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And understandest nothing,

That they sing in the quiere?"

Probably alluding to the illuminated Psalters, Missals, &c.

85

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By name Eliz. Barton, executed April 21, 1534.-Stow, p. 570.

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The story of the Wandering Jew is of considerable antiquity: it had obtained full credit in this part of the world before the year 1228, as we learn from Matthew Paris. For in that year, it seems, there came an Armenian archbishop into England, to visit the shrines and reliques preserved in our churches, who being entertained at the monastery of

St Alban's, was asked several questions relating to his country, &c. Among the rest, a monk, who sat near him, inquired, "If he had ever seen or heard of the famous person named Joseph, that was so much talked of; who was present at our Lord's crucifixion, and conversed with him, and who was still alive in confirmation of the Christian faith." The archbishop answered, That the fact was true. And afterwards one of his train, who was well known to a servant of the abbot's, interpreting his master's words, told them in French, "That his lord knew the person they spoke of very well: that he had dined at his table but a little while before he left the East: that he had been Pontius Pilate's porter, by name Cartaphilus; who, when they were dragging Jesus out of the door of the Judgment-hall, struck him with his fist on the back, saying, “Go faster, Jesus, go faster, why dost thou linger?" Upon which Jesus looked at him with frown, and said, "I indeed am going, but thou shalt tarry till I come." Soon after he was converted, and baptized by the name of Joseph. He lives for ever, but at the end of every hundred years falls into an incurable illness, and at length into a fit or ecstasy, out of which, when he recovers, he returns to the same state of youth he was in when Jesus suffered, being then about thirty years of age. He remembers all the circumstances of the death and resurrection of Christ, the saints that arose with him, the composing of the Apostles' Creed, their preaching and dispersion; and is himself a very grave and holy person. This is the substance of Matthew Paris's account, who was himself a monk of St. Alban's and was living at the time when this Armenian archbishop made the above relation.

Since his time, several imposters have appeared at intervals under the name and character of the Wandering Jew; whose several histories may be seen in Calmet's Dictionary of the Bible. See also the Turkish Spy, vol. ii. book iii. let. 1. The story that is copied in the following ballad is of one who appeared at Hamburgh in 1547, and pretended he had been a Jewish shoemaker at the time of Christ's crucifixion. The ballad, however, seems to be of later date. It is preserved in blackletter in the Pepys Collection.

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