlie interpreteth all things, by the
which more justlie and trulie everie thing is taken.

Now, these superstitious weaklings, if they had been
conversant with Christ, and seene him leade his life
sometime with women, sometime with Samaritanes,
with Publicanes, sinners, and with the Pharisies,
they would have murmured at him. Also, if they
had seene Marie powre upon Christ the pretious ointment,
they would have said with Judas: “This ointment
might have beene sold, and given to the poore.”
they also had seene Christ with whips drive out of the
Temple those that bought and sold, they would foorthwith
have judged Christ to have beene troubled and
moved with anger, and not by zeale of charitie. How
would they have beene offended, if they had seene him
go to the Jewes feast, heale a sicke man upon the sabboth
daie, practise with the woman of Samaria, yea &
shew unto hir of his most divine doctrine & life? They
would have taken occasion to have hated & persecuted
him, as the Scribes and Pharisies did: and even so K.iiij. should K4v 68
should Christ the Saviour of the world, have beene to
them an offence and ruine.

There be an other kind of little ones unperfecte
which are offended after this sort and maner. As
when they see one that is reputed and esteemed holie
to commit sinne, forthwith they learne to do that, and
woorse, and waxe cold in dooing of good, and confirme
themselves in evill: and then they excuse their wicked
life, publishing the same with the slander of their
neighbor. If anie man reproove them, they saie: “Such
a man did this, and woorse.”
So it is evident, that such
persons would denie Christ, if they sawe other men doo
the same. If they went to Rome, and sawe the enormities
of the Prelates, which is said to reigne there
among them, I doubt not, if they sawe one of them
sinne, which were reputed and taken for holie, their
faith should be lost; but not the faith of Christ, which
they never possessed: but they should loose that humane
opinion, which they had of the goodnesse of the Prelates.
For, if they had the faith of Christ, the holie
Ghost should be a witnes unto them, the which should
be mightie in them, that in case all the world would
denie Christ, yet they would remaine firme and stable
in the true faith.

The Pharisies also tooke occasion of the evill of others,
to waxe hautie and proud, taking themselves
to be men of greater perfection than anie other; bicause
of their vertue, even as the Pharisie did, when
he sawe the Publicans submission. And so they be offended
with everie little thing, judging evill, mmurmuring
against their neighbour, and for the same, they
are of manie reputed and taken for the more holie and
good: whereas in deed they be the more wicked. The
most wicked persons are offended, even at themselves.
For at their little stabilitie in goodnesse, and of their
delectable and evill life, they take occasion to despaire: where K5r 69
where they ought the more to commit themselves to
God, asking mercie for their offences: and foorthwith
to give thanks, that it hath pleased him of his goodnesse
to suffer them so long a time.

But what needeth it anie more to saie? The evill men
are offended even at the works of God, they see God
suffer sinners, therefore thinke they, sinne displeaseth
him not. And bicause they see not the good rewarded
with riches, oftentimes they imagine, that God loveth
them not. It seemeth to them God is parciall, bicause
he hath elected some, and some reprooved. And
therefore they saie, that the elected be sure of salvation,
taking by that, occasion to doo evill inough, saieng:
“Whatsoever God hath determined, shall be performed.”
If also they see the good men oppressed, and the
evill men exalted, they judge God unjust, taking occasion
to live evillie, saieng: “Inasmuch as God favoureth
the naughtie men, let us doo evill inough, to the
intent he doo us good.”
If then the wicked be offended
even at God, it is no woonder if they be offended at
those that followe and walke in his paths and waies.

The tenth Chapter,
Of carnall gospellers, by whose evill living Gods truth
is shamefullie slandered.

Iwill now speake with great dolor and heavinesse
in my hart, of a sort of people, which
be in the world, that be called professors of
the Gospell; and by their words doo declare
and shew, they be much affected to the same. But I am
afraid, some of them doo build upon the sand; as Simon
did, making a weake foundation: I
meane, they make not Christ their chiefest foundation,
professing his doctrine, of a sincere, pure, and zealous
mind; but either for bicause they would be called gospellers,pellers, K5v 70
to procure some credit and good opinion of the
true and verie favourers of Christs doctrine, either to
find out some carnall libertie, either to be contentious
disputers, finders or rebukers of other mens
faults, or else finallie to please and flatter the world.
Such gospellers are an offence, and a slander to the
word of God, and make the wicked to rejoice & laugh
at them, saieng: “Behold I praie you their faire fruits.
What charitie, what discretion, what godlinesse, holinesse,
or puritie of life is among them? Be not they
great avengers, foule gluttons, slanderers, backbiters,
adulterers, fornicators, swearers, and blasphemers;
yea and wallowe & tumble in all sinnes? These
be the fruits of their doctrine.”

And thus it may be seene, how the word of God is
evill spoken of, through licentious and evill living: and
yet the word of God is all holie, pure, sincere, and godlie,
being the doctrine & occasion of all holie and pure
living. It is the wicked that pervert all good things,
into evill. For an evill tree can not bring foorth good
fruit. And when good seede is sowne in a barren and
evill ground, it yeeldeth no good corne: and so it fareth
by the word of God. For when it is heard and knowne
of wicked men, it bringeth no good fruit: but when it is
sowne in good ground, I meane the harts of good people,
it bringeth foorth good fruit abundantlie: so that
the want & fault is in men, and not in the word of God.
I praie God all men and women may have grace to
become meete tillage for the fruits of the Gospell, and
to leave onlie the jangling of it. For onlie speaking of
the Gospell maketh not men good Christians, but good
talkers, except their facts and works agree with the
same: so then their speech is good, bicause their harts
be good. And even as much talke of the word of God,
without practising the same in our living, is evill & detestable
in the sight of God: so it is a lamentable thing to K6r 71
to heare, how there bee manie in the world, that do not
well digest the reading of scripture, and do commend Blasphemie
and praise ignorance, and saie, that much knowledge
of Gods word is the originall of all dissention, scismes,
and contention; and maketh men hautie, proud, and
presumptuous, by reading of the same.

This maner of saieng is no lesse than a plaine blasphemie
against the holie Ghost. For the spirit of God
is the author of his word, and so the holie Ghost is
made the author of evill, which is a most great blasphemie,
and (as the scripture saith) a sinne that shall
not bee forgiven in this world, neither in the other to
come. It were all our parts and duties, to procure and
seeke all the waies and meanes possible, to have more
knowledge of Gods word set foorth abroade in the
world, & not allow ignorance, and discommend knowledge
of Gods word, stopping the mouthes of the unlearned
with subtile and craftie persuasions of Philosophie,
and Sophistrie, whereof commeth no fruite,
but a great perturbation of the mind to the simple
& ignorant, not knowing which waie to turne them.
For how is it not extreame wickednesse, to charge the
holie sanctified word of God with the offences of man?
To alledge the scriptures to be perillous learning, because
certaine readers thereof fall into heresies?

These men might be inforced by this kind of argument,
to forsake the use of fire, because fire burneth
their neighbours house: or to absteine from meate and
drinke, because they see manie surfet. O blind hate!
They slander God for mans offence, & excuse the man
whome they see offend; and blame the scripture, which
they can not improve. Yea I have heard of some, that
have verie well understood the Latin tongue, that
when they have heard learned men persuade to the
credite and beleefe of certaine unwritten verities (as
they call them) which bee not in scripture expressed, and K6v 72
and yet taught as doctrine apostolike, and necessarie
to bee beleeved; they have been of this opinion, that
the learned men have mo Episles written by the Apostles
of Christ, than wee have abroad in the Canon
of the old and new testament, or knowne of anie, but
onlie to them of the Clergie. Which beleefe I did not
a little lament in my hart to heare, that anie creature
should have such a blind ignorant opinion.

Some kind of simplicitie is to bee praised, but this simplicitieout veritie
not allowed.

simplicitie, without the veritie, I can neither praise
nor allow. And thus it may bee seene, how wee that bee
unlettered remaine confused, without God of his
grace lighten our harts and minds with a heavenlie
light and knowledge of his will. For wee bee given of
our selves to beleeve men better than God. I praie
God send all learned men the spirit of God aboundantlie,
that their doctrine may bring forth the fruits therof.
I suppose there was never more neede of good doctrine
to bee set foorth in the world than now in this
age. For the carnall children of Adam, bee so wise in
their generation, that if it were possible, they would
deceive the children of light. The world loveth his
owne, and therefore their facts and doings be highlie
esteemed of the world: but the children of God are hated,
bicause they bee not of the world. For their habitation
is in heaven, and they do despise the world as a
most vile slave.

The fleshlie children of Adam be so politike, subtile,
craftie, and wise in their kind, that the elect should bee
illuded, if it were possible. For they are cloathed with
Christs garment, in utter appearance, with a faire
shewe of all godlines, and holines in their words: but
they have so shorne, nopped, and turned Christs garment,
and have so disguised themselves, that the children
of light beholding them with a spirituall eie, do
accompt and take them for men which have sold their maisters K7r 73
maisters garment, and have stolne a peece of everie
mans garment. Yet by their subtile art, and craftie
wits, they have so set those patches and peeces togither,
that they do make the blind world, and carnall
men to beleeve, it is Christs verie mantell.

The eleventh Chapter,
Of the vertuous properties of Gods children: of whome
everie one attendeth his vocation.

But the children of light knowe the contrarie:
for they are led by the spirit of God,
to the knowledge of the truth, and therefore
they discerne and judge all things right, and
knowe from whence they come, even from the bishop
of Rome, and his members, the headspring of all pride,
vaineglorie, ambition, hypocrisie, and feigned holines.

The children of God be not abashed, although the
world hate them; they beleeve they are in the grace
and favour of God, and that he, as a best father, doth
governe them in all things, putting awaie from them
all vaine confidence and trust in their owne doings.
For they knowe they can doo nothing but sin of themselves.
They bee not so foolish, and childish, not to give
God thanks for their election, which was before the
beginning of the world. For they beleeve most surelie
they bee of the chosen. For the holie Ghost doth witnes
to their spirit, that they bee the children of God, and
therefore they beleeve God better than man. They
saie with Saint Paule, “Who shall separate us from
the love of God? Shall tribulation, anguish, persecution,
hunger, nakednesse, perill, or sword?”
As it is written,
“For thy sake are we killed all daie long; and are
counted as sheepe appointed to bee slaine: neverthelesse,
in all these things wee overcome, through him
that loveth us. For I am sure, that neither death, nor INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to wwp@neu.edu that regMe is unmatched.Ro. 8.
life, neither Angels, nor rule; neither power, neither things K7v 74
things present, neither things to come, neither quantitie
or qualitie, neither anie creature, shall bee able to
depart us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesu
our Lord.”

They are not by this godlie faith presumptuouslie
inflamed, nor by the same become they loose, idle, or
slowe in dooing of godlie works, as carnall men dreme
of them: so much the more fervent they be in dooing
most holie and pure works, which God hath commanded
them to walke in. They wander not in mens traditions
and inventions, leaving the most holie and
pure precepts of God undone, which they knowe they
be bound to observe and keepe. Also they worke not
like hirelings, for meede, wages, or reward, but as loving
children, without respect of lucre, gaine, or hire.
They be in such libertie of spirit, and joie so much in
God, that their inward consolation can not be expresdamagedsure hope of
the elect.

sed with tongue. All feare of damnation is gone from
them; for they have put their whole hope of salvation
in his hands, which will and can performe it; neither
have they anie post or piller to leane to, but God, and
his smooth and unwrinkled Church. For he is to them
all in all things, and to him they leane, as a most sure
square piller, in prosperitie and adversitie, nothing
doubting of his promises and covenants. For they beleeve
most surelie they shall be fulfilled.

Also the children of God be not curious in searching
the high mysteries of God, which be not meet for them
to knowe: neither doo go about with humane and carnall
reasons to interpret Scripture, persuading men
by their subtile wits, and carnall doctrine, that much
knowledge of Scripture maketh men heretikes,
without they temper it with humane doctrine, Sophistrie,
Philosophie, and Logicke, wherewith to bee
seduced, according to the traditions of men, after the
ordinances of the world, and not after Christ. S. Paul doth K8r 75
doth most diligentlie admonish us, which arts are not
convenient & meet to be made checkmate with Scripture.
For the Scriptures be so pure and holie, that no
perfection can be added unto them. For even as fine
gold doth excell all other mettals, so doth the word of
God, all mens doctrines. I beseech the Lord to send the
learned and unlearned such abundance of his holie spirit,
that they may obeie and observe the most sincere
and holie word of God, and shew the fruits thereof,
which consisteth chieflie in charitie and godlie unitie:
that as we have professed one God, one faith, and one
baptisme, so we may be all of one mind, and one accord,
putting awaie all biting and gnawing. For in backbiting,
slandering, and mis-reporting our Christian brethren,
we shew not our selves the Disciples of Christ,
whom we professe. In him was most high charitie, humilitie
and patience, suffering most patientlie all ignominie,
rebukes, and slanders, praieng to his eternall
father for his enimies with most perfect charitie;
and in all things did remit his will to his fathers, as
the Scripture doth witnesse, when he praied in the
Mount. A godlie example and lesson for us to followe
at all times and seasons, as well in prosperitie, as in
adversitie; to have no will but Gods will, committing
and leaving to him all our cares and greefes, and to
abandon all our policies and inventions. For they be
most vaine, and foolish, and indeed verie shadowes and

But we be yet so carnall and fleshlie, that we run
headlong like unbrideled colts, without snaffle or bridle.
If we had the love of God printed in our harts, it
would keepe us backe from running astraie. And untill obscured
such time as it please God to send us this bit to hold
us in, we shall never run the right waie, although wee
speake and talke never so much of God and his word.
The true followers of Christs doctrine have alwaies a K8v 76
a respect, and an eie to their vocation. If they be called
to the ministerie of Gods word, they preach and teach
it sincerelie, to the edifieng of others; and shew themselves
in their living, followers of the same. If they be
maried men, having children and familie, they nourish
and bring them up, without all bitternesse, and fiercenesse,
in the doctrine of the Lord, in all godlinesse and
vertue; committing the instruction of others, which
apperteine not to their charge, to the reformation of
God, and his ministers, which chieflie be Kings and
Princes, bearing the sword even for that purpose, to
punish evill dooers. If they be children, they honour
their father and mother, knowing it to be Gods commandement,
and that he hath thereto annexed a promise
of long life. If they be servants, they obeie and
serve their maisters with all feare and reverence, even
for the Lords sake; neither with murmuring nor
grudging, but with a free hart and mind.

If they be husbands, they love their wives, as their
owne bodies, after the example as Christ loved the
congregation, and gave himselfe for it, to make it to
him a spouse without spot or wrinkle. If they be women
maried, they learne of S. Paule to be obedient to
their husbands, and to keepe silence in the congregation,
and to learne of their husbands at home. Also they
weare such apparell as becommeth holinesse, & comlie
usage, with sobernesse; not being accusers or detractors,
not given to much eating of delicate meats,
and drinking of wine; but they teach honest things, to
make the yong women sober minded, to love their husbands,
to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, houswifelie,
good, and obedient unto their husbands: that
the word of God be not evill spoken of. Verelie, if all
sorts of people would looke to their owne vocation,
and ordeine the same according to Christs doctrine, we
should not have so many eies and eares to other mens faults L1r 77
faults as we have. For we be so busie and glad to find
and esspie out other mens dooings, that we forget, and
can have no time to weigh & ponder our owne, which
after the word of God we ought first to reforme: and
then we shall the better helpe an other with the straw
out of his eies.

But alas, we be so much given to love and to flatter
our selves, and so blinded with carnall affections, that
we can see and perceive no fault in our selves. And
therfore it is a thing verie requisite and necessarie for
us, to praie all with one hart and mind to God, to give
us an heavenlie light and knowledge of our owne miseries
and calamities, that we may see them, and acknowledge
them trulie before him.

The twelfe Chapter,
The conclusion, with a Christian exhoration to the
amendement of life.

If anie man shall be offended at this my lamenting
the faults of men, which be in the
world, fantasing wih themselves, that I doo
it either of hatred or of malice, to anie sort
or kind of people; verelie in so dooing they shall doo me
great wrong. For I thanke God by his grace, I hate
no creature; yea I would saie more to give witnesse
of my conscience, that neither life, honour, riches, neither
whatsoever I possesse here, which appertaineth
to mine owne private commoditie, be it never so deerlie
beloved of mee, but most willinglie and gladlie I
would leave it, to win anie man to Christ, of what degree
or sort soever he were. And yet is this nothing in
comparison to the charitie that God hath shewed me,
in sending Christ to die for me. No, if I had all the
charitie of Angels, and Apostles, it should be but like
a sparke of fire compared to a great heape of burning

L.j. God L1v 78

God knoweth of what intent and mind I have lamented
mine owne sinnes and faults to the world. I
trust no bodie will judge that I have done it for praise
or thanke of anie creature; since rather I might be
ashamed, than rejoice in rehearsall thereof. For if they
knewe how little I esteeme and weigh the praise of the
world, that opinion were soone remooved and taken awaie.
For I thanke God (by his grace) I knowe the
world to be a blind judge, and the praises therof vaine,
and of little moment: and therefore I seeke not the Mundus quid?
praises of the same, neither to satisfie it none otherwise
than I am taught by Christ to doo, according to
christian charitie. I would to God we would all (when
occasion doth serve) confesse our faults to the world,
all respects of our owne commoditie laid apart. But
alas, selfe-love doth so much reigne among us, that as obscured
I have said before) we can not espie our owne faults.
And although somtime we find our owne guilt, either
we be favourable to interpret it no sin: or else we be
sore offended and greeved, to heare our faults charitablie
and godlie told us of other, putting no difference
betweene charitable warning, & malicious accusing.

Trulie, if we sought Gods glorie, as we should doo If we sought glory
of god we coould
damagedofesse of faltes &

in all things, we should not be ashamed to confesse our
selves to digresse from Gods precepts and ordinances;
when it is manifest we have done, and dailie doo.
I praie God our owne faults and deeds condemne us
not at the last daie, when everie man shall be rewarded
according to his dooings. Trulie, if we doo not redresse
and amend our living, according to the doctrine
of the Gospell; we shall receive a terrible sentence of
Christ the sonne of God, when he shall come to judge
and condemne all transgressours and breakers of his
precepts and commandements; and to reward all his
obedient and loving children. We shall have no man of L2r 79
of lawe to make our plea for us, neither can we have
the daie deferred, neither will the Judge be corrupted
with affection, bribes, or reward; neither will he heare
anie excuse or delaie, neither shall this Saint or that
Martyr helpe us, be they never so holie; neither shall
our ignorance save us from damnation. But yet wilfull
blindnesse, and obstinate ignorance shall receive obstinate ignorance
shall receave the
greter punishment

greater punishment, and not without just cause. Then
shall it be knowne who hath walked in the darke. For
all things shall appeere manifest before him. No mans
deeds shall be hidden; no, neither words, nor thoughts.
The poore and simple observers of Gods commandements
shall be rewarded with everlasting life, as obedient
children to the heavenlie Father: and the transgressors,
adders, and diminishers of the lawe of God,
shall receive eternall damnation for their just reward.
I beseech God we may escape this fearefull sentence,
and be found such faithfull servants, and loving children,
that we may heare the happie, comfortable, and
most joifull sentence ordeined for the children of God,
which is; “Come hither ye blessed of my father, and receive
the kingdome of heaven, prepared for you
before the beginning of the world. Unto
the Father, the Sonne, and the holie
Ghost, be all honour and
glorie world without
end, Amen.”

L2v 80

Also here followe godlie Praiers and
Meditations, wherein the mind is stirred, patientlie
to suffer all afflictions heere; to set at
naught the vaine prosperitie of the world: and
alwaie to long for everlasting felicitie: collected
out of holie works, by the most vertuous
and gratious Princesse Katherine,
Queene of England, France,
and Ireland.

INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to wwp@neu.edu that regMe is unmatched.Colossians. 3, verse. 1. 2. “If ye be risen againe with Christ, seeke the things which are
above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God.
Set your affection on things that are above: and not on things
which are on the earth.”

The first Chapter,
Of praiers to performe Gods will in

Most benigne Lord Jesu, grant me
thy grace, that it may alwaie
worke in mee, and persevere with
me unto the end.

Grant me, that I may ever desire
and will that, which is most
pleasant, and most acceptable to

Thy will be my will, and my will be to followe alwaie
thy will.

Let there be alwaie in me one will, and one desire
with thee, and that I have no desire to will, or not to
will, but as thou wilt.

Lord, thou knowest what thing is most profitable,
and most expedient for me.

Giue L3r 81

Give me therefore what thou wilt, as much as thou
wilt, and when thou wilt.

Doo with me what thou wilt, as it shall please thee,
and as shall be most to thine honour.

Put me where thou wilt, and freelie doo with me in
all things after thy will.

Thy creature I am, and in thy hands, leade and
turne me where thou wilt.

Lo, I am thy servant, readie to all things that thou
commandest. For I desire not to live to my selfe, but to

Lord Jesu, I praie thee grant me grace, that I never
set my hart on the things of this world: but that
all worldlie and carnall affections may utterlie die
and be mortified in me.

Grant me above all things, that I may rest in thee, christ is the true
peace of hart, &
rest of the soule

and fullie quiet and pacifie my hart in thee.

For thou Lord art the verie true peace of hart, and
the perfect rest of the soule: & without thee all things
be greevous and unquiet.

My Lord Jesu, I beseech thee, be with me in everie
place, and at all times; and let it be to me a speciall solace,
gladlie for thy love to lacke all worldlie solace.

And if thou withdrawe thy comfort from me at any
time, keepe me, O Lord, from desperation, and make
me patientlie to abide thy will and ordinance.

O Lord Jesu, thy judgments be righteous, and thy
providence is much better for me, than all that I can
imagine or devise.

Wherfore doo with me in all things as it shall please
thee. For it may not be but well, all that thou dooest.

If thou wilt that I be in light, be thou blessed: if
thou wilt that I be in darknesse, be thou also blessed.

If thou vouchsafe to comfort me, be thou highlie
blessed: if thou wilt I live in trouble, and without
comfort, be thou likewise ever blessed.

L.iij. Lord L3v 82

Lord give mee grace gladlie to suffer whatsoever
thou wilt shall fall upon me, and patientlie to take it
at thy hand: good and bad, bitter and sweete, joie and
sorrow: and for all things that shall befalll unto me,
hartilie to thanke thee.

Keepe me Lord from sinne, and I shall then neither
dread death, nor hell.

O what thanks ought I to give unto thee, which
hast suffered the greevous death of the crosse, to deliver
me from my sinnes, and to obtaine everlasting life
for me!

Thou gavest us most perfect example of patience,
fulfilling and obeieng the will of thy father, even unto
the death.

Make me wretched sinner, obedientlie to use my
selfe after thy will in althings, and patientlie to beare
the burden of this corruptible life.

For though this life be tedious, and as an heavie
burden to my soule: yet neverthelesse thorough thy
grace, and by example of thee, it is now made much
more easie and comfortable, than it was before thine
incarnation and passion.

Thy holie life is our waie to thee, and by following
of thee we walke to thee, that art our head and Saviour:
and yet, except thou hadst gone before and shewed
us the waie to everlasting life; who would endevor
himselfe to followe thee? Seeing we be yet so slowe
and dull, having the light of thy blessed example and
holie doctrine to leade and direct us.

O Lord Jesu, make that possible by grace, that is to
me impossible by nature.

Thou knowest well that I may litle suffer, and that
I am anon cast downe and overthrowne with a little
adversitie: wherfore I beseech thee O Lord, to strengthen
me with thy spirit, that I may willinglie suffer
for thy sake, all maner of trouble and affliction.

The L4r 83

The second Chapter,
A confession of our infirmities, with a desire to rest in
God above all things.

Lord, I will knowledge unto thee all mine
unrighteousnesse, and I will confesse to thee
all the unstablenesse of my hart.

Oftentimes a verie little thing troubleth
me sore, and maketh mee dull and slowe to serve thee.

And sometime I purpose to stand stronglie: but
when a little trouble commeth, it is to mee great anguish
and greefe, and of a right little thing riseth a
greevous temptation to mee.

Yea when I thinke my selfe to bee sure and strong,
and that (as it seemeth) I have the upper hand: suddenlie
I feele my selfe readie to fall with a little blast
of temptation.

Behold therefore (good Lord) my weakenesse, and
consider my frailenesser best knowne to thee.

Have mercie on me, and deliver me from all iniquitie
and sinne, that I bee not intangled therewith.

Oft times it greeveth mee sore, and in a maner confoundeth
mee, that I am so unstable, so weake, and so
fraile, in resisting sinfull motions.

Which although they drawe me not alwaie to consent,
yet neverthelesse their assaults bee verie greevous
unto mee.

And it is tedious to mee to live in such battell, albeit
I perceive, that such bettell is not unprofitable
unto mee: for thereby I knowe the better my selfe, and
mine owne infirmities, and that I must seeke helpe
onlie at thy hands.

O Lord God of Israel, the lover of all faithfull
souls, voucxhsafe to behold the labour and sorowe of
mee thy poore creature.

Assist mee in all things with thy grace, and so strengthenL.iiij. then L4v 84
me with heavenlie strength, that neither my cruell
enimie the feend, neither my wretched flesh (which
is not yet subject to the spirit) have victorie or dominon
over mee.

O what a life may this bee called, where no trouble
nor miserie lacketh! Where everie place is full of
snares of mortall enimies!

Wherefore Lord Jesu, I praie thee give me thy
grace, to rest in thee above all things, and to quiet mee
in thee above all creatures, above all glorie and honour,
above all dignitie and power, above all cunning
and policie, above all health and beautie, above all riches
and treasure, above all joie and pleasure, above
all fame and praise, above all mirth and consolation
that mans hart may take or feele besides thee.

For thou Lord God, art best, most wise, most high,
most mightie, most sufficient, and most full of all goodnesse,
most sweet, and most comfortable, most faire, most
loving, most noble, most glorious, in whom all goodnes
most perfeclie is.

And therefore, whatsoever I have besides thee, it is
nothing to mee. For my hart may not rest, ne fullie bee
pacified, but onlie in thee.

O Lord Jesu, most loving spouse; who shall give mee
wings of perfect love, that I may flie up from these
worldlie miseries, and rest in thee?

O when shall I ascend to thee, and feele how sweet
thou art?

When shall I wholie gather my selfe in thee so perfectlie,
that I shall not for thy love feele my selfe, but
thee onlie above my selfe, & above all worldlie things,
that thou maist vouchsafe to visit mee in such wise, as
thou dooest visit thy most faithfull lovers?

Now L5r 85

Now I often mourne and complaine of the miseries
of this life, and with sorowe and great heavinesse
suffer them.

For manie things happen dailie to mee, which oftentimes
trouble mee, make mee heavie, and darken
mine understanding.

They hinder mee greatlie, and put my mind from
thee, and so encumber me manie waies, that I can not
freelie and cleerelie desire thee, ne have thy sweet consolations,
which with thy blessed Saints be alwaie

I beseech thee, Lord Jesu, that the sighings and inward
desires of my hart may move and incline thee to
heare mee.

The third Chapter.
A recounting of Gods benefits, with praier to obtaine a
free and cleane mind, with hartie wisdome
and deliverance.

O Jesu, King of everlasting glorie, the joie and
comfort fo all Christian people, that are
wandering as Pilgrims in the wildernes of
this world: my hart crieth to thee by still desires,
and my silence speaketh unto thee, and saith:
“How long tarieth my Lord God to come to mee?”

Come O Lord, and visit mee: for without thee I have
no true joie, without thee my soule is heavie and sad.

I am in prison, and bounden with fetters of sorowe,
till thou O Lord, with thy gratious presence vouchsafe
to visit me, and to bring me againe to libertie and
joie of spirit, and to shew thy favourable countenance
unto me.

Open my hart (Lord) that I may behold thy lawes,
and teach me to walke in thy commandements.

Make me to knowe and folowe thy will, and to have
alwaies in my remembrance thy manifold benefits,
that I may yeeld due thanks to thee for the same.

But L5v 86

But I knowledge and confesse for truth, that I am
nodamaged to give thee condigne thanks, for the least benefit
that thou hast given me.

O Lord, all gifts and vertues that anie man hath,
in bodie or soule, naturall or supernaturall, be thy
gifts, and come of thee, and not of our selyes; and they
declare the great riches of thy mercie and goodnesse
unto us.

And though some have mo gifts than other; yet
they all proceed from thee, and without thee the least
can not be had.

O Lord, I accompt it for a great benefit. not to have
manie worldlie gifts, whereby the laud and praise of
men might blind my soule, and deceive me.

Lord, I knowe that no man ought to be ashamed or
miscontent, that he is in a lowe estate in this world,
and lacketh the pleasures of this life; but rather to be
glad and rejoice thereat:

For so much as thou hast chosen the poore and meeke
persons, and such as are despised in the world, to be thy
servants and familiar friends.

Witnesse be thy blessed Apostles, whome thou madest
chiefe pastours and spirituall governours of thy
flocke, which departed from the counsel of the Jews,
rejoising that they were counted worthie to suffer rebuke
for thy name.

Even so (O Lord) grant that I thy servant may be
as well content to be taken as the least, as other be to
be greatest; and that I be as well pleased to be in the
lowest place, as in the highest; and as glad to be of no
reputation in the world for thy sake, as other are to be
noble and famous.

Lord, it is the worke of a perfect man, never to sequester
his mind from thee; and among manie worldlie
cares to go without care: not after the maner of
an idle or a dissolute person, but by the prerogative of a free L6r 87
free mind, alwaie minding heavenlie things, and not
cleaving by inordinate affection to anie creature.

I beseech thee therefore, my Lord Jesu, keepe me
from the superfluous cares of this world, that I be
not inquieted with bodilie necessities; ne that I be
not taken with the voluptuous pleasures of the
world, ne of the flesh.

Preserve me from all things, which hinder my soule
health, that I be not overthrowne with them.

O Lord God, which art sweetnesse unspeakable,
turne into bitternesse to me all worldlie and fleshlie
delights, which might drawe me from the love of eternall
things, to the love of short and vile pleasures.

Let not flesh and bloud overcome me, ne yet the
world with his vaine glorie deceive me, nor the feend
with his manifold crafts supplant me: but give me
ghostlie strength in resisting them, patience in suffering
them, and constancie in persevering to the end.

Give me for all worldlie delectations, the most sweet
consolation of thy holie spirit, and for all fleshlie love,
indue my soule with fervent love of thee.

Make me strong inwardlie in my soule, and cast out
therof all unprofitable cares of this world, that I be
not led by unstable desires of earthlie things: but that
I may repute all things in this world (as they be)
transitorie and soone vanishing awaie, and my selfe also
with them, drawing toward mine end.

For nothing under the sunne may long abide; but
all is vanitie, and affliction of spirit.

Give me (Lord) therefore heavenlie wisdome, that
I may learne to seeke and find thee, & above all things
to love thee.

Give me grace to withdrawe me from them, that
flatter me, and patientlie to suffer them that unjustlie
greeve me.

Lord, when temptation or tribulation commeth, vouchsafe L6v 88
vouchsafe to succour me, that all may turne to my
ghdamagedie comfort, and patientlie to suffer, and alwaie
to saie, “Thy name be blessed.”

Lord, trouble is now at hand; I am not well, but I
am greatlie vexed with this present affliction. O most
glorious father, what shall I do? Anguish and trouble
are on everie side, helpe now, I beseech thee in this
houre: thou shalt be lauded and praised, when I am
perfectlie made meeke before thee, and when I am
cleerlie delivered by thee.

May it therefore please thee to deliver me. For what
may I most sinfull wretch do? Or whether may I go
for succour, but to thee?

Give mee patience now at this time in all my
troubles; helpe me, Lord God, and I shall not feare
ne dread, what trouble so ever fall upon me.

And now, what shall I saie, but that thy will be done
in me? I have deserved to be troubled and greeved;
and therefore it behooveth that I suffer, as long as it
pleaseth thee.

But would to God that I might suffer gladlie, till
the furious tempests were overpassed, and that quietnesse
of hart might come againe.

Thy mightie hand, Lord, is strong ynough to take
this trouble from me, & to asswage the cruell assaults
thereof with them, as thou hast oftentimes done before
this time; that when I am cleerlie delivered by
thee, I may with gladnesse saie, “The right hand of him
that is highest, hath made this change.”

The fourth Chapter,
To despise all things in the world, and yeeld our selves up to God,
that he may be all in all for our redemption in time of neede.

Lord grant me thy singular grace, that I may
come thither where no creature shall let me
ne keepe me from the perfect beholding of thee.

For L7r 89

For as long as anie transitorie thing keepeth me
backe, or hath rule in me, I may not freelie ascend to

O Lord, without thee nothing may long delight or
please: for if anie thing should be liking and favourie, it
must be through helpe of thy grace, seasoned with the
spice of thy wisedome.

O everlasting light, far passing all things, send
downe the beames of thy brightnesse from above, and
purifie and lighten the inward parts of my hart.

Quicken my soule, and all the powers thereof, that
it may cleave fast, and be joined to thee in joifull gladnesse,
and ghostlie ravishings.

O when shall that blessed houre come, that thou cupio dissoluj
esse tu chrisdamaged

shalt visit me, and glad me with thy blessed presence;
when thou shalt be to me all in all? Verelie untill that
time come, there can be no perfect joi in me.

But alas, mine old man, that is, my carnall affections
live still in me, and are not crucified nor perfectlie

For yet striveth the flesha against the spirit, and moveth
great battell inwardlie against me, and suffereth
not the kingdome of my soule to live in peace.

But thou good Lord, that hast the Lordship over all,
and power of the sea, to asswage the rages and surges
of the same, arise and helpe me; destroie the power of
mine enimies, which alwaies make battell against
me: shew foorth the greatnesse of thy goodnesse, and let
the power of thy right hand be glorified in me. For
there is to me none other helpe nor refuge, but in thee
onlie my Lord, my God: to thee be honour and gflorie everlasting.

O Lord grant me, that I may wholie resigne my
selfe to thee, and in all things to forsake my selfe, and
patientlie to beare my crosse, and to followe thee.

O Lord, what is man, that thou couchsafest to have mind L7v 90
mind of him, and to visit him?

Thou art alwaie one, alwaie good, alwaie righteous
and holie, justlie and blessedlie disposing all things after
thy wisdome.

But I am a wretch, and of my selfe alwaie readie
and prone to evill, and do never abide in one state, but
manie times doo varie and change.

Neverthelesse, it shall be better with me, when it
shall please thee. For thou O Lord onelie art he that
maiest helpe me; and thou maiest to confirme and stablish
me, that my hart shall not be changed from thee,
but be surelie fixed, and finallie rest and be quieted in

I am nothing else of my selfe, but vanitie before
thee, and unconstant creature, and a feeble. And therefore,
whereof may I rightrfullie glorie? Or why should
I looke to be magnified?

Who so pleaseth himselfe without thee, displeaseth
thee; and he that delighteth in mens praisings, looseth
the true praise before thee.

The true praise is to be praised of thee: and the true
joie is to rejoice in thee.

The true praise is to be praised of thee: and the true
joie is to rejoice in thee.

Wherefore, thy name O Lord, be praised, and not
mine; thy works be magnified, and not mine; and thy
goodnesse be alwaies lauded and blessed.

Thou art my glorie, and the joie of my hart, in thee
shall I glorie and rejoice, and not in my selfe, nor in anie
worldlie honor or dignitie, which to thine eternall
glorie compared, is but a shadowe, and a verie vanitie.

O Lord, we live here in great darknesse, and are soone
deceived with the vanities of this world, and are soone
greeved with a little trouble: yet id I could behold my
selfe well, I should plainelie see, that what trouble soever
I have suffered, it hath justlie come upon me, because
I have often sinned, & greevouslie offended thee.

To me therefore confusion, and despite is due; but to L8r 91
to thee laud, honour and glorie.

Lord send me helpe in my troubles; for mans helpe
is little woorth.

Now often have I beene disappointed, where I
thought I should have found friendship? And how often
have I found it, where as I least thought?

Wherefore it is a vaine thing to trust in man. For Salus a Deo
the true trust and helth of man is onlie in thee.

Blessed be thou Lord therefore in all things, that
happen unto us. For we be weake and unstable, soone
deceived, and soon changed from one thing to another.

O Lord God, most righteous Judge, strong and patient,
which knowest the frailtie and malice of man; be
thou my whole strength and comfort in all necessities.
For mine owne conscience Lord sufficeth not.

Wherefore to thy mercie I doo appeale, seeing no
man may be justified, ne appere righteous in thy sight,
if thou examine him after thy justice.

The fift Chapter,
Of the everlasting daie, and anguish of
this life.

Oblessed mansion of thy heavenlie Citie! O
most clearest daie of eternitie, whom the
might may never darken!

This is the daie alwaie cleare and merrie,
alwaie sure, and never changing his estate.

Would to God this daie might shortlie appeare, and
shine upon us, and that these worldlie fantasies were
at an end.

This daie shineth clearlie to thy Saints in heaven,
with everlasting brightnesse: but to us pilgrims in
earth it shineth obscurelie, and as through a mirrour
or glasse.

The heavenlie Citizens knowe how joious this day
is; but we outlawes, the children of Eve, weepe and waile L8v 92
waile the bitter tediousnes of our daie, that is of this
present life, short and evill, full of sorowe and anguish,

Where man is oftentimes defiled with sinne, incumbred
with affliction, inquieted with troubles,
wrapped in cares, busies with vanities, blinded with
errors, overcharged with labours, vexed with temptation,
overcome with vaine delights and pleasures
of the world, and grievouslie tormented with penurie
and neede.

O when shall the end come of all these miseries?

When shall I be clearelie delivered from the bondage
of sinne?

When shall I Lord have onelie mind on thee, and
fullie be glad and merrie in thee?

When shall I be free without letting, and be in perfect
libertie of bodie and soule?

When shall I have peace without trouble: peace
within and without, and on everie side stedfast & sure?

O Lord Jesu, when shall I stand and behold thee;
and have full sight and contemplation of thy glorie?

When shalt thou be to me all in all? And when shall
I be with thee in thy kingdome, that thou hast ordeined
for thine elect people from the beginning?

I am left here poore, and as an outlawe, in the land
of mine enimies; where dailie be battels, and great

Comfort mine exile, asswage my sorowe; for all my
desire is to be with thee.

It is to me an unpleasant burden, what pleasure
soever the world offereth me here.

I desire to have inward fruition in thee; but I can
not attaine thereto.

I covet to cleave fast to heavenlie things; but worldlie
affections plucke my mind downeward.

I would subdue all evill affections; but they dallie
rebell, and rise against me, and will not be subject unto my M1r 93
my spirit.

Thus I wretched creature sigh in my selfe, and am
grievous to my selfe, while my spirit desireth to be upward
and contrarie, my flesh draweth me downward.

O what suffer I inwardlie! I go about to mind
heavenly things, and streight a great rable of worldlie
things rush into my soule.

Therefore, Lord, be not long awaie; ne depart thou
in thy wrath from me.

Send me the light of thy grace; destroie in me all
carnall desires.

Send foorth the hot flames of thy love to burne and
consume the cloudie fantasies of my mind.

Gather, O Lord, my wits, and the powers of my
soule togither in thee; & make me to despise all worldlie
things, and by thy grace strongly to resist and overcome
all motions and occassions of sinne.

Helpe me thou everlasting truth, that no worldlie
guile nor vanitie hereafter have power to deceive me.

Come also thou heavenlie sweetnesse, and let all bitternesse
of sinne flie far from me. Pardon me, and forgive
me as oft as in my praier my mind is not surelie
fixed on thee.

For manie times I am not there, where I stand or
sit; but rather there wither my thoughts carie me.

For there I am, where my thoughts be, and where
as customablie is my thought, there is that that I

And that oftentimes commeth into my mind, that
y custome pleaseth me best; and that delighteth me
most to thinke upon.

Accordinglie as thou dost say in the gospell: “Where
as a mans treasure is, there is his hart.”

Wherefore, if I love heaven, I speake gladlie therof,
and of such things as be of God, and of that that
apperteineth to his honour, and to the glorie of his M.j. holie M1v 94
holie name.

And if I love the world, I love to talke of worldlie
things, and I joie anon in worldlie felicitie, and sorowe
and lament soone for worldlie adversitie.

If I love the flesh, I imagine oftentimes that, that
pleaseth the flesh.

If I love my soule, I delight much to speake and to
heare of things that be for my soules health.

And whatsoever I love, of that I gladlie heare, and
speake, and beare the images of them still in my mind.

Blessed is the man that for the love of the Lord, setteth
not by the pleasures of this world, and learneth
trulie to overcome himselfe, and with the fervour of
spirit crucifieth his flesh; so that in a cleane and a pure
conscience he may offer his praiers to thee, and be accepted
to have companie of thy blessed Angels, all
earthlie things excluded from his hart.

The sixt Chapter,
A sweet praier, wherein being pressed downe with troubles,
we humblie yeeld our selves under the mightie
hand of God our Creator.

Lord and holie Father, be thou blessed now
and ever. For as thou wilt, so it is done; and
that thou dooest is alwaie best.

Let me, thine humble and unwoorthie servant,
joie onelie in thee, and not in my selfe, ne in anie
thing else besides thee.

For thou Lord art my gladnes, my hope, my crowne,
and all mine honour.

What hath thy servant, but that she hath of thee,
and that without hir desert.

All things be thine; thou hast created and made

I am poore, and have beene in trouble and paine, ever
from my youth, and my soule hath beene in great heavinesseuinesse M2r 95
through manifold passions, that come of the
world, and of the flesh.

Wherefore Lord, I desire that I may have of thee
the joie of inward peace.

I aske of thee to come to that rest, which is ordeined
for thy chosen children, that be fed and nourished with
the light of heavenlie comforts. For without thy helpe
I can not come to thee.

Lord give me peace, give me inward joie, and then
my soule shall be full of heavenlie melodie, and be devout
and fervent in thy lauds and praises.

But if thou withdrawe thy selfe from me (as thou
hast sometime done) then may not thy servant runne
the waie of thy commandements, as I did before.

For it is not with me, as it was when the Lampe
of thy ghostlie presence did shine upon my head; and I
was defended under the shadowe of thy wings from
all perils and dangers.

O mercifull Lord Jesu, ever to be praised; the time
is come, that thou wilt proove thy servant; and rightfull
it is, that I shall now suffer somewhat for thee.

Now is the houre come, that thou hast knowne from
the beginning, that thy servant for a time should outwardlie
be set at naught, and inwardlie to leane unto

And that she should be despised in the sight of the
world, and be broken with affliction, that she may after
arise with thee in a new light, and be clarified, and
made glorious in the kingdome of heaven.

O holie father, thou hast ordeined it so to be; and it
is done as thou hast commanded.

This is thy grace (O Lord) to thy freend, to suffer
hir to be troubled in this world for thy love, how often
so ever it be, and of what person so ever it be, and in
what maner soever thou wilt suffer it to fall unto hir.
For without thy will or sufferance, what thing is done M.ij. upon M2v 96
upon the earth?

It is good to me, O Lord, that thou hast meekened damagedonū est mihj quod
obscured me.

me, that I may therby learne to knowe thy righteous
judgements, & to put from me all maner of presumption,
and statelinesse of hart.

It is verie profitable for me, that confusion hath covered
my face; that I may learne thereby rather to
seeke to thee for helpe and succour, than to man.

I have thereby learned to dread thy secret and terrible
judgements, which scourgest the righteous with
the sinner; but not without equitie and justice.

Lord, I yeeld thanks to thee, that thou hast not spared
my sinnes, but hast punished me with scourges of
love, and hast sent me affliction and anguish within
and without.

No creature under heaven may comfort me, but
thou Lord God, the heavenlie leach of mans soule,
which strikest and healest, which bringest a man nigh
unto death, and after restorest him to life againe, that
he may thereby learne to knowe his owne weaknesse
and imbecillitie, & the more fullie to trust in the Lord.

Thy discipline is laid upon me, and thy rod of correction
hath taught me, and under that rod I wholie