Anne Askew Executed
John Foxe (1516–1587).
Actes and Monuments of These Latter and Perillous Dayes, Touching Matters of the Church, Wherein are Comprehended and Described the Great Persecutions […] unto the Tyme nowe Present.
London: John Day, 1563. (00927)
During the period of religious persecution under Stephen Gardiner (ca. 1483–1555), Bishop of Winchester and advisor to Henry VIII, a young Lincolnshire woman named Anne Askew (1521–1546) left her estranged husband for a life of preaching the Gospels. Imprisoned in the Tower of London for distributing banned Protestant literature, Askew wrote several letters and a detailed account of her interrogation there. Although subjected to months of torture, which included the breaking of her spine and limbs on the rack, she refused to implicate additional Protestants and was burned at the stake as a heretic. The texts of Askew’s legal examination and letters appeared in this 1563 first edition of John Foxe’s Actes and Monuments along with the exhibited woodcut depicting her execution.