The current lot was Ponet's own copy of an influential tract against priestly marriage attributed in print to Thomas Martin but usually credited (including by both Ponet himself and by the ESTC) to Stephen Gardiner, which Ponet had interleaved and then annotated with notes that would form the basis of his confutation, An apologie fully aunsweringe... a blasphemose book (1556). It includes drafts of passages that are found in the printed text, such as Ponet's attack on the tract's dedication "not only to a queen, but also to a virgin queen... not doutinge belyke that her graces eares will not be offended with... your shameless shiftes, your ruffian lyke talke and lowde lyes" but these notes were substantially revised before reaching print: the bulk of this manuscript is a point by point refutation of "Martin's" arguments on priestly marriage, whereas Ponet's Apologie was not structured in this way. It also appears that the manuscript contains substantial material that never found its way into print as Ponet died before he could complete his promised second part of his Apologie. As was commonly the case with religious controversy of the period, Ponet's manuscript combines a formidable range of theological citations, intricate arguments (Chapter XII of the Traictise is an attack on Ponet's earlier publications, to which Ponet now responds in details), ad hominem attacks (returning repeatedly to the accusation that "Martyn playd allway the fole in Christmas" at Oxford, for example) and homely vignettes taken from everyday life. For example, he points out that forcing married priests to divorce would force the breaking of a sacrament to enforce a vow:
"...much lyke an yrishe surgeon that dwelled in Canterbery when I was a boy whiche toke apon himselfe to hele the sore eye of a monk in Canterbery, & the left eye beinge sore he said he must first put his medicine in the right eye ... & at the last he made the monk to see aswell in the one as with the other. for in pretendinge to heale the one eye he did put out both..."
A book from Ponet's library will be sold in these rooms in the Music and Continental Books sale, 5 June 2013, lot 192.
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