The First Blast of the Trumpet against the monstrous regiment of Women.
The English Scholar's Library etc.
The First Blast of the Trumpet, &c.
Edited by EDWARD ARBER, F.S.A., etc.,
LECTURER IN ENGLISH LITERATURE, ETC., UNIVERSITY COLLEGE, LONDON. SOUTHGATE, LONDON, N.
15 August 1878.
(All rights reserved.)
[Transcribers Note: The image source for this book was a .pdf of the above edition. The production of the pdf seems to have generated some errors e.g. royal1 for royall. Such errors have been fixed but otherwise the text aims to be true to the printed book.]
Extracts from Mr. DAVID LAING'S Preface
* * * * *
The First Blast of the Trumpet &c.
The wonderful silence of the godly and zealous preachers, the learned men and of grave judgment, now in exile, that they do not admonish the inhabitants of "greate Brittanny" how abominable before GOD is the Empire or Rule of Wicked Woman, yea, of a traitress and bastard.
This is contrary to the examples of the ancient prophets.
I am assured that GOD hath revealed unto some in this our age, that it is more than a monster in nature that a Woman shall reign and have empire above Man.
ANSWERS TO THE OBJECTIONS
Why no such doctrine ought to be published in these our dangerous days.
(a) It may seem to tend to sedition.
(b) It shall be dangerous not only to the writer or publisher, but to all as shall read the writings, or favour this truth spoken.
(c) _It shall not amend the chief offenders, because
1. It shall never come to their ears
2. They will not be admonished_.
If any think that the Empire of Women is not of such importance that for the surpressing of the same any man is bound to hazard his life: I answer, that to suppress it, is in the hand of GOD alone; but to utter the impiety and abomination of the same, I say, it is the duty of every true messenger of GOD to whom the truth is revealed in that behalf.
The First Blast to awake Women degenerate.
The Proposition. To promote a Woman to bear rule, superiority, dominion or empire above any realm, nation or city is
A. Repugnant to nature.
B. Contumely to GOD.
C. The subversion of good order, of all equity and justice.
A. Men illuminated only by the light of nature have seen and determined that it is a thing most repugnant to nature, that Women rule and govern over men.
1. Woman in her greatest perfection was made to serve and obey man, not to rule and command him.
2. After the fall, she was made subject to man by the irrevocable sentence of GOD. In which sentence there are two parts.
(a) A dolour, anguish and pain as oft as ever she shall be a mother.
(b) A subjection of her self, her appetites and will to her husband and his will.
From the former part of this malediction can neither art, nobility, policy nor law made by man deliver women: but, alas, ignorance of GOD, ambition and tyranny have studied to abolish and destroy the second part of GOD's punishment.
3. This subjection, understood by many to be that of the wife to the husband, is extended by Saint PAUL to women in general To which consent TERTULLIAN, AUGUSTINE, AMBROSE, CHRYSOSTOM, BASIL
4. The two other Mirrors, in which we may behold the order of Nature.
(a) The natural body of man
(b) The civil body of that Commonwealth [of the Jews] in which GOD by his own word hath appointed an order.
C. The Empire of a Woman is a thing repugnant to justice, and the destruction of every commonwealth where it is received.
(a) If justice be a constant and perpetual will to give to every person their own right: then to give or to will to give to any person that which is not their right, must repugn to justice. But to reign above Man can never be the right to Woman: because it is a thing denied unto her by GOD, as is before declared.
(b) Whatsoever repugneth to the will of GOD expressed in His most sacred word, repugneth to justice. That Women have authority over Men repugneth to the will of GOD expressed in His word. Therefore all such authority repugneth to justice.
ANSWERS TO OBJECTIONS.
1. The examples of DEBORAH [Judges iv. 4] and HULDAH [2 Kings xxii 14.]
2. The law of MOSES for the daughters of ZELOPHEHAD [Numb. xxvii. 7, and xxxvi. 11]
3. The consent of the Estates of such realms as have approved the Empire and Regiment of Women.
4 [The long custom which hath received the Regiment of Women. The valiant acts and prosperity. Together with some Papistical laws which have confirmed the same.
*** This objection was not directly replied to; but instead, the two following ones.]
(a) Albeit Women may not absolutely reign by themselves; because they may neither sit in judgment, neither pronounce sentence, neither execute any public office: yet may they do all such things by their Lieutenants, Deputies, and Judges substitutes.
(b) A woman born to rule over any realm, may choose her a husband; and to him she may transfer and give her authority and right.
And now to put an end to the First Blast. Seeing that by the Order of Nature; by the malediction and curse pronounced against Woman; by the mouth of Saint PAUL, the interpreter of GOD's sentence; by the example of that Commonwealth in which GOD by His word planted order and policy; and finally, by the judgment of the most godly writers: GOD hath dejected women from rule, dominion, empire and authority above man. Moreover, seeing that neither the example of DEBORAH, neither the law made for the daughters of ZELOPHEHAD, neither yet the foolish consent of an ignorant multitude: be able to justify that which GOD so plainly hath condemned. Let all men take heed what quarrel and cause from henceforth they do defend. If GOD raise up any noble heart to vindicate the liberty of his country and to suppress the monstrous Empire of Women: let all such as shall presume to defend them in the same, most certainly know; that in so doing they lift their hand against GOD, and that one day they shall find His power to fight against their foolishness.
JOHN KNOX to the Reader
12 July. JOHN KNOX to Sir WILLIAM CECIL
20 July. JOHN KNOX'S Declaration to Queen ELIZABETH
20 Mar. THOMAS RANDOLPH to Sir WILLIAM CECIL
5 Aug. JOHN KNOX'S Second Defence to Queen ELIZABETH
Extracts from JOHN KNOX'S History of the Church of Scotland
The First Blast of the Trumpet etc.
ISSUES IN THE AUTHOR'S LIFETIME.
A. As a separate publication.
1. 1558. [i.e. early in that year at Geneva. 8vo.] See title at p. I.
B. With other Works.
ISSUES SINCE HIS DEATH.
A. As a separate publication.
2. [?1687? Edinburgh.] 8vo. The First Blast of the Trumpet against the monstrous Regimen[t] of Women.
4. 15. Aug. 1878. Southgate London N.
English Scholar's Library. The present impression.
B. With other Works.
1846-1848. Edinburgh. 8vo. Bannatyne Club. The Works of JOHN KNOX. Collected and edited by DAVID LAING. In 6 Vols. A special and limited edition of 112 copies of the First Two Volumes was struck off for this Printing Club.
1846-1848. Edinburgh. 8vo. Wodrow Club. The same Two Volumes issued to this Society.
1854-1864. Edinburgh. 8vo. The remaining Four Volumes published by Mr. T. G. STEVENSON. The First Blast &c. is at Vol. iv. 349.
Early Replies to the First Blast etc.
1. 26 Apr. 1559. Strasburgh. 4to. [JOHN AYLMER, afterwards Bishop of LONDON].
An Harborovve for faithfull and trewe subiectes, agaynst the late blowne Blaste, concerninge the Gouernmente of VVemen wherin he confuted all such reasons as a straunger of late made in that behalfe, with a breife exhortation to Obedience. Anno. M.D. lix.
[This calling John Knox a "stranger" sounds to us like a piece of impudence, but may bring home to us that Scotland was then to Englishmen a foreign country.]
2. 1565-6. Antwerp. 8vo. PETRUS FRARINUS, M.A.
Oration against the Vnlawfull Insurrections of the Protestantes of our time, under the pretence to refourme religion.
Made and pronounced in the Schole of Artes at Louaine, the xiiij of December. Anno 1565. And now translated into English with the aduise of the Author. Printed by JOHN FOWLER in 1566.
The references to KNOX and GOODMAN are at E. vj and F. ij. At the end of this work is a kind of Table of Contents, each reference being illustrated with a woodcut depicting the irightful cruelties with which the Author in the text charges the Protestants. One woodcut is a curious representation of GOODMAN and NOKES.
Doctor FULKE wrote a Confutation of this work.
3. 1579. Paris. 8vo. DAVID CHAMBERS of Ormond.
Histoire abregee de tous les Roys de France, Angleterre et Escosse, etc. In three Parts, each with a separate Title page.
The Third Part is dated 21 August 1573; is dedicated to CATHERINE DE MEDICI; and is entitled
Discours de la legitime succession des femmes aux possessions de leurs parens: et du gouernement des princesses aux Empires et Royaumes.
4. 1584. [Printed abroad]. 8vo. JOHN LESLEY, Bishop of ROSS.
A treatise towching the right, title and interest of the most Excellent Princesse MARIE, Queen of Scotland, And of the most noble King JAMES, her Graces sonne, to the succession of the Crowne of England. ... Compiled ahd published before in Latin, and after in English. The Blast is alluded to at C. 2.
5. 1590. [Never printed.] Lord HENRY HOWARD [created Earl of NORTHAMPTON 13 March 1604.], a voluminous writer, but few of whose writings ever came to the press.
A dutifull defence of the lawfull Regiment of women deuided into three bookes. The first conteyneth reasons and examples grounded on the law of nature. The second reasons and examples grownded on the Ciuile lawes. The third reasons and examples grounded on the sacred lawes of god with an awnswer to all false and friuolous obiections which haue bene most vniustlie cowntenaunced with deceitfull coulores forced oute of theis lawes in disgrace of their approued and sufficient authorytie. Lansd. MS. 813 and Harl. MS. 6257.
At the time this tract was written the destinies, immediate and prospective, of the Protestant faith seemed to lay wholly in the laps of five women, viz:—
CATHERINE DE MEDICI, Queen of France.
MARIE DE LORRAINE, Queen Regent of Scotland, whose sole heir was her daughter MARY, afterwards Queen of Scots.
MARY TUDOR, Queen of England, having for her heir apparent the Princess ELIZABETH.
Of these, the last—also of least account at this moment, being in confinement—was the only hope of the Reformers. The other four, largely directing the affairs of three kingdoms, were steadfastly hostile to the new faith. Truly, the odds were heavy against it. Who could have anticipated that within three years of the writing of this book both MARY TUDOR and MARY DE LORRAINE would have passed away; that KNOX himself would have been in Scotland carrying on the Reformation; and that ELIZABETH would have commenced her marvellous reign. So vast a change in the political world was quite beyond all reasonable foresight.
Meanwhile there was only present to the vision and heart of the Reformer as he gazed seaward, from Dieppe, but the unceasing blaze of, the martyr fires spreading from Smithfield all over England. Month after month this horrid work was deliberately carried on and was increasing in intensity.
We se our countrie set furthe for a pray to foreine nations, we heare the blood of our brethren, the membres of Christ Iesus most cruellie to be shed, and the monstruous empire of a cruell women (the secrete counsel of God excepted) we knowe to be the onlie occasion of all the miseries: and yet with silence we passe the time as thogh the mater did nothinge appertein to vs. p. 3.
The vigour of the persecution had struck all heart out of the Protestants. Was this to go on for ever? Heart-wrung at the ruthless slaughter—as we, in our day, have been by the horrors of the Indian mutiny or of the Bulgarian atrocities—-the Reformer sought to know the occasion of all these calamities. At that moment, he found it in the Empire of Woman. Afterwards he referred much of this book to the time in which it was written [pp. 58 and 61]. Shall we say that his heart compelled his head to this argument, that his indignation entangled his understanding on this subject? Just as MILTON was led to the discussion of the conditions of divorce, through his desertion by his wife MARY POWELL; so the fiery martyrdoms of England led KNOX to denounce the female sex in the person of her whom we still call "Bloody MARY" that was the occasion of them all.
If in the happiest moment of his happiest dream, JOHN KNOX could have foreseen our good and revered Queen VICTORIA reigning in the hearts of the millions of her subjects, and ruling an Empire wider by far than those of Spain and Portugal in his day; if he could have seen England and Scotland ONE COUNTRY, bearing the name which, as almost of prophecy, he has foreshadowed for them in this tract, "the Ile of greate Britanny;" if he could have beheld that one country as it now abides in its strength and its wealth, the most powerful of European states; if he could have realized free Italy with Rome, the Popes without temporal power, and modern civilisation more than a match for Papal intrigues; if he could have known that the gospel for which he lived had regenerated the social life of Great Britain, that it was tha confessed basis of our political action and the perennial spring of our Christian activities, so that not merely in physical strength, but in moral, force and mental enlightenment we are in the van of the nations of the world: if the great Scotch Reformer had but had a glimpse of this present reality, this tract would never have been written, and he would willingly have sung the paean of aged SIMEON and passed out of this life.
But this work was the offspring of the hour of darkness, if not of despair. Something must be done. A warrior of the pen, he would forge a general argument against all female rule that would inclusively destroy the legal right of MARY to continue these atrocities.
The first note of this trumpet blast, "The Kingdom apperteineth to our GOD," shows us the vast difference between the way in which men regarded the Almighty Being then and now. Shall we say that the awe of the Deity has departed! Now so much stress is laid on the Fatherhood of GOD: in KNOX'S time it was His might to defend His own or to take vengeance on all their murderers. Both views are true. Nevertheless this age does seem wanting in a general and thorough reverence for His great name and character.
KNOX seems like some great Hebrew seer when he thus pronounces the doom of MARY and her adherents.
The same God, who did execute this greuous punishment, euen by the handes of those, whom he suffred twise to be ouercomen in batel, doth this day retein his power and iustice. Cursed Iesabel of England, with the pestilent and detestable generation of papistes, make no litle bragge and boast, that they haue triumphed not only against Wyet, but also against all such as haue entreprised any thing against them or their procedinges. But let her and them consider, that yet they haue not preuailed against god, his throne is more high, then that the length of their hornes be able to reache. And let them further consider, that in the beginning of their bloodie reigne, the haruest of their iniquitie was not comen to full maturitie and ripenes. No, it was so grene, so secret I meane, so couered, and so hid with hypocrisie, that some men (euen the seruantes of God) thoght it not impossible, but that wolues might be changed in to lambes, and also that the vipere might remoue her natural venom. But God, who doth reuele in his time apointed the secretes of hartes, and that will haue his iudgementes iustified euen by the verie wicked, hath now geuen open testimonie of her and their beastlie crueltie. For man and woman, learned and vnlearned, nobles and men of baser sorte, aged fathers and tendre damiselles, and finailie the bones of the dead, as well women as men haue tasted of their tyrannie, so that now not onlie the blood of father Latimer, of the milde man of God the bishop of Cantorburie, of learned and discrete Ridley, of innocent ladie Iane dudley, and many godly and worthie preachers, that can not be forgotten, such as fier hath consumed, and the sworde of tyrannie moste vniustlie hath shed, doth call for vengeance in the eares of the Lord God of hostes: but also the sobbes and teares of the poore oppressed, the groninges of the angeles, the watch men of the Lord, yea and euerie earthlie creature abused by their tyrannie do continuallie crie and call for the hastie execution of the same. I feare not to say, that the day of vengeance, whiche shall apprehend that horrible monstre Iesabal of England, and suche as maintein her monstruous crueltie, is alredie apointed in the counsel of the Eternall; and I verelie, beleue that it is so nigh, that she shall not reigne so long in tyrannie, as hitherto she hath done, when God shall declare him selfe to be her ennemie, when he shall poure furth contempt vpon her, according to her crueltie, and shal kindle the hartes of such, as sometimes did fauor her with deadly hatred against her, that they may execute his iudgementes. And therfore let such as assist her, take hede what they do.
Within a year of the writing of this MARY TUDOR was dead, and the system of which she was the centre was dead too.
There are some notable incidental matters in this tract.
First in matters of State. As
The spaniardes are Iewes and they bragge that Marie of England is the roote of Iesse. p. 46.
That most important testimony that the Reformation under EDWARD VI was mainly the work of the King and his court; as it had been in the days of his father HENRY VIII.
For albeit thou diddest not cease to heape benefit vpon benefit, during the reigne of an innocent and tendre king, yet no man did acknowledge thy potent hand and meruelouse working. The stoute courage of capitaines, the witte and policie of counselers, the learning of 'bishoppes, did robbe the of thy glorie and honor. For what then was heard, as concerning religion, but the kinges procedinges, the kinges procedinges must be obeyed? It is enacted by parliament: therefore it is treason to speake in the contrarie. p. 30.
The political shrewdness of the Writer on the entanglement of England in the Spanish War against France, whereby we lost Calais on the 6th January 1558.
They see their owne destruction, and yet they haue no grace to auoide it. Yea they are becomen so blinde, that knowing the pit, they headlong cast them selues into the same, as the nobilitie of England, do this day, fighting in the defense of their mortall ennemie the Spaniard. Finallie they are so destitute of vnderstanding and iudgement, that althogh they knowe that there is a libertie and fredome, the whiche their predecessors haue inioyed; yet are they compelled to bowe their neckes vnder the yoke of Satan, and of his proude ministres, pestilent papistes and proude spaniardes. And yet can they not consider that where a woman reigneth and papistes beare authoritie, that there must nedes Satan be president of the counsel, p. 31.
The absence of any specific allusion to Calais shows that this book was wholly written before its capture.
Next, in the imagery with which he expresses his insight into the nature of things. As
It is a thing verie difficile to a man, (be he neuer so constant) promoted to honors, not to be tickled some what with pride (for the winde of vaine glorie doth easelie carie vp the, drie dust of the earth). p. 19.
The wise, politic, and quiet spirites of this world, p. 8.
The veritie of God is of that nature, that at one time or at other, it will pourchace to it selfe audience. It is an odour and smell, that can not be suppressed, yea it is a trumpet that will sound in despite of the adversarie.
Lastly, the marvellous lashing of women, throughout: climaxing in
Woman ... the porte and gate of the deuil.
This work is therefore to us rather "the groaning of this angel," this "watchman of the LORD" at the national subjection, the fiery martyrdoms, "the sobs and tears of the poor oppressed;" than the expression of any fundamental principle on which GOD has constituted human society. Intellectually, there is partiality, forgetfulness and disproportion in the argument. It applies as much to a Man as to a Woman, and more to a wicked than a good Woman. He started on the assumption that almost all women in authority were wicked. Time however alters many things; and he lived to love and reverence Queen ELIZABETH.
So these trumpet notes are the outpouring of a very great nature, if not of a great thinker; of one whose absolute and dauntless devotion to GOD, to truth, to right, whose burning indignation against wrong-doing and faith in the Divine vengeance to overtake it, fitted him to do a giant's work in the Reformation, and will enshrine his memory in the affection of all good men till time shall end.
[Sidenote 1: what robbed God of his honor in England in the time of the Gospell.]
[Sidenote 2: The nobilitie and the hole realme of England, caste themselves willing in to the pit.]
[Sidenote 3: The propertie of Goddes truth.]
EXTRACTS FROM MR. DAVID LAING'S PREFACE.
With some other hints, gratefully acknowledged.
Of the various writings of the Reformer, no one was the occasion of exciting greater odium than his First Blast against the monstrous Regiment or Government of Women. Unlike all his other publications, it appeared anonymously, although he had no intention of ultimately concealing his name. His purpose was, as he tells us, "Thrice to Blow the Trumpet in the same matter, if GOD so permit," and, on the last occasion, to announce himself as the writer, to prevent any blame being imputed to others. This intention, it is well known, was never carried into effect. That KNOX'S views were in harmony with those of his colleagues, GOODMAN, WHITTINGHAM, and GILBY, need hardly be stated: but the reception of the little work fully confirmed the Author's opinion, that it would not escape "the reprehension of many." This may in a great measure be attributed to the course of public events within a few months of its publication.
The subject of Female Government had engaged his attention at an earlier period. One of his Questions submitted to BULLINGER in 1554 was "Whether a Female can preside over, and rule a kingdom by divine right?" And in answer to some doubts regarding the Apparel of Women, he himself says that "if women take upon them the office which GOD hath assigned to men, they shall not escape the Divine malediction." In his Additions to the Apology for The Protestants in prison at Paris, he expresses his conviction that the government of Princes had come to that state of iniquity that "no godly person can enjoy office or authority under them." This assertion indeed was not specially applicable to Female government, but his feelings in reference to the persecutions in England under MARY, and in Scotland under the Queen Regent, impelled him to treat of a subject which all others at the time seemed most sedulously to avoid.
His First Blast was probably written at Dieppe towards the end of 1557; and it was printed early in the following year at Geneva, as is apparent upon comparison with other books from the press of JOHN CRESPIN in that city.
A copy of the work having been sent to JOHN FOX, then residing at Basle, he wrote "a loving and friendly letter" to the author, in which he expostulates with him on the impropriety of the publication. In KNOX'S reply, dated the 18th of May 1558, he says, he will not excuse "his rude vehemencie and inconsidered affirmations, which may appear rather to proceed from choler than of zeal or reason." "To me," he adds, "it is enough to say, that black is not white, an'd man's tyranny and foolishness is not GOD's perfect ordinance."
The similar work of GOODMAN on Obedience to Superior Powers which appeared at Geneva about the same time, was also suggested by the persecuting spirit which then prevailed. But both works were published somewhat unseasonably, as such questions on Government and Obedience, it is justly observed, might have been more fitly argued when a King happened to fill the throne. The terms used by GOODMAN in reference to MARY, Queen of England, are not less violent than unseemly. She died on the 17th of November 1558, and her successor regarded the authors of those works with the utmost dislike; although neither of them, in their writings, had any special reference or the least intention of giving offence to Queen ELIZABETH....
That these works, and every person supposed to entertain similar sentiments, should be regarded with marked aversion by Queen ELIZABETH, need excite no surprise.
In the beginning of the year 1559, CALVIN having revised and republished his Commentaries on ISAIAH, originally dedicated to EDWARD VI. in 1551; he addressed the work in a printed Epistle to Her Majesty: but his messenger brought him back word that his homage was not kindly received by Her Majesty, because she had been offended with him by reason of some writings published with his approbation at Geneva.
CALVIN felt so greatly annoyed at this imputation, that he addressed a letter to Sir WILLIAM CECIL, in which he expresses himself with no small degree of asperity on the subject of KNOX'S First Blast. He says—
Two years ago [i.e. in 1557] JOHN KNOX asked of me, in a private conversation, what I thought about the Government of Women. I candidly replied, that as it was a deviation from the original and proper order of nature, it was to be ranked, no less than slavery, among the punishments consequent upon the fall of man: but that there were occasionally women so endowed, that the singular good qualities which shone forth in them made it evident that they were raised up by Divine authority; either that GOD designed by such examples to condemn the inactivity of men, or for the better setting forth of His own glory. I brought forth Huldah and Deborah; and added, that GOD did not vainly promise by the mouth of Isaiah that "Queens should be nursing mothers of the Church"; by which prerogative it is very evident that they are distinguished from females in private life. I came at length to this conclusion, that since, both by custom, and public consent, and long practice, it hath been established, that realms and principalities may descend to females by hereditary right, it did not appear to me necessary to move the question, not only because the thing would be most invidious; but because in my opinion it would not be lawful to unsettle governments which are ordained by the peculiar providence of GOD.
I had no suspicion of the book, and for a whole year was ignorant of its publication. When I was informed of it by certain parties, I sufficiently shewed my displeasure that such paradoxes should be published; but as the remedy was too late, I thought that the evil, which could not now be corrected, should rather be buried in oblivion than made a matter of agitation.
Inquire also at your father in law [Sir ANTHONY COOKE] what my reply was, when he informed me of the circumstance through Beza. And MARY was still living, so that I could not be suspected of flattery.
What the books contain, I cannot tell; but KNOX himself will allow that my conversation with him was no other than what I have now stated.
Calvin then proceeds to say, that great confusion might have arisen by any decided opposition, and there would have been cause to fear, that in such a case—
By reason of the thoughtless arrogance of one individual, the wretched crowd of exiles would have been driven away, not only from this city [of Geneva] but even from almost the whole world.
Some years later, and subsequent to CALVIN'S death, BEZA, in a letter to BULLINGER, adverts to Queen ELIZABETH'S continued dislike to the Church of Geneva. In his letter, dated the 3rd of September 1566, he says—
For as to our Church, I would have you know that it is so hateful to the Queen [of England], that on this account she has never said a single word in acknowledgement of the gift of my Annotations [on the New Testament]. The reason of her dislike is twofold; one, because we are accounted too severe and precise, which is very displeasing to those who fear reproof; the other is, because formerly, though without our knowledge, during the lifetime of Queen MARY, two books were published here in the English language, one by Master KNOX against the Government of Women, the other by Master GOODMAN on the Rights of the Magistrate.
As soon as we learned the contents of each, we were much displeased, and their sale was forbidden in consequence; but she, notwithstanding, cherishes the opinion she has taken into her head.
[Footnote 1: The letter is not dated, but it was subsequent to one written on the 29th of January 1559 [i.e. 1560], Zurich Letters. Second Series, p. 35.]
[Footnote 2: Zurich Letters. Second Series, p. 34.]
THE FIRST BLAST OF THE TRUMPET AGAINST THE MONSTRVOVS REGIMENT OF WOMEN.
Veritas temporis filia,
M. D. LVIII.
THE KINGDOME APPERTEINETH TO OVR GOD.
[Sidenote a: the Negligence of watchemen.] [Sidenote b: The diligence of the olde prophetes of God.] [Sidenote c: I. Reg. 12.] [Sidenote d: Ezech. 16.] [Sidenote e: Ierem. 29.] [Sidenote f: Ezech. 7,8,9.]
Wonder it is, that amongest so many pregnant wittes as the Ile of greate Brittanny hath produced, so many godlie and zelous preachers as England did somtime norishe, and amongest so many learned and men of graue iudgement, as this day by Iesabel are exiled, none is found so stowte of courage, so faithfull to God, nor louing to their natiue countrie, that they dare admonishe the inhabitantes of that Ile how abominable before God, is the Empire or Rule of a wicked woman, yea of a traiteresse and bastard. And what may a people or nation left destitute of a lawfull head, do by the authoritie of Goddes worde in electing and appointing common rulers and magistrates. That Ile (alas) for the contempt and horrible abuse of Goddes mercies offred, and for the shamefull reuolting to Satan frome Christ Iesus, and frome his Gospell ones professed, doth iustlie merite to be left in the handes of their own counsel, and so to come to confusion and bondage of strangiers. But yet I feare that this vniuersall negligence[a] of such as somtimes were estemed watchemen, shall rather aggrauate our former ingratitude, then excuse this our vniuersall and vngodlie silence, in so weightie a mater. We se our countrie set furthe for a pray to foreine nations, we heare the blood of our brethren, the membres of Christ Iesus most cruellie to be shed, and the monstruous empire of a cruell woman (the secrete counsel of God excepted) we knowe to be the onlie occasion of all these miseries: and yet with silence we passe the time as thogh the mater did nothinge appertein to vs. But the contrarie examples of the auncient prophetes[b] moue me to doubte of this our fact. For Israel did vniuersalie decline frome God by embrasing idolatrie vnder Ieroboam. In whiche they did continue euen vnto the destruction of their common welthe[c]. And Iuda withe Ierusalem did followe the vile superstition and open iniquitie of Samaria[d]. But yet ceased not the prophetes of God to admonishe the one and the other: Yea euen after that God had poured furthe his plagues vpon them[e]. For Ieremie did write to the captiues of Babylon, and did correct their errors, plainlie instructing them, who did remaine in the middest of that idolatrouse nation. Ezechiel[f] frome the middest of his brethren prisoners in Chaldea, did write his vision to those that were in Ierusalem, and sharplie rebukinge their vices, assured them that they shuld not escape the vengeance of God by reason of their abominations committed.
[Sidenote g: God alway had his people amongst the wicked, who neuer lacked their prophetes and teachers.] [Sidenote h: Isaie. 13. Ierem. 6. Ezech. 36.] [Sidenote i: Examples what teachers oght to do in this time.] [Sidenote j: Ezech. 2, Apoca. 6.] [Sidenote k: Thre chef reasons, that do stay man from speaking the truthe.] [Sidenote l: 1. Cor. 9.] [Sidenote m: Mat. 26. Act. 18, 21.] [Sidenote n: Psalm. 2. Act. 4.] [Sidenote o: It is necessarie for everie man to open the impietie, whiche he knoweth to hurt his commonwelth.] [Sidenote p: No man can repent except he knowe his synne.]
The same prophetes for comfort of the afflicted and chosen saintes of God, who did lie hyd amongest the reprobate of that age[g] (as commonlie doth the corne amongest the chaffe) did prophecie and before speake the changes of kingdomes, the punishmentes of tyrannes, and the vengeance[h] whiche God wold execute vpon the oppressors of his people. The same did Daniel and the rest of the prophetes euerie one in their season. By whose examples and by the plaine precept, which is geuen to Ezechiel, commanding him that he shall say to the wicked: Thou shalt die the death. We in this our miserable age are bounde to admonishe[i] the world and the tyrannes thereof, of their sodeine destruction, to assure them, and to crie vnto them, whether they list to heare or not. That the blood of the saintes, which by them is shed, continuallie crieth and craueth[j] vengeance in the presence of the Lorde of hostes. And further it is our dutie to open the truthe reueled vnto vs, vnto the ignorant and blind world, vnlest that to our owne condemnation we list to wrap vp and and hyde the talent committed to our charge. I am assured that God hath reueled to some in this our age, that it is more then a monstre in nature, that a woman shall reigne and haue empire aboue man. And yet with vs all, there is suche silence, as if God therewith were nothing offended. The naturall man, ennemy to God shall fynd, I knowe, many causes why no suche doctrine oght to be published in these our dangerous dayes. First, for that it may seme to tend to sedition[k]: secondarilie, it shal be dangerous, not onlie to the writer or publisher, but also to all such as shall reade the writinges, or fauor this truth spoken: and last it shall not amend the chief offenders, partlie because it shall neuer come to their eares, and partlie because they will not be admonished in such cases. I answer, yf any of these be a sufficient reason that a truth knowen shalbe conceled, then were the auncient prophetes of God very fooles, who did not better prouide for their owne quietnes, then to hasard their liues for rebuking of vices, and for the opening of such crimes, as were not knowen to the world, And Christ Iesus did iniurie to his Apostles, commanding them to preache repentance and remission of synnes in his name to euerie realme and nation. And Paule did not vnderstand his owne libertie, when he cried, wo be to me, if I preache not the Euangile. Yf feare, I say, of persecution[l], of sclander, or of any inconuenience before named might have excused, and discharged the seruantes of God[m], from plainlie rebuking the sinnes of the world; iuste cause had euerie one of them to haue ceased frome their office. For sodeinlie their doctrine was accused by termes of sedition, of newe learning, and of treason: persecution and vehement trouble did shortlie come vpon the professours with the preachers[n]: kinges, princes and worldlie rulers did conspire against God and against his anoynted Christ Iesus. But what? Did any of these moue the prophetes and Apostles to faynt in their vocation? no. But by the resistance, whiche the deuill made to them by his suppostes, were they the more inflamed to publishe the truthe reueled vnto them and to witnesse with their blood, that greuous condemnation and Goddes heuie vengeance shuld folowe the proude contempt of graces offred. The fidelitie, bold courage, and constancie of those that are passed before vs, oght to prouoke vs to folowe their footsteppes, onles we loke for an other kingdome then Christ hath promised to such as perseuere in profession of his name to the end. Yf any think that the empire of women, is not of such importance, that for the suppressing of the same, any man is bounde to hasarde his life, I answer, that to suppresse it, is in the hand of god alone. But to vtter the impietie and abomination of the same, I say, it is the dutie of euerie true messager of God, to whome the truth is reueled in that behalfe. For the especiall dutie[o] of Goddes messagers is to preache repentance, to admonishe the offenders of their offenses, and to say to the wicked, thou shalt die the death, except thou repent. This, I trust, will no man denie to be the propre office of all Goddes messagers to preache (as I haue said) repentance and remission of synnes. But nether of both can be done, except the conscience of the offenders be accused and conuicted of transgression. For howe shall any man repent not knowing wher in he hath offended? And where no repentance is founde[p], there can be no entrie to grace. And therfore I say, that of necessitie it is, that, this monstriferouse empire of women, (which amongest all enormities, that this day do abound vpon the face of the hole earth, is most detestable and damnable) be openlie reueled and plainlie declared to the world, to the end that some may repent and be saued. And thus farre to the first sorte.
[Sidenote q: The propertie of Goddes truth.] [Sidenote r: 2. Reg. 6.] [Sidenote s: Mat. 14.] [Sidenote t: Rum. 1.] [Sidenote u: The ignorant multitide hath set up the authoritie of women not knowinge the danger.]
To such as thinke that it will be long before such doctrine come to the eares of the chief offenders, I answer that the veritie of God is of that nature, that at one time or at other, it will pourchace to it selfe audience. It is an odour and smell, that can not be suppressed[q], yea it is a trumpet that will sound in despite of the aduersarie. It will compell the verie ennemies to their own confusion, to tes tifie and beare witnesse of it. For I finde that the prophecie and preaching of Heliseus was declared in the hall of the king of Syria by the seruantes and flatterers of the same wicked king[r], making mention that Heliseus declared to the king of Israel, what so euer the said king of Syria spake in his most secret chamber. And the wonderous workes of Iesus Christ were notified to Herode[s], not in any greate praise or commendation of his doctrine, but rather to signifie that Christ called that tyranne a fox: and that he did no more regarde his authoritie then did Iohn the Baptist, whom Herode before had beheaded for the libertie of his tonge. But whether the bearers of the rumors and tidinges were fauourers of Christ or flatterers of the tyranne, certain it is that the fame, as well of Christes doctrine, as of his workes came to the eares of Herod: euen so may the sounde of our weake trumpet, by the support of some wynd (blowe it from the south or blowe it from the northe it is no mater) come to the eares of the chief offenders. But whether it do or not, yet dare we not cease to blowe as God will giue strength[t]. For we are debters to mo then to princes, to witte, to the multitude of our brethren, of whome, no doubte a greate nomber haue here to fore offended by errour and ignorance, geuing their suffragies, consent and helpe to establishe women in their kingdomes and empires[u], not vnderstanding howe abominable, odious and detestable is all such vsurped authoritie in the presence of God. And therfore must the truthe, be plainlie spoken, that the simple and rude multitude may be admonished.
[Sidenote v: A very dangerous thing to speake against olde errors.] [Sidenote w: Accomptes will be had of Goddes giftes.] [Sidenote x: The cause mouing the author to write.] [Sidenote y: Ezech. 33.]
And as concerning the danger, which may hereof insue, I am not altogether so brutishe and insensible, but that I haue laid mine accompt what the finishinge of the worke may coste me for mine own parte. First, I am not ignorant howe difficile and dangerous it is to speake against a common error[v], especiallie when that the ambitious mindes of men and women are called to the obedience of goddes simple commandement. For to the most parte of 'men, laufull and godlie appeareth, what soeuer antiquitie hath receiued. And secondarilie, I looke to haue mine aduersaries not onlie of the ignorant multitude, but also of the wise, politike, and quiet spirites of this worlde, so that aswell shall suche as oght to mainteine the truth and veritie of God become ennemies to me in this case, as shall the princes and ambitious persons, who to mainteine their vniust tyrannie do alwayes studie to suppresse the same. And thus I am most certeinlie persuaded, that my labour shall not escape reprehension of many. But because I remembre that accomptes[w] of the talentes receiued must be made to him, who nether respecteth the multitude, nether yet approueth the wisdome, policie, peace, nor antiquitie, concluding or determining any thinge against his eternall will reueled to vs in his moste blessed worde, I am compelled to couer myne eyes, and shut vp myne eares, that I nether se the multitude, that shall withstand me in this mater, nether that I shall heare the opprobries, nor consider the dangers, which I may incurre for vttering the same. I shalbe called foolishe, curious, despitefull, and a sower of sedition: and one day parchance (althogh now I be nameles) I may be attainted of treason. But seing that impossible it is[x], but that ether I shall offend God, dailie calling to my conscience, that I oght to manifest the veritie knowen, or elles that I shall displease the worlde for doing the same, I haue determined to obey God, not withstanding that the world shall rage therat. I knowe that the world offended (by Goddes permission) may kill the bodie, but Goddes maiestie offended, hath power to punishe bodie and soule for euer. His maiestie is offended, when that his preceptes are contemned, and his threatninges estemed to be of none effect. And amongest his manifold preceptes geuen to his prophetes, and amongest his threatninges, none is more vehement, then is that, which is pronounced to Ezechiel in these wordes[y]: Sonne of man, I haue appointed the a watchman to the house of Israel, that thou shuldest heare from my mouthe the worde, and that thou maist admonishe them plainlie, when I shall say to the wicked man: O wicked, thou shalt assuredlie die. Then if thou shalt not speake, that thou maist plainlie admonishe him, that he may leaue his wicked way, the wicked man shall die in his iniquitie, but his blood will I requier of thy hand. But and if thou shalt plainlie admonishe the wicked man, and yet he shall not turne from his way, such a one shall die in his iniquitie, but thou hast deliuered thy soule.
[Sidenote z: For the Authors name.]
This precept, I say, with the threatning annexed, togither with the rest, that is spoken in the same chapter, not to Ezechiel onlie, but to euerie one, whom God placeth whatchman ouer his people and flocke, (and watchman are they whose eyes he doth open, and whose conscience he pricketh to admonishe the vngodlie) compelleth me to vtter my conscience in this mater, notwithstanding that the hole worlde shuld be offended with me for so doing. Yf any wonder, why I do concele my name, let him be assured, that the feare of corporall punishement is nether the onlie, nether the chef cause. My purpose is thrise to blowe the trumpet in the same mater, if God so permitte[z]: twise I intende to do it without name, but at the last blast, to take the blame vpon my selfe, that all others may be purged.
THE FIRST BEAST TO AWAKE WOMEN DEGENERATE.
To promote a woman to beare rule, superioritie, dominion or empire aboue any realme, nation, or citie, is repugnant to nature, contumelie to God, a thing most contrarious to his reueled will and approued ordinance, and finallie it is the subuersion of good order, of all equitie and iustice.
In the probation of this proposition, I will not be so curious, as to gather what soeuer may amplifie, set furth, or decore the same, but I am purposed, euen as I haue spoken my conscience in most plaine and fewe wordes, so to stand content with a simple proofe of euerie membre, bringing in for my witnesse Goddes ordinance in nature, his plaine will reueled in his worde, and the mindes of such as be moste auncient amongest godlie writers.
[Sidenote 1: Causes why women shuld not have preeminence ouer men.]
And first, where that I affirme the empire of a woman to be a thing repugnant to nature, I meane not onlie that God by the order of his creation hath spoiled woman of authoritie and dominion, but also that man hath seen, proued and pronounced iust causes why that it so shuld be. Man, I say, in many other cases blind, doth in this behalfe see verie clearlie. For the causes be so manifest, that they can not be hid. For who can denie but it repugneth to nature, that the blind shal be appointed to leade and conduct such as do see? That the weake, the sicke, and impotent persones shall norishe and kepe the hole and strong, and finallie, that the foolishe, madde and phrenetike shal gouerne the discrete, and giue counsel to such as be sober of mind? And such be al women, compared vnto man in bearing of authoritie. For their sight in ciuile regiment, is but blindnes: their strength, weaknes: their counsel, foolishenes: and iudgement, phrenesie, if it be rightlie considered.
[Sidenote 2: Priuate example do not breake the generall ordinance.] [Sidenote 3: 2 Politicorum Aristotelis.] [Sidenote 4: Reade Isaie the thirde chaptre.] [Sidenote 5: Amazones were monstruouse women, that coulde not abide the regiment of men, and therfore killed their husbandes, reade Iustine.] [Sidenote 6: Arist. 2. Politic.] [Sidenote 7: Lib. 50. de regulis iuris.] [Sidenote 8: What women may not be.] [Sidenote 9: 3. 16. lib. Digestorum.] [Sidenote 10: Ad Senatus consul, Veleianum.] [Sidenote 11: Lib. 3. de posulationse Tit. 1.] [Sidenote 12: Calphurnia.]
I except such as God by singular priuiledge, and for certein causes knowen onlie to him selfe, hath exempted from the common ranke of women, and do speake of women as nature and experience do this day declare them. Nature I say, doth paynt them furthe to be weake, fraile, impacient, feble and foolishe: and experience hath declared them to be vnconstant, variable, cruell and lacking the spirit of counsel and regiment. And these notable faultes haue men in all ages espied in that kinde, for the whiche not onlie they haue remoued women from rule and authoritie, but also some haue thoght that men subiect to the counsel or empire of their wyues were vn worthie of all publike office. For this writeth Aristotle in the seconde of his Politikes: what difference shal we put, saith he, whether that women beare authoritie, or the husbanesd that obey the empire of their wyues be appointed to be magistrates? For what insueth the one, must nedes folowe the other, to witte, iniustice, confusion and disorder. The same author further reasoneth, that the policie or regiment of the Lacedemonians (who other wayes amongest the Grecians were moste excellent) was not worthie to be reputed nor accompted amongest the nombre of common welthes, that were well gouerned, because the magistrates, and rulers of the same were to [o] muche geuen to please and obey their wyues. What wolde this writer (I pray you) haue said to that realme or nation, where a woman sitteth crowned in parliament amongest the middest of men. Oh fearefull and terrible are thy iudgementes (o Lord) whiche thus hast abased man for his iniquitie! I am assuredlie persuaded that if any of those men, which illuminated onelie by the light of nature, did see and pronounce causes sufficient, why women oght not to beare rule nor authoritie, shuld this clay liue and see a woman sitting in iudgement, or riding frome parliament in the middest of men, hauing the royall crowne vpon her head, the sworde and sceptre borne before her, in signe that the administration of iustice was in her power: I am assuredlie persuaded, I say, that suche a sight shulde so astonishe them, that they shuld iudge the hole worlde to be transformed into Amazones, and that suche a metamorphosis and change was made of all the men of that countrie, as poetes do feyn was made of the companyons of Vlisses, or at least, that albeit the owtwarde form of men remained, yet shuld they iudge that their hartes were changed frome the wisdome, vnderstanding, and courage of men, to the foolishe fondnes and cowardise of women. Yea they further shuld pronounce, that where women reigne or be in authoritie, that there must nedes vanitie be preferred to vertue, ambition and pride to temperancie and modestie, and finallie, that auarice the mother of all mischefe must nedes deuour equitie and iustice. But lest that we shall seme to be of this opinion alone, let vs heare what others haue seen and decreed in this mater. In the rules of the lawe thus it is written: Women are remoued from all ciuile and publike office, so that they nether may be iudges, nether may they occupie the place of the magistrate, nether yet may they be speakers for others. The same is repe[a]ted in the third and in the sextenth bokes of the digestes: Where certein persones are forbidden, Ne pro aliis postulent, that is, that they be no speakers nor aduocates for others. And among the rest are women forbidden, and this cause is added, that they do not against shamefastnes intermedle them selues with the causes of others, nether yet that women presume to vse the offices due to men. The lawe in the same place doth further declare, that a naturall shamfastnes oght to be in womankind, whiche most certeinlie she loseth, when soeuer she taketh vpon her the office and estate of man. As in Calphurnia was euidentlie declared, who hauing licence to speake before the senate, at length became so impudent and importune, that by her babling she troubled the hole assemblie. And so gaue occasion that this lawe was established.
[Sidenote 13: De statu homino Titul. 8. Frome women.] [Sidenote 14: power is taken away by the Ciuile lawe ouer their own children.] [Sidenote 15: Dig. lib. 24. de donatione inter virum et foeminane.] [Sidenote 16: women be couetous therefore vnmete gouernors.] [Sidenote 17: Lib. 1. Digest. de le gib. et senatuscon Titul. 3, Politic. 2.] [Sidenote 18: England and Scotland beware.]
In the first boke of the digestes, it is pronounced that the condition of the woman in many cases is worse then of the man. As in iurisdiction (saith the lawe) in receiuing of care and tuition, in adoption, in publike accusation, in delation, in all populat action, and in motherlie power, which she hath not vpon her owne sonnes. The lawe further will not permit, that the woman geue any thing to her husband, because it is against the nature of her kinde, being the inferiour membre to presume to geue any thing to her head. The lawe doth more ouer pronounce womankinde to be the most auaricious (which is a vice intolerable in those that shulde rule or minister iustice). And Aristotle, as before is touched, doth plainly affirme, that wher soeuer women beare dominion, there must nedes the people be disorded, liuinge and abounding in all intemperancie, geuen to pride, excesse, and vanitie. And finallie in the end, that they must nedes come to confusion and ruine.
[Sidenote 19: Great imperfections of women.] [Sidenote 20: Ronsilda the wife of Gisulphus betrayed to Cacanus the dukedome of friaul in Italie.] [Sidenote 21: Iane quene of Naples hanged her husband.] [Sidenote 22: Athalia, 4. Reg. II. Hurene, Anton. Sabell.] [Sidenote 23: If the lesse thinges be denied to women, the greater cannot be granted.] [Sidenote 24: woman in her greatest perfection was made to serue man.] [Sidenote 25: I. Cor. II.] [Sidenote 26: A good comparison.] [Sidenote 27: A newe necessity of womans subiection. woman by the sentence of God, subiect to man. Gene. 3.] [Sidenote 28: The punishment of women unjustlie promoted and of their promoters. ] [Sidenote 29: Gene. 3.] [Sidenote 30: Let all women take hede.]
Wold to god the examples were not so manifest, to the further declaration of the imperfections of women, of their naturall weaknes, and inordinat appetites. I might adduce histories, prouing some women to haue died for sodein ioy, some for vnpaciencie to haue murthered them selues, some to haue burned with such inordinat lust, that for the quenching of the same, they haue betrayed to strangiers their countrie and citie: and some to haue bene so desirous of dominion, that for the obteining of the same, they haue murthered the children of their owne sonnes. Yea and some haue killed with crueltie their owne husbandes and children. But to me it is sufficient (because this parte of nature is not my moste sure foundation) to haue proued, that men illuminated onlie by the light of nature, haue seen and haue determined, that it is a thing moste repugnant to nature, that women rule and gouerne ouer men. For those that will not permit a woman to haue power ouer her owne sonnes, will not permit her (I am assured) to haue rule ouer a realme: and those that will not suffer her to speake in defense of those that be accused, nether that will admit her accusation intended against man, will not approuel her, that she shal sit in iudgement crowned with the royal crowne, vsurping authoritie in the middest of men. But now to the second part of nature: In the whiche I include the reueled will and perfect ordinance of God, and against this parte of nature, I say, that it doth manifestlie repugne that any woman shal reigne or beare dominion ouer man. For God first by the order of his creation, and after by the curse and malediction pronounced against the woman, by the, reason of her rebellion, hath pronounced the contrarie. First, I say, that woman in her greatest perfection, was made to serue and obey man, not to rule and command him:  As saint Paule doth reason in these wordes. Man is not of the woman but the woman of the man. And man was not created for the cause of the woman, but the woman for the cause of man, and therfore oght the woman to haue a power vpon her head (that is a couerture in signe of subiection). Of whiche words it is plaine that the Apostle meaneth, that woman in her greatest perfection shuld haue knowen, that man was Lord aboue her: and therfore that she shulde neuer haue pretended any kind of superioritie aboue him, no more then do the angels aboue God the creator, or aboue Christ Iesus their head. So, I say, that in her greatest perfection woman was created to be subiect to man: But after her fall and rebellion committed against God, their was put vpon her a newe necessitie, and she was made subiect to man by the irreuocable sentence of God, pronounced in these wordes: I will greatlie multiplie thy sorowe and thy conception. With sorowe shalt thou beare thy children, and thy will shall be subiect to thy man: and he shal beare dominion ouer the. Herebie may such as altogither be not blinded plainlie see, that God, by his sentence, hath deiected all woman frome empire and dominion aboue man. For two punishmentes are laid vpon her, to witte, a dolor, anguishe and payn, as oft as euer she shal be mother; and a subiection of her selfe, her appetites and will, to her husband, and to his will. Frome the former parte of this malediction can nether arte, nobilitie, policie, nor lawe made by man, deliuer womankinde, but who soeuer atteineth to that honour to be mother, proueth in experience the effect and strength of goddes word. But (alas) ignorance of God, ambition, and tyrannie haue studied to abolishe and destroy the second parte of Goddes punishment. For women are lifted vp to be heades ouer realmes, and to rule aboue men at their pleasure and appetites. But horrible is the vengeance, which is prepared for the one and for the other, for the promoters, and for the persones promoted, except they spedelie repent. For they shall be deiected from the glorie of the sonnes of God, to the sclauerie of the deuill, and to the torment that is prepared for all suche, as do exalte them selues against God. Against God can nothing be more manifest, then that a woman shall be exalted to reigne aboue man. For the contrarie sentence hath he pronounced in these wordes: Thy will shall be subiect to thy husband, and he shall beare dominion ouer the. As God shuld say: forasmuch as thou hast abused thy former condition, and because thy free will hath broght thy selfe and mankind in to: the bondage of Satan, I therfore will bring the in bondage to man. For where before, thy obedience shuld haue bene voluntarie, nowe it shall be by constraint and by neeessitie: and that because thou hast deceiued thy man, thou shalt therfore be no longar maistresse ouer thine own appetites, ouer thine owne will nor desires. For in the there is nether reason nor discretion, whiche be able to moderate thy affections, and therfore they shall, be subiect to the desire of thy man. He shall be Lord and gouernour, not onlie ouer thy bodie, but euen ouer thy appetites and will. This sentence, I say, did God pronounce against Heua, and her daughters, as the rest of the Scriptures doth euidentlie witnesse. So that no woman can euer presume to reigne aboue man, but the same she must nedes do in despite, of God, and in contempt of his punishment, and maledictjon.
[Sidenote 31: Answer to an obiection. ] [Sidenote 32: 1 Tim. 2. ] [Sidenote 33: I. Cor. 14.] [Sidenote 34: From a general privilege is woman secluded.] [Sidenote 35: She that is, subject to one may not rule many.]
I am not ignorant, that the most part of men do vnderstand this malediction of the subiection of the wife to her husband, and of the dominion, which; he beareth aboue her: but the holie ghost geueth to vs an other interpretation of this place, taking from all women all. kinde of superioritie, authoritie and power ouer man, speaking as foloweth, by the mouth of saint Paule. I suffer not a woman to teache, nether yet to vsurpe authoritie aboue man. Here he nameth women in generall, excepting none, affirming that she may vsurpe authoritie aboue no man. And that he speaketh more plainly, in an other place in these wordes: Let women kepe silence in the congregation, for it is not permitted to them to speake, but to be subiect as the lawe sayeth. These two testimonies of the holy ghost, be sufficient to proue what soeuer we haue affirmed before, and to represse the inordinate pride of women, as also to correct the foolishnes of those that haue studied to exalt women in authoritie aboue man, against God, and against his sentence pronounced. But that the same two places of the apostle may the better he vnderstand: it is to be noted, that in the latter, which is writen in the first epistle to the Corinthes the 14. chapitre, before the apostle had permitted that all persones shuld prophecie one after an other: addinge this reason: 'that all may learne and all may receiue consolation'. And lest that any might haue iudged, that amongest a rude multitude, and the pluralitie of speakers, manie, thinges litle to purpose might haue bene affirmed, or elles that some confusion might haue risen: he addeth, the spirites of the prophetes are subiect to the prophetes: As he shuld say, God shall alwayes raise vp some, to whome the veritie shalbe reueled, and vnto such ye shal geue place, albeit they sit in the lowest seates. And thus the apostle wold haue prophecying an exercise to be free to the hole churche, that euerie one shuld communicate with the congregation, what God had reueled to them, prouidinge that it were orderlie done. But frome this generall priuiledge he secludeth all woman, sayinge: let women kepe silence in the congregation. And why I pray you? was it because that the apostle thoght no woman to haue any knowledge? no he geueth an other reason, saying; let her be subiect as the lawe saith. In which wordes is first to be noted, that the apostle calleth this former sentence pronounced against woman a lawe, that is, the immutable decree of God, who by his owne voice hath subiected her to one membre of the congregation, that is to her husband, wherupon the holie ghost concludeth, that she may neuer rule nor bear empire ahoue man. For she that is made subiect to one, may neuer be preferred to many, and that the holie ghoste doth manifestlie expresse, saying: I suffer not that women vsurpe authoritie aboue man: he sayth not, I will not, that woman vsurpe authoritie aboue her husband, but he'nameth man in generall, taking frome her all power and authoritie, to speake, to reason, to interprete, or to teache, but principallie to rule or to iudge in the assemblie of men. So that woman by the lawe of God, and by the interpretation of the holy ghost, is vtterly forbidden to occupie the place of God in the offices afore said, which he hath assigned to man, whome he hath appointed and ordeined his lieutenant in earth: secluding frome that honor and dignitie all woman, as this short argument shall euidentlie declare.
[Sidenote 36: A strong argument.] [Sidenote 37: NOTE.] [Sidenote 38: Tertullian de habitu mulierum.] [Sidenote 39: Let women hearken what Tertullian an olde Docto saith.] [Sidenote 40: NOTE] [Sidenote 41: Tertull, lib 8. de virginilis verlandis.] [Sidenote 42: In proaemio 6. lib. contra Marcionem.]
The apostle taketh power frome all woman to speake in the assemblie. Ergo he permitteth no woman to rule aboue man. The former parteis euident, whereupon doth the conclusion of necessitie folowe. For he that taketh from woman the least parte of authoritie, dominion or rule, will not permit vnto her that whiche is greatest: But greater it is to reigne aboue realmes and nations, to publish and to make lawes, and to commande men of all estates, and finallie to appoint iudges and ministers, then to speake in the congregation. For her iudgement, sentence, or opinion proposed in the congregation, may be iudged by all, may be corrected by the learned, and reformed by the godlie. But woman being promoted in souereine authoritie, her lawes must be obeyed, her opinion folowed, and her tyrannic mainteined: supposing that it be expreslie against God, and the prophet [profit] of the common welth, as to[o] manifest experience doth this day witnesse. And therfore yet againe I repete that, whiche before I haue affirmed: to witt, that a woman promoted to sit in the seate of God, that is, to teache, to iudge or to reigne aboue man, is amonstre in nature, contumelie to God, and a thing most repugnant to his will and ordinance. For he hath depriued them as before is proued, of speakinge in the congregation, and hath expreslie forbidden them to vsurpe any kinde of authoritie aboue man. Howe then will he suffer them to reigne and haue empire aboue realmes and nations? He will neuer, I say, approue it, because it is a thing most repugnant to his perfect ordinance, as after shalbe declared, and as the former scriptures haue plainlie geuen testimonie. To the whiche, to adde any thing were superfluous, were it not that the worlde is almost nowe comen to that blindnes, that what soeuer pleaseth not the princes and the multitude, the same is reiected as doctrine newelie forged, and is condemned, for heresie. I haue therfore thoght good to recite the mindes of some auncient writers in the same mater, to the end that suche as altogither be not blinded by the deuil, may consider and vnderstand this my iudgement to be no newe interpretation of Goddes scriptures, but to be the vniforme consent of the most parte of godlie writers, since the time of the apostles. Tertullian in his boke of womens apparell, after that he hath shewed many causes why gorgious apparell is abominable and odiouse in a woman, addeth these wordes, speaking as it were to euery woman by name: Dost thou not knowe (saith he) that thou art Heua? the sentence of God liueth and is effectuall against this kind, and in this worlde of necessity it is, that the punishment also liue. Thou art the porte and gate of the deuil. Thou art the first transgressor of goddes law. thou diddest persuade and easely deceiue him whome the deuil durst not assault. For thy merit (that is for thy death) it behoued the son of god to suffre the death, and doth it yet abide in thy mind to decke the aboue thy skin coates? By these and many other graue sentences, and quicke interrogations, did this godlie writer labour to bring euerie woman in contemplation of her selfe, to the end that euerie one depelie weying, what sentence God had pronounced against the hole race and doughters of Heua, might not onely learne daily to humble and subiect them selues in the presence of God, but also that they shulde auoide and abhorre what soeuer thing might exalte them or puffe them vp in pride, or that might be occasion, that they shuld forget the curse and malediction of God. And what, I pray you, is more able to cause woman to forget her owne condition, then if she be lifted vp in authoritie aboue man? It is a thingverie difficile to a man, (be he neuer so constant) promoted to honors, not to be tickled some what with pride (for the winde of vaine glorie doth easelie carie vp the drie dust of the earth). But as for woman, it is no more possible, that she being set aloft in authoritie aboue man, shall resist the motions of pride, then it is able to the weake reed, or to the turning wethercocke, not to bowe or turne at the vehemencie of the vnconstant wind. And therfore the same writer expreslie forbiddeth all woman to intremedle with the office of man. For thus he writeth in his book de virginibus velandis: It is not permitted to a woman, to speake in the congregation, nether to teache, nether to baptise, nether to vendicate to her selfe any office of man. The same he speaketh yet more plainly in the preface of his sixte boke writen against Marcion, where he recounting certain monstruous thinges, whiche were to be sene at the sea called Euxinum, amongest the rest, he reciteth this as a greate monstre in nature, that women in those partes, were not tamed nor embased by consideration of their own sex and kind: but that all shame laide a parte, they made expenses vpon weapons and learned the feates of warre, hauinge more pleasure to fight, then to mary and be subiect to man. Thus farre of Tertullian, whose wordes be so plain, that they nede no explanation. For he that taketh from her all office apperteining to man, will not suffre her to reigne aboue man: and he that iudgeth it a monstre in nature, that a woman shall exercise weapons, must iudge it to be a monstre of monstres, that a woman shalbe exalted aboue a hole realme and nation. Of the same minde is Origen, and diuers others. Yea euen till the dayes of Augustine, whose sentences I omit to auoide prolixitie.
[Sidenote 43: August. lib. 22. contra Faustum, c.31.] [Sidenote 44: De Trinitat, lib. 12 cap. 7] [Sidenote 45: In quaect. veteris Testamenti, quaest. 45.] [Sidenote 46: NOTE.] [Sidenote 47: Lib. de Continentia cap. 4.] [Sidenote 48: Ambros. in Hexaemero lib. 5. c. 7.] [Sidenote 49: Cap. 5.] [Sidenote 50: Ambros. super. 2. c. I epist. ad Timoth.] [Sidenote 51: Ambros. in I. epist. ad Corin. cap. 14.] [Sidenote 52: Genes 3.] [Sidenote 53: whose house I pray you ought the parliament house to be, Goddes or the deuilles?] [Sidenote 54a: Rufus is by S. Paul saluted before his mother.]
Augustine in his 22. boke writen against Faustus, proueth that a woman oght to serue her husband as vnto God: affirming that in no thing hath woman equall power with man, sauing that nether of both haue power ouer their owne bodies. By whiche he wold plainlie conclude, that a woman oght neuer to pretend nor thirst for that power and authoritie which is due to man. For so he doth explane him selfe in an other place, affirming that woman oght to be repressed and brideled be times, if she aspire to any dominion: alledging that dangerous and perillous it is to suffre her to procede, althogh it be in temporall and corporall thinges. And therto he addeth these wordes: God seeth not for a time, nether is there any newe thinge in his sight and knowledge, meaninge therby, that what God hath sene in one woman (as concerning dominion and bearing of authoritie) the same he seeth in all. And what he hath forbidden to one, the same he also forbiddeth to all. And this most euidentlie yet in an other place he writeth, mouing this question: howe can woman be the image of God, seing (saith he) she is subiect to man, and hath none authoritie, nether to teache, nether to be witnesse, nether to iudge, muche lesse to rule, or beare empire? These be the verie wordes of Augustine, of which it is euident that this godlie writer, doth not onelie agree withe Tertullian before recited, but also with the former sentence of the lawe, whiche taketh frome woman not onelie all authoritie amongest men, but also euerie office apperteining to man. To the question howe she can be the image of God, he answereth as foloweth. Woman (saith he) compared to other creatures is the image of God, for she beareth dominion ouer them: but compared vnto man, she may not be called the image of God, for she beareth not rule and lordship ouer man, but oght to obey him &c. And howe that woman oght to obey man, he speaketh yet more clearlie in these words: the woman shalbe subiect to man as vnto Christ. For woman (saith he) hath not her example frome the bodie and from the fleshe, that so she shalbe subiect to man, as the fleshe is vnto the spirite. Because that the flesh in the weaknes and mortalitie of this life, lusteth and striueth against the spirit, and therfore wold not the holie ghost geue example of subiection to the woman of any suche thing &c. This sentence of Augustine oght to be noted of all women, for in it he plainlie affirmeth, that woman oght to be subiect to man, that she neuer oght, more to desire preeminence aboue him, then that she oght to desire aboue Christe Iesus. With Augustine agreeth in euerie point S. Ambrose, who thus writeth in his Hexaemeron: Adam was deceiued by Heua, and not Heua by Adam, and therfore iust it is, that woman receiue and acknowledge him for gouernor whom she called to sinne, lest that again she slide and fall by womanlie facilitie. And writing vpon the epistle to the Ephesians, he saith: let women be subiect to their owne husbandes as vnto the Lorde: for the man is heade to the woman, and Christ is heade to the congregation, and he is the sauiour of the bodie: but the congregation is subiect to Christ, euen so oght women to be to their husbandes in all thing-es. He procedeth further saying: women are commanded to be subiect to men by the lawe of nature, because that man is the author or beginner of the woman: for as Christ is the head of the churche, so is man of the woman. From Christ, the church toke beginning, and therfore it is subiect vnto him: euen so did woman take beginning from man, that she shuld be subiect. Thus we heare the agreing of these two writers to be such, that a man might iudge the one to haue stolen the wordes and sentences from the other. And yet plain it is, that duringe the time of their writinge, the one was farre distant frome the other. But the holie ghost, who is the spirite of Concorde and vnitie, did so illuminate their hartes, and directe their tonges, and pennes, that as they did conceiue and vnderstand one truth, so did they pronounce and vtter the same, leauing a testimonie of their knowledge and Concorde to vs their posteritia. If any thinke that all these former sentences, be spoken onelie of the subiection of the maryed woman to her husband, as before I haue proued the contrarie, by the plain wordes and reasoning of S. Paule, so shal I shortlie do the same, by other testimonies of the forsaid writers. The same Ambrose writing vpon the second chapitre of the first epistle to Timothie, after he hath spoken much of the simple arrayment of women: he addeth these wordes: woman oght not onelie to haue simple arrayment, but all authoritie is to be denied vnto her: for she must be in subiection to man (of whome she hath taken her originall) aswell in habit as in seruice. And after a fewe wordes he saith: because that death did entre in to the world by her, there is no boldenes that oght to be permitted vnto her, but she oght to be in humilitie. Hereof it is plain, that frome all woman, be she maried or vnmaried, is all authoritie taken to execute any office, that apperteineth to man. Yea plain it is that all woman is commanded, to serue, to be in humilitie and subiection. Whiche thing yet speaketh the same writer, more plainlie in these wordes. It is not permitted to women to speake, but to be in silence, as the lawe saith. What saith the lawe? Vnto 'thy husband, shall thy conuersion be, and he shall beare dominion ouer the'. This is a speciall lawe (saith Ambrose) whose sentence, lest it shulde be violated, infirmed, or made weake, women are commanded to be in silence. Here he includeth all women. And yet he procedeth further in the same place saying: It is shame for them to presume to speake of the lawe in the house of the Lord, who hath commanded them to be subiect to their men. But moste plainly speaketh he writing vpon the 16. chapitre of the epistle of S. Paule to the Romaines, vpon these wordes[54a]: Salute Rufus and his mother. For this cause (saith Ambrose) did the apostle place Rufus before his mother, for the election of the administration of the grace of God, in the whiche a woman hath no place. For he was chosen and promoted by the Lorde, to take care ouer his busines, that is, ouer the churche, to the whiche office could not his mother be appointed, albeit she was a woman so, holie, that the apostle called her his mother. Hereof it is plaine that the administration of the grace of God, is denied to all woman. By the administration of Goddes grace, is vnderstand not onely the preaching of the worde and administration of the sacramentes, by the whiche the grace of God is presented and ordinarilie distributed vnto man, but also the administration of ciuile iustice, by the whiche, vertue oght to be mainteined, and vices punished. The execution wherof is no lesse denied to woman, then is the preaching of the Euangile, or administration of the sacramentes, as herafter shall most plainlie appeare.
[Sidenote 54: Chrysost. homil. 17. in genes.] [Sidenote 55: NOTE] [Sidenote 56: Homil. 15 in Genes.] [Sidenote 57: God graunt all womens hartes to understand and folow this sentence.] [Sidenote 58: In Mat. cap. 23. homil. 44.] [Sidenote 59: woman can no haue vertue in equalitie with man. Ad Ephe. cap. 4. sermone 13. NOTE] [Sidenote 60: The body lackinge the head, can not be well gouerened nether can common welth lackinge man.] [Sidenote 61: In ca. 22. Ioh. homil. 87.] [Sidenote 62: In Ioh. homil. 41.] [Sidenote 63: Basilius Mag. in aliquot scripturae locos.]
Chrysostome amongest the Grecian writers of no small credit, speaking in rebuke of men, who in his dayes, were becdmen inferior to some women in witt and in godlines, saith: for this cause was woman put vnder thy power (he speaketh to man in generall) and thou wast pronounced Lorde ouer her, that she shulde obey the, and that the head shuld not folowe the feet. But often it is, that we see the contrary, that he who in his ordre oght to be the head, doth not kepe the ordre of the feet (that is, doth not rule the feet) and that she, that is in place of the foote, is constitute to be the head. He speaketh these wordes as it were in admiration, that man was becomen so brutish, that he did not consider it to be a thing most monstruouse, that woman shulde be preferred to man in any thing, whom God had subiected to man in all thinges. He procedeth saying: Neuer the lesse it is the parte of the man, with diligent care to repel the woman, that geueth him wicked counsel: and woman, whiche gaue that pestilent counsel to man, oght at all times to haue the punishment, whiche was geuen to Heua, sounding in her eares. And in an other place he induceth God speaking to the woman in this sorte: Because thou left him, of whose nature thou wast participant, and for whome thou wast formed, and hast had pleasure to haue familiaritie with that wicked beast, and wold take his counsel: therfore I subiect the to man, and I apointe and affirme him to be thy Lorde, that thou maist acknowledge his dominion, and because thou couldest not beare rule learne well to be ruled. Why they shulde not beare rule, he declareth, in other places, saying: womankinde is imprudent and soft, (or flexible) imprudent because she can not consider withe wisdome and reason the thinges which she heareth and seeth: and softe she is, because she is easelie bowed. I knowe that Chrysostome bringeth in these wordes to declare the cause why false prophetes do commonlie deceiue women: because they are easelie persuaded to any opinion, especiallie if it be against God, and because they lacke prudence and right reason to iudge the thinges that be spoken. But hereof may their nature be espied, and the vices of the same, whiche in no wise oght to be in, those, that are apointed to gouerne others: For they oght to be constant, stable, prudent and doing euerie thing with discretion and reason, whiche vertues women can not haue in equalitie with men. For that he doth witnesse in an other place, saying: women haue in them selues a tickling and studhe of vaine glorie, and that they may haue common with men: they are sodeinlie moued to anger, and that they haue also common with some men. But vertues. in which they excell, they haue not common with man, and therfore hath the apostle remoued them from the office of teachinge, which is an euident proof that in vertue they farre differ frome man. Let the reasons of this writer be marked, for further he yet procedeth: after that he hath in many wordes lamented the effeminate maners of men, who were so farre degenerate to the weaknes of women, that some might haue demanded: why may not women teache amongest suche a sorte of men, who in wisdome and godlines are becomen inferior vnto women? We finallie concludeth: that not withstanding that men be degenerate, yet may not women vsurpe any authoritie aboue them, and in the end, he addeth these wordes: These thinges do not I speake to extolle them (that is women) but to the confusion and shame of our selues, and to admonish vs to take again the dominion, that is mete and conuenient for vs, not onelie that power which is according to the excellencie of dignitie: but that which is accordinge to prouidence, and according to helpe, and vertue. For then is the bodie in best proportion, when it hath the best gouernor. O that both man and woman shulde consider the profound counsel and admonition of this father! He wolde not that man for appetit of any vaine glorie shuld desire preeminence aboue woman. For God hath not made man to be heade for any suche cause: but hauing respecte to that weaknes and imperfection which alwayes letteth woman to gouerne. He hath ordeined man to be superior, and that meaneth Chrysostome, saying: then is the bodie in best proportion, when it hath the best gouernor. But woman can neuer be the best gouernor, by reason that she-being spoiled of the spirit of regiment, can neuer attein to that degree, to be called or iudged a good gouernor. Because in the nature of all woman, lurketh suche vices, as in good gouernors are not tolerable. Which the same writes expresseth. in these wordes: womankind (saith he) is rashe and foolhardie, and their couetousnes is like the goulf of hell, that is, insaciable. And therfore in an other place, he will that woman shall haue no thing to do in iudgement, in common affaires, or in the regiment of the common welth, because she is impacient of troubles, but that she shall liue in tranquillitie; and quietnes. And if she haue occasion to go frome the house, that yet she shal haue no matter of trouble, nether to, folowe her, nether to be offered vnto her, as commonlie there must be to such as beare authoritie: And with Chrysostome fullie agreeth Basilius Magnus in a sermon which he maketh vpon some places of scripture, wherin he reproueth diuers vices and amongest the rest, he affirmeth woman to be a tendre creature, flexible, soft and pitifull: whiche nature, God hath geuen vnto her, that she may be apt to norishe children. The which facilitie of the woman, did Satan abuse, and therby broght her frome the obedience of God. And therfore in diuers other places doth he conclude, that she is not apt to beare rule, and that she is forbidden to teache. Innumerable mo testimonies, of all sortes of writers may be adduced for the same purpose, but withe these I stand content: iudgeing it sufficient to stoppe the mouthe of such as accuse and condemne all doctrine, as hereticall, which displeaseth them in any point that I haue proued, by the determinations and lawes of men illuminated onelie by the light of nature, by the ordre of Goddes creation, by the curse and malediction pronounced against woman, by the mouth of saint Paule, who is the interpreter of Goddes sentence, and lawe, and finallie by the mindes of those writers, who in the church of God, haue bene alwayes holden in greatest reuerence: that it is a thing moste repugnant to nature, to Goddes will and apointed ordinance, (yea that it can not be without contumelie committed against God) that a woman shuld be promoted to dominion or empire to reigne ouer man, be it in realme, nation, prouince or citie. Now resteth it in few wordes, to be shewed, that the same empire of women is the subuersion of good ordre equitie and iustice.
[Sidenote 64: De ordine lib. I C. 10]
Augustine defineth ordre to be that thing, by the whiche God hath appointed and ordeined all thinges. Note well reader, that Augustine will admit no ordre, where Goddes apointment is absent and lacketh.
[Sidenote 65: De ciuit. Dei, lib. 19 cap. 13.] [Sidenote 66: what soener done withowt the appointment of Goddes will is done withowt ordre.] [Sidenote 67: Two mirrors, in which we may beholde the ordre of nature.] [Sidenote 68: Common welthes under the rule of women, lacke a laufull heade] [Sidenote 69: Idol.] [Sidenote 70: Psal. 115.] [Sidenote 71: The empire of a woman is an idol.] [Sidenote 72: I. COY. II] [Sidenote 73: NOTE.] [Sidenote 74: I. COY. II.] [Sidenote 75: Marke the similitude of Chrysostome.] [Sidenote 76: NOTE.] [Sidenote 77: Howe women be couered in England and Scotland.] [Sidenote 78: Brute beastes to be preferred.] [Sidenote 79: Insoluent ioy bringeth sodein sorowe.]
And in an other place he saith, that ordre is a disposition, geuing their owne propre places to thinges that be vnequall, which he termeth in Latin Parium et disparium, that is, of thinges equall or like, and thinges vnequall or vnlike. Of whiche two places and of the hole disputation, which is conteined in his second boke de ordine, it is euident, that what soeuer is done ether whithout the assurance of Goddes will, or elles against his will manifestlie reueled in his word, is done against ordre. But suche is the empire and regiment of all woman (as euidentlie before is declared) and therfore, I say; it is a thing plainlie repugnant to good ordre, yea it is the subuersion of the same. If any list to reiect the definition of Augustin, as ether not propre to this purpose, or elles as insufficient to proue mine intent: let the same man vnderstand, that in so doinge, he hath infirmed mine argument nothinge. For as I depend not vpon the determinations of men, so think I my cause no weaker, albeit their authoritie be denied vnto me. Prouided that god by his will reueled, and manifest worde, stand plain and euident on my side. That God hath subiected womankinde to man by the ordre of his creation, and by the curse that he hath pronounced against her is before declared. Besides these, he hath set before our eyes, two other mirrors and glasses, in whiche he will, that we shulde behold the ordre, which he hath apointed and established in nature: the one is, the naturall bodie of man: the other is the politik or ciuile body of that common welth, in which God by his own word hath apointed an ordre. In the natural body of man God hath apointed an ordre, that the head shail occupie the vppermost place. And the head hath he ioyned with the bodie, that frome it, doth life and motion flowe to the rest of the membres. In it hath he placed the eye to see, the eare to hear, and the tonge to speake, which offices are apointed to none other membre of the bodie. The rest of the membres, haue euery one their own place and office apointed: but none may haue nether the place nor office of the heade. For who wolde not iudge that bodie to be a monstre, where there was no head eminent aboue the rest, but that the eyes were in the handes, the tonge and mouth beneth in the belie, and the eares in the feet. Men, I say, shulde not onlie pronounce this bodie to be a monstre: but assuredlie they might conclude that such a bodie coulde not long indure. And no lesse monstruous is the bodie of that common welth, where a woman beareth empire. For ether doth it lack a laufull heade (as in very dede it doth) or els there is an idol exalted in the place of the true head. An idol I call that, which hath the forme and apparance, but lacketh the vertue and strength, which the name and proportion do resemble and promise. As images haue face, nose, eyes, mouth, handes and feet painted, but the vse of the same, can not the craft and art of man geue them: as the holy ghost by the mouth of Dauid teacheth vs, saying: they haue eyes, but they see not, mouth, but they speake not, nose, but they smell not, handes and feet, but they nether touche nor haue power to go. And suche, I say, is euerie realme and nation, where a woman beareth dominion. For in despite of God (he of his iust iudgement, so geuing them ouer in to a reprobat minde) may a realme, I confesse, exalt vp a woman to that monstriferous honor, to be estemed as head. But impossible it is to man and angel, to geue vnto her the properties and perfect offices of a laufull heade. For the same God that hath denied power to the hand to speake, to the bely to heare, and to the feet to see, hath denied to woman power to commande man, and hath taken away wisdome to consider, and prouidence to forsee the thinges, that, be profitable to the common welth: yea finallie he hath denied to her in any case to be head to man: but plainly hath pronounced that man is head to woman, euen as Christ is heade to all man. If men in a blinde rage shulde assemble to gether, and apointe them selues an other heade then Iesus Christ (as the papistes haue done their romishe Antichrist) shuld Christ therfore lose his owne dignitie, or shulde God geue that counterfet head power to geue life to the bodie, to see what soeuer might endamage or hurte it, to speake in defense, and to heare the request of euerie subiect? It is certein that he wold not. For that honor he hath apointed before all times to his onelie sonne: and the same will he geue to no creature besides: no more will he admit, nor accept woman to be the lauful head ouer man, althogh man, deuil, and angel will coniure in their fauor. For seing he hath subiected her to one (as before is saide) he will neuer permit her to reigne ouer manie. Seing he hath commanded her to heare, and obey one, he will not suffre that she speake, and with vsurped authoritie command realmes and nations. Chrysostome explaning these wordes of the apostle: (the heade of woman is man) compareth God in his vniuersall regiment to a king sitting in his royall maiestie, to whome all his subiectes commanded to geue homage and obedience, appeare before him, bearing euerie one suche a badge and cognisance of dignitie and honor, as he hath geuen to them: which if they despise and contemne, then do they dishonor their king, Euen so saith he oght man and woman to appeare before God, bearing the ensignes of the condition, whiche they haue receiued of him. Man hath receiued a certein glorie and dignitie aboue the, woman, and therfore oght he to appeare before his high maiestie, bearing the signe of his honor, hauinge no couerture vpon his heade: to witnesse that in earth man hath no head, (beware Chrysostome what thou saist, thou shalt be reputed a traytor if Englishe men heare the: for they must haue my souereine lady and maistresse, and Scotland hath dronken also the enchantment and venom of Circes, let it be so to their owne shame and confusion, he procedeth in these wordes) but woman oght to be couered, to witnesse, that in earth she hath a head, that is man. Trewe it is (Chrysostome) woman is couered in both the said realmes, but it is not with the signe of subiection, but it is with the signe of superioritie, to witt, with the royal crowne. To that he answereth in these wordes: what if man neglect his honor? he his no lesse to be mocked (saith Chrysostome) then if a king shulde depose himself of his diademe or crowne and royal estat, and cloth him self in the habit of a sclaue. What, I pray you, shulde this godlie father haue saide, if he had sene all the men of a realme or nation fall downe before a woman? If he had sene the crowne, sceptre, and sworde, whiche are ensignes of the royall dignitie, geuen to her, and a woman cursed of God, and made subiecte to man, placed in the throne of iustice, to sit as Goddes lieutenant? What, I say, in this behalfe, shuld any hart vnfeinedlie fearing, God haue iudged of suche men? I am assured that not onlie shulde they haue bene iudged foolishe but also enraged, and sclaues to Satan, manifestlie fighting against God and his apointed ordre. The more that I consider the subuersion of Goddes ordre, which he hath placed generallie in all liuinge thinges, the more I do wondre at the blindnes of man, who doth not consider him self in this case so degenerate, that the brute beastes are to be preferred vnto him in this behalfe. For nature hath in all beastes printed a certein marke of dominion in the male, and a certeine subiection in the female, whiclie they kepe inuiolate. For no man euer sawe the lion make obedience, and stoupe before the lionesse, nether yet can it be proued, that the hinde taketh the conducting of the heard amongest the hartes. And yet (alas) man, who by the mouth of God hath dominion apointed to him ouer woman, doth not onlie to his own shame, stoupe vnder the obedience of women, but also in despit of God and of his apointed ordre, reioyseth, and mainteineth that monstruouse authoritie, as a thing lauful and iust, The insolent ioy, the bonefiers, and banketing which were in london and els where in England, when that cursed Iesabell was proclaimed qwene, did witnesse to my hart, that men were becomen more then enraged. For els howe coulde they so haue reioysed at their owne confusion and certein destruction? For what man was there of so base iudgement (supposing that he had any light of God) who did not see the erecting of that monstre, to be the ouerthrowe of true religion, and the assured destruction of England, and of the auncient liberties therof? And yet neuer the lesse, all men so triumphed, as if God had deliuered them frome all calamitie.
[Sidenote 80: Rom. I.] [Sidenote 81: what robbed God OF HIS HONOR in England in the time of the Gospell.] [Sidenote 82: Goddes benefites shewed to England.] [Sidenote 83: Discipline refused in England.] [Sidenote 84: The nobilitie and the hole realme of England, caste themselues willingly in to the pit.] [Sidenote 85: Confession.] [Sidenote 86: NOTE]
But iust and rightuouse, terrible and fearfull are thy iudgements, o Lorde! For as some times thou diddest so punishe men for vnthankfulnes, that man ashamed not to commit villanie withe man; and that because, that knowinge the to be God, they glorified the not as God, euen so haste thou moste iustlie nowe punished the proude rebellion and horrible ingratitude of the realmes of England and Scotland. For when thou diddest offre thy selfe moste mercifullie to them both, offering the meanes by the whiche they might haue bene ioyned to gether for euer in godly Concorde: then was the one proude and cruel,