Forty Martyrs of England & Wales


Forty English & Welsh Martyrs
(1534 – 1680)

The term English Martyr’s refers to a group of Canonised Saints who were executed for practising their Catholic faith during the English Reformation between 1534 and 1680. However, many also remember on this day, the hundreds of other uncanonized and undocumented English, Welsh and Scotish Catholics who were likewise executed for their practice of the Catholic faith.

St Anne Line

Following the excommunication of Queen Elizabeth I from the Church by Pope Pius, the English introduced a law making it treasonable for anyone to follow the Catholic faith or harbour a Catholic Priest. The punishment for doing so was hanging, almost to the point of death, and then “drawn and quartered” – cutting the body into four pieces. The executions were generally a very public affair and body parts were often displayed as a deterrent to others.

The Forty English and Welsh Martyrs were mainly Priests, Monks and Friars but included some laymen and the notable women Margaret Clitherow, Anne Line and Margaret Ward.


Martyrs of England & Wales:
Pray for us that we may become worthy to enjoy the promises of Jesus Christ.

Glory be to the…