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Thomas Carew

Thomas Carew was born of the ancient and worthy family of his name in Cornwall, educated in the university of Oxford, and, entering upon the sacred function, became a frequent and zealous preacher. He received ordination from the Bishop of Worcester, and was licensed by Archbishop Grindal and Bishop Aylmer, from whom, on account of his excellent preaching, he received high commendations. He afterwards became minister at Hatfield Peverel, in Essex; but having acquainted the bishop by letter, that in the county of Lssex, within the compass of sixteen miles, there were twenty-two nonresidents, thirty insufficient and scandalous ministers, and, at the same time, nineteen ministers silenced for refusing subscription, his lordship, instead of being pleased with the information, convened Mr. Carew before the high commission, and charged him, without the smallest evidence, with setting up a presbytery, and contemning ecclesiastical censures. It was further alleged against him, " That he was chosen by the people; that he had defaced the Book of Common Prayer; that he denied that Christ descended into the regions of the damned; and that he kept persons from the communion, when there was more need to allure them to it."» These charges being brought against him, the bishop, to make short of it, tendered him the oath ex officio,. upon the refusal of which Mr. Carew was immediately committed to the Fleet, and another minister sent to supply the place. His successor was soon found guilty of adultery; and when the parishioners petitioned Bishop Aylmer for his removal, and the restoration of their former minister, his grace said, " That he would not, for all the livings he had, put a poor man out of his living for the fact of adultery."t

Mr. Carew having left an account of his troubles, let us hear him speak for himself. " The bishop," says he," first granted me a license to preach, and much commended my preaching; but afterwards, upon the complaint of secret enemies, he sent for me, and took it from me. Before I had been at Hatfield above seven weeks, because I would not wear the surplice, he suspended me, and I continued under suspension half a year. My parishioners were at considerable expense and trouble in presenting many supplications unto him, that I might be released from suspension and restored to my ministry, but without success. Afterwards

• MS. Register, p. 651, 652.—Strype's Aylmer, p. 190. 121. t MS. Register, p. 653,654.

I Trent to his lordship myself, to know the reasons of his displeasure; and when I said I would yield in all things according to the word of God, he replica, « That addition, according to the word of God, is your knavish trick; but

" in about a twelvemonth after, by the kind favour of one who was intimate with the bishop, my liberty was obtained. Nevertheless, by further complaints of known enemies, I was again suspended; and after I was cleared by my judges, I obtained my release from suspension. Soon after this, I was again brought into trouble; and refusing to take the oath to answer their articles against myself I was committed to the Fleet."* His commitment was dated November 16, 1585.

Mr. Carew, and Mr. Allen, his patron, were both committed to prison at the same time. They both offered bail, but it was refused. Afterwards, it was offered them by the bishop, upon these conditions: " That Allen, the patron, would not disturb the minister who was appointed to preach there, nor disquiet him in reading the service; and that Mr. Carew would preach no more in his diocese, without a further license."t These conditions did not, however, meet their approbation. During their imprisonment in the Fleet, Mrs. Carew presented a supplication to the queen, for the release of her husband, in which she addressed her majesty as follows:—" This most humbly beseecheth your most royal majesty, to relieve the distressed state of your poor handmaid, who sueth to your highness in behalf of her husband, a minister of the gospel, who hath been accused by certain papists, and who incensed the Bishop of London against him. And for refusing to subscribe to two of the archbishop's articles, which appear to him to be contrary to the word of God and the laws of the realm, the bishop bath suspended, deprived, and twice committed him to prison; and hath now a third time committed him, because he is unwilling to give up preaching till the bishop license him. Wherefore, I heartily beseech your majesty, that you will set my husband at liberty; that, by preaching the word, he may further instruct the people how to pray for the present peace and everlasting felicity of your most excellent majesty ."t

Mr. Carew and his worthy patron, having suffered imprisonment for some time, made application to the privy council,

* MS. Register, p.653—655. + Strype's Aylmer, p. 12I, 1«.

t MS. Regiiter, p. 658, 659.

and were both released from prison. This so greatly displeased Bishop Aylmer, that he sent to the council a very angry letter, calling the prisoners knaves, rebels, rascals, fools, petty gentlemen, precisions, &c.;» and told their

yield up his authority. But the bishop never left our pious divine till he had hunted him out of his diocese. + Mr. Carew was author of " Several Sermons," 1603; and " Four Godly Sermons," 1605. He was living at the period last mentioned.