Ferrar, Robert

Ferrar, Robert bishop of St. David's, a martyr of the reign of queen Mary, was born at Halifax, Yorkshire, and was educated at Oxford, where he became B. D. and a regular canon of the order of St. Augustine. The duke of Somerset, lord protector in the reign of Edward VI, was his patron, and employed him in carrying on the Reformation. He was one of the committee nominated to compile the English liturgy. The zeal of Ferrar, who was consecrated bishop in 1547 (under Edward VI), soon procured him many enemies among the Papists,, and after the fall of his eminent patron he was, under a false charge, committed to prison some time before the death of the king. On the accession of Mary he was tried on the new charge of heresy as a Protestant, degraded from his ecclesiastical functions, and, in company with Hooper, Bradford, Rogers, Saunders, and others, delivered over to the secular power for punishment. A little before this good bishop suffered, a young gentleman who visited him lamented the severity of the kind of death he was about to undergo. Ferrar replied, "If you see me once to stir while I suffer the pains of burning, then give no credit to those doctrines for which I die." By the grace of God he was enabled to make good this assertion, for he never moved until he was struck down in the flames by a blow on his head. He was burned at Caermarthen, in Wales, March 30, 1555.Middleton, Evangelical Biography, i, 346; Burnet, Hist. of Reformation (4 vols.), ii, 347 sq.; Fox, Book of Martyrs; Hook, Eccles. Biography, v, 96.

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