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Synopsis

John Foxe (1517-1587) was an English historian and martyrologist. He early became a Protestant and, when Mary Tudor became queen, he fled from England to Strasbourg, France. There, he occupied himself with a Latin history of the Christian persecutions and he printed, in Latin, the first part of his history of the persecution of Protestant reformers. "Foxe's Book of Martyrs" is an account of Christian martyrs throughout Western history, emphasizing the sufferings of English Protestants and proto-Protestants from the fourteenth century through the reign of Mary I. The book helped mold British popular opinion about the Catholic Church for several centuries as it was widely owned and read by English Puritans. During Elizabeth's reign, this book was highly celebrated and even became required reading. It was placed in churches and reprinted in shorter editions so that many households possessed a copy.

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