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Latimer: England’s prophet

Historian Iain Murray has rightly noted: ‘The advance of the church is ever preceded by a recovery of preaching [the Word].’

History Professor Michael Haykin
Figure Image
Hugh Latimer (holding Bible) led to execution in Oxford with Nicholas Ridley

The Reformation, a time of great spiritual advance, was no exception. Now, among the remarkable cadre of preachers raised up during the Reformation, the English preacher Hugh Latimer (c.1495–1555) deserves more attention than he is often given in accounts of the English Reformation. The 20th-century historian Patrick Collinson once described Latimer as one of the greatest English-speaking preachers of the 16th century. And according to Augustine Bernher (fl.1550s –1570s), a Francophone pastor who was mentored by Latimer and later pastored during the reign of Elizabeth I (1533–1603), ‘if England ever had a prophet, he was one’.