Sunday, September 15, 2019

Father John Floyd, SJ, RIP--and his Brother Henry

According to Edwin Hubert Burton in the Catholic Encyclopedia, Father John Floyd, SJ, was a Catholic missionary in Recusant era England and a controversialist of that era, writing many works under several pseudonyms:

English missionary, wrote under the names Flud, Daniel à Jesu, Hermannus Loemelius, George White, Annosus Fidelis Verimentanus, and under the initials J. R. Some of his works have been erroneously attributed to Robert Jennison, S. J. He was b. in Cambridgeshire in 1572; d. at St.-Omer, 15 Sept. 1649. he was educated at the Jesuit College at Eu, then at the English College at Reims (17 March, 1588) and finally the English College in Rome (1590), where he entered the Society of Jesus, 1 Nov., 1592. Nothing is known about his ordination, but in 1606 he was a missionary priest in England. On 6 April in that year he was arrested at Worcester while attempting to visit Ven. Edward Oldcorne (sic) who was to suffer martyrdom next day. Having been imprisoned for twelve months he, with forty-six other priests, was banished for life. He then spent four years teaching at St.-Omer, though Foley (Records, IV, 238), is mistaken in supposing he published any controversial works at that time. 

Then (1913) Venerable Edward Oldcorne, SJ was beatified in 1929.

On 31 July, 1609, he was professed of the four vows, and soon after returned to England, where he laboured on the mission for many years, being often captured, but effecting his escape by buying off the pursuivants. In 1612 he published his first work, "The Overthrow of the Protestant Pulpit Babels", in which he replied to Crawshaw's "Jesuit Gospel". He was in return answered by Sir Edward Hoby in his "A Counter-Snarl for Ishmael Rabshakeh a Cycropedian Lycaonite, being an answer to a Roman Catholic who writes himself J. R." Father Floyd countered in 1614 with "Purgatorie's Triumph over Hell, maugre the barking of Cerberus in Syr Edward Hobyes Counter Snarle". This controversy closed with Hoby's rejoinder, "A Curry-comb for a Cox-combe", published in 1615. Father Floyd next turned his attention to Marc' Antonio de Dominis, formerly Archbishop of Spilatro, who had apostacized and become Protestant dean of Windsor. Against him Father Floyd wrote four works: "Synopsis Apostasiæ Marci Antonii de Dominis, olim Archepiscopi Spalatensis, nunc Apostatæ, ex ipsiusmet libro delineata" (Antwerp 1617). It was translated into English by Father Henry Hawkins, S.J., in 1617, and again by Dr. John Fletcher in 1828. "Hypocrisis Marci Antonii de Dominis detecta sui censura in ejus libros de Republicâ Ecclesiasticâ" (Antwerp, 1620); "Censura ex Librorum X de Republicâ Ecclesiasticâ Marci Antonii de Dominis" (Antwerp 1620, Cologne, 1621); "Monarchiæ Ecclesiasticæ ex scriptus M. Antonii de Dominis Archepiscopi Spalatensis Demonstratio, duobus libri comprehensa" (Cologne, 1622). All four works appeared under the signature Fidelis Annosus Verimentanus.

His brother Henry was also a Jesuit missionary in England, who died of natural causes in London about nine years before John, according to the Dictionary of National Biography:

FLOYD, HENRY (1563–1641), Jesuit, elder brother of Father John Floyd [q. v.], born in Cambridgeshire in 1563, received his education in the English College of Douay during its temporary removal to Rheims. On 8 May 1589, being then a deacon, he was sent with other students by Dr. Richard Barret, president of the college, to assist in commencing the new English College founded by Father Parsons at Valladolid (Records of the English Catholics, i. 220, 224). For a time he was stationed at the ‘residence’ or seminary established by Parsons at Lisbon. He was probably ordained priest in 1592, and he defended universal theology with great applause at Seville on 20 Feb. 1592–3. From Lisbon he crossed over to England about 1597, and for nineteen years he was chaplain to Sir John Southcote. In 1599 he entered the Society of Jesus, and in 1618 was professed of the four vows. He underwent many vicissitudes owing to his great zeal, and at various times was incarcerated in Newgate, the Clink, and the Fleet prisons in London, and in Framlingham and Winchester gaols. On James I's accession, being sent into banishment with many other priests, he returned to Lisbon, but soon revisited England, and again fell into the hands of the pursuivants. After serving the mission in the London district for many years, he died in London on 7 March 1640–1.

The Sir John Southcote mentioned as the patron of Father Henry Floyd, SJ, must be Sir John Southcote, the son of an MP and Judge, also named John:

Southcote was probably the John Southcote of Bodmin who in 1544 helped Tregonwell to buy and sell land in the south-west: in 1549 he was to be of similar assistance to Henry Chiverton. He bought land himself near London and late in life settled in Essex. Mary promoted him serjeant and Elizabeth made him a judge, in which capacity he revised the bill settling the form of consecration for bishops before its enactment in 1566 (8 Eliz. c.1) and took part in the conference in 1577 on how to deal with recusancy. According to his descendants he shared their Catholicism and resigned his office rather than condemn a priest, retiring to his house at Merstham in Surrey ‘where for three years he led a penitential life and happily ended his days’, this, however, conflicts with evidence of his continuing to serve as a judge until a year before his death at Witham. His son John was reported as having attended mass in 1584 and his daughters married into Catholic families, but his own conformity is borne out by his retention as a justice of the peace in all the home counties after 1564.4

The Southcote Family is included in Volume One of The Troubles of Our Catholic Forefathers Related by Themselves edited by--you guessed it--a Jesuit, Father John Morris, SJ (1826-1893).

No comments:

Post a Comment