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ILLIAM LAUD, archbishop of Canterbury, in the fixteenth century, was fon of William Laud, a clothier of Reading, in Berkshire, by Lucia his wife, widow of Mr. John Robinson, of Reading, and fifter of Sir William Web, lord-mayor of London in 1591.
He was born at Reading, October the feventh 1573, and educated in the free-school there; and in July 1589, went to Oxford; and in June the year following, was elected fcholar of St. John's college there, under the tuition of Dr. John Buckeridge.
In June 1593, he was made a fellow of that college; and on the firft of July, in the year following, took the degree of batchelor of arts; and, on June the twenty fixth 1598, that of master of arts, being grammar reader that year. January the fourth 1609, he was ordained deacon; and on April the fifth 1601, prieft: both which orders were conferred upon upon him by Dr. Young, bishop of Rochefter.
In 1602, he read a divinity lecture in St. John's college, which was maintained by Mrs. Mag. May the fourth 1603, he was chofen proctor of the univerfity of Oxford; and September the third following was made chaplain to Charles Blound earl of Devonfhire. July the fixth 1604, he took the degree of batchelor of divinity.
December the twenty-fixth 1605, he married the earl of Devonfhire to Penelope, then wife of Robert, lord Rich; which action afterwards gave him the most fenfible regret.
October the twenty-firft 1606, he preached a fermon at St. Mary's at Oxford, for which he was questioned by Dr. Airy, .the vice-chancellor. November the thirteenth 1607, he was inducted into the vicarage of Stanford, in Northamptonfhire; and in April the year following, was made chaplain to Dr. Richard Neile, then bishop of Rochester. September the feventeenth 1609, he preached his first fermon before the king at Theobald's; and in October following, exchanged his advow
fon of North-Kilworth, for the rectory of
Finding the air of Cuckftone prejudicial to him, he exchanged it for the living of Norton; into which he was inducted in November 1610, by proxy.
About Christmas the fame year, the lordchancellor Ellefmere complained against him to the king, at the inftigation of Dr. Abbot, archbishop elect. May the tenth 1611, he was elected prefident of St. John's college; but his election being called in queftion, it was at laft confirmed by his majefty. The fame. year, on the third of November, he was fworn the king's chaplain. April the eighteenth 1601, Dr. Neile, then bishop of Lincoln, gave him the prebend of Bugden; and December the first 1615, conferred upon him the archdeaconry of Huntingdon. In November 1616, he was advanced by his majesty to the deanery of Gloucefter, and attended him towards Scotland, from whence he returned a little before him in 1617..
He refigned his living of Weft-Tilbury, and was inducted into that of Ibstock, in Leicefterfhire, on the fecond of Auguft 1617. January the twenty-fecond 1620, he was inftalled prebendary of Westminster, having had the advowson of it ten years the November beВ 2 fore.
fore. June the twenty-ninth 1621, the king gave him the grant of the bishopric of St. Da vid's; to which fee he was chofen on the tenth of C&tober following, and refigned the prefidentship of St. John's college on the feventeenth of November.
Shortly after, he contracted an intimacy with George Villiers, then marquifs of Buckingham; before whom, and the countess his mother, he had a conference with Fisher the jefuit, which confirmed their attachment to the proteftant religion. January the twentyfirst 1622-3, he was inducted into the rectory of Creeke, in Northamptonshire, which he held in commendam with his bifhopric.
In October 1623, he incurred the difpleafure of Dr. John Williams, bishop of Lincoln, then lord keeper of the great feal. April the feventeenth 1624, he became deputy-clerk of the clofet to king Charles I. for Dr. Neile, then bishop of Durham, who was indisposed, and executed that office till the first of May following.
February the fecond 1625-6, he officiated at the coronation of his majefty, as dean of Weftminster; the king having commanded bishop Williams, the dean of that church, not to be present at that ceremony. June the twentieth 1626, he was nominated to the fee of Bath and Wells; to which he was elected on the fixteenth of Auguft. In the beginning of October, the fame year, he was made dean of the chapel royal; and April the twenty-ninth
1627, was made privy-counsellor to his majefly.
Ón the fifteenth of July 1628, he was tranflated to the bishopric of London; and, about this time, his ancient acquaintance, Sir James Whitelocke, a judge, ufed to fay of him, that he was too full of fire, though a just and good man; and, that his want of experience in ftate-matters, and his too much zeal for the church, and heat, if he proceeded in the way he was then in, would fet this nation on fire.
April the twelfth 1630, he was elected chanceltor of the univerfity of Oxford. In May 1633, he attended the king into Scotland; and, June the fifteenth, was fworn counsellor of that kingdom. Auguft the fourth, the fame year, upon the death of archbishop Abbot, the king refolved to advance him to the fee of Canterbury.
The fame morning a perfon came to him, and offered him to be a cardinal. This offer he rejected, faying, that fomething dwelt within him which would not fuffer that, till Rome was other than it was.
September the nineteenth, he was tranflatedto the archbishopric of Canterbury. May the thirteenth he received the feals of his being chofen chancellor of the univerfity of Dublin in Ireland, to which office he had been elected on the fourteenth of September 1633. March the fourteenth 1634.5, he was named one of the commiffioners of the exchequer, upon the