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Elizabeth, was robbed of that little he had, by some searchers appointed for that purpose. Were not these thieves themselves robbed, I mean of their expectation, who hoped to enrich themselves by pillaging an exile and a poet? It grieved him most of all that he lost the fair copy of his Epigrams, though afterwards with much ado he recovered them from his foul papers.* These at last he put in print, et juvenilem fœtum senex edidit, without any trespass on his gravity; such his poems being so witty that a young man, so harmless that an old man, need not be of them ashamed.
Being returned into England, he was by queen Elizabeth preferred to the bishopric of Norwich; and was consecrated September 1, 1560. Fourteen years he sat in that see, and died 1574.t
THOMAS RAVIS was born of worthy parentage at Maulden in this county; bred in Christ Church in Oxford, whereof he was dean, and of which university he was twice vice-chancellor. Afterwards, when many suitors greedily sought the bishopric of Gloucester then vacant, the lords of the council requested Dr. Ravis to accept thereof.§
As he was not very willing to go thither, so (after his three years' abode there) those of Gloucester were unwilling he should go thence, who in so short a time had gained the good liking of all sorts, that some who could scant brook the name of bishop were content to give (or rather to pay) him a good report.
Anno 1607 he was removed to London; and there died on the 14th of December 1609; and lieth buried under a fair tomb in the wall at the upper end of the north part of his cathedral.¶
ROBERT ABBOT, D.D. was born at Guildford in this county; bred in Baliol College in Oxford, whereof he became principal, and king's professor of divinity in that University. What is said of the French, so graceful in their garb, that they make any kind of clothes become themselves; so general was his learning, he made any liberal employment beseem him; reading, writing, preaching, opposing, answering, and moderating; who could disentangle truth, though complicated with errors on all sides. He so routed the reasons of Bellarmin, the Romish champion, that he never could rally them again. Yet preferment (which is ordered in heaven) came down very slowly on this Doctor; whereof several reasons are assigned: 1. His hu
Dr. Humphrey in the Latin life of Jewel, p. 99.
Bishop Godwin, in his Bishops of Norwich.
So expressed in his epitaph on his monument in St. Paul's.
§ Sir J. Harrington, in his additional supply to bishop Godwin's catalogue of Bishops, p. 32.
|| Bishop Godwin, in his Bishops of London.
mility affected no high promotion. 2. His foes traduced him for a Puritan, who indeed was a right godly man, and cordial to the discipline, as doctrine, of the church of England. 3. His friends were loath to adorn the church with the spoil of the University, and mar a professsor to make a bishop.
However, preferment at last found him out; when he was consecrated bishop of Salisbury, December 3, 1615. Herein he equalled the felicity of Suffridus bishop of Chichester, that, being himself a bishop, he saw his brother George at the same time archbishop of Canterbury. Of these two, George was the more plausible preacher, Robert the greater scholar; George the abler statesman, Robert the deeper divine; gravity did frown in George, and smile in Robert.
But, alas! he was hardly warm in his see before cold in his coffin, being one of the five bishops which Salisbury saw in six years. His death happened anno 1617.
GEORGE ABBOT was born at Guilford in this county, being one of that happy ternion of brothers; whereof two, eminent prelates; the third, lord mayor of London. He was bred in Oxford, wherein he became head of University College; a pious man, and most excellent preacher, as his lectures on Jonah do declare.
He did first creep, then run, then fly into preferment, or rather preferment did fly upon him without his expectation. He was never incumbent on any living with cure of souls, but was mounted from a lecturer to a dignitary; so that he knew well what belonged to the stipend and benevolence of the one and the dividend of the other; but was utterly unacquainted with the taking of tithes, with the many troubles attending it, together with the causeless molestations which persons presented meet with in their respective parishes. And because it is hard for one to have a fellow-suffering of that whereof he never had a suffering, this (say some) was the cause that he was so harsh to ministers when brought before him.
Being chaplain to the earl of Dunbar, then omni-prevalent with king James, he was unexpectedly preferred archbishop of Canterbury, being of a more fatherly presence than those who might almost have been his fathers for age in the church of England. I find two things much charged on his memory: first, that in his house he respected his secretary above his chaplains, and out of it always honoured cloaks above cassocks, lay above clergy-men: secondly, that he connived at the spreading of non-conformity, insomuch that I read in a modern author, "Had bishop Laud succeeded Bancroft, and the project of conformity been followed without interruption, there is little question to be made but that our Jerusalem (by this time) might have been a city at unity in itself.”*
Yet are there some of archbishop Abbot's relations, who (as I am informed) will undertake to defend him, that he was in no degree guilty of these crimes laid to his charge.
This Archbishop was much humbled with a casual homicide of a keeper of the lord Zouch's in Bramzell park, though soon after he was solemnly quitted from any irregularity thereby.
In the reign of king Charles, he was sequestered from his jurisdiction; say some, on the old account of that homicide; though others say, for refusing to license a sermon of Dr. Sibthorp's. Yet there is not an express of either in the instrument of sequestration; the commission only saying, in the general, "That the said archbishop could not at that present, in his own person, attend those services which were otherwise proper for his cognizance and jurisdiction."
For my own part, I have cause to believe that as vulnus semel sanatum novo vulnere recrudescit, so his former obnoxiousness for that casualty was renewed on the occasion of his refusal to license that sermon, with some other of his court-un-compliances. This archbishop died anno Domini 1633, having erected a large hospital with liberal maintenance at Guildford, the place of his nativity.
RICHARD CORBET, D.D. was born at Ewel in this county, and, from a student in, became dean of, Christ Church, then bishop of Oxford;-a high wit and most excellent poet; of a courteous carriage, and no destructive nature to any who offended him, counting himself plentifully repaid with a jest upon him. He afterwards was advanced bishop of Norwich,
where he died anno Domini 1635.
THOMAS CROMWEL was born at Putney in this county, of whom I have given measure, pressed down and running over, in my "Church History."
WILLIAM HOWARD, son to Thomas Howard, second of that surname, duke of Norfolk, was by queen Mary created baron of Effingham in this county, and by her made lord admiral of England, which place he discharged with credit. I find he was one of the first favourers and furtherers, with his purse and countenance, of the strange and wonderful discovery of Russia.* He died anno Domini 1556.
CHARLES HOWARD, son to the Lord William aforesaid, succeeded him (though not immediately†) in the Admiralty ;a hearty gentleman, and cordial to his sovereign; of a most
⚫ Hackluyt, in his Sea Voyages, in his Epistle Dedicatory.
The father was appointed lord high admiral, by queen Mary, in 1554; the son, by queen Elizabeth, in 1585.-ED.
proper person, one reason why queen Elizabeth (who, though she did not value a jewel by, valued it the more for, a fair case) reflected so much upon him. The first evidence he gave of his prowess was, when the emperor's sister, the spouse of Spain, with a fleet of 130 sails, stoutly and proudly passed the narrow seas, his lordship, accompanied with ten ships only of her majesty's navy royal, environed their fleet in a most strange and warlike sort, enforced them to stoop gallant, and to vail their bonnets for the queen of England.*
His service in the eighty-eight is notoriously known, when, at the first news of the Spaniards' approach, he towed at a cable with his own hands, to draw out the harbour-bound ships into the sea. I dare boldly say, he drew more, though not by his person, by his presence and example, than any ten in the place. True it is, he was no deep seaman (not to be expected from one of his extraction); but had skill enough to know those who had more skill than himself, and to follow their instructions; and would not starve the queen's service by feeding his own sturdy wilfulness, but was ruled by the experienced in sea-matters; the queen having a navy of oak, and an admiral of osier.
His last eminent service was, when he was commander of the sea (as Essex of the land) forces, at the taking of Cadiz, for which he was made Earl of Nottingham, the last of the queen's creation.
His place was of great profit (prizes being so frequent in that age), though great his necessary and vast his voluntary expenses, keeping (as I have read) seven standing houses at the same time, at London, Ryegate, Effingham, Bletchingley, &c.; so that the wonder is not great if he died not very wealthy.
He lived to be very aged, who wrote Man (if not married) in the first of queen Elizabeth, being an invited guest at the solemn consecration of Matthew Parker at Lambeth; and many years after, by his testimony, confuted those lewd and loud lies, which the Papists tell of the Nag's Head in Cheapside.‡ He resigned his admiralty in the reign of king James to the duke of Buckingham ;§ and died towards the latter end of the reign of the king aforesaid.||
Sir ROBERT DUDLEY, Knight, son to Robert Dudley earl of Leicester by Douglas Shefeld (whether his mistress or wife God knoweth, many men being inclinable charitably to believe the latter) was born at Shene in this county, and bred by his
Hacluyt, in his Sea Voyages, in his Epistle Dedicatory. † Camden's Elizabeth, in 88.
Mason de Ministerio Anglicano.
§ Buckingham (then only a Marquis) was appointed admiral, January 28, 161920.-ED.
He was created Earl of Nottingham, October 12, 1588; and died December 13, 1629.-ED.
mother (out of his father's reach) at Offington in Sussex.* He afterwards became a most complete gentleman in all suitable accomplishments. Endeavouring, in the reign of king James, to prove his legitimacy, and meeting with much opposition from the court, in distaste he left his land, and went over into Italy. But worth is ever at home, and carrieth its own welcome along with it. He became a favourite to the duke of Florence, who highly reflected on his abilities, and used his directions in all his buildings. At this time Leghorn from a child started a man without ever being a youth, and of a small town grew a great city on a sudden; and is much beholding to this Sir Robert for its fairness and firmness, as chief contriver of both.
But by this time his adversaries in England had procured him to be called home by a special privy seal; which he refused to obey, and thereupon all his lands in England were seized on by the king, by the statute of fugitives. These his losses doubled the love of the duke of Florence unto him. And indeed Sir Robert was a much meriting person on many accounts; being: 1. An excellent mathematician; especially for the practical part thereof in architecture: 2. An excellent physician; his Catholicon at this day finding good esteem amongst those of that faculty: 3. An excellent navigator; especially in the Western Seas.
Indeed long before his leaving of England, whilst as yet he was rectus in curiâ, well esteemed in queen Elizabeth's court, he sailed with three small ships to the isle of Trinidad, in which voyage he sunk and took nine Spanish ships, whereof one an armada of 600 tons.†
It must not be forgotten how he was so acceptable to Ferdinand the Second, emperor of Germany, that, by his letters patent, bearing date at Vienna, March the 9th, 1620, he conferred on him and his heirs the title of a Duke of the Sacred Empire. Understand it a title at large (as that of Count Arundel's) without the assignation of any proper place unto him. How long he survived this honour, it is to me unknown.‡
NICHOLAS OCKHAM was bred a Franciscan in Oxford, and became the eighteenth public lecturer of his convent in that university. He is highly praised by the writers of his own order for his learning, whom I do believe, notwithstanding Bale writeth so bitterly against him.§ He flourished anno 1320.
WILLIAM OCKHAM was born in this county, in a village so
Mr. Dugdale, in his Illustrations of Warwickshire, title Kenelworth Castle.
He died in a palace of the duke of Florence, in 1649. See a farther account of him in the "History of Leicestershire," vol. i. p. 539.-ED.
§ De Scriptoribus Britannicis, Cent. v. num. 17.