Véron, John (DNB00)

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VÉRON, JOHN (d. 1563), protestant controversialist, was born at or near Sens, for he styled himself Senonensis, but at what date is unknown. He studied at Orleans in 1534, and about 1536 settled in England, for his letters of denisation, 2 July 1544, state that he had been eight years in that country, that he had been a student at Cambridge (apparently without graduating), and that he was, and intended continuing to be, a tutor. In 1548 he published a volume entitled ‘Certyne Litel Treaties set forth by J. V. for the erudition and learnyng of the symple and ignorant peopell,’ London, 16mo. It included ‘The Five abominable Blasphemies contained in the Mass’ (cf. English Hist. Rev. x. 419–21), an English translation of Bullinger's treatise against the anabaptists, ‘The Byble the Word of God,’ ‘No Humane Lymmes the Father hath,’ and ‘The Masse is an Idol.’ In 1550 he had removed to Worcester, where he dedicated to Sir John Yorke [q. v.] ‘The godly Sayings of the ancient Fathers on the Sacrament’ (Worcester, 8vo; reprinted from this edition, London, 1846, 8vo). There he also translated Zwingle's ‘Short Pathway to the Understanding of the Scriptures,’ dedicated to Sir Arthur Darcy, and Bullinger on ‘Infant Baptism.’ ‘The Ymage of both Pastours’ appeared at London in 1550. On 21 Aug. 1551 he was ordained deacon by Ridley at Fulham, and on the 29th of the same month he received priest's orders. He was instituted on 3 Jan. 1552 to the rectory of St. Alphage, Cripplegate. He witnessed, or was in some way implicated in, the uproar at Paul's Cross, which led on 16 Aug. 1553 to the arrest of John Bradford (1510?–1555) [q. v.], for Véron was likewise committed to the Tower, both being styled ‘seditious preachers’ (Acts of Privy Council, ed. Dasent, iv. 321; Works of Thomas Becon, Parker Soc. 1843). Ridley, writing to Bradford in 1554, inquired for Véron (see Foxe, Martyrs), who in 1554 was deprived of his benefice and remained a prisoner till Queen Elizabeth's accession. He published while in the Tower a translation of Bullinger's ‘Dialogue between a Libertine and a Christian.’ On his release he became a preacher at Paul's Cross, was appointed prebendary of St. Paul's on 8 Nov. 1559, rector of St. Martin, Ludgate, on 8 March 1559–60, and vicar of St. Sepulchre on 21 Oct. 1560, which preferments he held till his death. On 8 Oct. 1559 he preached before the queen at Whitehall, when he urged that protestant bishops should retain the old temporalities of their sees, so as to live in proper style. Aspersions were cast on his character, and on 2 Nov. 1561 a man did penance at Paul's Cross for calumniating Véron, while on the 23rd of the same month Henry Machyn [q. v.] had also publicly to apologise. Machyn disliked Véron, and seems to have nicknamed him ‘White-hair.’ About 1560 Véron published ‘A moste necessary treatise of free wil not onlye against the Papists, but also against the Anabaptists’ (London, 8vo); and in 1561 ‘The Huntynge of Purgatorye to Death’ (London, 8vo), dedicated to the Earl of Bedford, and ‘The Overthrow of the Justification of Works,’ dedicated to James Blount, lord Mountjoy. He was likewise the author of ‘A frutefull Treatise of Predestination … with an Apology of the same … whereunto are added … a very necessary boke against the free wyll men, and another of the true justification of faith and the good workes proceadynge of the same’ (London, 1563? 8vo), dedicated to the queen; ‘A strong defence of the Marryage of Pryestes,’ and ‘A strong Battery against the Idolatrous Invocation of the dead Saintes’ (London, 1562, 8vo). Most of his works were in dialogue form. Strype describes him as a courageous and eloquent preacher.

On 1 March 1562 Véron certified to the privy council the accuracy of a translation of a French pamphlet against catholicism, which there was an idea of publishing in England. He died on 9 April 1563, and was buried in St. Paul's, but seems to have had no tombstone. John Awdelay (fl. 1559–1577) [q. v.] wrote some verses to his memory (Poetry of Reign of Elizabeth, Parker Soc. 1845), and in 1575 Rodolphus Waddington published a ‘Latin-English Dictionary’ which Véron had apparently left in manuscript. The Christopher Véron who matriculated at St. Edmund Hall, Oxford, in 1578 (Foster, Alumni Oxon.), was probably his descendant, and a Mademoiselle Véron was living in 1561 (Hist. MSS. Comm. Hatfield Papers, iv. 159).

[The fullest account of Véron is in Bulletin Soc. Hist. Protestantisme, 1890, partially reprinted in Schickler's Églises du Refuge, 1892, but it has not utilised Machyn's Diary (Camden Soc. 1848), which contains numerous references to Véron; see also Véron's Works in the Brit. Mus. Libr.; William Reginald's Calvino-Turcismus; Strype's Annals and Memorials; Newcourt's Repertorium (which confuses Véron with Heron); Hennessy's Nov. Repert. Eccl. pp. 38, 293; Denizations, Huguenot Soc. 1893, vol. viii.]

J. G. A.