Yaxley, Richard, Bl.

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Priest, martyr; b. ca. 1560 at Boston, Lincolnshire, England; hanged, drawn, and quartered July 5, 1589 at Oxford. Richard, the third son of William Yaxley and his wife Rose Langton, went to Rheims in 1582 to study for the priesthood. Ordained in 1585, he began his labors in and around Oxford in February 1586. He was arrested with Bl. George nichols and two others. All were interrogated at Oxford. Sent to London for further questioning, they were imprisoned at Bridewell. Yaxley was sent to the Tower of London as a close prisoner on May 25, 1589, and appears to have been racked frequently until sent back to Oxford on June 30, to stand trial for treason. Following his execution, his head was placed on a pike at Oxford Castle and his other remains on the four gates of the city. 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]