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Wycliffe and His Subversive Bible

"For each man that shall be damned shall be damned by his own guilt, and each man that is saved shall be saved by his own merit." -- John Wycliffe

Last year the Oxford lecturer, John Wycliffe, released a partial translation of the Bible into Middle English, the language of the people, but one of the leaders of the Peasant's Revolt is a Lollard (a follower of Wycliffe) so an Oxford committee is formed to review John Wycliffe's work and fearing government retribution and God's own wrath, Wycliffe is prohibited from lecturing. King Richard II later has him expelled. Copying and distribution of Wycliffe's Bible will continue even though possession of such a Bible is now considered heresy. At this time Bible reading from the Latin is perform by the clergy and only selected stories or Psalms are presented to the public in English but the usual sense of trust and authority granted to the Church is breaking down. Some people want to know what the Bible actually says and they are willing to risk their necks to find out. [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7]

My Take by Alex Shrugged
Question: What constitutes a subversive thought?
Answer: When a thought causes the authorities to work harder to justify what they are doing.

Managing intelligent people is like herding cats because intelligent, reasoning people will ask fundamental questions such as... "Why are we doing it this way?" and the worst question of all for government officials... "WHY ARE WE DOING THIS AT ALL?" It would be more efficient if these people would shut up, trust the King and keep their shoulder to the wheel, but Wycliffe's Bible has put a few key facts in the hands of the masses. How does a leader put that genie back in the bottle? It is done through overwhelming the people with facts and failing to teach the art of reason. Thus fighting over which facts get printed in Texas schoolbooks is beside the point if the student is not taught how to evaluate the significance of those facts. This is the basis of our educational system today. The system is being overwhelmed to the point where people are giving up and turning it over to "the experts,"... back to a time before Wycliffe.[8]

Aztecs: The Beginnings of Empire

The village of Tenochtitlan [teh-nosh-TIT-lahn] has grown into a city-state. They have already begun construction of the Great Temple, Templo Mayor [TEMP-low mah-YOUR] and they have already named their first king, Acamapichtli [ah-cama-PICT-lee] but in Aztec hierarchy at this time, it amounts to little more than an interim governor. His father is from the Mexica tribe that established the city of Tenochtitlan [teh-nosh-TIT-lahn] and his mother is a princess of another tribe with really good connections. It is a shrewd a political move that would impress any European dynasty. This year he is elevated to commander-in-chief and ruler. [9] [10] [11] [12] [13]

My Take by Alex Shrugged
Tribal connections are important even in the modern day. In present day Afghanistan, President Hamid Karzai, is derisively called "The Mayor of Kabul" since his influence does not extend much further than the city limits. He is ethnic Pashtun [pash-toon] which is the tribe of the Taliban. The Northern Alliance that originally opposed the Taliban are ethnic Tajiki [tah-gee-kee]. The Tajiki [tah-gee-kee] were US allies during the initial push into Afghanistan to overthrow the Taliban. One wonders if the USA has given enough consideration to the tribal connections and how important they can be to maintain. [14] [15] [16] [17] [18]

This Year on Wikipedia

Year 1382, Wikipedia.

See Also


  1. Bull of Pope Gregory XI, Against John Wycliffe. Internet History Sourcebooks Project, fordham.edu, 1382.
  2. Wycliffe's Bible - Wikipedia, 2014 [last update]
  3. Wycliffe, John. (translator) John Wycliffe Bible - Internet Archive. 1382 (BIBLE) note: This Bible translation is in Middle English. Those who read Modern English could probably read through 50% of it, guess at many other words but some words will be incomprehensible without a Middle English dictionary.
  4. Tuchman, Barbara Wertheim. (Barbara Tuchman, bio). A Distant Mirror: The Calamitous 14th Century. Ballantine, 1979. pp. 347-350. (BOOK) quote="When he had preached disendowment of the Church's temporal property, Wyclif had had powerful friends, but when he rejected the sacerdotal system, his patrons, fearing heresy arid the jaws of Hell, withdrew. In 1381 a council of twelve doctors of the University of Oxford was to pronounce eight of his theses unorthodox and fourteen heretical, and to prohibit him from further lecturing or preaching. Though his voice was silenced, his work spread through dissemination of the Bible in English."
  5. LastName, FirstName. The Peasants' Revolt and the Blackfriars Trial, lwbc.co.uk, 2009 [last update]
  6. Lollardy - Wikipedia, 2014 [last update]
  7. Jerome: Translations and Commentaries - Wikipedia, 2014 [last update]
  8. John Dewey - Wikipedia, 2014 [last update]
  9. Aguilar-Moreno, Manuel. Handbook to Life in the Aztec World. New York: Facts on File, Infobase Publishing. 2006. pp. 29, 227-228.
  10. Gold, Ryszard. The Visual History: 1300 CE. 2010.
  11. Tenochtitlan - Wikipedia, 2014 [last update]
  12. Acamapichtli - Wikipedia, 2014 [last update]
  13. Templo Mayor - Wikipedia, 2014 [last update]
  14. Afghanistan - Wikipedia, 2014 [last update]
  15. Hamid Karzai - Wikipedia, 2014 [last update]
  16. Pashtun people - Wikipedia, 2014 [last update]
  17. Northern Alliance - Wikipedia, 2014 [last update]
  18. Tajik people - Wikipedia, 2014 [last update]

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