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 The Life and Death of Mahomet

(2,590 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
- The Life and Death of Mahomet Date: 1637 Original Language: English Description The Life and Death of Mahomet (in full  The Life and Death of Mahomet, The Conquest of Spaine together with the Rysing and Ruine of the Sarazen Empire), published in 1637, was attributed to the explorer and soldier Sir Walter Raleigh (c. 1551-1618), although he almost certainly did not write it. A number of other texts were also spuriously attributed to him. The work is 273 pages long, although there are only 15 full lines of print on each page. It carries a portrait of Sir Walter Raleig…

Andrew Marvell

(1,054 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
Biography Andrew Marvell was born at Winestead, East Yorkshire, on 31 March 1621. His father, also Andrew Marvell, became lecturer (indicating his Puritan loyalty) at Holy Trinity Church, Kingston upon Hull, and Master of Charterhouse Hospital, a charitable foundation, in 1624. Marvel attended Hull Grammar School (there is no actual record, though this is generally accepted) then Trinity College, Cambridge, from the early age of 12. He graduated BA in 1638, and proceeded to study for his MA, but …

Thomas Chubb

(892 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
Date of Birth: 26 September 1679 Place of Birth: East Harnham, Salisbury Date of Death: 8 February 1747 Place of Death: In or near Salisbury BiographyThomas Chubb was born on 29 September 1679 at East Harnham, Salisbury. His father, Henry Chubb, died in 1688, and by 1694 Chubb was apprentice to a glove-maker, though poor eye-sight led him to change his occupation in 1705 to that of assistant to a tallow-chandler. He may briefly have attended a local charity school, but he makes no reference to this in his autobiographical sketch ( Posthumous works, vol. 1, pp. ii-viii) and appears to ha…

 Sermon 14. Of the impiety and imposture of paganism and Mahometanism

(1,789 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
- Isaac Barrow Date: Uncertain; probably 1670s Original Language: English Description It is not known precisely when Isaac Barrow preached this sermon, though it was probably in Trinity College chapel in the early 1670s as part of his series of sermons on the Creed. Similar content, at times word for word the same, is found in his ‘Exposition of the Creed’, written in 1669, and this is possibly the reason why this latter work was omitted from the first edition of Barrow’s Works (I. Simon,  Three Restoration divines, Paris, 1967, p. 306). The ‘Exposition’ was published separately i…

 Court correspondence

(1,861 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
- James I Date: 1603-25 Original Language: Latin Description James I corresponded with a number of Muslim rulers, especially with the Ottoman sultan and with the Mughal emperor. He initiated the latter correspondence, while the former had developed under his predecessor Elizabeth I, during whose reign the Levant Company had been formed (1581) and an ambassador appointed to Istanbul (1583). Early in his reign, James received letters from the Ottoman sultan extending friendship. These are archived in State…

Richard Hakluyt

(1,629 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
Biography Richard Hakluyt was born in London, probably in 1552. His father, also Richard Hakluyt, who died in 1557, was a member of the Skinners’ Company. The name Hakluyt is thought to be of Welsh origin, although Dutch has also been suggested (Laughton, ‘Hakluyt, Richard’, p. 11; variant spellings include Hackellet, Hackeluite, Hackeluett and Hacluit). The younger Richard (also known as Hakluyt the Preacher) was able to attend the prestigious Westminster School from 1564 as a Queen’s scholar. I…

Henry Smith

(667 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
Date of Birth: Probably 1560 Place of Birth: Withcote, Leicestershire Date of Death: 4 July 1591 Place of Death: Husbands Bosworth, Leicestershire Biography Henry Smith was born into a wealthy Leicestershire family, probably in 1560. In 1573, he became a fellow-commoner at Queens’ College, Cambridge, but soon left to study privately with Richard Greenham (1535-94), rector of Dry Drayton, Cambridgeshire, who instructed him in Puritan theology. By 1576, Smith was a student at Lincoln College, Oxford, where he gained his…

 God's arrow against atheists

(1,996 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
God's arrow against atheists- Henry Smith Date: 1593 Original Language: English Description Although it is included in a book of sermons, God’s arrow against atheists is really an apologetic tract in which Henry Smith set out to prove that there is a God who should be worshipped. It was first published as a pamphlet in 1593, and it later appeared in Smith’s collected sermons (1657, vol. 2). In the 1866 edition, it is the 24th section (pp. 333-418) with six chapters. Chapter 1 refutes ‘atheism’, chapter 2 argues that Christianity is the only true religion, chapter 3 co…

Giles Fletcher the Elder

(808 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
Biography Giles Fletcher was baptised on 26 November 1546 in Watford, Hertfordshire, and was therefore probably born in late October or early November (Cooper, ‘Fletcher, Giles’, p. 299, gives 1549 as his year of birth). Since his father, Richard Fletcher (d. 1586), was vicar of Bishop’s Stortford at the time, he is likely to have been born there. He is also known as Giles Fletcher the Elder to distinguish him from his son, Giles the Younger (d. 1623), who became a poet of note, as did his other …

 The Journal of Sir Thomas Roe

(2,041 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
- Thomas Roe Date: 1619 Original Language: English DescriptionThe Journal of Sir Thomas Roe (its title in full is The journal of Sir Thomas Roe: Embassador from His Majesty King James the First of England to Ichan Guire, the mighty Emperor of India, commonly call’d the Great Mogul: containing an account of his voyage to that country and his observations there) was not published in full until the 19th century. Samuel Purchas included about a third of it in Purchas his pilgrimes (1625), together with some letters, but the complete text and additional letters were not publishe…

 The palace of pleasure

(2,175 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
The palace of pleasureThe palace of pleasure beautified, adorned and well furnished, with pleasaunt histories and excellent nouelles, selected out of diuers good and commendable authors William Painter Date: 1566, 1567, 1575 (3 volumes) Original Language: English Description The palace of pleasure is a three-volume work containing a total of 101 tales, in novella form, translated from a variety of Greek, Latin, French and Italian sources. Vol. 1 was published in 1566, with 60 novellas and was dedicated to the Earl of Warwick, vol. 2 ap…

 Islam in the writings of Stephen Nye, William Whiston and Samuel Clarke

(3,458 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
- Three Anglican Unitarians: Stephen Nye, William Whiston and Samuel Clarke Date: 1687-1749 Original Language: English DescriptionStephen’s Nye’s  A brief history of the Unitarians, called also Socinians, in four letters written to a friend (1687) is 167 pages long. It contains two passages referring to Islam. First, in its discussion of Christian states that permit profession of Unitarianism, it lists some parts of Transylvania and the Netherlands where liberty of conscience is recognised as part of ‘civil rights’, and also ‘M…

Simon Ockley

(649 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
Date of Birth: 1678 Place of Birth: Exeter Date of Death: 9 August 1720 Place of Death: Swavesey, Cambridgeshire BiographySimon Ockley was born in Exeter in 1678 to a family from Norfolk. He graduated from Cambridge in 1698, and at about that time he began lecturing in Hebrew. Ordained deacon at Norwich, he was appointed curate at Swavesey, Cambridgshire. When he was ordained priest at Ely in 1705, he succeeded to the living of Swavesey as vicar. He married in about 1701 and between 1702 and 1708 had six children, of whom four survived childhood.  He was encouraged by Humphrey Prideaux t…

 Here begynneth a lytell treatyse of the turkes lawe called Alcaron. And also it speketh of Machamet the nygromancer

(1,739 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
Here begynneth a lytell treatise- Wynkyn de Worde Date: Probably 1515 or 1519 Original Language: English Description Probably published in 1515, this work is an illustrated tract of 12 pages on six leaves, including what functions as a title page and which reads ‘Here begynneth a lytell treatyse of the turkes lawe called Alcoran. And also it talketh of Machamet the Nygromancer’, really the first two sentences rather than a title. The text is almost entirely reproduced from Wynkyn de Worde’s edition of the Travels of John Mandeville, which he had first printed with 72 woodcuts in 1…

 Correspondence with Sultan Aḥmad al-Manṣūr al-Saʿdī

(2,791 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
- Elizabeth I Date: 1579-1603 Original Language: Unspecified Description Beginning in 1579 and continuing until the year in which both rulers died, Elizabeth I and Sultan Aḥmad al-Manṣūr al-Saʿdī of Morocco (r. 1578-1603) exchanged letters and diplomatic missions, and engaged in mutually beneficial trade. Their letters are mainly found in the National Archives at Kew (State Papers, Foreign 71, and Royal Letters, 102 sub series Barbary) and the British Library (Cotton, Nero B Viii and Xii). Many are reproduced in de Castries, Les sources inédites de l’histoire du Maroc, while a num…

 An universal history

(1,006 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
- George Sale Date: 1736-68 Original Language: English Description An universal history, from the earliest account of time compiled from original writers. By the authors of the antient part appeared in 65 volumes between 1736 and 1768. Vols 22-65 add  The modern part of to the title. Although George Sale died in 1736, his name remained associated with the series alongside his fellow editors George Psalmanazar, Archibald Bower, George Shelvocke, John Campbell, and John Swinton. In fact, the series was frequently referred to as ‘Sale's  Universal history’ (Morrison, ‘Book note’,…

 A compleat history of the Turks

(978 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
- David Jones Date: 1701-19 Original Language: English DescriptionDavid Jones’  A compleat history of the Turks: from their origin in the year 755, to the year 1701. Containing the rise, growth, and decay of that empire, in its respective periods, under their several kings and emperors. ... With the life of their prophet Mahomet first appeared in two volumes in 1701. Following the pattern established by Richard Knolles (d. 1610) in his  Generall historie of the Turkes (1603), Jones gave a chapter to the reign of each sultan. In fact, in the parts up to the 17th century, Jones more or les…

 The history of the decline and fall of the Roman Empire

(4,511 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
- Edward Gibbon Date: 1776-89 Original Language: English DescriptionEdward Gibbon’s  The history of the decline and fall of the Roman Empire was published in six volumes between 1776 and 1788, with revised editions of the first three volumes appearing between 1776 and 1789. The first edition of volume 1 (1776) was followed by five revisions before the last three volumes were published (1788). By then, two editions (1781 and 1787) of volumes 2 and 3 were in print. During 1789, the sixth edition of volume 1 and a thi…

 Miscellanea aurea: Or the golden medley

(2,821 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
- Miscellanea Aurea: Or the Golden Medley Date: 1720 Original Language: English Description Miscellanea aurea: Or the golden medley is a collection of texts, including poetry and travel narratives, chosen by an anonymous compiler for the entertainment of readers and especially the Duke of Buckingham, to whom the book is dedicated (pp. A2-A4). Items, described as ‘Letters’, are mostly anonymous, although among those with attributions are the opening letter (pp. 1-34) signed Carlo Amontesocio, a pseudonym for the h…

Chapter 7. Christian perceptions of Muḥammad

(10,370 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
Introduction: Setting the scene Christian writings about Muḥammad during the first thousand years of Christian-Muslim encounter were almost all negative and hostile, presenting an attitude of virtually unrelieved antipathy. Tropes and legends developed that continued to shape Christian ideas about Muḥammad well into the early modern period, some of them still lurking in Christian writings even today. Major foci were Muḥammad’s moral conduct, how he spread Islam, how he allegedly compiled the Qur’an,…
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