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in the mean time, be merciful unto him, and reclaim him by some good means, to the catholic faith ; yet, it should seem, he hath not lost all good gists of nature, whereas, in conscience he was pricked to open the truth in our defence, and to detect his own wickedness and treacheries of others practised against us, to our confusion. Now I see, as all the world hereafter, shall easily perceive, that the doings of this man do confirm the old saying, that rather than God will have wilful murder concealed, he procureth the birds of the air to reveal it.
I am minded to signify to Sir Francis Walsingham, this his submis. sion unto us, except, in the mean time, I shall learn that he hath (as he promised faithfully to me) already opened the same. Mr. Richardson and Mr. Filbie have now obtained some bedding, who ever since their condemnation have laid upon the boards. Mr. Hart hath had many and great conflicts with his adversaries. This morning, the 10th of January, he was committed to the dungeon, where he now remaineth : God comfort him ; he taketh it very quietly and patiently ; the cause was, for that he would not yield to Mr. Reynolds, of Oxford, in any one point, but still remained constant, the same man he was before and ever. Mr. Reynolds, albeit, he be the best learned of that sort, that hath from time to time come hither to preach and confer, yet the more he is tried and dealt withal, the less learning he hath shewed. Thus, beseeching you to assist us with your good prayers, whereof, now, especially, we stand in need, as we, by God's grace, shall not be unmindful of you. I bid you farewell, this 10th day of January, 1582.
Yours, to death, and after death,
N. B. Mr. Hart, here mentioned, was Mr. John Hart, a native of Oxfordshire, who, for conscience sake, leaving the university of Oxford, passed over into Flanders, was admitted into the English college of Douay, in 1571, made bachelor of divinity in that university, in 1577, and the year following, ordained priest. Returning into England, he was apprehended in June, 1580, and on the 29th of December, of the same year, was, from the Marshalsea, translated to the Tower: he was cruelly tortured in prison, and in the November following, condemned to die ; but on the day assigned for execution, he was, by a reprieve, taken off the sledge, and returned to prison ; he was, afterwards, sent into banishment, in 1584, and entered into the Society of Jesus. Mr. Reynolds, published in print, his conference with Mr. Hart, though, as it is supposed, very partially. It is allowed, at all hands, that Mr. Hart acquiried himself with honour in this controversy ; whom, therefore, Mr. Cambden is pleased to compliment with the title of Vir præ cæteris doctissimus. He died at Jareslaw, in Poland, 1594,
LAURENCE RICHARDSON, ALIAS, JOHNSON, PRIEST.*
LAURENCE RICHARDSON was born in Lancashire, and educated in Brazen-nose college, in Oxford, and was a fellow of that college, but quitling his fellowship and protestant religion, as a great many of the most hopesul subjects did in those days, he went over to Douay college in 1573, where, having passed through his course of divinity, he was made priest, in 1577. His labours upon the mission were in his native country of Lancashire, where he was much esteemed for his extraordinary zeal and piety. He was apprehended, in some part of the year 1581, and being in prison at the tiine that the pretended plot of Rhemes and Rome was set on foot by the enemies of the catholics; he was also charged with the rest of the priests then in prison, of that pretended conspiracy, though he was in England, at the time that he was accused to have been plotting at Rhemes ; and the wretches that were his accusers, had never seen him there or elsewhere, before his imprisonment. However, all this was not regarded in his trial, and he was condemned, November 21, 1581, and executed, the 30th of May, 1582. My author, an eye-witness of his death, tells us, that immediately after the cart was drawn away from Mr. Kirby, Mr. Richardson and Mr. Cottam, priests and graduates, were brought together, to look upon him whilst he was hanging; and that he being cut down, they were put up into the cart, where, with cheersul countenances, they signed themselves with the sign of the cross, saying, in nomine Patris, &c. Mr Cottam, turning him about, said God bless you all, our Lord bless you, with a smiling countenance. Mr. Richardson, being commanded by the sheriff's man, to look upon his companion, who was in cutting up, said, O! God's will be done : with that, one Field, a preacher, said, despatch, despatch : to whom, Mr. Cottam said, with a smiling countenance, what are you, an executioner or a preacher ? fye, fye. A minister standing by, said, leave off those jests, it is no time to jest; he is a preacher, and not an executioner; he cometh to exhort you to die well. Mr. Cottam, replied, Truly, by his words, he seemed to be an executioner; for he said, despatch, despatch. Then, Mr. Richardson being placed right under the place, where he was to hang, divers persons moved speeches to him, all at one time. To whom, he answered, I pray you, do not trouble me: if you demand any questions of me, let them be touching the matter whereof I was condemned, and do not move new questions ; and thereupon he was turned back, to look upon Mr. Kirby, who was then in quartering, which he did; and the head being cut off, they held it up, saying, God save the queen : and he being demanded what he said, I say, amen, I pray God save her.
And further, he said, I am come hither to die for treason, and I protest before God, I am not guilty of any treason, more than all catholic bishops that ever were in the land, since the conversion thereof, till our time; and were they alive, they might as well be executed for treason, as I am now. To whom, a minister replied, the case is not
* From Raissius, his catalogue of martyrs, and the Douay diary; his death, from an eye-witness.
the same ; for then, popish priests lived under popish princes, and did not disobey them, and so were no traitors. Whilst they were talking with Mr. Richardson, Mr. Cottam took Bull, the hangman, by the sleeve, and said to him, God forgive thee, and make thee his servant ; take heed in time, and call for grace, and no doubt but God will hear thee: take example by the executioner of St. Paul, who, during the time of the saint's execution, a little drop of blood falling from St. Paul, upon his garment, white, like milk, did afterwards call him to remembrance of himself, and so he became penitent for his sins, and became a good man; whose example, I pray God thou mayest follow; and I pray God give thee his grace.
• Then the six articles were read, and Mr. Richardson's answer, who said, as touching the doctrine of Dr. Saunders and Dr. Bristow, he allowed of it no farther than they agreed with the true catholic church of Rome. Topcliff, and some ministers said, he built his faith upon Saunders ; to whom, he answered, I build not my faith upon any one man whatsoever, but upon the whole catholic church. Then the rope being put about both their necks, and fastened to the post, the sheriff said, now Richardson, if thou wilt confess thy faults and renounce the pope, the queen will extend her mercy toards thee, and thou shalt be carried back again. Mr. Richardson answered, I thank her majesty for her mercy ; but I must not confess an untruth, or renounce my faith.
* All this while, Mr. Cottam was in prayer, and uttering divers good sentences ; saying, all that we here sustain, is for saving of our souls ; and therewithal listing up his eyes to heaven, he said, O Lord, thou knowest our innocency. Then, he was bid to confess his treasons. O Lord, said he, how willingly would I confess, if I did know any thing that did charge me; and if we had been guilty of any such thing, surely, one or other of us, either by racking or death, would have confessed it, or else we had been such people as never were heard of. And I protest before God, that before my coming into England, I was prepared to go into the Indies; and if I were to be set at liberty, I would never rest, but on the journey towards those countries. With that, the sheriff said, the queen will be merciful to thee, if thou wilt thyself: he answered, I thank her grace ; saying further, do with me what you think good. Therewithal, the sheriff commanded that the rope should be loosed from the post, and he removed down from the cart,
• Then, Mr. Richardson was once more called upon to confess, and ask pardon of the queen; he answered, that he had never offended her to his knowledge. Then he was willed to pray; which he did, desiring all catholics to pray with him. He said his pater, ave, and creed: and when the cart began to move, he said, Lord receive my soul, Lord Jesu, receive my soul.'
THOMAS COTTAM, PRIEST.*
THOMAS COTTAM, was born in Lancashire, brought up, in Brazen-nose college, in Oxford, where he took the degree of bachelor of arts, March 23, 1568. From whence, he went to London, and was there for some time, a school-master ; but embracing the catholic religion, he left the kingdom, and went over to Douay, to the English college, lately founded there. From Douay, after some time, he was sent to Rome, where he entered into the Society of Jesus : • But there, falling into a consuming and lingering sickness, he was, by his superiors, sent to Lyons, in France lo try, if by change of air, he might be recovered : but the sickness so grew and increased upon him, that he was made an unfit man for them, and thereupon they dismissed him. Whilst Mr. Coltam was at Lyons, Sledd, that infamous Judas, intending to work some mischief, came from Rome in the company of divers Englishmen, whose names and marks he look very diligently: and being come to Lyons, found Mr. Cottam there, and travelling in his company from thence for some days, understood of him, that he meant very shortly to return home to his native country. Whereupon Sledd took his marks more exactly and precisely; and being arrived at Paris, he there presented to the English ambassador the names and marks he had taken, who sent them over to the queen's counsel, and from them they were sent to the searchers of the ports.
In the mean time, Mr. Cottam went to Rhemes, where the college had lately been translated from Douay; and there, being a deacon and a good preacher long before, he was made priest; and hearing of company that were ready to go into England, he made great haste to go with them, and earnest suit to have leave, partly for his health, and especially for the great zeal he had to gain and save souls.
• He arrived at Dover in June, 1580, in the company of Mr. John Hart, and Mr. Edward Rishton, two learned priests, (who are also both condemned) and another, a layman. After these four had been searched to their skins, and nothing found about them, Mr. Hart was stopped and taken for Mr. Orion, (to whom he nothing at all resembled) Mr. Coltam was likewise stopped, because the marks which Sledd had given of him were indeed, very clear and apparent in him. And, for the avoiding of charges, Mr. Allen, then major of Dover, and Stevens, the searcher, requested the layman, Mr. Coitam's companion,' “ Dr. Ely, professor of the canon and civil law in the university of Douay," • who called himself Havard, to carry him as a prisoner to my Lord Cobham, who agreed very easily thereunto: but as soon as they were out of the town, I cannot, said Havard, in conscience, nor will not, being myself a catholic, deliver you, a catholic priest, prisoner to my Lord Cobham; but we will go strait to London, and when you come there, shift for yourself, as I will do for myself. Coming to London, Mr. Cottam went immediately to one of the prisons, and there conserred with a catholic, a friend of his, recounting to him the order and manner of his apprehension and escape. His friend told him, that in conscience, he
* From the same eye-witness, and from Raissius, his catalogue, p. 37.
could not make that escape, and persuaded him to go and yield himself prisoner: whereupon he went to his friend Havard,' “ Dr. Ely," and requested him to deliver him the major of Dover's letter to my Lord Cobham. Why? what will you do with it? said Havard : I will go, said Mr. Cottam, and carry it to him, and yield myself prisoner; for I am fully persuaded that I cannot make this escape in conscience : Why, said Havard, this counsel that hath been given you, proceedeth, I con-. fess, from a zealous mind, but I doubt whether it carrieth with it the weight of knowledge ; you shall not have the letter, nor you may not, in conscience, yield yourself to the persecutor and adversary, having so good means offered to escape their cruelty. But Mr. Cottam still persisting in his demands, Well, said Mr. Havard, seeing you will not be turned from this opinion, let us go first and consult with such a man, (naming one but newly come over) whom Mr. Cottam greatly honoured and reverenced for his singular wit and learning, and for his rare virtues, and if he be of your opinion, you shall have the letter, and go in God's name. When they came to this man, he utterly disliked of his intention, and dissuaded him from so fond a cogitation. Mr. Cottam being assuaged, but not altogether satisfied, went quietly about his business, and never left London for the matter. The major of Dover's letter being sent back to him again, within two or three days after, cometh up the host of the inn where Mr. Cottam was taken.
*This host, as Providence would have it, met with Havard, and, taking him by the shoulder, said, Gentleman, you had like to have undone me, because the prisoner you promised to deliver is escaped. Wherefore, you must come with me to one Mr. Andrews, my Lord Cobham's deputy, and give him satisfaction in the matter. Havard was somewhat amazed at this sudden summoning; but after awhile, coming to himself, he said, Why, my host, if I deliver you the prisoner again, you will be contented? Yes, said the other, deliver me the prisoner, and I have nothing to say to you. Upon this they went to Mr. Cottam's lodging, but he was removed, the people of the house knew not whither. The host would fain have had this Havard, so called for the time, to go with him to the said Andrews; but Havard sought all means to avoid his company, being sure, if he had once come within the persecutor's paws, he should not escape them so easily; and being, as then, loth to fall into further trouble, he said to the other, My host, there is no such necessity why I should go to Mr. Andrews; for if I did, perhaps he would pick some quarrel with me, by reason of the prisoner's éscape, and I might come to trouble, and you would reap no gain or profit thereby. But this I will do for your discharge, I will bring you to a merchant, who, I think, will give you his hand that I shall bring the prisoner by four of the clock, or else that I shall deliver you my body again. I am content, saith he, so that I have the one of you two. To the merchant, therefore, they went, who, at the request of Havard, his brother-in-law, gave his hand and promise for the performance of the condition before specified. (Which promise, though punctually performed, cost the merchant eight months' imprisonment afterwards: but how justly, will be one day examined before the just Judge.) Thus, Havard, leaving his host in the merchant's house, went forth into