1769 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Sir John Denham

James Granger, in Biographical History of England (1769; 1824) 5:246.



Sir John Denham, the only son of Sir John Denham, of Little Horsley, in Essex, was born in Dublin, in the year 1615, where his father was chief baron of the Exchequer, and one of the lords justices of Ireland. He was early sent to Oxford for education, but was more addicted to cards and dice than to study. He afterward removed to Lincoln's Inn, where he studied the common law with sufficient appearance of application; yet did not lose his propensity for gambling; and in consequence was very often plundered by sharpers. After his father's decease he lost several thousand pounds. He was made governor of Farnham Castle for the king, which he soon resigned, and returned to Oxford, where, in 1643, he published COOPER'S HILL. He was employed by the royal family, and in 1648 conveyed James, duke of York, into France. At the restoration, he was made surveyor of the king's buildings, and dignified with the order of the Bath. Ob. 1668.