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and in 1568 finally reviewed, corrected, and approved by her visitors. In 1545 he was elected vice-chancellor, in which office he had an opportunity of exerting himself still farther for the welfare of his college and the university at large; and he gave such satisfaction, that within the space of three years he was elected to the same office. On his election, Dr. Haddon, the public orator, gave him this character to his friend Cheke, “ cujus tu gravitatem, con : silium, literas, nosti, nos experimur;" adding, 66 Catonem aut Quintum Fabium renatum putes.”
In the same year, 1545, the society presented him to the rectory of Land-Beach; but to his great mortification, he was obliged to resign his beloved college of Stoke in 1547, although he laboured as much as possible to prevent its dissolution. To preserve, however, as far as he could, the memory of its founder Edmund Mortimer, earl of March, he brought away with him his arms painted on glass, and placed them in a window of the master's lodge; and secured the books of history and antiquities, which made part of that invaluable collection with which he afterwards enriched his college. The same year, and in the forty-third of his age, he married Margaret the daughter of Robert Harlstone, gent. of Mattishall in Norfolk, and sister of Simon Harlstone, who had lived some time at Mendlesham in Suffolk, where he was distinguished for his piety and sufferings in the reign of queen Mary. Dr. Parker had been attached to this lady for about seven years, but they were prevented from marrying by the statute of Henry VIII. which made the marriage of the clergy felony. Mr. Masters conjectures that it was about this time he drew up, iu his defence, a short treatise still preserved in the college library “De conjugio Sacerdotum,” and another against alienation of the revenues of the church, which Strype has printed in his Appendix, No. VII. It is also probable that, on the increase of his family, he added the long gallery to the master's lodge. The lady he married proved a most affectionate wife, and had so much sweetness of temper and amiable disposition, that bishop Ridley is said to have asked, “ If Mrs. Parker had a sister?i.. intimating that he would have been glad to have married one who came near her in excellence of character.
In 1549, when Kett's rebellion broke out, Dr. Parker happened to be on a visit to his friends at Norwich, where he did great service by his exhortations and sermons; and even ventured into the camp of the rebels, and, without regarding the imminent danger to which this exposed him, boldly inveighed against their rebellion and cruelty, exhorted them to temperance, sobriety, and submission, and placed in the strongest light every argument and warning that was likely to prevail. To give a faithful account of this affair, he afterwards employed Mr. Nevile (see NEVILE, ALEXANDER), who wrote it in elegant Latin, and received for his reward an hundred pounds. In 1550 he lost his most intimate friend Dr. Martin Bucer, who left him one of his executors; and to testify his great regard for that eminent reformer, he preached his funeral sermon. In this, with great modesty and diffidence, he has drawn a most excellent character of him, and indeed the whole is written in a style so plain and uniform, as to be much superior to the common rate of sermons in those days. It was printed by Jugge, under the title, “ Howe we ought to take the death of the godly, a sermon made in Cambridge at the burial of the noble clerck, D. M. Bucer. By Matthew Parker, D. of Divinitie.”
In 1552 the king presented him to the canonry and prebend of Covingham, in the church of Lincoln, where he was soon after elected dean, upon Dr. Taylor's promotion to that see. He had before been nominated to the mastership of Trinity-college, probably on the death of Dr. Redman in 1551, but this did not take effect. It is also said that he declined a bishopric in this reign. On the accession of queen Mary, however, the scene was changed, and he, with all the married clergy who would not part with their wives, and conform to those superstitious rites and ceremonies they had so lately rejected, were stript of their preferments. He bore
He bore this reverse of fortune with pious resignation. “ After my deprivation” (he says, in his private journal) “ I lived so joyful before God in my conscience, and so neither ashamed nor dejected, that the most sweet leisure for study, to which the good providence of God has now recalled me, gave me much greater and more solid pleasures, than that former busy and dangerous kind of life ever afforded me. What will hereafter befall me, I know not; but to God, who takes care of all, and who will one day reveal the bidden things of men's hearts, I commend myself wholly, and my pious and most chaste wife, with my two most dear little sons.' It by a MS. in the college, quoted by Strype, that Dr. Parker
<< lurked secretly in those years (the reign of queen Mary) within the house of one of his friends, leading a poor life, without any men's aid or succour; and yet so well contented with his lot, that in that pleasant rest, and leisure for his studies, he would never, in respect of himself, have desired any other kind of life, the extreme fear of danger only excepted. And therein he lived as all other good men then did.' His wife he would not be divorced from, or put her away all this evil time (as he might, if he would, in those days, which so rigorously required it), being a woman very chaste, and of a very virtuous behaviour, and behaving herself with all due reverence toward her husband."
It may seem extraordinary that one who had so early imbibed the sentiments of the reformers, and had adhered to them so constantly, should have escaped the vigilance of the persecutors; and it is certain that strict search was sometimes made for him, and that on one occasion, when obliged to make his escape on a sudden, he got a fall from his horse, by which he was so much hurt, that he never recovered it. Yet either from the remissness of his enemies, or the kindness of his friends, he was enabled to secrete himself, and notwithstanding the danger he was in, he employed his time in study. Among other things, it was during this alarming interval, that he wrote or rather enlarged a treatise, supposed to be drawn up by bishop Ponet, in defence of priests' marriages, against a book of Dr. Martin's, which he caused to be printed, but without his name, in 1562. The title was “A Defence of Priests' Marriages, established by the Imperial laws of the realm of England ; against a civilian, naming himself Thomas Martin, doctor of the civil laws," &c. This work is noticed in our account of Dr. Martin, and a full account of it is given by Strype, p. 504. Dr. Parker also employed some part of his time in translating the book of Psalms into various and elegant English metre, which was likewise afterwards printed, but in what year is uncertain, unless in 1567, as minuted with a pen in the copy which is in the college library. This book, which Strype says he never could get a sight of, is divided into three quinquagenes with the argument of each psalm in metre placed before it, and a suitable collect full of devotion and piety at the end. Some copies of verses, and transcripts from the fathers and others on the use of the psalms are prefixed to it, with a table dividing them into Prophetici, Eruditorii, Consolatorii, &c. and at the end are added the eight several tunes, with alphabetical tables to the whole.
On the accession of queen Elizabeth, he left his retreat in Norfolk, and being on a visit to his friends at Cambridge, was sent for up to town by his old acquaintance and contemporaries at the university, sir Nicholas Bacon, now lord-keeper of the great seal, and sir William Cecil, secretary of state, who well knew his worth. But he was now become enamoured of retirement, and suspecting they designed him for some high dignity in the church, of which however no intimation had yet been given, he wrote them many letters *, setting forth his own inabilities and infrmities, and telling the lord-keeper in confidence," he would much rather end his days upon some such small preferment as the mastership of his college, a living of twenty nobles per ann. at most, than to dwell in the deapry of Lincoln, which is 200 at the least.” These statesmen, however, still considered him as in every respect the best fitted for the archbishopric of Canterbury; and the reluctance he showed to accept it, and the letters he wrote both to them and the queen, only served to convince all parties that they had made a proper choice. He was accordingly consecrated on Dec. 17, 1559, in Lambeth chapel, by William Barlow, late bishop of Bath and Wells, and then elect of Chichester; John Story, late bishop of Chichester, and then elect of Hereford; Miles Coverdale, bishop of Exeter, and John Hodgkin, suffragan bishop of Bedford. An original instrument of the rites and ceremonies used on this occcasion, corresponding exactly with the archbishop's register, is still carefully preserved in Bene't college library, and proved of great service, when the papists; some years after, invented a story that Parker was consecrated at the Nag's head inn, or tavern, iņ Cheapside. That this was a mere fable has been sufficiently shown by many authors, and is acknowledged even by catholic writers. Being thus constituted primate and metropolitan, Dr. Parker endea. voured to fill the vacant sees with men of learning and piety, who were well affected to the reformation; and soon after his own consecration, he consecrated in his chapel at Lambeth, Grindal, bishop of London ; Cox, bishop of Ely; Sandys, bishop of Worcester; Jewell, bishop of Salisbury; and several others.
* These letters are printed in Bur- of his “ Antiquitates" in the Lambeth net's History of the Reformation, but the library, with many other curious MS originals are in the archbishop's copy documents respecting him.
The subsequent history of archbishop Parker is that of the church of England. He had assisted at her foundation, and for the remainder of his life had a principal hand in the superstructure. Referring, however, to ecclesiastic history, and particularly to Strype's invaluable voluine, for the full details of the archbishop's-conduct, we shall confine ourselves to a few of the most prominent of those measures in which he was personally concerned. Soon after his consecration he received a letter from the celebrated Calvin, in which that reformer said that “he rejoiced in the happiness of England, and that God had raised up so gracious a queen, to be instrumental in propagating the true faith of Jesus Christ, by restoring the gospel, and expelling idolatry, together with the bishop of Rome's usurped power.” And then in order to unite protestants together, as he had attempted before in king Edward's reign, he intreated the archbishop to prevail with her majesty, to summon a general assembly of all the protestant clergy, wheresoever dispersed; and that a set form and method (namely of public service, and government of the church) might be established *, not only within her dominions, but also among all the reformed and evangelical churches abroad. Parker communicated this letter to the queen's council, and they took it into consideration, and desired the archbishop to return thanks to Calvin ; and to signify that they thought his proposals very fair and desireable, but as to church-government, to inform him, that the church of England would adhere to the episcopal form. The death of Calvin prevented any farther intercourse on this subject, but Strype has brought susficient evidence that Calvin was not absolutely averse to episcopacy, and that he was as zealous for uniformity * as our archbishop, who has been so much reproached for his endeavours to promote it.
In 1560, Parker wrote a letter to the queen, with the concurrence of the bishops of London and Ely, exhorting her majesty to marry, which it is well known she declined. He also visited several dioceses, in some of which he
* It is worth the notice of those who the reformers, and that no mai conrail against Parker for his endeavours ceived that religion would be benefited to promote uniformity, and his conse- by being split into an hundred sects, quent-harsh treatment of the Puritans, with as many different ways of thinkthat in those days an establishment of ing, and petty church governments, some description was the object of all