Things you may not know about Anne Askew
Anne Askew in brief
Anne Askew (or Ayscough) was a woman of courage and strong beliefs. She was tortured, in the Tower of London, as a Protestant heretic for preaching in London and handing out Protestant leaflets, before being burned at the stake.
Anne was one example of the many brave men and women, both Catholics and Protestants, in Tudor times, willing to die for their beliefs. Anne lived during the reign of King Henry VIII, at a time when it was dangerous to have strong Catholic or Protestant views. She had an enquiring mind, strong faith and sincerity and was willing to stand up and preach despite the fact that, as a woman of high social status, this was bound to attract the attention of the authorities.
What was exceptional about Anne was that despite being arrested, interrogated, and put on the rack (a device so fearful that most victims confessed whatever was required of them), she refused to give names or implicate others, including women at court close to Queen Catherine Parr. She also refused to be silent, arguing forcefully and confounding her accusers with her knowledge and learning. After her ordeal, no longer capable of walking, she was taken to her execution in a chair and fastened to the stake by a chain to hold her up. Again she refused to recant and was burned in front of a great crowd. She was only 25 years of age.
Transcript of Ballad
The Ballad of Anne Askew
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