Monday, February 05, 2007

Topuddle Martyr

Offended here by the smelly socks the late Mr Lovelace, of Tolpuddle Martyr fame, was created by the sculptor Thompson Dagnall from Lancashire (north of the Thames!).

Good looking chap, wonder what he would have thought?

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Blogger Robert said...

Chris, blogger will not give you a bigger size of picture from here. If you want bigger images just let me know and I will email them to you.

9:33 am  
Blogger Marly Youmans said...

Oh, more about the Tolpuddle-ites! Good. Pictures of people around sculpture are often amusing--that funny little tension between the living and the not.

So was the earlier "Christian martyrs" piece another Tolpuddle martyrs piece, or was I mistaken and that was something else?

7:55 pm  
Blogger chris miller said...

Thanks for yet another lead -- I've posted the Tolpuddleite to my website -- with a link to Dagnall.

8:33 pm  
Blogger Robert said...

Our history is filled with horrors like the rest of the world. But as a country we are very short on sculpture.

Hi Marly, the Tolpuddle Martyrs were the "birth" of Trades Union movement. 6 farm labourers sent to Austrailia as punishment etc.

The Dorchester Christian Martyrs were Catholics during the Reformation, more complicated see:

8:39 am  
Blogger Marly Youmans said...

Oh, I see. Dorchester martyrs. I shall go take a peek.

Thought that it was a bit extreme to call being sent to Australia a martyrdom--though I'm sure it felt unjust and like a very slow (hot and nasty, with serpents) martyrdom...

2:02 pm  
Blogger iona said...

Hi Daddy,

Didn't quite understand the link for FRINK. How did you find out they were reformation martyrs? and why? I can't remember any abbey or specail insident of martyrdom in Dorchester, and why Christian Martyrs? why not Catholic or protestant?

Hope all's well at home,


2:09 pm  
Blogger Robert said...

I cribbed it from a Church site in New York. I hope Father Robert McNamara is right and doesn't mind. After all this time in Dorset I now know who the Christian Martyrs were! Try this:

Dozens of Catholics were executed in England during the Protestant Reformation: clergy, laywomen, laymen. Many of these have been canonized, beatified, or declared "venerable."
Not all the "English martyrs" were of English blood. Three of the five executed in Dorchester (Dorset) were Irish. They were beatified in 1929 by Pope Pius XI.
Father John Cornelius, their leader, was born in 1557 to Irish parents who had moved to Great Britain. A Dorsetshire Catholic knight, Sir John Arundel, sent him to Oxford University to study. But John was too Catholic in his convictions to be pleased with the "new religion" that dominated the University. Feeling called rather to the Catholic priesthood, he crossed the Channel and enrolled at the English college in Rheims (France) for holy orders. From Rheims he went on to the English College in Rome to complete his theology, and it was at Rome that he was ordained a priest.
Return to England as a Catholic priest was at that time forbidden under pain of death. But Father John, a man of prayer and zeal, saw in that law a challenge rather than a deterrent, as did the rest of the contemporary English priests who set service to persecuted Catholics as their top priority. His assignment was to the Catholics of Dorset. These priests' ministry was a "cloak-and-dagger" operation, since they were always in danger of discovery and arrest. Their capture could mean also the arrest and punishment of anybody who assisted them.
Naturally, the missionaries' terms of service were usually short, for the police were alert and aggressive. Cornelius (he also went by the alias of Mohun, although his real surname seems to have been O'Mahony) was finally seized by the sheriff of Dorset on April 24, 1594, at the Chideock Castle of Lady Arundel.
Having seized the priest by surprise, the Sheriff was about to hurry him off hatless. Now, in that hat-conscious age, to be hatless was to appear uncivilized. Thomas Bosgrave, a gallant young Cornish nephew of Sir John Arundel and a witness to the arrest, stepped forward and offered Father John his own hat. "The honour I owe to your function," he declared, "may not suffer me to see you go bareheaded!" It was a simple gesture of charity to a priest, but he was to pay for his piety. The Sheriff promptly arrested Bosgrave, too, for "aiding" a Catholic clergyman. He likewise arrested two serving-men of this Catholic household, Dubliners John Carey and Patrick Salmon. Content, no doubt, with the day's work, the county official then led his catch off to jail.
Cornelius, the most important of them, was taken to London to be examined by Queen Elizabeth's Privy Council. The Council had him stretched on the rack to force him to name all those who had given him shelter or assistance. Torture would not open his lips, however, so he was sent back to Dorchester for trial, along with the three lay captives. On July 2, the court declared the priest guilty of high treason under the law that forbade Catholic priests to enter England and remain there. Bosgrave, Carey and Salmon were pronounced guilty of felony for aiding and abetting Father John. The sentence was the same for all: hanging, drawing, and quartering.
After the court had published its judgment, it offered all four men a reprieve if they would give up their Catholic faith. All four refused.
The execution took place at Dorchester two days later. The three laymen were hanged first. Each made a Catholic profession of faith before the trap was sprung. Father John then kissed the feet of his hanging companions. He was not allowed to make any formal statement; but he did manage to state that he had been lately admitted into the Jesuits, and would have been en route to the Jesuit novitiate in Flanders had he not been arrested.
Forty-nine years later, on August 19, 1642, another secular priest was hanged, disembowelled, and quartered in Dorchester for the same "crime" of being a Catholic priest. Father Hugh Green, an Englishman, was beatified at the same time as the gallant Cornishman Bosgrave and the three Irishmen: John Cornelius, John Carey and Patrick Salmon. Today they are known as the Blessed Martyrs of Dorchester.
Why should we still recall "hate crimes" like these executions centuries after they occurred? For two reasons, I think. First, to warn us against ever becoming persecutors ourselves. Second, to remind us that the supreme Christian act is still to lay down our life for our friends.
--Father Robert F. McNamara

St. Thomas the Apostle Church
4536 St. Paul Blvd.
Rochester, New York 14617

9:17 pm  
Blogger Robert said...

As an addendum to this I recently read about some more Catholic martyrs from Chideock. There was once a castle there and it is a significant Roman Catholic area in the first Elizabethan era to the present day.

2:40 pm  

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