Thomas Kyme, Anne's husband, expelled her from their Lincolnshire home, after Anne herself left him to preach in London, denying the doctrine of transubstantiation, which holds that the bread and wine of the Christian mass or communion are literally transformed into the body and blood of Jesus Christ. Anne held to the Protestant belief that the mass was an act of remembrance and spiritual communion with her God. Rather than keep silent about her faith, she spoke out. She was arrested in 1545, interrogated openly in London, tortured and racked by Sir Anthony Kingston, the Lord Chancellor Thomas Wriothesley, and Richard Rich, and then -- her body covered in gunpowder -- burned at the stake on July 16, 1546, in Smithfield, just outside London Wall. She refused to recant; she especially refused to name others who shared her religious convictions. Her own description of her examinations, however, made their way to John Bale, who printed them abroad. Two years before the death of Henry VIII, Anne endured a martyrdom that many others, both Roman Catholic and Protestant, were to suffer until Elizabeth I came to the throne 22 years later, in 1558. Anne's perfect poem calmly expresses her indomitable spirit and submission to Paul's words in the New Testament, "Now there remain faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity."

  • The Early Modern Englishwoman: A Facsimile Library of Essential Works. Part 1: Printed Writings, 1500-1604. Vol. I: Anne Askew, ed. John N. King.General ed. Betty S. Travitsky and Patrick Cullen. Aldershot: Scolar Press, 1996. BR 350 .A75A3 Robarts Library
  • Watt, Diane. “Askew , Anne (c.1521-1546).” Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Ed. H. C. G. Matthew and Brian Harrison. Oxford: OUP, 2004.

Born June 3, 1771, Sydney Smith was educated at Winchester and New College, Oxford, where he took a B.A. in 1792 and an M.A. in 1796. He was ordained as an Anglican priest in 1796 and became a curate in Nether Avon, near Amesbury. Moving to Edinburgh as a tutor, Smith published his first book of sermons and married Catharine Amelia Pybus. During this period he co-founded and edited the Edinburgh Review, to which he contributed much of his life. By 1803 the Smiths had gone to London, where he achieved a reputation as an outstandingly witty preacher at such places as Berkeley Chapel, Mayfair, the Foundling Hospital, and the Fitzroy Chapel. He lectured on moral philosophy at the Royal Institution from 1804 to 1806 and wrote his best-known work, Peter Plymley's Letters, on legalizing Roman Catholic worship. He served as priest at and lived near Foston-le-Clay, Yorkshire, in 1809, moved to Bristol to become a prebend in its cathedral in 1828, and three years later returned to London to take up a canonry at St Paul’s Cathedral. Besides his sermons and philosophic lectures, Smith's fame rests on his letters, and among them we find his occasional verse. He died at Green Street, London, on February 22, 1845, and interred at Kensal Green.


Born in 1823, William Brighty Rands published several volumes of children's literature anonymously and contribuetd to periodicals under various pseudonyms, especially Matthew Browne, Henry Holbeach, and T. Talker. He worked as a reporter in the House of Commons and died in 1882. His major publications are

  • [Browne, Matthew] Chaucer's England (London: Hurst and Blackett, 1869).
  • Lilliput Levee (1864)
  • Lilliput Lectures (London: Strahan, 1871). PR 5209 R2 L5 York University Library
  • Lilliput Revels (New York: G. Routledge, 1871). Microopaque. New York : Readex Microprint, 1970. Center of Research Libraries Database.
  • Lilliput Legends (1872)
  • W. B. Rand, Lilliput Lyrics, ed. R. Brimley Johnson (London: John Lane, the Bodley Head, 1899). del F Fisher Rare Book Library

John Bunyan was born at Elstow, near Bedford, and baptized Nov. 30, 1628, the son of a tinker, and like his father a tinker. He joined joined the parliamentary forces in the English civil war in 1644. On leaving, he married in 1646 a pious woman whose only dowry was two books, The Plain Man's Pathway to Heaven and Lewis Bayly's The Practice of Piety. They had four children. In 1657 Bunyan joined the Baptist church and became an unlicensed preacher. For refusing to conform, he was jailed from 1660 to 1672. During his Imprisonment he wrote and in 1666 published both Grace Abounding, one Of the best autobiographies ever produced, and The Holy City. Released in 1672, licensed at last for preaching, Bunyan was again imprisoned for six months in 1675. Afterwards he turned to write The Pilgrim's Progress (1678), the best-read book in English until the twentieth century. Other books follows: Life and Death of Mr. Badman (1680), The Holy War (1682), and The Pilgrim's Progress, part 2 (1684). He died of complications from a chill on August 31, 1688, and was buried in Bunhill Fields.

  • Bunyan, John. Grace abounding to the chief of sinners, 1666 (Menston: Scolar Press, 1970; PR 3329 G1 1666A Robarts Library). Also the edition by Roger Sharrock (London: Oxford University Press, 1966; PR 3329 G1 1966 Robarts Library).
  • --. Christian behaviour; The Holy City; The resurrection of the dead, ed. J. Sears McGee (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1987; BR 75 .B7A6 1987 Robarts Library)
  • --. The pilgrim's progress, part 1, 1678 (Menston: Scolar Press, 1970; PR 3330 A1 1970 Robarts Library). Also The pilgrim's progress, ed. N. H. Keeble (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1984; PR 3330 A2K43 1984 Robarts Library).
  • --. The life and death of Mr. Badman: presented to the world in a familiar dialogue between Mr. Wiseman and Mr. Attentive, ed. James F. Forrest and Roger Sharrock (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1988; PR 3329 .L1 1988 St. Michael's College Library PR 3329)
  • --. The holy war made by Shaddai upon Diabolus for the regaining of the metropolis of the world: or, The losing and taking again of the town of Mansoul, ed. Roger Sharrock and James F. Forrest (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1980; PR 3329 H1 1980 Robarts Library)
  • --. The Poems, ed. Graham Midgley (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1980; BR 75 B7 A25 1980 Erindale College)
  • Forrest, James F., and Richard Lee Greaves.
  • John Bunyan: a reference guide (Boston, Mass.: G.K. Hall, 1982; Z 8131 F67 1982 Robarts Library)
  • Greaves, Richard L. “Bunyan, John (bap. 1628, d. 1688).” Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Ed. H. C. G. Matthew and Brian Harrison. Oxford: OUP, 2004.
  • Griffith, Gwilym Oswald.
  • John Bunyan (London: Hodder and Stoughton, 1927; PR 3331 G75 1927 Robarts Library)
  • Harrison, Frank Mott. A bibliography of the works of John Bunyan (London: Oxford University Press for the Bibliographical Society, 1932; Z 8131 H3 Robarts Library)