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No. II.


In tracing the History of the Reformation, we must always revert to a much earlier period than that of Luther. The chief witnesses against the corrupt ceremonies and discipline of the Church of Rome belonged to two distinct sects, but entertaining nearly the same sentiments—the Albigenses, who were chiefly settled about Toulouse and Albigeois, in Languedoc; and the Valdenses, who inhabited the mountainous tract of country, (known as the Cottian Alps,) in the provinces of Dauphine and Provence, in the south of France, and in Piedmont, in the north of Italy. Both sects may be considered as descendants of the primitive Christians, and the long series of persecutions which they endured, may have conduced to spread their opinions in other lands, and to keep alive a spirit of religious inquiry and freedom.

The great English Reformer John Wykliffe, died in the year 1380. The persecutions which arose after his death, drove many of his495 adherents into exile, and brought some of them to the western parts of Scotland, who, having settled in Ayrshire, obtained the name of the Lollards of Kyle. Any notices respecting them that have been preserved are unfortunately very scanty, but should not be overlooked in a work like the present.

Andrew of Wyntoun, Prior of Lochlevin, the author of a Metrical Chronicle, written about the year 1420, when recording the appointment of Robert Duke of Albany as Governor of Scotland, in the year 1405, commends him for his opposition to Lollards and Heretics:—

"He was a constant Catholike,
All Lollard he hatyt, and Hereticke."—(vol. ii. p. 419.)

It was during his administration, that the first Martyr of the Reformed religion was committed to the flames at Perth, for alleged heresy, in the year 1406 or 1407. This was eight or nine years previously to the death of John Huss, that "generous and intrepid Martyr and confessor of Christ," as Luther justly calls him.

Walter Bower, the continuator of Fordun, is probably the only original historian who has preserved an account of Resby, of which the following is an extract:—

"Lib. xv. Cap. xx. De Combustione Jacobi Resby hæretici apud Perth.

"Eodem anno [mccccvi] die combustus est Jacobus Resby, Presbyter Anglicus de schola Johannis Wykliff, hæreticus condemnatus in concilio cleri sub magistro Laurentio de Lundoris, inquisitore hæreticæ pravitatis, solidissimo clerico et famoso theologo, vitæ sanctitate quamplurimum collaudato. Qui quidem Jacobus, quamvis interdum celeberrimus reputabatur simplicibus prædicatione, periculosissimas tamen conclusiones intersperserat in sua dogmatizatione. Quarum prima fuit, quod Papa de facto non est Christi vicarius. Secunda, Nullus est Papa, nec Christi vicarius, nisi sit sanctus. De consimilibus, vel pejoribus, tenuit quadraginta conclusiones. Cujus tam Scripta quam auctorem Inquisitor confutavit, et ad ignem applicavit et incineravit. Hujusmodi errores excerpti sunt de hæresibus dicti Johannis Wykliff hæresiarchæ, damnati Londoniis in Anglia, anno Domini mccclxxx, per primatem Angliæ, et tredecim episcopos, ae magistros in sacra theologia triginta, ex dialogo, trialogo, et aliis suis libris. Conclusiones et libelli istius hæretici adhuc a nonnullis Lolardis habentur in Scotia, et curiose servantur, ex instinctu Diaboli, per tales quibus aquæ furtivæ dulciores sunt, et panis absconditus suavior."—(Vol. i. p. 441.)496

The several abbreviates of the Scotichronicon notice Resby's fate. Law's MS. places it in 1406; but the larger "Extracta ex Cronicis Scocie," gives the year 1407, nor omits the circumstance "De talibus et pejoribus xl. Conclusiuncs; cujus liber adhuc restant curiose servantur per Lolardos in Scocie." Among later writers who mention Resby, Spotiswood says, "John Wickliffe in England, John Hus and Jerome of Prague in Bohemia, did openly preach against the tyranny of the Pope, and the abuses introduced in the Church; and in this countrey, one called Joannes [James] Resby an Englishman, and de schola Wickliffi, as the story speaketh, was brought in question for some points of doctrine which he taught, and condemned to the fire. He was charged by Master Laurence Lendores with 40 heretical opinions; whereof we have two only mentioned; one, That the Pope was not Christ's Vicar; the other, That he was not to be esteemed Pope, if he was a man of wicked life. For maintaining these two points, he suffered in the year 1407."—(History of the Church, p. 56.) This date is also given in the Breve Cronicon, (apud Registrum Glasguense, p. 316.) "Combustio Jacobi Henrici [Resby] apud Perth, a.d. 1407."

The prevalence of such opinions is still more evident from the oath which Masters of Arts were required to take, in the newly founded University of St. Andrews; it being enacted at a Congregation, held on the 10th of June 1416, that all who commenced Masters of Arts should swear, among other things, that they would resist all adherents of the sect of Lollards. "Item, Jurabitis quod ecclesiam defendetis contra insultum Lollardorum, et quibuscunque eorum secte adherentibus pro posse vestro resistetis."—(MS. Records of the University, quoted by Dr. MʻCrie, Life of Melville, vol. i. p. 419.)

Knox commences his History with referring to some person whose name did not appear in the Scrollis or Registers of Glasgow, who suffered in that city in the year 1422. David Buchanan and Petrie have rather hastily concluded that Resby was the person referred to, overlooking both the difference of time and the place of his execution.

Another proof of the increase of the Lollards in Scotland, is furnished by an Act in the Parliament of King James the First, held at Perth, on the 12th March 1424-5, soon after his return from his long captivity in England:—

"Of Heretickis and Lollardis.

"Item, Anentis Heretikis and Lollardis, that ilk Bischop sall ger inquyr be the Inquisicione of Heresy, quhar ony sik beis fundyne, ande at thai be punyst as Lawe of Haly Kirk requiris: Ande, gif it497 misteris, that Secular power be callyt tharto in suppowale and helping of Haly Kirk."—(Acta Parl. Scotiæ, vol. ii. p. 7.)

The prevalence of reformed opinions is also clear from the appointment of a dignified Churchman as Heretical Inquisitor. Such an office would obviously never have been contemplated, unless for the wide spread of what was deemed to be heresy. Laurence of Lindores, Abbot of Scone, in 1411, was the first Professor of Law in the newly erected University of St. Andrews, and he is described as "solidissimus clericus et famosus theologus, vitæ sanctitate quamplurimum collaudatus." But the title of Haereticæ Pravitatis Inquisitor, formed his highest distinction; and he is said to have given no peace or rest to heretics or Lollards. Whether Laurence of Lindores resigned his situation as Abbot on obtaining other preferment, is uncertain. In July 1432, when elected Dean of the Faculty of Arts, at St. Andrews, he is styled Rector of Creich, Master of Arts, Licentiate in Theology, Inquisitor for the Kingdom of Scotland, &c. This office of Dean he held till his death, when (post mortem felicis memoriæ Magistri Laurencii de Lundoris,) Mr. George Newton, Provost of the Collegiate Church of Bothwell, was elected his successor, 16th September 1437.—(Registers of the University.) Lindores is said to have written "Examen Hæreticorum Lolardorum, quos toto regno exegit."

The next Martyr was Paul Craw or Crawar, a native of Bohemia, by old Scotish writers called Beum. As Knox seems to have had before him the brief notice contained in the first edition of Foxe's "Actes and Monuments," the passage from that edition may here be quoted:—

Paule Craws a Bohemian.

"The same yere [1431] also was Paul Craws a Bohemian taken at s. Andrews by the Bishop Henry, and delivered over to the seculer power to be burnt, for holdyng contrary opinions vnto the church of Rome, touching the sacrament of the Lords supper, the worshipping of sainctes, auriculer confessyon, with other of Wycleffes opinions."—(Foxe, p. 360, first edit., 1564, folio.)

The earlier notices given of this Martyr by Bower the Continuator of Fordun, and Hector Boece, may also be quoted, the latter in the words of his translator John Bellenden, Archdean of Murray, in the reign of James the Fifth. It will be observed that Bower mentions Laurence of Lindores as Inquisitor, whereas Boece says it was John Fogo, his successor in that office, who acted on this occasion, which some authorities place in 1431, others in 1432, or in the following year.498

"De combustione Pauli Crawar arch-hæretici, et de Lolardis.

"Anno sequenti [mccccxxxiii] accusatus est Paulus Crawar Teutonicus, xxiij. die mensis Julij, apud Sanctum Andream, et hæreticus obstinatus repertus, convictus est et condemnatus, et ad ignem applicatus et incineratus. Hic, ut dicitur, missus fuit ab hæreticis Pragensibus de Bohemia, qui tune in maleficiis nimium prævalebant, ad inficiendum regnum Scotorum, recommissus per ipsorum literas, tanquam præcellens arte medicine. Hic in sacris literis et in allegatione Bibliæ promptus et exercitatus inveniebatur; sed ad insipientiam sibi, omnes quasi illos articulos erroneos Pragenses et Wiklivienses pertinaciter tenebat: sed per venerabilem virum magistrum Laurentium de Londoris, inquisitorem hæreticæ pravitatis, qui nusquam infra regnum requiem dedit hæreticis, vel Lolardis, confutatus est."—(Scotichronicon, vol. ii. p. 495.)

Bower, after this extract, in the remainder of the chapter, and the two following ones, has given some account of the rise and opinions of these Heretics, and the mode of confuting them; which are too long for quotation. Bellenden's briefer notice is as follows:—

"Nocht lang efter was tane in Sanct Androis ane man of Beum namit Paule Craw, precheand new and vane superstitionis to the pepyl, specially aganis the sacrament of the alter, veneration of sanctis, and confession to be maid to Priestis. At last he was brocht afore the Theologis, and al his opinionis condampnit. And because he perseuerit obstinatly to the end of his pley, he was condampnit and brint. He confessit afore his death that he was send out of Beum to preiche to Scottis the heresyis of Hus and Wiccleif. The King commendit mekyl this punition, and gaif the Abbacy of Melros to Johne Fogo, for he was principall convikar of this Paule."—(Bellenden's Cronyklis of Scotland, fol. ccxlvij of orig. edition.)

It is a mistake, however, to say that Fogo was thus rewarded for the zeal he displayed in convicting Paul Crawar of heresy in 1432. Dr. John Fogo was Abbot of Melrose in the year 1425, when he was sent to Rome on an embassy from King James the First. He was the King's Confessor, and was present at the Council of Basil in 1433.—(Morton's Monastic Annals, pp. 236, 237.) Sir James Balfour treats him with very little ceremony:—"This zeire 1433, (he says,) the King, at the earnist sollicitatione of the clergey, bot especially of Henrey Wardlaw, Bishope of St. Andrewes, bestowed the Abbey of Melrosse upone a luberdly mounke of the Cisteauxe499 order, quho had wretten a blasphemous pamphlet against Paull Crau's heresy, named Johne Fogo."—(Annals, vol. i. p. 161.)

But it was not obscure men or strangers who were occasionally subjected to the charge of heresy. In the reign of James the Third, the case of the Primate of Scotland is worthy of special notice. In 1466, Patrick Graham, son of Lord Graham, and nephew of James the First, was translated from the See of Brechin to St. Andrews. Graham proceeded to Rome to obtain his confirmation, but the enmity of the Boyds during their power at Court occasioned him to delay for some years his return to Scotland. During this period, the Archbishop of York having renewed an old contested claim as Metropolitan of the Scotish Church, Graham succeeded in obtaining from Pope Sixtus the Fourth a sentence, whereby it was declared "a thing unfitting that an English Prelate should be the Primate of Scotland, by reason of the warres that might break forth betwixt the two kingdoms."—The King, in 1470, calls him "Consanguineo nostro carissimo;" and in the same year is styled as "Conservator Privilegiorum Ecclesiæ Scoticanæ." He is said to have returned in the year 1472; and both Buchanan and Spottiswood have given a minute and interesting account of the troubles in which he was involved.

In 1471, Pope. Sixtus the Fourth erected the See of St. Andrews into an Archbishoprick, and thus Graham became Primate, Pope's Nuncio, and Legatus a latere. But his zeal and innovations in reforming abuses, excited the envy and opposition both of the clergy and persons in civil authority; and darkened the latter days of his life to such a degree, that he was brought to trial, and by the Pope's Legate, named Huseman, who came to Scotland for that purpose, he was degraded from his dignities, and condemned to perpetual imprisonment, as a Heretic, schismatic, &c.; and was put under the custody of William Schevez, Archdean of St. Andrews, who was appointed his coadjutor and successor. Bishop Lesley (p. 318,) places Graham's trial in 1477, and says, he was first imprisoned in Inchcolm, then removed to Dunfermling, and soon after to the Castle of Lochleven, where he died in 1478. See also Sir James Balfour's Annals, vol. i. p. 200. "This end (says Spottiswood) had that worthy man, in virtue and learning inferior to none of his time, oppressed by the malice and calumny of his enemies, chiefly for that they feared reformation of their wicked abuses by his means."

Of the Lollards mentioned by Knox as summoned for trial before James the Fourth in 1491, no additional information has been ob500tained. Alexander Alesius, in 1534, takes notice of John Campbell of Cesnock having also been summoned and acquitted: see Rev. Chr. Anderson's Annals, vol. ii. p. 400; John Davidson's Memoriall of Two Worthie Christians, &c., p. 10, Edinb. 1595, 8vo; and Calderwood's History, vol. i. p. 54. In "The Praise of Aige," a poem, written about that time by Walter Kennedy, a younger son of Gilbert Lord Kennedy, the progenitor of the Earls of Cassilis, we find these lines:—

"This warld is sett for to dissaive us evin,
Pryde is the nett, and cuvatece is the trane;
For na reward, except the joy of hevin,
Wald I be yung in to this warld agane.
The Schip of Faith, tempestuous wind and rane
Dryvis in the see of Lollerdry that blawis;
My yowth is gane, and I am glaid and fane,
Honour with aige to every vertew drawis."

The same author, in his Flyting or poetical contest with William Dunbar, among other terms of reproach, styles his antagonist "Lamp Lollardorum;" and also, "Judas Jow, Juglour, Lollard Lawreat."—(Dunbar's Poems, vol. ii. pp. 85, 90, 440.)

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