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have stopped him out from coming there." The Duke of Lancaster, indignant at this threatening language, told the bishop," that he would keep such maestries there, though he said nay." Wickliffe, as usual, was standing before the bishop and the rest of the commissioners, to hear what things were laid to his charge, when the Lord Marshal desired him to sit down, telling him, that as he had many things to answer to, he had need of a soft seat to be at his ease. The bishop replied, "that he should not sit there; for," added he, "it is neither according to law nor reason, that he who was cited to answer before his ordinary, (the head pope), should sit down during the time of his answer." On this many angry words took place between the bishop and the Earl Marshal. The Duke of Lancaster then interfered, and told the bishop, "that the Earl Marshal's motion, was a very reasonable one, and that as for him, (the bishop), he was now become so proud and arrogant, that he, (the Duke) would bring down not only the pride of him, but of every prelate in England;" adding, "that rather than take what the bishop said at his hand, he would pull him out of the church by the hair of his head." These speeches occasioned the assembly to become very tumultuous; so the court broke up without doing any thing. Notwithstanding the hatred of the clergy, he died peaceably in his rectory of Lutterworth, in the year 1384. Thirteen years afterwards his bones were taken up, and burnt by a decree of the council of Constance.
His partizans were called Lollards, from the name of one of their leaders. Under Henry IV. such was their influence, that the commons proposed to apply the temporal benefits of the church, to the exigencies of the state, which was resisted by the King. Wickliffe wrote a tract on the schism of the popes, and translated the bible into
English. He was so voluminous a writer, that Labinio Lipus, bishop of Prague, burnt two hundred volumes, written by this extraordinary person, which belonged to some of the heretical noblemen of Bohemia.
The learned and candid Melancthon speaks thus of Wickliffe, "He foolishly confounds the gospel and politics, and does not see that the gospel permits us to make use of all the lawful forms of government of all nations. He contends that it is not lawful for priests to have property. He insists that tithes ought only to be paid to those who teach, as if the gospel forbade the use of political ordinances. He wrangles sophistically and seditiously about civil dominion."