Mrs Cicely Ormes





This young martyr, aged twenty-two, was the wife of Mr. Edmund Ormes,

worsted weaver of St. Lawrence, Norwich. At the death of Miller and

Elizabeth Cooper, before mentioned, she had said that she would pledge

them of the same cup they drank of. For these words she was brought to

the chancellor, who would have discharged her upon promising to go to

church, and to keep her belief to herself. As she would not consent to

this, the chancellor urged that he had shown more lenity to her than any

other person, and was unwilling to condemn her, because she was an

ignorant foolish woman; to this she replied, (perhaps with more

shrewdness than he expected,) that, however great his desire might be to

spare her sinful flesh, it could not equal her inclination to surrender

it up in so great a quarrel. The chancellor then pronounced the fiery

sentence, and, September 23, 1557, she was brought to the stake, at

eight o'clock in the morning. After declaring her faith to the people,

she laid her hand on the stake, and said, "Welcome thou cross of

Christ." Her hand was sooted in doing this, (for it was the same stake

at which Miller and Cooper were burnt,) and she at first wiped it; but

directly after again welcomed and embraced it as the "sweet cross of

Christ." After the tormentors had kindled the fire, she said, "My soul

doth magnify the Lord, and my spirit doth rejoice in God my Saviour."

Then crossing her hands upon her breast, and looking upwards with the

utmost serenity, she stood the fiery furnace. Her hands continued

gradually to rise till the sinews were dried, and then they fell. She

uttered no sigh of pain, but yielded her life, an emblem of that

celestial paradise in which is the presence of God, blessed for ever.



It might be contended that this martyr voluntarily sought her own death,

as the chancellor scarcely exacted any other penance of her than to keep

her belief to herself; yet it should seem in this instance as if God had

chosen her to be a shining light, for a twelve-month before she was

taken, she had recanted; but she was wretched till the chancellor was

informed, by letter, that she repented of her recantation from the

bottom of her heart. As if to compensate for her former apostacy, and to

convince the catholics that she meant no more to compromise for her

personal security, she boldly refused his friendly offer of permitting

her to temporize. Her courage in such a cause deserves commendation--the

cause of Him who has said, Whoever is ashamed of me on earth, of such

will I be ashamed in heaven.



In November, Thomas Spurdance, one of queen Mary's servants, was brought

before the chancellor of Norwich, who, among his interrogations, was

severely recriminated upon by the prisoner. This good man was taken by

two of his fellow-servants, dwelling at Codman, in Suffolk. He was sent

to Bury where he remained some time in prison, and in November, 1557,

braved the fiery indignation of the enemies of Christ with Christian

fortitude and resignation.



J. Hallingdale, W. Sparrow, and R Gibson, suffered in Smithfield

November 18th, 1557.





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