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Contributing Institution: Southern Methodist University Bridwell Library and Ohio State University Libraries Description: "MD" (see "Soldiers drag two Christians by ropes" in this collection). and This three-page woodcut insert illustrates thirty-five distinct scenes of torture and suffering. Foxe titles the composite image, "A Table of the X. first Persecutions of the Primitiue Church vnder the Heathen Tyrannes of Rome" ["A table of the ten first persecutions of the primitive church under the heathen tyrants of Rome"]. Workers at John Day's printing house employed just three woodblocks to create the image, which contains three segments pasted together. Speeches attributed to martyrs in individual scenes are keyed to locations in Foxe's text. The longer passage that runs across the bottom of the image explains Foxe's apocalyptic perspective on Christian history. The composite image illustrates martyrdoms spanned by the reigns of emperors Tiberius and Constantine I. The greatly expanded second edition (1570) of the Book of Martyrs, in which this insert first appears, begins its account with these martyrs, in a deliberate act of historical appropriation whereby Foxe reconstructs the deaths of early Christians as proto-Protestant martyrdoms. This woodcut also appears in the fourth edition (1583), but it does not appear in the first (1563) or third (1576) editions. Because it could easily be removed and posted on walls or posts, the illustration is frequently missing in surviving copies of the work. Of all Foxe illustrations, it is perhaps the scarcest to survive to the present day. Luborsky and Ingram 11223/1A. JPEG file (17.9 MB).
Contributing Institution: Southern Methodist University Bridwell Library and Ohio State University Libraries Description: An enthroned emperor observes the suffering and martyrdom of Christian bishops. The emperor holds a sword, which symbolizes his authority, and soldiers attend him. The woodcut contains six scenes of torture: flames engulf a martyr (upper left); lions devour a naked man (upper center); two workers crucify a man upside-down (upper right) (see "St. Peter undergoes crucifixion upside-down" in this collection); two guards flog a man, who is dressed in loincloth, tied to a stake, and bleeding (right foreground); a torturer stands on and drills out the eye of a bound bishop (center foreground) (see "Martyrs suffer branding and the removal of their eyes" in this collection); and a man kneels, about to be beheaded (center). Beginning with the second edition (1570), this woodcut and the eleven that follow it comprise an appendix to volume one of the work, under the title "The Proud Primacy of Popes." This appendix details the alleged decline of relations between Christian monarchs and the papacy during the medieval period, a decline which Foxe traces from its beginning at the time of the primitive Church. The damage to the OSU copy of this illustration (pictured here) results from a reader having defaced the woodcut that appears on the verso side of the next leaf. The "Proud Primacy" series appears in the second (1570), third (1576), and fourth (1583) editions. Luborsky and Ingram 11223/24. JPEG file (4.72 MB).
Contributing Institution: Southern Methodist University Bridwell Library and Ohio State University Libraries Description: Lawrence ("This side is now rosted inough,turne up O tyrant great. &c. 72." ["This side is now roasted enough, turn up (i.e., over) o tyrant great, etc. 72."]) lies naked on his left side on a grid iron. A man operates a bellows that fuels the flames. Lawrence raises his right arm above his head, and another man places an additional log on the fire. Soldiers and an emperor observe. (Cartouche: "Laurence layd upon the Gridyron, by Galienus, or Decius. 72." ["Laurence laid upon the grid iron by Galienus or Decius. 72."]). This woodcut appears on the "Table of the Ten First Persecutions of the Primitive Church" foldout illustration in the second (1570) and fourth (1583) editions. Luborsky and Ingram 11223/1A (detail). JPEG file (1.26 MB). and "MD" (see "Soldiers drag two Christians by ropes" in this collection).
Contributing Institution: Southern Methodist University Bridwell Library and Ohio State University Libraries Description: "MD" (see "Soldiers drag two Christians by ropes" in this collection). and Four martyrs sit back to back in a vat of hot oil, two of them gazing upward in prayer. A soldier pours a ladle of heated oil over the martyrs, and a second soldier pumps a bellows beneath the vat. A turbaned emperor speaks to a richly dressed man at his left, while a group of soldiers and others observes (one of whom gazes upward). (Cartouche: "Christians put in a vessellofboylyngoyle. 36." ["Christians put in a vessel of boiling oil. 36."]). This woodcut appears on the "Table of the Ten First Persecutions of the Primitive Church" foldout illustration in the second (1570) and fourth (1583) editions. Luborsky and Ingram 11223/1A (detail). JPEG file (1.32 MB).
Contributing Institution: Southern Methodist University Bridwell Library and Ohio State University Libraries Description: "A most exact Table of the first ten Persecutions of the Primitiue [Primitive] Church vnder the Heathen Tyrants of Rome," followed in smaller type by: "continuing the space of allmost [almost] three hundred years after Christ from ye time of Tiberius unto Constantius Emperors of the said Empire with the sundry kinds of torments devised against the Christians and executed upon them.” This tipped-in insert illustrates thirty-four scenes of torture of early Christians under the Roman empire. Headings for the scenes with page number on which the scene is described include (from left to right) : "Christians brains beaten out with Maulls 49; Hanged by the middle 87; Tormented with trees 87; Their hands and feet cut off 37; Forced to thrust their hands in the fyre [fire] 85; Stoned to death 42; Torso on bull hornes 53; Hang’d by the neck and heels 87; Cast to swine to be devoured 109; Scraped with shells 87; Stab’d with forks 38; Thrust through with swords 87; Marturns and Sanctus burned with an iron chaire 52; Hanging by one hand and stretching out their joints 88; Their bones broken with batts [bats] 65; Searing of womens breasts 69; Some burnt with their entralls torne out 46; Christians left hamms Seared 89; Christians roasted pouring vinegar and salt on their members 86; Christians torne in pieces with wild horses 65; Christians burnt in furnace 42; Christians beaten with cudgels for not worshipping 105; St. Peter hang’d on the cross 38; Here they are flead [flayed] alive 38; Here their tongues are cut out 138; Christians most cruelly thrust through 50; Christians right eyes being burned out 92; Christians drag’d through the streets 109; Christians thrust under the nailes [nails] with sharp tacks 88; With an Engyne [engine] they are beheaded 88; Christians burned in their temple men, women and children 87; St. Lawrence ("This side is now roasted, turne me O tyrant great") laid on the gridiron 79; Christians driven up the mountain and thrown down on sharp tacks 45; Christians put in vessel to boil 39." The text at the bottom of the page details Foxe's interpretation of the Book of Revelations: "The 42 Monthes in the Revelation of St. John Expounded." This image is significantly redesigned and reduced in scope from the similar woodcut (Luborsky and Ingram 11223/1A) which appeared in the first (1570) and fourth (1583) early English editions. JPEG file (1.62 MB).