1812 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Sir William Vaughan

Alexander Chalmers, in General Biographical Dictionary (1812-17) 30:267-68.



WILLIAM VAUGHAN, a Latin poet and moral writer, was the son of Walter Vaughan, of the Golden Grove, in Carmarthenshire, esq. and younger brother to sir John Vaughan, first earl of Carbery, and patron of bishop Jeremy Taylor. He was born at Golden Grove in 1577, and became a commoner of Jesus college, Oxford, in 1591, where he took his degrees in arts. The fruits of his scholastic attainments began to appear uncommonly early, as he was only in his fifteenth year when be prepared for printing an easy paraphrase of Persius in English and Latin; and his publications which appeared in 1597 and 1598 bespeak a prematurity of genius. After taking his degrees in arts, he applied to the study of the law, but before he proceeded in that faculty, set out on his travels, and at Vienna performed the necessary exercises for a doctor's degree, in which he was incorporated at Oxford in 1605. He afterwards appears to have meditated a settlement in Cambriol, Newfoundland, where he was living in 1628, but the time of his death is not mentioned. His Latin poems are, 1. the Song of Solomon, and some of the Psalms, translated, Lond. 1597. 2. Varia Poemata de Sphaerarum ordine, 1589, 8vo. 3. Poemeta continent; Encom. Roberti Comitis Essex, 1598, 8vo. 4. Cambrensium Caroleia, &c. a poem on the nuptials of Charles I. 1625 or 1630, 8vo. His English works are, The Golden Grove, moralized in three books, 1608, 8vo, which seems to have suggested to bishop Taylor the title of one of his most popular works; and The Golden Fleece, 1626, 4to: both works of the moral kind, and replete with observations on the manners of the times, and the principal personages. A particular account of both is given in the [British] Bibliographer, vol. II. by which it appears that Vaughan had translated a part of Boccalini's Advices from Parnassus, and had published Circles called the Spirit of Detraction, conjured and convicted, and Commentaries upon, and paraphrase of, Juvenal and Persius, all in early life.