It may be worth noting, perhaps, that in the 1801 revision of the 39 articles, one main revision was to drop reference to the Athanasian Creed in Article 8. Be that as it may.
While it is abundantly clear that the author of the (so-called) AthCreed was a non-universalist and intended to promote one or another kind of non-universalistic doctrine (and also that the historical use of that Creed by the Roman Catholic Church was aimed at least partially against universalistic tendencies in the East, in much the same way as the affirmation of the filioque in the Creed was aimed against Eastern denial that the Spirit proceeds from the Son as well as the Father); it is just as blatantly clear that the non-universalistic statements of the AthCreed are (1) reserved for the introductions and epilogues to the two main halves of the Creed; and (2) are in all cases explicitly tied to the notion that in order to be saved the most important thing is to rightly believe the material in the two main halves.
These are evident facts that are not really disputable. Which Luke and I have been over the ground of before.
The practical point is that if the wrapping statements (as I call them) are insisted upon as being part of the Creed themselves (instead of only referring to the material of the Creed, as the statements themselves actually say in effect!), then acceptance of the Creed necessarily involves acceptance of the idea that in order to be saved from hopeless damnation the first and foremost thing is that a person must believe the content of at least the two main halves (if not also of the wrapping statements).
At the time I asked for any evidence of any other (effectively) creedal statement by a main body of trinitarian Christians, Protestant or otherwise, that also affirmed what the wrapping statements actually teach, namely that to avoid hopeless damnation a person saves themselves by consistently asserting to the doctrinal content of the AthCreed (whatever the extent of that content might be). I myself couldn’t recall any such creedal statement myself in use by trinitarian Church bodies today; and such statements are demonstrably absent (as well as overt statements of hopeless damnation at all) from the two prior Great Creeds (Apostles and Nicene).
I gave a couple of examples from various Calvinistic creedal positions–no such statement (of course) could be found. Hopeless damnation, yes (sometimes); saving oneself by holding doctrinal knowledge, no.
Now we come to the Anglican 39 articles; and unless there have been more revisions than mentioned in the 1801 draft, once again there is (of course!) nothing remotely about a person having to hold various doctrines in order to be saved, much less that the most important thing first and foremost to be saved is to hold various doctrines.
So. What does the inclusion of reference to the AthCreed in the first editions of the Articles involve? I can see two options, not themselves mutually exclusive, for consideration.
(1) The drafters intended it as a reference to the trinitarian doctrinal set, and to the Incarnational doctrinal set, and (broadly) to the doctrine of judgment–all of which are represented elsewhere in the Articles, and all of which are represented (in less precise forms) in the other two of the Big Three Creeds mentioned in Article 8.
(2) The drafters intended it as a reference to the doctrine of salvation by persistently holding doctrine (which doctrines being listed in the Creed), but then not only forgot to mention this anywhere else in the Articles but wrote several articles which implicitly countervail this concept (even if not explicitly so).
To me, (1) looks infinitely plausible, while (2) looks infinitely implausible (if not exactly impossible perhaps). A problem with (2) could even explain, perhaps, the removal of reference to the AthCreed in the 1801 version of the draft. I would be curious to see records of official discussion among Anglican scholars at the time on why the reference to the AthCreed was eventually removed.
If the main reason for referring to the AthCreed originally, however, was (1) and not (2), then that would very easily explain why the Archbishop did not think it strange or contradictive to delete an Article denying universalism while keeping an Article referring to something that definitely teaches (one or another kind of) non-universalism: because that portion of the Creed wasn’t what they were interested in affirming in regard to Article 8 in the first place.
Which in turn would also explain why they inadvertently thereby included reference to another doctrine, linked inextricably with non-universalism in the AthCreed, which they not only don’t affirm elsewhere but practically deny: they weren’t even thinking about the “wrapping statement” material when including reference to the AthCreed in Article 8.