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 De Turcopapismo

(1,303 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
'Turcopapism' Matthew Sutcliffe Date: 1599, 1604 Original Language: Latin Description De Turcopapismo was first published in London in 1599, at 248 pages long, then in 1604 as a much larger work, 605 pages long, divided into four books (its full title is  De Turcopapismo, hoc est, de Turcarum & Papistrum aduersùs Christi ecclesiam & fidem coniuratione, eorúm; in religione & moribus consensione & similitudine, liber vnus. Eidem ... adiuncti sunt, de Turcopapistarum maledictis & calumnijs, aduersus Gulielmi Giffordi ... volumen ... quo…

George Sandys

(1,255 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
Biography George Sandys was born on 2 March 1578 in Bishopthorpe Palace, the official residence of the Archbishop of York, the youngest son of Archbishop Edwin Sandys (d. 1588). He probably attended St Peter’s School in York before matriculating at St Mary Hall, Oxford, on 5 December 1589. He soon transferred to Corpus Christi, where two older brothers had studied. However, before taking his degree, he moved to London’s Middle Temple, although there is no record that he was called to the bar. At …

 Foxe's Book of martyrs

(3,015 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
Foxe's Book of martyrsActes and monuments of these latter and perillous dayes, touching matters of the church;, Actes and monuments- John Foxe Date: 2nd English edition, 1570 Original Language: English Description Foxe’s  Actes and monuments (its full title is  Actes and monuments wherein are comprehended and described the great persecutions and horrible troubles that have been wrought and practiced by the Romish Prelates, speciallye in the Realme of England and Scotland from the peace of our Lord a thousande unto the tyme now present) appeared in four editions during his lif…

 A voyage into the Levant

(2,903 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
- Henry Blount Date: 1636 Original Language: English Description Using the pagination from the 1977 facsimile edition,  A voyage into the Levant by Henry Blount, identified as ‘HB, gentleman’ on the title page then in full at the end of the work, has 126 pages. (The full title is  A voyage into the Levant a briefe relation of a journey lately performed Master H. B, gentleman, from England by the way of Venice into Dalmatia, Sclavonia, Bosna, Hungary, Macedonia, Thessaly, Thrace, Rhodes and Egypt unto Gran Cairo: with particular observations c…

 The three ladies of London

(1,768 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
- Robert Wilson Date: 1584 Original Language: English Description Robert Wilson’s  The three ladies of London (in full,  A right excellent and famous comœdy called The three ladies of London. Wherein is notablie declared and set foorth, how by the meanes of Lucar, Loue and Conscience is so corrupted, that the one is married to Dissimulation, the other fraught with all abomination) was performed by Leicester’s Men during 1581. It was first published in 1584, and Wilson then revised it in 1592. Since then, various reprints and editions have appeared, several in the 21st century.  The 1584 …

Alexander Ross, Hugh Ross, Thomas Ross

(3,334 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
Biography Alexander Ross (d. 1654), Hugh Ross (d. 1649) and Thomas Ross (d. 1675) (also rendered Rosse), all members of the Scottish clan Ross, have each been identified as translator and editor of the first English version of the Qur’an, the 1649 translation of André du Ryer’s French translation. Alexander Ross’s authorship of the appendix, ‘A needful caveat’, which bears his name, is undisputed. However, responsibility for other sections of the publication, namely, a translator’s note to Christ…

 Two very notable commentaries

(1,448 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
Two very notable commentaries- John Shute Date: 1562 Original Language: English Description Two very notable commentaries is John Shute’s translation of two Italian texts (its full title is Two very notable commentaries the one of the originall of the Turcks and Empire of the house of Ottomanno, written by Andrewe Cambine, and the other of the warres of the Turcke against George Scanderbeg, prince of Epiro, and of the great victories obteyned by the sayd George, as well against the Emperour of Turkie, as other princes, and …

 The siege of Damascus

(2,438 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
- John Hughes Date: 1720 Original Language: English Description The siege of Damascus: A tragedy. As it is performed at the Theatre-Royal by His Majesty’s servants was first performed on 17 February 1720. It was well received, and it remained popular, with frequent revivals. There was a second imprint from the prompt-book during the same year, and since then reprints have regularly appeared. It was issued as a Best English Plays volume in 1750, and was included in Walter Scott’s  British drama collection in 1804. Hughes had actually completed the play in 1718, but the theatre m…

 Purchas his Pilgrimage

(2,775 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
- Samuel Purchas Date: 1613 Original Language: English Description The first edition of Purchas his Pilgrimage (in full,  Purchas his Pilgrimage, or Relations of the world and the religions observed in all ages and places discouered, from the Creation unto this present. In foure parts) was published in 1613. The second, enlarged edition appeared in 1614, the third in 1617 and the fourth in 1626. Each successively increases in size: 1613, 752 pages plus front and end matter; 1614, 627 pages plus front matter; 1617, 1031 pages plus front matter; 1626, 1047 pages plus front and end matter. Cop…

 The principall navigations

(5,308 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
- Richard Hakluyt Date: 1589 Original Language: English Description The first edition of Richard Hakluyt’s  Principall navigations (to give its full title,  The Principall Navigations, Voiages and Discoveries of the Engllish Nation Made by Sea or Over Land, to the Most Remote and Farthest Distant Quarters of the Earth at any Time within the Compasse of these 1500. Yeeres: deuided into three seuerall parts, according to the positions of the regions whereunto they were directed ... Whereunto is added the last most renowned English nauigation, round about the whole globe of the earth) wa…

William Painter

(576 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
Biography William Painter (also spelt Payntor) is said to have belonged to a Kentish family, although his background is obscure. He has been confused with another William Painter, who attended Cambridge University and later became Master of Sevenoaks School and an ordained deacon (he probably died in 1597). In his 1890 edition of Painter’s most important work, The palace of pleasure, Jacobs reprints Haslewood’s 1813 biographical sketch. This refers to Painter’s appointment as grammar-master at Sevenoaks, which induced Haslewood to assume that ‘he must h…

 ‘A needful caveat or admonition’

(1,489 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
- Alexander Ross, Hugh Ross, Thomas Ross Date: 1649 Original Language: English Description ‘A needful caveat or admonition for these that desire to know what use may be made of, or if there be danger in reading the Alcoran’ is the only section of the 1649 Qur’an that was not translated from the original French and to which authorship is attributed. It was written by Alexander Ross. It is a 14-page appendix, added after the main text had been printed. It was probably commissioned as a result of efforts to sup…

John Shute

(606 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
Biography There is no recorded information about John Shute’s family background and education. By 1557, he appears in records as a captain in the army of Lord Clinton, 1st Earl of Lincoln (1512-85), accompanying him to France. When Clinton became Constable of the Tower of London, Shute was appointed a master gunner. In 1569, Shute became a yeoman of the ordinance for life and also spent time working for Sir Francis Walsingham, Elizabeth I’s secretary of state, reviewing troops in the Netherlands,…

 A Relation Of Some Yeares Travaile Begunne Anon 1626

(1,748 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
Some yeares travels into divers parts of Asia and Afrique- Thomas Herbert Date: 1634 Original Language: English Description The first edition of A Relation Of Some Yeares Travaile, of 1634, was ‘about 250 pages’ long with 35 ‘copper plate engravings ... probably’ by the printer, W. Marshall, ‘based on Herbert’s own drawings’ ( Travels in Persia, ed. Foster, p. ix). This description is based on the 1638 enlarged edition. Herbert’s title indicates that the text is both a travel narrative and a description of various kingdoms in Africa and Asia, especi…

 Euangelium infantiæ : vel, Liber apocryphus de infantia Servatoris

(442 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
‘The Gospel of the infancy , or the apocryphal book of the infancy of the Saviour’ Henry Sike Date: 1697 Original Language: Latin (with Arabic) Description Euangelium infantiæ is a 100-page annotated Latin translation of an Arabic manuscript that had belonged to Jacobus Golius (d. 1667). Already in the process of translating the Qur’an, Sike would have been attracted to this work by references in the Qur’an to some of its contents. He did not himself versify the Latin translation, but when it was reproduced by J.A. Fabricius ( Codex apocryphus Novi Testamenti,  Hamburg, 1703), he divid…

 Paradise Lost: A poem in twelve books

(3,215 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
- John Milton Date: 1667, 1674 Original Language: English Description John Milton’s epic poem,  Paradise Lost, written in blank verse or ‘English heroic’, was first published in quarto in 1667. It was divided into ten books. The second edition in octavo followed in 1674, reorganised into 12 books (on the difference between the two editions, see R.G. Moyles,  The text of Paradise Lost, Toronto, 1985). The poem has 10,565 lines. Many editions and works of commentary have followed (see Miner, Moeck and Jablonski, Three centuries). Several poets have produced rhyming versions. It h…

 The Alcoran of Mahomet

(2,304 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
- Alexander Ross, Hugh Ross, Thomas Ross Date: 1649 Original Language: English Description The Alcoran of Mahomet (in full, The Alcoran of the Mahomet, Translated out of Arabick into French, by the Sieur du Ryer, Lord of Malezair, and Resident for the King of France at Alexandria and newly Englished for the satisfaction of all that desire to look into the Turkish Vanities. To which is prefixed, the life of Mahomet, the prophet of the Turks, and author of the Alcoran. With A needful caveat, or admonition, for them…


(3,366 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
- Thomas Hobbes Date: 1651 Original Language: English Description The first edition of  Leviathan, or the Matter, Forme & Power of a Commonwealth, Ecclestiasticall and Civill, was published for Hobbes at the Green Dragon in St Paul’s Churchyard by Andrew Crooke in 1651. This is known as the ‘Head edition’ due to the printer’s device (a head on a capital) on the title page. There were two versions of this edition, one printed on large-size paper (35 cm high) with a hand drawn red line in the margin, an expensive edition …

Three Anglican Unitarians: Stephen Nye, William Whiston and Samuel Clarke

(1,825 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
Date of Birth: Nye, 1648; Whiston, 9 December 1667; Clarke, 11 October 1675 Place of Birth: Nye, Rickling, Essex; Whiston, Norton juxta Twycrosse, Leicestershire; Clarke, Norwich Date of Death: Nye, 6 Jan 1719; Whiston, 22 August 1752; Clarke, 17 May 1729 Place of Death: Nye, Little Hormead, Hertfordshire; Whiston, Lyndon Hall, Rutland; Clarke, London Biography Stephen Nye, William Whiston and Samuel Clarke were all known during their lives as anti-Trinitarians or as Unitarians, even though they were ordained Church of England clergy. Stephen Nye, the eldest of the three, was…

Matthew Sutcliffe

(616 words)

Author(s): Bennett, Clinton
Biography Matthew Sutcliffe or Sutclyfe was born in Halifax, Yorkshire, in 1549 or 1550, the second of five sons born to John and Mary Sutcliffe. At the age of 15 he entered Peterhouse, Cambridge, moving to Trinity as a scholar in 1568. He graduated BA in 1571, MA in 1574. A minor fellow from 1572, he became a major fellow during 1574 and began to study law. By 1581, he was  lector mathematicus, an LLD and had probably been ordained, although one source thinks that this happened later (Troup, ‘Biographical notes’, p. 173). In 1582 he was admitted as a member of Doct…
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