Nicholas Ridley Martyr Facts, Life, Timeline - Prisoner of the Tower of London

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Master Ridley was a Bishop of London in the Reformed Church of England. He became a Protestant Martyr along with Hugh Latimer when Mary 1 burnt them at the stake in Oxford for heresy.

Ridley was born the second son of Christopher Ridley of Unthank Hall near Willemoteswick Northumberland.

In 1518, Ridley attended Pembroke Hall in Cambridge. He graduated MA in 1526. Then he studied the Sorbonne in Paris and at Louvain. He was appointed later Junior Treasurer of Pembroke Hall Cambridge.


  • In 1536, he signed the decree against Papal jurisdiction for the University.
  • In 1534, he became Chaplain to the University.
  • In 1537, he was Champlain to Thomas Cranmer, Archbishop of Canterbury.
  • In April 1538, he became Vicar of Herne Kent
  • In 1540, he became Master of Pembroke Hall
  • In 1541, he became Chaplain to Henry VIII and canon of Canterbury.
  • In 1543, he was accused of heresy and acquitted
  • In 1547, he became nominated as Bishop of Rochester
  • In 1548, he helped compile the English prayer book
  • In 1549, he examined Bishop Gardener and bishop Bonner for heresy
  • In 1549, he succeeded Bonner as See of London.

Ridley signed papers that designated Lady Jane Grey as Queen after the death of Edward VI. Then, he preached a sermon on July 9th, 1553 at St Paul's Cross which proclaimed both Mary and Elizabeth illegitimate and that their succession to the English throne would be disastrous to the Church of England.

When it was obvious that Lady Jane Grey was not to be queen, Ridley went to Framingham to beg Mary I for a pardon. Instead, he was arrested and sent to the Tower of London.

In 1554, together with Thomas Cranmer and Hugh Latimer, he was sent to Oxford for examination. He was excommunicated and declared a heretic.

He refused to recant in October 1555. He was then tried for heresy and burned at the stake with Hugh Latimer at Oxford October 16, 1555.

See also:

Kings and Queens of England

Medieval Castles in England

Tudor England Government Policies and Acts

Martin Luther and the rise of Protestantism



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Nicholas Ridley Martyred ...

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Nicholas Ridley Bishop of London and Hugh Latimer Bishop of Worcester Burnt by Catholics at Oxford