Bird, John

Bird, John an English prelate of the 17th century, was born at Coventry, Warwickshire. He was educated a Carmelite at Oxford; became the thirty- first and last provincial of his order; preached some sermons before Henry VIII against the primacy of the pope, for which he was preferred to be successively bishop of Ossory, Ireland, Bangor, in Wales, and Chester, England (see Godwin [bp.], Lives of the Bishops). John Bale, however, contemporary with Bird, and also bishop of Ossory, names him not as bishop of Ossory, but Episcopum Pennecensem in Hibernia" (De Scriptoribus Britannices). Bale also says that in the reign of Mary "he returned to the vomit of popery;" but in the first year of her reign he was ousted from his bishopric for being married, and all that we know after is that, at the examination of Thomas Hawkes, martyr, Bird brought Bonner wine and apples, probably a present for a ne noceat. He was apparently complacent to the regnant faith, enough to save his head, but there seems to be no evidence that he was a thorough-paced Romanist. He was a little man, lived to a great age, died in 1655, and was buried in Chester. See Fuller, Worthies of England (ed. Nuttall), 3, 279.

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