1819 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Samuel Daniel

Thomas Campbell, in Specimens of the British Poets (1819; 1845) 79-80.



SAMUEL DANIEL was the son of a music-master and was born at Taunton, in Somersetshire. He was patronized and probably maintained at Oxford, by the noble family of Pembroke. At the age of twenty-three he translated Paulus Jovius's Discourse of Rare Invention. He was afterwards tutor to the accomplished and spirited Lady Anne Clifford, daughter to the Earl of Cumberland, who raised a monument to his memory on which she recorded that she had been his pupil. At the death of Spenser he furnished, as a voluntary laureat, several masks and pageants for the court, but retired, with apparent mortification, before the transcendent favour of Jonson.

While composing his dramas he lived in Old-street, St. Luke's, which was at that time thought retirement from London; but at times he frequented the city, and had the honour of ranking Shakespeare and Selden among his friends. In his old age he turned husbandman, and closed his days at a farm in Somersetshire.