The monument of matrones conteining seuen seuerall lamps of virginitie, or distinct treatises; whereof the first fiue concerne praier and meditation: the other two last, precepts and examples, as the woorthie works partlie of men, partlie of women; compiled for the necessarie vse of both sexes out of the sacred Scriptures, and other approoued authors, by Thomas Bentley of Graies Inne student.
Bentley, Thomas, student of Gray's Inn., Abergavenny, Frances Nevill, Lady, d. 1576., Marguerite, Queen, consort of Henry II, King of Navarre, 1492-1549. Miroir de l'âme pécheresse. English & French., Catharine Parr, Queen, consort of Henry VIII, King of England, 1512-1548. Lamentacion of a sinner., Tyrwhit, Elizabeth, Morning and evening prayers., Catharine Parr, Queen, consort of Henry VIII, King of England, 1512-1548. Prayers or meditacions.

Another praier to be said before the receiuing of the bles∣sed Communion, as you kneele at Gods boord.

O Lord, although I be not woorthie to receiue thee into the house of my soule, for mine innu∣merable offences and sins done against thy great goodnesse: yet trusting, good Lord, in Page  581 thy great pitie and infinite mercie, I come to receiue thy blessed bodie; as a sicke creature, to thee that art the health of life; vncleane, to thee that art the well of mercie; blind by ignorance, to thee that art the light euerlasting; needie of thy grace, and poore in vertue, to thee that art the King of heauen and earth; naked of good works, to thee that art the author of grace. I come as a wretch, to thee my Lord and maker; all de∣solate and comfortlesse, to thee my helpe and succour. For besides thee there is no consolation. I come as a sinner, to thee that art the mediatour and meane be∣twixt God and man. I come as a caitife, to thee my most mercifull Sauiour. I come all sinfull, to thee the granter of remission and pardon; dead by sinne, to thee that art the restorer to life; euill, to thee that art all goodnesse; hard-harted, to be releeued by the infusion of thy super-abundant grace; desiring thee meekelie to heale mine infirmities and sicknesse, to wash awaie my sinne and filthinesse, to lighten my blindnesse, to re∣duce me to the right waie, where I am out thereof, to comfort me desolate of goodnesse. Haue mercie on my wretchednesse, pardon my sinfulnes, giue me the light of grace (thus burdened in sinne,) that I may receiue thee the food of all Angels, the King of glorie, the Lord of all lords, with such chastitie of bodie, with such pure∣nesse of mind, and cleannesse of soule, with such contri∣tion of hart, and abundance of weeping teares, with such spirituall ioie and gladnesse, with such dread and reuerence, with such faith, hope and charitie, with such obedience and humilitie, with such loue, deuotion, faithfulnesse and thankfulnesse; as it is beseeming for such a Lord to be receiued, and to my soule most expe∣dient.

And be not displeased, good Lord, that I a sinner, with an vncleane hart and polluted mind come hither this daie, to receiue thy pretious bodie in sacramen∣tall Page  582 bread and wine: but remember, mercifull Lord, that thou refusedst not the sinfull Marie Magdalen, being penitent, from the kissing of thy blessed feet. And in likewise despise me not, nor put me awaie as vn∣woorthie, from the receiuing of thy bodie in the blessed Sacrament, for my sinnes and wickednesse: but grant thou me cōpunction of hart, plentie of weeping tears, to wash awaie my sinnes & wickednesse; so that with a pure hart and cleane conscience, I may this daie re∣ceiue the Sacrament to my soules helth; that I may obtaine and possesse thereby euerlasting life, with all holie Saints in heauens glorie; and in this present life, with the holie spirit to be replenished, and neuer to admit other louer besides thee.

Grant me, blessed Iesu, so to receiue the Sacra∣ment of bread and wine, that I may be woorthie to bee accounted for a member of thy mysticall bodie heere in earth. And though as yet I be not worthie to be num∣bered among the simplest, and lowest of thy seruants; but rather to be reiect and out-cast for my sinfulnesse: yet, good Lord, of thine infinite power thou maist make me able, equall, and like to the meanest of thine elect seruants. Come thou Father of the fatherlesse; come thou comforter of the comfortlesse; come and cleanse my soule from all contagiousnesse of sinne. For it is not conuenient, and according, there to be anie vnclean∣nes, where thou, the spouse of virginall chastitie shoul∣dest come in and dwell. Come therefore, and sanctifie my soule, and make it cleane by thy gratious presence; that no heapes of soile, or remnants of sinne be to be found in anie least cranie or corner of thy spirituall house or temple, (my bodie and soule I meane) to of∣fend the celestiall eies of thy diuine Maiestie: so shall thy holie hall, which is my cleansed soule, ring and re∣sound with thy perpetuall praises to thy glorie. Come, I saie, O God, and apparell my naked soule with the Page  583 rich ornaments of thy vertue and grace, and with the white raines of thy righteousnesse and innocencie; that I may delight thee, therein to abide. And as thou disdainedst not to touch the sore leapers with thy holie hands: so, good Lord, vouchsafe to annoint my simple soule, with the ointment of remission and pardon; that in this life, by stedfast hope, firme faith, and perfect charitie, I may so increase in vertue, from daie to daie, that I may atteine to the glorious fruition of thy Godhead in the kingdome of heauen: where I may see thee face to face, and praise thee with all thine elect and chosen Saints, worlds without end,

Amen.