Brooks - BX9338 .B7 1813 v1

4 INTRODUCT ION. Mr. Richard Byfield, Mr. John Frith, and Dr. Robert Barnes, all highly celebrated for piety and zeal in the cause of the reformation.. King Henry was succeeded by his son, EDWARDVI., a prince of most pious memory. Being only nine years and four months old when he came to the crown, he was free from bigotry and superstition, and ready to observe the instructions of Archbishop Cranmer and the Duke of Somerset, by whose aid and influence, he set himself to promote sound religion. Upon his accession, the penal laws against protestants were abolished, the chains ofmany worthy persons confined in prison were struck off, the prison-doors were set open, and the sufferers released. Others who had fled from the storm, and remained in a state of exile, now with joy returned home. Among the former were old Bishop Latimer and John Rogers;-f and among the latter, were Hooper, afterwards the famous martyr, and Miles Coverdale, afterwards a celebrated puri- tan4 Men of real worth were esteemed and preferred. Hooper became Bishop of Gloucester, and Coverdale was made Bishop of Exeter. The monuments of idolatry, with the superstitious rites and ceremonies, were com- manded to be abolished, and a purer form of worship introduced. Though, during this reign, the reformation made considerable progress, the greatest part of the paro- chial clergy were in a state of most deplorable ignorance : but to remedy, as far as possible, this evil, the pious reform- ers composed and published the book of Homilies for their use.§ The order of public worship was a Liturgy or Book of Common Prayer, established by act of par- liament. Though this act did not pass without much opposition, especially from the bishops, some were so enamoured with the book, that they scrupled not to say, " it was compiled by the aidof the Holy Ghost." fl In the year 1550, the altars in most churches were taken away, and convenient tables set up in their places.a "And as the form of a table," says Burnet, " was more likely to turn the people from the superstition of the popish mass, and bring them to the right use of the Lord's supper, Bishop Ridley, in his primary visitation, exhorted the 4, Fox's Martyrs, vol. ii. p. 227, 241, 256, 445. + Burnet's Hist. of Refor. vol. ii. p. 25. t Fuller's Church Hist. b. vii. p. 371, Burnet's Hist. of Refor. vol. ii. p. 25, 27. ll Ibid. p. 94. fl MS. Remarks, p. 51.