Even the archbishop of Canterbury favoured a modification of episcopacy, and an approach to Presbyterian polity and dicipline; but attention was mainly directed to the settlement of doctrine and worship. Cranmer wrote that bishops and priests were not different but the same in the beginning of Christ's religion.
Cranmer held that the consecration of a bishop was an unnecessary rite, and not required by Scripture; that election and appointment to office were sufficient.
It may be noted that Cranmer favoured a proposal for the formation of a council of presbyters in each diocese, and for provincial synods.
He failed to comply, and after a seven days' trial he was deprived of his bishopric by an ecclesiastical court over which Cranmer presided, and was sent to the Marshalsea.
The fall of Somerset in the following month raised Bonner's hopes, and he appealed from Cranmer to the council.
Dixon's Histories; Pollard's Cranmer and England under Somerset; other authorities cited in Dict.
THOMAS CRANMER (1489-1556), archbishop of Canterbury, born at Aslacton or Aslockton in Nottinghamshire on the 2nd of July 1489, was the second son of Thomas Cranmer and of his wife Anne Hatfield.
If the offer was made, it was declined, and Cranmer continued at Cambridge filling the offices of lecturer in divinity at his own college and of public examiner in divinity to the university.
It was a somewhat curious concurrence of circumstances that transferred Cranmer, almost at one step, from the quiet seclusion of the university to the din and bustle of the court.
Cranmer went with two of his pupils named Cressy, related to him through their mother, to their father's house at Waltham in Essex.
Meeting with Cranmer, they were naturally led to discuss the king's meditated divorce from Catherine of Aragon.
Cranmer suggested that if the canonists and the universities should decide that marriage with a deceased brother's widow was illegal, and if it were proved that Catherine had been married to Prince Arthur, her marriage to Henry could be declared null and void by the ordinary ecclesiastical courts.
At their first interview Cranmer was commanded by the king to lay aside all other pursuits and to devote himself to the question of the divorce.
When the treatise was finished Cranmer was called upon to defend its argument before the universities of Oxford and Cambridge, which he visited, accompanied by Fox and Gardiner.
An embassy, with the earl of Wiltshire at its head, was despatched to Rome in 1530, that " the matter of the divorce should be disputed and ventilated," and Cranmer was an important member of it.
Cranmer returned in September 1530, but in January 1531 he received a second commission from the king appointing him " Conciliarius Regius et ad Caesarem Orator."
His niece Margaret won the heart of Cranmer, and in 1532 they were married.
In August 1532 Archbishop Warham died, and the king almost immediately afterwards intimated to Cranmer, who had accompanied the emperor in his campaign against the Turks, his nomination to the vacant see.
Cranmer, however, was not satisfied with this.
The celerity and skill with which Cranmer did the work intrusted to him must have fully satisfied his master.
The next step was taken by Cranmer, who wrote a letter to the king, praying to be allowed to remove the anxiety of loyal subjects as to a possible case of disputed succession, by finally determining the validity of the marriage in his archiepiscopal court.
With Anne's condemnation by the House of Lords Cranmer had nothing to do.
Meanwhile Cranmer was actively carrying out the policy which has associated his name more closely, perhaps, than that of any other ecclesiastic with the Reformation in England.
The course taken by Cranmer in promoting the Reformation exposed him to the bitter hostility of the reactionary party or " men of the old learning," of whom Gardiner and Bonner were leaders, and on various occasions - notably in 1543 and 1 545 - conspiracies were formed in the council or elsewhere to effect his overthrow.
Cranmer was present with Henry VIII.
Cranmer was therefore enabled without let or hindrance to complete the preparation of the church formularies, on which he had been for some time engaged.
It laid down the lawfulness and necessity of persecution to the death for heresy in the most absolute terms; and Cranmer himself condemned Joan Bocher to the flames.
Cranmer had been tried by a papal commission, over which Bishop Brooks of Gloucester presided, in September 1555.
About the same time Cranmer subscribed the first two of his " recantations."
All these authorities had now legally established Roman Catholicism as the national faith, and Cranmer had no logical ground on which to resist.
He set practically no limits to the ecclesiastical authority of kings; they were as fully the representatives of the church as the state, and Cranmer hardly distinguished between the two.
And Foreign; Foxe's Acts and Monuments; Strype's Memorials of Cranmer (1694); Anecdotes and Character of Archbishop Cranmer, by Ralph Morice, and two contemporary biographies (Camden Society's publications); Remains of Thomas Cranmer, by Jenkyns (1833); Lives of Cranmer, by Gilpin (1784), Todd (1831), Le Bas, in Hook's Lives of the Archbishops of Canterbury, vols.
Chester Waters's Chesters of Chicheley (1877) contains a vast amount of genealogical information about Cranmer which has only been used by one of his biographers.
3 According to Cranmer, Letters and Papers of Henry VIII.
P. 300, the only authority; and Cranmer himself only knew of it a fortnight of ter.
The most important of Strype's works are the Memorials of Thomas Cranmer, Archbishop of Canterbury, 1694 (ed.
At the Clarendon Press, Oxford, between 1812 (Cranmer) and 1824 (Annals).
Parker, like Cranmer, declined the invitation.
See John Strype, Life and Acts of Archbishop Parker (3 vols., Oxford, 1824), and Memorials of Thomas Cranmer (2 vols., Oxford, 1840); John D'Alton, Memoirs of the Archbishops of Dublin (Dublin, 1838).
Vermigli and Ochino were both invited to England by Cranmer in 1547, and given a pension of forty marks by the government.
This was similar to the view now held by Cranmer and Ridley, but it is difficult to prove that Vermigli had any great influence in the modifications of the Book of Common Prayer made in 1552.
But as early as 1549 Cranmer had in hand " Articles of Religion " to which he required all preachers and lecturers to subscribe.
Broke with the church of Rome Alesius was induced to go to England, where he was very cordially received (August 1535) by the king and his advisers Cranmer and Thomas Cromwell.
He was in England again for a short time during Edward VI.'s reign, and was commissioned by Cranmer to make a Latin version of the First Prayer-Book (1549) for the information of Bucer, whose opinion was desired.
Among his publications, besides many sermons, were A Brief Review of the Episcopal Church in Virginia (1845); Wilberforce, Cranmer, Jewett and the Prayer Book on the Incarnation (1850); Reasons for Loving the Episcopal Church (1852); and Old Churches, Ministers and Families of Virginia (1857); a storehouse of material on the ecclesiastical history of the state.
A few months later Thomas Cranmer, who had been one of those to discuss sympathetically Luther's works in the little circle at Cambridge, and who believed the royal supremacy would tend to the remedying of grave abuses and that the pope had acted ultra vires in issuing a dispensation for the king's marriage with Catherine, was induced by Henry to succeed Warham as archbishop of Canterbury.
Acting on this, Cranmer tried the divorce case before his court, which declared the marriage with Catherine void and that with Anne Boleyn, which had been solemnized privately in January, valid.
The payment of annates and of Peter's pence 1 Cranmer himself had taken the oath of canonical obedience to.
Then, the ancient heresy laws having been revived, came the burnings of Rogers, Hooker, Latimer, Ridley, Cranmer and many a less noteworthy champion of the new religion.
Of the twelve homilies contained in the first book, four (the 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th) are probably to be attributed to Cranmer, and one (the 12th) possibly to Latimer; one (the 6th) is by Bonner; another (the 5th) is by John Harpsfield, archdeacon of London, and another (the 11th) by Thomas Becon, one of Cranmer's chaplains.