"l do swear the evidence I'll give before the court shall be the truth the whole truth, and nothing but the truth."
"So help me God," sir.
"So help me God."
Now Rich, on May you were at the Tower?
-For what purpose?
I was sent to carry away the prisoner's books.
-Did you talk with the prisoner?
Did you talk of the King's supremacy of the Church?
What did you say?
I said to him, "Supposing there were an act of parliament to say that l, Richard Rich, were to be king.Would not you, Master More, take me for king?"
"That I would," he said. "For then you would be king."
Then he said, "But I will put you a higher case.How, if there were an act of parliament, to say that God should not be God?"
-This is true and then you said--
But then I said, "l will put you a middle case.
"Parliament has made our King Head of the Church. Why will you not accept him?" Well?
And then he said, "Parliament had not the power to do it."
Repeat the prisoner's words.
He said:"Parliament had not the competence." Or words to that effect.
He denied the title!
In good faith, Rich, I am sorrier for your perjury than my peril.
-Do you deny this?
-Yes! You know if I were a man who heeded not the taking of an oath I need not be here. Now, I will take an oath. If what Master Rich has said is true I pray I may never see God in the face. Which I would not say, were it otherwise, for anything on earth!
-That is not evidence.
-ls it probable...Is it probable that after so long a silence on this the very point so urgently sought of me I should open my mind to such a man as that?
Sir Richard, do you wish to modify your testimony?
No, my lord.
Is there anything you wish to take away from it?
No, my lord.
Have you anything to add?
No, my lord.
-Have you, Sir Thomas?
-To what purpose? I am a dead man. You have your will of me.
Then the witness may withdraw.
There is one question I would like to ask the witness.
That's a chain of office you're wearing. May I see it? The Red Dragon. What's this?
Sir Richard is appointed Attorney General for Wales.
For Wales? Why Richard, it profits a man nothing to give his soul for the whole world. But for Wales.
My lords! I've done.
The jury will retire and consider the evidence.
Considering the evidence, it shouldn't be necessary for them to retire. Is it necessary? Then is the prisoner guilty or not guilty?
Guilty, my lord!
Sir Thomas More, you have been found guilty of high treason.
-The sentence of the court--
-My lords! When I was practising the law, the manner was to ask the prisoner before pronouncing sentence, if he had anything to say.
Have you anything to say?
Yes. Since the court has determined to condemn me God knoweth how, I will now discharge my mind concerning the indictment and the King's title. The indictment is grounded in an act of parliament which is directly repugnant to the law of God and His Holy Church. The supreme government of which no temperable person may by any law presume to take upon him. This was granted by the mouth of our Saviour, Christ Himself to St. Peter and the bishops of Rome whilst He lived and was personally present here on earth. It is therefore insufficient in law to charge any Christian to obey it. And more than this the immunity of the Church is promised both in Magna Carta and in the King's own coronation oath.
Now, we plainly see you are malicious!
Not so. I am the King's true subject and I pray for him and all the realm. I do none harm. I say none harm. I think none harm. And if this be not enough to keep a man alive then in good faith, I long not to live. Nevertheless it is not for the supremacy that you have sought my blood but because I would not bend to the marriage!
You have been found guilty of high treason. The sentence of the court is that you be taken to the Tower of London until the day hence to the appointment for your execution!
I am commanded by the King to be brief and since I am the King's obedient subject brief I will be. I die His Majesty's good servant but God's first. I forgive you, right readily. Be not afraid of your office. You send me to God.
You're very sure of that, Sir Thomas?
He will not refuse one who is so blithe to go to him.
Thomas More's head was stuck on Traitor's Gate for a month.
Then his daughter, Margaret, removed it and kept it 'til her death.
Cromwell was beheaded for high treason five years after More.
The Archbishop was burned at the stake.
The Duke of Norfolk should have been executed for high treason but the King died of syphilis the night before.
Richard Rich became Chancellor of England and died in his bed.