Monday, June 28, 2010

John Rogers

This man was in our family line and was the first marter by the Bloody Queen Mary
John "Thomas Matthew" Rogers
John Rogers went on to print the second complete English Bible in 1537. It was, however, the first English Bible translated from the original Biblical languages of Hebrew & Greek. He printed it under the pseudonym "Thomas Matthew", (an assumed name that had actually been used by Tyndale at one time) as a considerable part of this Bible was the translation of Tyndale, whose writings had been condemned by the English authorities. It is a composite made up of Tyndale's Pentateuch and New Testament (1534-1535 edition) and Coverdale's Bible and some of Roger's own translation of the text. It remains known most commonly as the Matthew-Tyndale Bible. It went through a nearly identical second-edition printing in 1549.
John Rogers was born in 1500 in the parish of Aston, near Birmingham. He was a minister, Bible translator and commentator. John Rogers was the first English Protestant martyr to be executed by Mary I of England, a.k.a. “Queen Bloody Mary”. He was burned at the stake on February 4, 1555 at Smithfield.
Early Years of John Rogers
John Rogers, was educated at Pembroke Hall, Cambridge University, where he graduated with a B.A. in 1526. Six years later he was rector of Holy Trinity, Queenhithe, London, and in 1534 went to Antwerp as chaplain to the English merchants of the Company of the Merchant Adventurers. Here he met William Tyndale, under whose influence he abandoned the Roman Catholic faith. Rogers took a wife named Adriana, a native of Antwerp, who eventually bore him ten childern.
The Death of John Rogers
When the time came that he should be brought out of Newgate Prison to Smithfield, the place of his execution, Mr. Woodroofe, one of the sheriffs, first came to John Rogers, and asked him if he would revoke his abominable doctrine, and the evil opinion of the Sacrament of the altar. Rogers answered, "That which I have preached I will seal with my blood." Then Mr. Woodroofe said, "Thou art an heretic." Rogers replied "That shall be known at the Day of Judgment." Mr. Woodroofe added, "I will never pray for thee." Though Rogers responded "But I will pray for you.”
John Rogers awaited and met death on the 4th of February 1555 at Smithfield cheerfully, though he was denied even a last moment with his wife. Rogers stands as the first blood on the hands of Queen “Bloody” Mary… and the first of hundreds more to come. Noailles, the French ambassador, speaks of the support given to John Rogers by the majority of the people commenting, "even his children assisted at it, comforting him in such a manner that it seemed as if he had been led to a wedding rather than an execution."
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Sister--Three said...

Many of today's Christians have forgotten that one of the main corner stones of our nation was freedom to worship as we want. Now, we tend to banter for a U. S. religion as England had in these times. Our freedom only comes when we give freedom to others. We are selfish today wanting our way for all rather than freedom to choose.

Stacer said...

Hi, Patsy. I just found your blog while doing research on John Rogers. I would like to talk with you about any additional information you may have on his life, writings, and any illustrations or books you may have (or have access to).

Our church has put together a presentation called "The Bibles of the Martyrs", and our information on John Rogers and his work on the Matthews Bible is quite limited. Any additional information you can help us with would truly be invaluable.

If you go to you will see the illustration of John Roger's death that we painted as well as the historical layout and a facsimile of one of the pages from his Bible. Hope it is a blessing to you and your family. You certainly have quite a heritage!

Please feel free to contact me at 253-927-7673 (Faith Baptist Church) or via email at

I look forward to hearing from you.