Archbishop Matthew Parker

The Advertisements (1566)

Gee, Henry, and William John Hardy, ed.,
Documents Illustrative of English Church History
(New York: Macmillan, 1896), 467-75.

Hanover Historical Texts Project
Scanned and proofread by Heather Haralson, May 1998.
Posted by Raluca Preotu, July 1999.
Proofread and pages added by Jonathan Perry, March 2001.

Editors' Introduction:
THE Advertisements is a later title for Abp. Parker's Articles, which were drawn up by him probably at some time in 1564, in reference to the 'Vestiarian Controversy.' They were sent to Cecil for the queen's signature, March 3, 1565. This was refused, and nothing more is heard of them until March 12, 1566, when a second attempt to obtain the queen's signature was made without success. Parker therefore issued them under the title of Advertisements without royal sanction or authority. The difficult question of their authority is discussed by Mr. Aubrey Moore, History of the Reformation, p.266.
[Transcr. from a contemporary copy in the British Museum, printed by Wolfe, C. 25, c. 6; cf Wilkins, iv. 247.]

The Preface.

The queen's majesty, of her godly zeal, calling to remembrance how necessary it is to the advancement of God's glory, and to the establishment of Christ's pure religion for all her loving subjects, especially the state ecclesiastical, to be knit together in one perfect unity of doctrine, and to be conjoined in one uniformity of rites and manners in the ministration of God's holy word, in open prayer and ministration of sacraments, as also to be of one decent behaviour in their outward apparel, to be known partly by their distinct habits to be of that vocation (who should be reverenced the rather in their offices, as ministers of the holy things whereunto they be called), hath by her letters [Page 468] directed unto the Archbishop of Canterbury and metropolitan, required, enjoined, and straitly charged, that with assistance and conference had with other bishops, namely, such as be in commission for causes ecclesiastical, some orders might be taken, whereby all diversities and varieties among them of the clergy and the people (as breeding nothing but contention, offence, and breach of common charity, and be against the laws, good usage, and ordinances of the realm) might be reformed and repressed, and brought to one manner of uniformity throughout the whole realm, that the people may thereby quietly honour and serve Almighty God in truth, concord, unity, peace, and quietness, as by her majesty's said letters more at large doth appear. Whereupon, by diligent conference and communication in the same, and at last by assent and consent of the persons beforesaid, these orders and rules ensuing have been thought meet and convenient to be used and followed: not yet prescribing these rules as laws equivalent with the eternal word of God, and as of necessity to bind the consciences of her subjects in the nature of them considered in themselves; or as they should add any efficacy or more holiness to the virtue of public prayer, and to the sacraments, but as temporal orders mere ecclesiastical, without any vain superstition, and as rules in some part of discipline concerning decency, distinction, and order for the time.

Articles for doctrine and preaching.

First, that all they, which shall be admitted to preach, shall be diligently examined for their conformity in unity of doctrine, established by public authority; and admonished to use sobriety and discretion in teaching the people, namely, in matters of controversy; and to consider the gravity of their office, and to foresee with diligence the [Page 469] matters which they will speak, to utter them to the edification of the audience.

Item, that they set out in their preaching the reverent estimation of the holy sacraments of Baptism and the Lord's Supper, exciting the people to the often and devout receiving of the Holy Communion of the Body and Blood of Christ, in such form as is already prescribed in the Book of Common Prayer, and as it is further declared in a Homily concerning the virtue and efficacy of the said sacraments.

Item, that they move the people to all obedience, as well in observation of the orders appointed in the book of common service, as in the queen's majesty's Injunctions, as also of all other civil duties due for subjects to do.

Item, that all licences for preaching granted out by the archbishop and bishops within the province of Canterbury, bearing date before the first day of March, 1564, be void and of none effect, and nevertheless all such, as shall be thought meet for the office, to be admitted again without difficulty or charge, paying no more but fourpence for the writing, parchment, and wax.

Item, if any preacher or parson, vicar or curate, so licensed, shall fortune to preach any matter tending to dissension, or to the derogation of the religion and doctrine received, that the hearers denounce the same to the ordinaries, or the next bishop of the same place; but no man openly to contrary or to impugn the same speech so disorderly uttered, whereby may grow offence and disquiet of the people; but shall be convinced and reproved by the ordinary after such agreeable order, as shall be seen to him according to the gravity of the offence. And that it be presented within one month after the words spoken.

Item, that they use not to exact or receive unreasonable rewards or stipends of the poor pastors coming to their cures to preach, whereby they might be noted as followers [Page 470] of filthy lucre, rather than use the office of preaching of charity and good zeal to the salvation of men's souls.

Item, if the parson be able, he shall preach in his own person every three months, or else shall preach by another, so that his absence be approved by the ordinary of the diocese in respect of sickness, service, or study at the universities. Nevertheless yet for want of able preachers and parsons to tolerate them without penalty, so that they preach in their own persons, or by a learned substitute once in every three months of the year.

Articles for administration of prayer and sacraments.

First, that the common prayer be said or sung decently and distinctly, in such place as the ordinary shall think meet for the largeness and straitness of the church and choir, so that the people may be most edified.

Item, that no parson or curate, not admitted by the bishop of the diocese to preach, do expound in his own cure, or elsewhere, any Scripture or matter of doctrine, or by the way of exhortation, but only study to read gravely and aptly, without any glossing of the same, or any additions, the Homilies already set out, or other such necessary doctrine as is or shall be prescribed for the quiet instruction and edification of the people.

Item, that in cathedral churches and colleges the Holy Communion be administered upon the first or second Sunday of every month at the least. So that both dean, prebendaries, priests, and clerks do receive, and all other of discretion of the foundation do receive four times in the year at the least.

Item, in the ministration of the Holy Communion in cathedral and collegiate churches, the principal minister shall use a cope with gospeller and epistoler agreeably; and at all other prayers to be said at that Communion Table, to use no copes but surplices.

[Page 471] Item, that the dean and prebendaries wear a surplice with a silk hood in the choir; and when they preach in the cathedral or collegiate church, to wear their hood.

Item, that every minister saying any public prayers, or ministering the sacraments or other rites of the Church, shall wear a comely surplice with sleeves, to be provided at the charges of the parish; and that the parish provide a decent table standing on a frame for the Communion Table.

Item, that they shall decently cover with carpet, silk, or other decent covering, and with a fair linen cloth (at the time of the ministration) the Communion Table, and to set the Ten Commandments upon the east wall over the said table.

Item, that all communicants do receive kneeling, and as is appointed by the laws of the realm and the queen's majesty's Injunctions.

Item, that the font be not removed, nor that the curate do baptize in parish churches in any basons, nor in any other form than is already prescribed, without charging the parent to be present or absent at the christening of his child, although the parent may be present or absent, but not to answer as godfather for his child.

Item, that no child be admitted to answer as godfather or godmother, except the child hath received the Communion.

Item, that there be none other holy days observed besides the Sundays, but only such as be set out for holy days, as in the statute anno quinto et sexto Edwardi sexti, and in the new calendar authorized by the queen's majesty.

Item, that when any Christian body is in passing, that the bell be tolled; and that the curate be specially called for to comfort the sick person, and after the time of his passing to ring no more but one short peal, and one before the burial, and another short peal after the burial.

[Page 472] Item, that on Sundays there be no shops open, nor artificers commonly going about their affairs worldly, and that in all fairs and common markets falling upon the Sunday, there be no showing of any wares before the service be done.

Item, that in the Rogation days of procession they sing or say in English the two psalms beginning, Benedic anima mea, &c., with the litany and suffrages thereunto, with one homily of thanksgiving to God, already devised and divided into four parts, without addition of any superstitious ceremonies heretofore used.

Articles for certain orders in ecclesiastical policy.

First, against the day of giving of orders appointed, the bishop shall give open monitions to all men to except against such as they know not to be worthy either for life or conversation. And there to give notice that none shall sue for orders but within their own diocese where they were born, or had their long time of dwelling, except such as shall be of degree in the universities.

Item, that young priests or ministers made or to be made, be so instructed that they be able to make apt answers concerning the form of the catechism prescribed.

Item, that no curate or minister be permitted to serve without examination and admission of the ordinary or his deputy in writing, having respect to the greatness of the cure and the meetness of the party; and that the said ministers, if they remove from one diocese to another, be by no means admitted to serve without testimony of the diocesan, from whence they come, in writing of their honesty and ability.

Item, that the bishop do call home once in the year any prebendary in his church, or beneficed in the diocese, which [Page 473] studieth at the universities, to know how he profiteth in learning, and that he be not suffered to be a serving or a waiting man dissolutely.

Item, that at the archdeacon's visitation the archdeacon shall appoint the curates to certain taxes [texts] of the New Testament to be conned without book, and at their next synod to exact a rehearsal of them.

Item, that the churchwardens once in the quarter declare by their curates, in bills subscribed with their hands to the ordinary or to the next officer under him, who they be which will not readily pay their penalties for not coming to God's divine service accordingly.

Item, that the ordinaries do use good diligent examination to foresee all simoniacal pacts or covenants with the patrons or presenters for the spoil of their glebe, tithes, or mansion houses.

Item, that no persons be suffered to marry within the Levitical degrees mentioned in a table set forth by the Archbishop of Canterbury, in that behalf, anno Domini 1563; and if any such be, to be separated by order of law.

Articles for outward apparel of persons ecclesiastical.

First, that all archbishops and bishops do use and continue their accustomed apparel.

Item, that all deans of cathedral churches, masters of colleges, all archdeacons, and other dignities in cathedral churches, doctors, bachelors of divinity and law, having any ecclesiastical living, shall wear in their common apparel abroad a side gown with sleeves straight at the hand, without any cuts in the same; and that also without any falling cape; and to wear tippets of sarcenet, as is lawful for them by the Act of Parliament 24 Henry VIII.

Item, that all doctors of physic, or of any other faculty, [Page 474] having any living ecclesiastical, or any other that may dispend by the Church one hundred marks, so to be esteemed by the fruits or tenths of their promotions; and all prebendaries, whose promotions be valued at twenty pound or upward, wear the like apparel.

Item, that they and all ecclesiastical persons or other, having any ecclesiastical living, do wear the cap appointed by the Injunctions. And they to wear no hats but in their journeying.

Item, that they in their journeying do wear their cloaks with sleeves put on, and like in fashion to their gowns, without guards, welts, or cuts.

Item, that in their private houses and studies they use their own liberty of comely apparel.

Item, that all inferior ecclesiastical persons shall wear long gowns of the fashion aforesaid, and caps as afore is prescribed.

Item, that all poor parsons, vicars, and curates do endeavour themselves to conform their apparel in like sort so soon and as conveniently as their ability will serve to the same. Provided that their ability be judged by the bishop of the diocese. And if their ability will not suffer to buy their long gowns of the form afore prescribed, that then they shall wear their short gowns agreeable to the form before expressed.

Item, that all such persons as have been or be ecclesiastical, and serve not the ministry, or have not accepted, or shall refuse to accept the oath of obedience to the queen's majesty, do from henceforth abroad wear none of the said apparel of the form and fashion aforesaid, but to go as mere laymen, till they be reconciled to obedience; and who shall obstinately refuse to do the same, that they be presented by the ordinary to the commissioners in causes ecclesiastical, and by them to be reformed accordingly.

[Page 475] Protestations to be made, promised, and subscribed by them that shall hereafter be admitted to any office, room, or cure in any church or other place ecclesiastical.

Imprimis, I shall not preach or publicly interpret, but only read that which is appointed by public authority, without special licence of the bishop under his seal.

I shall read the service appointed plainly, distinctly, and audibly, that all the people may hear and understand.

I shall keep the register book according to the queen's majesty's Injunctions.

I shall use sobriety in apparel, and especially in the church at common prayers, according to order appointed.

I shall move the parishioners to quiet and concord, and not give them cause of offence, and shall help to reconcile them which be at variance, to my uttermost power.

I shall read daily at the least one chapter of the Old Testament, and one other of the New, with good advisement to the increase of my knowledge.

I do also faithfully promise in my person to use and exercise my office and place to the honour of God, to the quiet of the queen's subjects within my charge, in truth, concord, and unity; and also to observe, keep, and maintain such order and uniformity in all external policy, rites, and ceremonies of the Church, as by the laws, good usages, and orders are already well provided and established.

I shall not openly intermeddle with any artificer's occupations, as covetously to seek a gain thereby, having in ecclesiastical living to the sum of twenty nobles or above by year.

Agreed upon, and subscribed by

Commissioners in causes ecclesiastical.

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