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The Cambridge History of English and American Literature in 18 Volumes (1907–21).
Volume III. Renascence and Reformation.

XVII. The Marprelate Controversy

§ 6. The Minerall Conclusions

Soon after the appearance of the second Marprelate tract, Thomas Cooper, bishop of Winchester, took up the cudgels for the episcopal side, in his Admonition to the People of England. Far from discouraging Martin by his grave condemnation, the worthy bishop played straight into the satirist’s hands and merely provided fresh fuel for the fire of his wit. The old business of Bridges was growing somewhat stale, and Martin turned with alacrity towards a new antagonist. Just then, the Marprelate press was on its journey from Fawsley to Coventry; but, so soon as it was comfortably settled at the White Friars, a broadside appeared, known as The Minerall Conclusions, which was intended to keep the game in swing until a more weighty answer to Cooper’s Admonition could be framed and printed. It contained thirty-seven “Minerall and Metaphisicall Schoolpoints, to be defended by the reverende Bishops and the rest of my cleargie masters of the Convocation house.” These school-points are arguments or opinions of the most ludicrous description, each purporting to be held by an ecclesiastical dignitary who is named as its defender. Nearly half of them are quoted (or misquoted) from Cooper’s book, and the whole concludes with a witty address to the reader, stating that, if anyone can be found ready and willing to withstand these arguments and their formidable supporters, “the matters shall be, according unto order, quietly tried out between him and the bare walles in the Gatehouse, or some other prison.”