Extracted from A.F. Pollard (1964). Tudor Tracts: 1532-1588. London: Cooper Square.
Tract title page (in Gothic script):
A compendious register in metre, containing the names and patient sufferings of the
members of Jesus Christ, and the tormented, and cruelly burned within England; since the
death of our famous King, of immortal memory EDWARD the Sixth, to the entrance and
beginning of the reign of our Sovereign and dearest Lady ELIZABETH of England, France and
Ireland, Queen; Defender of the Faith; to whose highness truly and properly appertaineth,
next and immediately under GOD, the supreme power and authority of the Churches of England
and Ireland. So be it. Anno 1559.
Then follows a lengthy poem entitled The Register (of the Martyrs), providing a record,
year by year of those martyred in the Marian persecutions. The following verse records the
martyrdom on August 23, 1555 of "The Six Godly Men of Kent".
August 23 When LAURENCE, COLLIER, COKER and STERE
At Canterbury were causeless slain,
With HOPPER and WRIGHTE; six in one
Converted flesh to earth again;
When ROGER CORRIAR was done to death:
We wished for our Elizabeth.
The story: from G.A. Williamson (1965). Foxxe's Book of Martyrs. London: Little-
Brown, p. 277.
"Mention was made in the story of Bland and Sheterden of certain other Kentish men
with them, examined by Thornton, Bishop of Dover. The condemnation and execution of them
was deferred until the end of August. Coming now therefore to the time of their suffering,
we will briefly touch some part of their examination and answers as we find them in the
registers. The names of these were William Hopper, Henry laurence, Richard Colliar,
Richard Wright, and William Stere".
(Then several paragraphs about the examination of each by Bishop Richard Thornton of
"Stere likewise was brought to appear the 16 of August, where he, being required to
make answer to the judge, made answer that he should command his dogs and not him; and
declared that Dick of Dover had no authority to sit against him in judgment and asked
where his authority was. Who then showed him certain bulls and writings from Rome. Stere
denying that to be of sufficient force, the said Dick said also he had authority from the
queen. Then the martyr alleging that the archbishop of Canterbury (who then was in
prison)(ie Thomas Cranmer then imprisoned at Oxford)- was his diocesan, urged him to show
his authority from the archbishop, or else he denied his authority to be sufficient. And
as touching the sacrament of the altar, he found it not (he said) in the scripture; and
therefore he would not answer thereunto.
And moreover, the judge, speaking of the sacrament of the altar, with reverance thereof,
and putting off his cap, he said that he need nor reverence that matter so highly, and
thus (saying to the judge that he was a bloody man etc) the sentence was pronounced
against him; after which sentence being read, he said that the sacrament of the altar was
the most blasphemous idol that ever was etc.
And thus these six heavenly martyrs and witness bearers to the truth, being condemned by
the bloody suffragen and the archdeacon of Canterbury, master Collins and master Faucet,
were burned altogether in the same town of Canterbury, at three stakes and one fire, about
the latter end of August.
The copy of the their sentence condemnatory, you may find above in the story of John
Rogers; for the papists in all their condemnations, follow one manner of sentence of
course, commonly against all that be condemned through their unmerciful tyranny.