The authorship of the tracts has been attributed to several persons: to Penry himself, who however emphatically denied it and whose acknowledged works have little resemblance in style to those of Martin, to Job Throckmorton, and to Henry Barrow.
Nor was he (apart from his reception of legendary elements into his narrative) unworthy of the honour in which he was held; for he is really a great historian, in the form of his matter and in his conception of his subject - diligent, impartial, well-informed and interesting, if somewhat rhetorical in style and vague in chronology.
When we put aside one or two exceptionally fine pieces, like the hymn of the soul in the apocryphal Acts of Thomas, the highest degree of excellence in style is perhaps attained in staightforward historical narrative - such as the account of the PersoRoman War at the beginning of the 6th century by the author who passes under the name of Joshua the Stylite, or by romancers like him who wrote the romance of Julian; by biographers like some of those who have written lives of saints, martyrs and eminent divines; and by some early writers of homilies such as Philoxenus (in prose) and Isaac of Antioch (in verse).
From the letters after the year 1892 I have culled in the spirit of one making an anthology, choosing the passages best in style and most important from the point of view of biography.
It is not because Isaiah could not have conceived of a personal Messiah, but because the Messiahpassages are not plainly Isaiah's either in style or in thought.
Eloquent testimony is given by the beautiful churches and palaces of Prague - largely Gothic and baroque in style - to the architectural genius of the nation.
He was born of heathen parents in Africa about 260, and became a pupil of Arnobius, whom he far excelled in style though his knowledge of the Scriptures was equally slight.
Now, with one brilliant exception - the story of the swimming-match, which is felicitously introduced and finely told - these retrospective passages are brought in more or less awkwardly, interrupt inconveniently the course of the narrative, and are too condensed and allusive in style to make any strong poetic impression.
Each side of the octagon is covered with a large relief of a Biblical subject, very dull in style and coarse in execution.
Beginning with the sagas of the west, most perfect in style and form, the earliest in subject is that of Gold-Thori (c. 930), whose adventurous career it relates; Hensa-porissaga tells of the burning of Blund-Ketil, a noble chief, an event which led to Thord Gelli's reforms next year (c. 964); Gislasaga (960-980) tells of the career and death of that ill-fated outlaw; it is beautifully written, and the verses by the editor (13th century) are good and appropriate; Hord's Saga (980) is the life of a band of outlaws on Whalesfirth, and especially of their leader Hord.