SAWTREY, WILLIAM (d. 1401), English Lollard, was a priest at Lynn who was summoned before the bishop of Norwich for heresy in 1399. He does not appear at this time to have been seriously punished, and at the beginning of 1401 he is found in London, where his preaching again attracted the notice of the ecclesiastical authorities. The statute De haeretico comburendo had just been introduced for the purpose of stamping out heresy, but it had not become law when Sawtrey was summoned to St Paul's and was charged with denying transubstantiation, with refusing to adore the cross except as a symbol, and with six other heresies. He defended himself ably against Archbishop Thomas Arundel, but in February he was condemned and was degraded from the priesthood. Being the first Lollard to be put to death he was burned at St Paul's Cross in March 1401.
Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)