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affected only the protestant clergy, and persons in general, who should speak against the common prayer-book.
3. Some disturbances, attributed to catholics in the north, but which do not appear to have been of magnitude, occasioned an act to be passed in the fifth year of the reign of her majesty, by which persons, maintaining the authority of the pope or the Roman see, were subjected to the penalties of præmunire: ecclesiastical persons, fellows of colleges in the universities, and officers in the courts of justice, were compellable to take the oath of supremacy under the penalty of præmunire for the first offence, and those of high treason for the second: and persons, who had said or heard mass, might have the oath tendered to them, and their refusal of it was punishable by the same penalties.
This act considerably extended the penal code, and operated generally on the whole body of English catholics: but it was far from being generally earried into execution.
IN more than one page of his different works, the writer has taken occasion to express his opinion, that the claim of the popes to temporal power, by
divine right, has been one of the most calamitous events in the history of the church: its effects, since the reformation, on the English, Irish, and Scottish catholics have been dreadful, and are still felt by them severely. We have now to mention the bull of Pius, and the penal enactments by which it was followed.
Bull of Pius the fifth.
THE bull of Paul the third, deposing Henry the eighth, and absolving his subjects from their allegiance, and the arrogant answer of Paul the fourth to the ambassador of queen Elizabeth, have been mentioned: we have now to notice the bull, "Reg"nans in excelsis," of Pius the fifth. After reciting her offences, this pope, "out of the fulness "of his apostolic power, declares Elizabeth, being "an heretic, and a favourer of heretics, and her "adherents in the matter aforesaid, to have in"curred the sentence of anathema, and to be cut "off from the unity of the body of Christ." "More66 over," continues the pope, "we declare her to be deprived of her pretended title to the kingdom aforesaid, and of all dominion, dignity, and privilege whatsoever: and also the nobility, subjects, "and people of the said kingdoms, and all others, "which have in any sort sworn unto her, to be "for ever absolved from every such oath, and all "manner of duty, dominion, allegiance, and obe"dience; as we also do, by the authority of these
presents, absolve them, and do deprive the same "Elizabeth of her pretended right to the kingdom, "and all other things aforesaid: and we do com"mand and interdict, all and every the noblemen, "subjects, people, and others aforesaid, that they "presume not to obey her, or her monitions, mandates, and laws: and those, which shall do to "the contrary, we do innodate with the like sen"tence of anathema.
And, because it were a matter of too much difficulty to carry these presents to all places, "where it may be needful, our will is, that the "copies thereof, under a public notary's hand, and "sealed with the seal of an ecclesiastical prelate, or "of his court, shall carry altogether the same credit "with all people, judicial and extrajudicial, as these presents should do, if they were exhibited or "shown.-Given at Rome, at St. Peter's, in the year of the incarnation of our Lord 1570, the "5th of the calends of May, and of our popedom "the 5th year."
Such was this celebrated bull, ever to be condemned, and ever to be lamented. It is most clear, that the pope assumed by it a right, the exercise of which Christ had explicitly disclaimed for himself;-that it tended to produce a civil war between the queen's protestant and catholic subjects, with all the horrors of a disputed succession and that it necessarily involved a multitude of respectable and conscientious individuals in the bitterest and most complicated distress. What could have fascinated the pontiff, virtuous and pious, as
all historians describe him, to the adoption of such a measure* !
Some months after it was published, Mr. John Felton, a catholic gentleman, affixed it to the gate of the palace of the bishop of London. He was apprehended, and tried for high treason; he confessed the fact, was found guilty, and deservedly executed. The English catholics reprobated his conduct, and never accepted the bull. Felton himself acknowledged the guilt of the action, and begged her majesty's forgiveness.
"The bull of pope Pius the fifth, against queen "Elizabeth," says Strypet, "was set up in Paris "at Pont St. Estienne, containing the self-same "matter, and on the same day, (March the 2d), "that Felton set it up at St. Paul's, London : put"ting her under a curse, and all that adhered to ❝her; and absolving her subjects from their oath "of allegiance: and those, that should obey her, to "be involved under the said curse. This insolent "bull may be read at length in our histories: and "particularly in Camden's Elizabeth. The people " of Paris flocked mightily together about it. The "queen's ambassadors, then in France, were the "lord Buckhurst and Mr. Walsingham, whose ser"vant went boldly and tore it down and brought
* Pope Pius the fifth was beatified by Clement the tenth, in 1672, and canonized by Clement the eleventh, in 1712; his festival holds its place in the Roman calendar, on the 5th of May but in canonizing a saint, the church is far from canonizing all his actions.
† Ann. Ref. vol. ii. p. 17.
"it to his master, who, with the lord Buckhurst, "after some conference, repaired to the king and "immediately broke with him in that behalf. He, "calling Walsingham unto him, asked him the con"tents of the bull: whereof being advertised, and Walsingham presenting to him so much of the "bull as was given him by his servant, the king "showed himself very much moved thereat, and in "such sort as that both might very well see he was unfeigned and forewith he called Lansac unto
him, to take order with the judge criminal for the "searching out of the setter-up of the same and "assured the ambassadors, if by any means he could "be found, he should receive such punishment as "such a presumption required: considering the
good amity between him and his good sister.
Walsingham then showed the king that, if he did "not take order in this, the like measure might be "measured to himself *. To which he answered, "that he did perceive that very well and that "whosoever he were, that should seem to ask in "honour any of his confederates, he would make "account of him accordingly. After Walsingham "departed from the king, Lansac told him in his
* This was verified in the person of his successor, Henry the fourth. While he was king of Navarre, Sixtus Quintus, by a bull signed by himself and twenty-five cardinals, excommunicated that prince, and his brother the prince of Condé, deprived them and their successors of all their states, and particularly of their rights of succession to the throne of France, and absolved all their subjects and vassals from their oath of allegiance. Daniel, Hist. de France, ed. 1755, tom. xi. p. 201.