Edward Waterson (?? – 7 January 1594 (NS)) was a English Catholic priest and martyr. He served the hidden Catholics in England during the reign of Elizabeth I. Edward was arrested in 1593 and executed at Newcastle upon Tyne. He was beatified in 1929.


Born in London, Waterson was brought up in the Church of England. In 1588, returning from a mercantile trip to Turkey, he stopped in Rome and was brought into the Catholic Church there by Richard Smith. Waterson proceeded to Reims where he was ordained into the priesthood on 11 March 1592.

In the summer of 1592 Waterson to returned to England, where legal restrictions on Catholics were severe, in order to minister to hidden Catholics. Joseph Lambton, a young Catholic priest who was on the same ship was arrested upon landing, but Waterson escaped.[1] However, he was captured by the authorities in midsummer 1593 and held until just after Christmas (OS), when he was hanged, drawn and quartered, as a traitor. While incarcerated in the Newgate prison he had attempted to escape by burning down his cell door.[2]



  • Challoner, Richard (1742) Memoirs of missionary priests, as well secular as regular, and of other Catholics of both sexes, that have suffered death in England on religious accounts, from the year of our Lord 1577 to 1684 London, OCLC 6346793
  • Pollen, John Hungerford (1908) Unpublished documents relating to the English martyrs. Vol. I, 1584-1603 (vol. V of Catholic Record Society Series), Catholic Record Society, London, OCLC 14013058
  • Knox, Thomas Francis (1878) The first and second diaries of the English College, Douay : and an appendix of the unpublished documents David Nutt, London, OCLC 1749433
  • Holtby, (1877) "Account of Three Martyrs" in John Morris, (1877) Troubles of our Catholic Forefathers (series III) London, Burns and Oates, OCLC 61914439
  • Daw, Christian (2000) The Forty four: The martyrs of the Venerable English College Rome Saint Michael's Abbey Press, Farnborough, Hampshire, ISBN 0-907077-02-1

This article incorporates text from the entry Ven. Edward Waterson in Catholic Encyclopedia of 1913, a publication now in the public domain.

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