Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Jesuits Oldcorne And Owens

"five times, and once with the utmost severity for several hours,"
in order that, happily, information might be extracted from him that would prove him to be possessed of a guilty knowledge of the Plot. But this princely soul had nothing of that kind to tell, so that King James and his Counselors wreaked their lawless seventy in vain. On the 7th day of April, 1606, at Kedhill, one mile- from the City of Worcester, on the London Road,
"the silver cord was loosed, the golden bowl was broken, the pitcher was crushed at the fountain, the wheel was broken on the cistern."
For on that day, at that spot, the happy spirit of Edward Oldcorne mounted far, far beyond the fading things of time and space.

Link (here)

'One Nicholas Owen, commonly called, and most known
by the name of "Little John."

By which name he was so famous, and so much esteemed by all Catholics, especially those of the better sort, that few in England, either priests or others, were of more credit. ...
His chief employment was in making of secret places to hide priests and church-stuff in from the fury of searches ; in which kind he was so skillful both to devise and frame the places in the best manner. . . .
He was the immediate cause of saving the lives of many hundreds of persons. . . . One reason that made him so much desired by Catholics of account, who might have had other workmen enough to make conveyances in their houses, was a known and tried care he had of secrecy, not only from such as would of malice be inquisitive, but from all others to whom it belonged not to know; in which he was so careful that you should never hear him speak of any houses or places where he had made such hides.' Link (here)

According to the report in the ' State Papers,' because he was almost starved to death. He was imprisoned in the Tower, and examined on 26 Feb. 1606; he denied : having ever known, seen, or heard of Garnett or Oldcorne.
Persisting in this denial at a second examination on 1 March, torture was applied, and Owen then admitted his attendance on Garnett at Hindlip, but would not disclose any further knowledge of him. He was threatened with further torture at a subsequent examination, but died before it took place.
The official account states that he committed suicide, and at an inquest held on his body in the Tower a verdict offelo de te was returned. But it is not improbable that he died from the effects of torture. Link (here)


shadowlands said...

I live only ten minutes from a wonderful old house called Baddesley Clinton where Nicholas Owen built several priest holes.They are so small and cramped,it's amazing to think that Priests would hide in them for days at a time with very little food. As far as I know,no one was ever discovered at Baddesley.

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