England’s Merry Martyr

Richard Simpson, revised, edited and enlarged by Peter Joseph, Edmund Campion (Gracewing/Freedom Publishing Australia, 2010), 687 pages, $60.  John Henry Newman once described Richard Simpson, the nineteenth-century English Catholic intellectual, as “always flicking his whip at Bishops, cutting them in tender places, throwing stones at Sacred Congregations, and … discharging pea-shooters at Cardinals who happen by bad luck to look out of the window”. Moreover, to the “despair of his friends”, he had a “talent for seeing the comic side of serious problems”. It is therefore no surprise that when Simpson undertook a biography of the Elizabethan Catholic martyr Edmund…

Subscribe to get access to all online articles