Speed, John, Bl.

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Lay martyr; alias Spence; b. Durham, England; d. hanged there Feb. 4, 1594. John Speed diligently escorted St. John boste from house to house as he ministered to his scattered flock. He was arrested in the Brancepeth (Durham) home of William and Grace Claxton with them and Boste. All were condemned, but Mrs. Claxton was reprieved because she was pregnant. John Speed died with constancy for aiding an illegal priest. He was beatified by Pius XI on Dec. 15, 1929 as one of the Martyrs of Durham.

Feast of the English Martyrs: May 4 (England).

See Also: england, scotland, and wales, martyrs of.

Bibliography: r. challoner, Memoirs of Missionary Priests, ed. j. h. pollen (rev. ed. London 1924; repr. Farnborough 1969), I, 100ff. j. h. pollen, Acts of English Martyrs (London 1891); English Martyrs 15841683 (London 1908), 239.

[k. i. rabenstein]