Thules, John, Bl.

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Priest, martyr; b. ca. 1568 at Whalley, Upholland, Lancashire, England; hanged, drawn, and quartered March 18, 1616, at Lancaster under James I. He began his studies at Rheims and then completed them at Rome, where he was ordained (April 1592). Immediately thereafter he returned to his homeland to begin a 20-year apostolate. He was a prisoner at Wisbeach Castle, Cambridgeshire, for some years but later escaped. He labored in Lancashire until he was arrested by Earl William of Derby and was committed to Lancaster Castle, where fellow-martyr Bl. Roger wrenno was confined. A curious metrical account of the martyrdom of Thules and Wrenno, as well as portions of a poem composed by Thules, are included in Pollen's Acts of the English Martyrs, 194207. He was beatified by Pope John Paul II on Nov. 22, 1987, with George Haydock and Companions.

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). j. h. pollen, Acts of English Martyrs (London 1891).

[k. i. rabenstein]