Pope Leo XIII on the Holy Rosary 2022 - As has now been our tradition for several years, we commemorate the feast of the Holy Rosary with some excerpts from one of the encyclicals on the subject ...
4 hours ago
“In 1513, John Buxton, worsted weaver, was buried in the churchyard "before the image of our Lady in the Oke, and gave to our Lady in the Oke 6d. This was a famous image of the Virgin Mary, placed in the oak, which grew in the churchyard, so as it was seen by all that passed in the street; from whence the church took the name of St. Martin at the Oak, it being always before, called St. Martin in Coste-lane, or Coselany, the whole part of the city from Blackfriars-bridge, or New bridge, to St. Martin at the Oak-gates, being so called, because it lies on the coste of the river: now it seems this oak and image began to be of remark about the time of Edward II. for then I find it first called ate the Oke.........certain it is, she was much visited by the populace, who left many gifts in their wills, to dress, paint, and repair her; at the coming of Edw. VI. to the crown, she was dismounted, and I am apt to believe the poor oak, also cut down, least that should be visited for her ladyship's sake, for the present oak, which now grows in the place, hath not been planted a hundred years, as appears by the parish register in these words, "I John Tabor, constable and overseer, did bring the Oak from Rannerhall near Horning ferry, before me on my horse, and set it in the churchyard of St. Martin of Coselany, I set it March 9. 1656." Then also the rich vestments and plate, were sold, and the money laid out to fye the river. 1534, Will. Alleyn, worsted weaver, gave a pall of baudekyn.”The church building was rebuilt in the fifteenth century - the chancel circa 1440, the south aisle with a huge apparently uncompleted porch initiated by a bequest from Alderman Thomas Wilkyns in 1491-2.
You know, my brother, the custom of the Roman church in which you remember you were bred up. But it pleases me, that if you have found anything, either in the Roman, or the Gallican, or any other church, which may be more acceptable to Almighty God, you carefully make choice of the same, and sedulously teach the church of the English, which as yet is new in the faith, whatsoever you can gather from the several churches. For things are not to be loved for the sake of places, but places for the sake of good things. Choose, therefore, from every church those things that are pious, religious, and upright, and when you have, as it were, made them up into one body, let the minds of the English be accustomed thereto.
“Here was a clock formerly, which now stands disused in the south aisle; and in a chapel at the upper end thereof was placed a famous sword, called the Good Sword of Winfarthing, of which Becon, in his Reliques of Rome, (printed in 1563,) fo. 91, gives us the following account.
In Winfarthing, a littel billage in Norfolke, there was a rerteyne Swerd, called the Good Swerd of Winfarthyng, this Swerd was counted so prerious a relique, and of so great birtue, that there was a solemne pilgrimage used unto it, with large giftes and offringes, with bow makings, crouchinges, t kissinges: This Swerd was bisited far and near, for many t sundry purposes, but specialy for thinges that were lost, and for horses that were eyther stolen or else rune astray, it helpid also unto the shortning of a married mans life, if that the wyfe which was weary of her husband, would set a randle before that Swerd ebery Sunday for the space of a whole yeare, no Sunbay er cepted, for then all was bain, whatsoeber mas done before.
I have many times beard (says that author) when I was a rhild, of diberse ancient men and wemen, that this Swerd was the Swerd of a rertayne thief, which took sanctuary in that church pard, and after wards through the negligence of the watchmen escaped, and left his swerd behind him, which being found, and laid up in a rertaine old chest, was afterward through the suttilty of the parson and the clerk of the same parish, made a precious Relique, full of bertue, able to do much, but specially to enrich the bor, and make fat the parson's pouch."I have left Blomefield’s transcription of Beccon uncorrected with its slightly odd typography - the odd use of b for v, h or p, r for c and t for &, is not too difficult to understand.
"It chanced Testwood one day to walk in the church, at afternoon, and to behold the pilgrims, especially of Devonshire and Cornwall, how they came by plumps, with candles and images of wax in their hands, to offer to good King Henry of Windsor. [King Henry VI was reinterred in the main chapel and there was a considerable devotion to him supported by King Henry VII]." Testwood spoke to a group of them against pilgrimage, &c. "Then he went further and found another sort licking and kissing a White Lady made of alabaster, which image was mortised in a wall behind the high altar, and bordered about with a pretty border, which was made like branches, with hanging apples and flowers. And when he saw them so superstitiously use the image as to wipe their hands upon it, and then to stroke them over their eyes and faces, as though there had been great virtue in touching the picture, he up with his hand, in which he had a key, and smote down a piece of the border about the image, and with the glance of the stroke chanced to break off the image’s nose. “Lo, good people !” quoth he, “you see what it is nothing but earth and dust, and cannot help itself; and how then will it help you? For God s sake, brethren, be no more deceived.” And so he gat him home to his house, for the rumour was so great, that many came to see the image how it was defaced."
One rather wonders how “great” it was in size. I recall seeing a reference to the tradition that Bishops of Lincoln were expected to make a suitable offering of jewellery to the image.
A great image of Our Lady, sitting in a chair of silver and gilt with four polls, two of them having arms in the front, having upon her head a crown, silver and gilt, set with stones and pearls; and one bee [metal torque] with stones and pearls about her neck, and an ouche [brooch] depending thereby, having in her hand a sceptre with one flower, set with stones and pearls and one bird in the top thereof; and her Child sitting upon her knee, with a crown on his head, with a diadem set with pearls and stones, having a ball with a cross of silver and gilt in his left hand and at either of his feet a scutcheon of arms.
For as moch as we understand that there ys a certain shryne and di[vers] fayned Reliquyes and Juels in the Cathedrall church of Lyncoln with [which] all the symple people be moch deceaved and broughte into greate su[per]sticion and Idolatrye to the dyshonor of god and greate slander of th(is) realme and peryll of theire own soules,
"We Let you wỹt that (we) beinge mynded to bringe or lovinge subiectes to ye righte knowledge of ye truth by takynge away all occasions of Idolatrye and supersticion. For ye especiall trust (and) confidence we have in yowr fydelytyes, wysdoms and discrec̃ons, have (and) by theis presentes doe aucthorise name assign and appointe you fowre or three of you that immediatelye uppon the sighte here of repairinge to ye sayd Cathedrall church and declaringe unto ye Deane Recydencyaryes and other mynisters there(of) the cause of yowr comynge ys to take downe as well ye sayd shryne and supersticious reliquyes as superfluouse Jueles, plate copes and other suche like as yow shall thinke by yowr wysdoms not mete to contynew (and) remayne there, unto the wych we doubte not but for yeconsiderac̃ons rehersed the sayde Deane and Resydencyaryes wth other wyll be conformable and wyllinge thereunto, and so yow to precede accordingly. And to see the sayd reliquyes, Juels and plate safely and surely to be conveyde to owr towre of London in to owr Jewyll house there chargeing the mr of owr Jewyls wth the same.
"And further we wyll that you charge and com̃ande in owr name the sayd Deane there to take downe such monumentes as may geve any occasioñ of memorye of such supersticion and Idolatrye hereafter...."
Memorandum that by force of the above wrytten comyssyoñ there was taken owt of ye sayd Cathedrall church of Lyncoln at that tyme in gold ijmvjcxxj oz (2621 oz.), in sylver iiijmijciiijxx.v oz (4285 oz.); Besyde a greate nombre of Pearles & preciouse stones wych were of greate valewe, as Dyamondes, Saphires Rubyes, turkyes, Carbuncles etc. There were at that tyme twoe shrynes in the sayd Cath. churche; the one of pure gold called St Hughes Shryne standinge on the backe syde of the highe aulter neare unto Dalysons tombe, the other called St John of Dalderby his shryne was of pure sylver standinge in ye south ende of the greate crosse Ile not farre from the dore where ye gallyley courte ys used to be kepte."Harry Lytherland was the last Treasurer of Lincoln. His responsibilities were care of the treasures, not the finances, of the cathedral. As he saw the last of the treasures carried away, he cried "ceasing the Treasure, so ceaseth the office of the Treasurer," and flinging down the keys on the pavement of the choir, he walked out of the church. This occurred on the 6th June 1540. The office of Treasurer in the Chapter, which was part of the foundation, has not been filled since.
“The saying of the witnesses against Thos. Emans, servant to Mr. Evans. That he said, leaning upon Roger Crompe's shoulder, "Lady, art thon stripped now? I have seen the day that as clean men hath been stripped at a pair of gallows as were they that stripped thee." Then he entered the chapel, said his prayers, and kissed the image, and turned to the people, and said "Ye that be disposed to offer, the figure is no worse than it was before, and the lucre and profit of this town is decayed through this." Presten, the keeper of Our Lady, saith that he heard Thomas Emans say to the people, "This lady is now stripped, I trust to see the day that they shall be stripped as naked that stripped her."This is followed by the confession of Thomas Emans, of the parish of All Saints, Worcester, made on August 19:
“That he entered the Lady chapel in the monastery of Worcester, on Our Lady even the Assumption, 1537, and said a Paternoster and an Ave, and kissed the image's feet, and then turned and said to the people: "Though our Lady's coat and her jewels be taken away from her, the similitude of this is no worse to pray unto, having a remors unto her above, then it was before." Spoke with the intent that the people should resort to her at Worcester as they had done before. Witnesses:—Hugh bp. of Worcester, Hen. Holbaghe, prior of St. Mary's Worcester, Walter Walshe, Robt. Acton, and Humfrey Burneforde and Wm. Mercer, bailiffs of Worcester.”
L&P Henry VIII xii (2) 587What happened to Thomas Emans is not recorded beyond that he was committed to ward, but it does indicate genuine dissent at the episcopal action. Letters and Papers xii (2) 530 also indicates considerable hostility to Latimer in the diocese: one man was reported as saying he would walk seven miles carrying a faggot to burn Latimer at the stake. As it turned out he would have had to wait seventeen years and travel to Oxford for that particular pleasure.
“I trust your lordship will bestow our great Sibyll to some good purpose ut pereat memoria cum sonitu. She hath been the Devil’s instrument to bring many (I fear) to eternal fire: now she herself with her old sister of Walsingham, her young sister of Ipswich, with their other two sisters of Doncaster and Penrice, would make a jolly muster in Smithfield; they would not be all day in burning.”
Sermons and Remains of Hugh Latimer (1845), p395
“Now Worcester is behind, an ancient and a poor city, and yet replenished with men of honesty, though not most wealthy; for years reason of their lady they have been given to much idleness; but now that she is gone they be turned to labouriouness, and from laziness to goodness.”