Page images
PDF
EPUB
[blocks in formation]

though Scaliger be pleased to say hypocritically of Lucan, "non canit, sed latrat ; " yet others (under the rose) as judicious, allow him an excellent poet, and losing no lustre by Mr. May's translation.

Some disgust at court was given to, or taken by him (as some will have it), because his bays were not gilded richly enough, and his verses rewarded by king Charles according to his expectation.

He afterwards wrote a history of this state, in the beginning of our civil wars; and, being myself (for my many writings) one under the authority of the tongues and pens of others, it ill becometh me to pass any censure on his performance therein. Sure I am, if he were a biassed and partial writer, he lieth buried near a good and true historian indeed (I mean Mr. Camden) in the west side of the north isle of Westminster Abbey, dying suddenly in the night, anno Domini 1652, in the 55th year of his age.

John Selden, son of Thomas Selden, was born at Salvington, within the parish of East Terring, in this county; and the ensuing inscriptions, being built three stories high, will acquaint us with his age and parentage.

The lowest is written on the top stone of his sepulchre, being five feet deep in the ground.

“ Hic inhumatur corpus JOHANNIS SELDENI." The second is inscribed on a blue marble stone, lying flat on the floor in the Temple church :

“J. SELDENUS, J. C, hic situs est." The third is graven on the wall, in a monument of white and black marble :

“JOHANNES SELDENUS " Heic juxta situs : natus est decimo sexto Decembris molxxxiv. Salvintoniæ,

qui viculus est Terring Occidentalis in Sussexiæ maritimis, parentibus honestis, Joanne Seldeno Thomæ filio è quinis secundo, anno mdXlI. nato, et Margareta filiâ et hærede unicâ Thomæ Bakeri de Rushington, ex Equestri Bakerorum in Cantio familiâ ; filius è cunis superstitum unicus, ætatis fere Lxx. annorum. Denatus est ultimo die Novembris, anno Salutis reparatæ MDCLIV. ; per quam expectat heic resurrectionem fælicem."

He was first bred in Hart Hall in Oxford, then in the Inner Temple in London, where he attained great skill in the law, and all antiquity.* His learning did not live in a lane, but traced all the atitude of arts and languages, as appears by the many and various works he hath written, which people affect as they stand affected either by their fancy or function. Laygentlemen prefer his “ Titles of Honour;" lawyers, his “Mare Clausum ;" antiquaries, his “ Spicilegium ad Édmearum;" clergymen like best his book “ de Diis Syris,” and worst his “ History of Tithes."

• Mr. Leigh,

Of Religious and Learned Men," p. 100.

Indeed, the body of that history did not more offend them in point of profit, than the preface thereof in matter of credit ; such his insolent reflections therein. Nor will it be impertinent here to insert a passage of consequence, which I find in a modern author of good intelligence:

“ Master Selden was no friend to bishops, as constituted and established in the Church of England. For, being called before the High Commission, and forced to make a public acknowledgment of his error and offence given unto the Church, in publishing a book entitled 'The History of Tithes,' it sunk so deep into his stomach, that he never after affected the men, or cordially approved the calling, though many ways were tried to gain him to the church's interest.”*

To this his public acknowledgment I can say nothing. This I know, that a friend of mine, employed on a fair and honest account to peruse the library of archbishop Laud, found therein a large letter written to him, and subscribed with master Selden's own hand, wherein he used many expressions of his contrition, much condemning himself for setting forth a book of that nature; which letter my aforesaid friend gave back again to master Selden, to whom (I assure you) it was no unacceptable present.

But that which afterwards entituled him to a general popularity, was his pleading with master Noy for a “ Habeas Corpus of such gentlemen which were imprisoned for the refusal of the loan. Hence was it that most men beheld master Selden as their common council, and themselves as his clients, conceiving that the liberty of all English subjects was concerned in that suit. He had very many ancient coins of the Roman emperors, and more modern ones of our English kings; dying exceeding wealthy; insomuch that naked charity both wished and hoped for a good new coat at his hands, but missed of its expectation. The archbishop of Armagh (to whom he was always most civil and respectful) preached his funeral sermon. The large library which he left is a jewel indeed; and this jewel long looked to be put into a new cabinet, when one. of the inns of court (on which it was bestowed) should be pleased to provide a fair and firmt fabric to receive it; but now is reposited (Bodly within a Bodly) in the matchless library of Oxford.

ROMISH EXILE WRITERS. GREGORY MARTINE was born at Mayfield in this county; bred (contemporary with Campian) fellow of Saint John's College in Oxford. I He was chosen by Thomas duke of Norfolk to be tutor to his son Philip earl of Arundel ; and well discharged his trust therein.

* Extraneus Vapulans, made by an Alter-idem to Doctor Heylin, p. 167.

Mr. Spencer, keeper of the library at Jesus' College.
Pits, de Angliæ Scriptoribus, anno 1582.

[blocks in formation]

وو

Going afterwards beyond the seas, and living some time in Douay and Rome, he fixed at last in the English College at Rheims, where he was professor of divinity. As he was papal both in his christian and surname, so was he deeply dyed with that religion, writing many books in the defence thereof, and one most remarkable, intituled, “ A Detection of the Corruptions in the English Bible.” Athaliah did craftily cry out first, “ Treason, Treason," when she was the greatest traitor herself ;* and this Martine, conscious of the many and foul corruptions in his own Rhenish translation, politicly complained of the faults in our English Bible. He died the 28th of October 1582; and lieth buried in the parish church of St. Stephen's in Rheims.

THOMAS STAPLETON was born at Henfield in this county, as Pits, his familiar friend, doth inform us.† Object not that it is written on his tomb at Saint Peter's at Louvain,

“ Thomas Stapletonus, qui Cicestriæ in Angliâ nobili loco natus;" Chichester there not being taken restrictively for the city, but extensively for the diocese. His bare surname is sufficient proof of his gentle birth.

Those of his own persuasion please themselves much to observe, that this Thomas was born in the same year and month wherein Sir Thomas More was beheaded, as if Divine Providence had purposely dropped from heaven an acorn in place of the oak that was felled.

He was bred in New College in Oxford, and then by the bishop (Christopherson, as I take it) made canon of Chichester, which he quickly quitted in the first of queen Elizabeth. Flying beyond the seas, he first fixed at Douay, and there commendably performed the office of catechist, which he discharged to his commendation. I

Reader, pardon an excursion caused by just grief and anger. Many, counting themselves Protestants in England, do slight and neglect that ordinance of God, by which their religion was set up, and gave credit to it in the first Reformation ; I mean, CatechISING. Did not our Saviour say even to Saint Peter himself, “Feed my lambs, feed my sheep."$ And why lambs first? 1. Because they were lambs before they were sheep. 2. Because, if they be not fed whilst lambs, they could never be sheep. 3. Because sheep can in some sort feed themselves; but lambs (such their tenderness) must either be fed or famished. Our Stapleton was excellent at this lamb-feeding, from which office he was afterwards preferred king's professor of divinity in Louvain, and was for forty years together “ Dominus ad oppositum,” the undertaker-general against all Protestants. Dr. Whitacre, professor in Cambridge, experimentally professed, * 2 Kings xi. 14.

† Page 796. [ See his epitaph in Pits.

Ś John xxi. 15, 16.

that Bellarmine was the fairer and Stapleton the shrewder adversary..

His preferment (in mine eye) was not proportionable to his merit, being no more than canon and master of a college in Louvain. Many more admired that Stapleton missed, than that Allen got, a cardinal's cap, equalling him in strictness of life, exceeding him in gentility of birth, and painfulness of writing for the Romish cause. Such consider not that Stapleton's ability was drowned with Allen's activity; and one grain of the statesman is too heavy for a pound of the student; practical policy, in all ages, beating pen-pains out of distance in the race of preferment. Stapleton

died, and was buried in St. Peter's in Louvain, anno 1598.

BENEFACTORS TO THE PUBLIC. Reader, let not the want of intelligence in me be mis-interpreted want of munificence in the natives of this county, finding but one most eminent, and him since the Reformation.

RICHARD SACKVILL, eldest son of Thomas earl of Dorset, by Cecily his wife, had his barony (if not his birth) at Buckhúrst in this county: a gentleman of singular learning in many sciences and languages; so that the Greek and Latin were as familiar unto him as his own native tongue.* Succeeding his father in that earldom, he enjoyed his dignity not a full year, as lacking seven weeks thereof. Yet is there no fear that the shortness of his earlship will make his name forgotten, having erected a monument which will perpetuate his memory to all posterity; viz. a college at East Grinstead in this county, for one-and-thirty poor people to serve Almighty God therein; endowing the same with three hundred and thirty pounds a-year out of all his land in England. By Margaret sole daughter to Thomas duke of Norfolk, he left two surviving sons, Richard and Edward, both persons of admirable parts (successively earls after him); and, dying 1608, was buried at Withiham in this county.

MEMORABLE PERSONS. John, HENRY, and Thomas PALMER, sons unto Edward Palmer, esquire, of Angmarine in this county; a town so called, as I am informed, from aqua marina, or the water of the sea, being within two miles thereof, and probably, in former ages, nearer thereunto.

Their mother was daughter to one Clement of Wales, who, for his effectual assisting of king Henry the Seventh, from his landing at Milford-haven until the Battle of Bosworth, was brought by him into England, and rewarded with good lands in this and the next county.

Mills, in Catalogue of Honour, p. 418.

MEMORABLE PERSONS-GENTRY.

263

It happened that their mother, being a full fortnight inclusively in labour, was on Whitsunday delivered of John her eldest son, on the Sunday following of Henry her second son, and the Sunday next after of Thomas her third son. This is that which is commonly called superfætation (usual in other creatures, but rare in women); the cause whereof we leave to the disquisition of physicians.

These three were knighted for their valour by king Henry the Eighth (who never laid his sword on his shoulders who was not a man); so that they appear as remarkable in their success as their nativities. The truth hereof needeth no other attestation than the general and uncontrolled tradition of their no less worshipful than numerous posterity in Sussex and Kent; amongst whom I instance in Sir Roger Palmer, aged eighty years, lately deceased, and cofferer to our late king, averring to me the faith hereof on his reputation. The exact date of these knights' deaths I cannot attain.

LEONARD MASCALL, of Plumstead in this county, being much delighted in gardening (man's original vocation), was the first who brought over into England, from beyond the seas, carps and pippins; the one well cooked delicious, the other cordial and restorative. For the proof hereof, we have his own word and witness ;* and did it, it seems, about the fifth year of the reign of king Henry the Eighth, anno Domini 1514. The time of his death is to me unknown.

William WITHERS, born at Walsham in this county, being a child of eleven years old, did, anno 1581, lie in a trance ten days without any sustenance: and at last coming to himself, uttered to the standers-by many strange speeches, inveighing against pride, covetousness, and other outrageous sins. But let the credit thereof be charged on my author's account.f

NAMES OF THE GENTRY OF THIS COUNTY, RETURNED BY THE COMMISSIONERS IN THE TWELFTH YEAR OF KING HENRY

THE SIXTI.

S. Bishop of Chichester, and John Earl of Huntington ;

William St. John, and William Sidney, (knights of the

shire);— Commissioners to take the oaths. Abbatis de Bello.

Rich. Dalynrigge, arm. Tho. de Echingham, mil. Edw. Sakevyle, arm. Hugon. Halsham, mil.

Will. Ryman, arm. Rog. Ferrys, mil.

Rog. Gunter, arm, Tho. Leukenore, mil.

Rob. Lyle. Rob. Roos, mil.

Johan. Bartelet. Hen. Husee, mil.

Will. Ernele. • In his book of Fishing, Fowling, and Planting. + Holinshed, in his Chronicle, p. 1315.

« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »