Imatges de pÓgina

raged at this, that they treated Mr. Patenson, on this account, with more than ordinary cruelty, causing him to be cut down immediately, and butchered whilst he was alive, and in his perfect senses.

He suffered at Tyburn, January 22, 1591-2.


Thomas Pormort, or Portmore, was born in Lincolnshire, of a gentleman's family. He performed his studies abroad, partly in the college of Rhemes, and partly in that of Rome, to which he was sent from Rhemes, in 1581. At Rome, he was made priest, and from thence he was sent upon the English mission. He fell into the hands of the persecutors, in August, 1591, and was committed to the Tower, where he was several times cruelly racked, to extort from him, by force of torments, the names of those who had harboured or relieved him. But his constancy was proof against all their torments, although, by the violence of them, his body was all disjointed, and his belly broken. So they proceeded to his trial, and condemned him to die, as in cases of high treason. The crimes for which he was sentenced to death, and afterwards executed, are thus set down by Mr. Stow, in his chronicle, 1591.

• The 8th of February, Thomas Pormort was convicted of two several high treasons; the one for being a seminary priest, and the other for reconciling John Barwys, haberdasher. John Barwys was also convicted of high treason, for being reconciled, and of felony, for relieving the said priest, contrary to the statute. Thomas Pormort was executed in Paul's church-yard, February 20.

This year, 1592, on the 23d of June, Robert Ashton, gentleman, born at Croston, in Lancashire, was executed at Tyburn, for procuring a dispensation from Rome, to marry his second cousin. Catalog. Chalced., Sc. And in the same month, Thomas Metham, one of the first missioners from Douay, afterwards a jesuit, died a prisoner for his faith, in Wisbich castle.


* From the Douay Diary and Catalogues, from Ribadaneira, chap. 7, and Dr. Champney's manuscript.


EDWARD WATERSON was born at London; and being come to man's estate, travelled, with certain merchants, into Turkey, to see those eastern regions. Here, a rich Turk taking a liking to him, offered his daughter in marriage, if he would renounce the Christian religion : but this condition, Mr. Waterson, though at that time no catholic, rejected with horror. Coming back from Turkey, he took Rome in his way homewards, and there, was instructed and reconciled to the catholic church by the means of Mr. Richard Smith, (afterwards bishop of Chalcedon,) then living in the English college, in that city. From Rome, he went to Rhemes, where the college was, at that time, which is now at Douay. Here he was admitted a student, and here he lived, for some years, a great pattern of humility, penance, and other virtues. He had a most ardent zeal for the salvation of souls ; and, upon that account, though he was but indifferently learned, he was desirous to be made priest, and to be sent upon the English mission. He had his desire, and was ordained priest the Saturday after Mid-lent Sunday, 1592, and was sent into England, the Whitsuntide following: on which occasion, he declared to his companions, That if he might have the kingdom of France, to stay there till the next Midsummer, he would rather choose to go for England, as he did ; such was his desire of being serviceable to the souls of his countrymen.

Mr. Waterson was but a short time in England, before he was apprehended, tried, and condemned, for being made priest, by Roman authority, and coming into England, and remaining here. He received the sentence of death, with joy, and suffered with constancy. The Rev. archdeacon Trollop, relates, from the testimony of virtuous catholics, who were eye-witnesses, and related it to him, that whilst this blessed martyr was drawn upon the hurdle to his execution, upon a sudden, the hurdle stood still ; and the officers, with all their whipping, and striving, could not make the horses to move it : and fresh horses passing by, they took them, and put them to the hurdle ; yet they could not, (though they broke the tresses,) any way move him, or the hurdle; who, seeing their attempts to be frustrate, were forced to take the martyr from the hurdle, aud to lead him on foot, to the place of execution, saying, it would be a note to the papists, which had happened that day.

Dr. Champney adds, that being, upon this occasion, taken off the hurdle, he walked cheerfully towards the gallows, not as to a punishment, but as to a crown. And, that coming to the place, and recommending himself by a short prayer to God, as he was offering to go up the ladder, it was violently agitated of itself, without any visible hand, till the confessor made the sign of the cross, and then, the ladder stood still ; and he ascending, was shortly after turned off; and according to sentence, cut down, bowelled, and quartered. I find Dr. Champney

* From Dr. Champney's manuscript history, and from an MS. relation of his death, sent over to Douay by Mr. Cuthbert Trollop, archdeacon.

was Mr. Waterson's cotemporary at the college, and received clerical tonsure, with about forty others, on the same day as Mr. Waterson was made deacon, Frebruary 24, 1591.

Mr. Waterson suffered at Newcastle, upon Tyne, January 7, 1593.


JAMES BIRD was born at Winchester, of a gentleman's family. His parents brought him up in the protestant religion ; which, upon a conviction of conscience, he afterwards forsook, and became a catholic ; and, going abroad, was, for some time a student in Douay college, during its residence at Rhemes. At his return home, his zeal for his religion, caused him to be apprehended. The accusations laid to his charge, were, that he had been reconciled to the Roman church, and, that he maintained the pope to be, under Christ, the head of the church. When he was brought to the bar, he acknowledged the indictment; and thereupon received sentence of death, as in cases of high treason : yet, so that both life and liberty were offered him if he would but once go to the protestant church ; but he chose rather to die, than to act against his conscience. And when his father solicited him to save his life by complying, he modestly answered, that as he had always been obedient to him, so would he willingly obey him in this also, if he could do it, without offending God. After a long imprisonment, he was hanged, drawn and quartered at Winchester, March 25, 1593.

He suffered with wonderful constancy and cheerfulness, being but nineteen years old. His head was set up on a pole, upon one of the gates of that city; which his father, one day passing by, and viewing the face of his son, thought that the head, bowing down, made him a reverence : upon which, he cried out, ah! my son Jemmy, who not only, living, wast ever obedient and dutiful, but now also, when dead, payest reverence to thy father ! how far from thy heart was all affection or will for treason, or any other wickedness!


Antony Page was born of a gentleman's family, at Harrow, on the Hill, in the county of Middlesex. He performed his studies abroad, in Douay college, then residing at Rhemes, where he was made priest in 1591, and sent upon the mission, January 3, 1591–2. Dr. Champney, who was his cotemporary at the college, tells us, that he was a man of wonderful meekness, of a virginal modesty and purity, and of a more

* From the bishop of Chalcedon's catalogue, and Dr. Champney's manuscript. + From the same catalogue and manuscript, and from the Douay diary.



than common learning and piety ; who, for his singular candour of mind, and sweetness of behaviour, was dear to all. Falling into the hands of the adversaries of his faith, after suffering much in prison, and maintaining, by disputation, his religion, in some conferences with the ministers, he was condemned to die, as in cases of high treason, merely on account of his priestly character, and was drawn, hanged, and quartered at York, April 20, 1593.


He was born of a gentleman's family, at Malton,t in Yorkshire, and going abroad to the college then residing at Rhemes, there performed part of his studies, and being in his divinity, went from thence to Rome, to the English college of that city, in 1589. But he had not been here long, before his zeal for the salvation of the souls of his neighbours prompted him to desire to break off the course of his school divinity, and to return home to look after the lost sheep. So being made priest, he was sent upon the mission, where he was immediately apprehended, and committed to prison, and not long after brought to the bar, arraigned and condemned for being a priest, and coming into England to perform his priestly offices in this kingdom. For this, and no other treason, he had sentence to die the death of a traitor, which he suffered with great constancy and fortitude. He was cut down alive, and the hangman, (who was one of the felons, who, to save his own life was to perform that office, having bugun the butchery, by dismembering the martyr, had so great a horror of what he was doing, that he absolutely refused to go on with the operation, though he was to die for the refusal, so that the sheriff was obliged to seek another executioner, whilst the martyr, with invincible patience and courage, supported a torment which cannot be thought of without horror, and which shocked even the most barbarous of the spectators ; till, at length, a butcher from a neighbouring village was brought to the work, who, ripping him up, and bowelling him, set his holy soul at liberty, to take its happy flight to its sovereign and eternal good.

He suffered at Newcastle, July 27, 1593, in the flower of his age, (for he was not yet thirty,) and in the sight of his friends and relations.

WILLIAM DAVIES, PRIEST. MR. Davies was born, according to Yepez's relation, in Cærnarvon, according to the bishop of Chalcedon's catalogue, at Crois in Yris, in Denbigshire, of North Wales. He was, says the former, of one of the

* From the same catalogue and manuscript.
† Some say he was of the bishopric of Durham.

# From the Douay diary, and from the relation of one of his companions and fellow prisoners, recorded by bishop Yepez, in his history of the persecution, 1.5, c. 8.

best families of that country ; but leaving home, he went beyond sea, and became a student in the college then residing at Rhemes. Here, in a short time, he made a great progress in virtue, and such was his zeal of souls, that he was very desirous, even before he had finished the usual course of his divinity studies, to run to the succour of numbers in his country, perishing through error and vice. He was made priest, and sent upon the mission in 1585. He chose his own country for the seat of his labours, and there, for several years, in the midst of difficulties and dangers, sought after the lost sheep, and brought many of them back to his Lord's fold; till, about the 20th of March, 1591-2, going to Holyhead, to procure a passage for four young men into Ireland, who from thence desired to go over into Spain, to the college of Valladolid, both he and his companions were taken up upon suspicion, at the instance of one Mr. Fulk, a great enemy of the catholics. They passed that first night in the hands of the dregs of the people, who entertained them all the night with scoffs and injuries; but the next morning they were hurried away to Beaumaris, which is the county town of Anglesey. Here they were all five examined.

1st. If they had any Agnus Dei's, or blessed medals, or pope's bulls, or if they had received any letters from the English seminaries abroad? They answered, No. They were asked, if they would swear it upon the bible ? they answered, they would not; for they thought their word was enough.

2dly. They were asked where they were going? They answered, To Ireland.

3dly. They were asked if they would go to church, or take the oath of supremacy? They absolutely refused to do either. And so this day's work ended, after they had treated them with many injurious words and reproaches. The next day they were again brought before the magistrates, and examined more rigorously. And then Mr. Davies frankly confessed, that he was a priest of the seminary of Rhemes, and that he had returned home to administer the sacraments to his brethren, the catholics of this kingdom, and to bring back as many protestants as he could to the true catholic religion. They urged him much to tell them with whom he had lived all the time he had been in England ; but he absolutely refused, whatever efforts they made, to give them any answer, to such questions as these, which might be of bad consequence to others.

Upon this consession, Mr. Davies was separated from his companions, and cast into a dark, stinking dungeon, between two walls of the castle of Beaumaris, where he was not suffered to see or speak with any one, till after about a month's time, his virtue and patience had gained so far upon the jailor, as to permit him, for about one hour in a day, viz: between eight and nine in the morning, to come out of his dungeon to breathe a better air, and to converse with his companions, who were kept prisoners in another part of the castle. They then found the means privately to procure a vestment, and other necessaries, to say mass, which Mr. Davies celebrated every day, and afterwards punctually returned to his dungeon to give God thanks, and there entertained himself with his Saviour. The jailor, by degrees, was still more indulgent

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