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Nicholas of Hereford

d. c.1420. Lollard writer. While a fellow of Queen's College, Oxford, and engaged in translating the Latin Bible into English, he became an ardent supporter of Wycliffe* and in 1382 began to preach Lollard doctrines. Condemned and excommunicated by the archbishop of Canterbury, he journeyed to Rome to petition against the sentence, but was imprisoned by the pope. Having escaped during a popular uprising in 1385, he returned to England and soon became the leader of the Lollard party in the west country, appealing especially to the common people by addresses and handbills. He was captured in 1391, was imprisoned at Nottingham, was tortured, then suddenly recanted, leaving his followers depressed and bewildered. Royal and episcopal favors were now heaped upon him. He was made chancellor and treasurer of Hereford Cathedral, but ended his life as a Carthusian monk at Coventry. He probably played an important part with John Purvey* in a revision of Wycliffe's English Bible.

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