1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Story, John

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STORY, JOHN (c. 1510-1571), English martyr, was educated at Oxford, where he became lecturer on civil law in 1535, being made later principal of Broadgates Hall, afterwards Pembroke College. He appears to have disavowed his Roman Catholic opinions just after the accession of Edward VI., but having been chosen a member of parliament in 1547 he gained notoriety by his opposition to the act of uniformity in 1548. For crying out “Woe unto thee, O land, when thy king is a child,” he was imprisoned by the House of Commons, but he was soon released and went into exile. Returning to England in 1553, he resigned his position at Oxford, which was now that of regius professor of civil law, and was made chancellor of the dioceses of London and of Oxford and dean of arches. Queen Mary being now on the throne, Story was one of her most active agents in prosecuting heretics, and was one of her proctors at the trial of Cranmer at Oxford in 1555. Under Elizabeth he was again returned to parliament, but in 1560 he underwent a short imprisonment for boasting about his work in the former reign. In 1563 he was again arrested, but managed to escape to Flanders, where he became a pensioner of Philip II. of Spain. The duke of Alva authorized him to exclude certain classes of books from the Netherlands and, in 1570, while engaged in this work, he was decoyed on to a ship at Antwerp and conveyed to Yarmouth. In spite of his claim that he was a Spanish subject, he was tried for high treason, and executed at Tyburn on the 1st of June 1571. In 1886 Story was beatified by papal decree.