The General Biographical Dictionary, Vol. 9: Containing an Historical and Critical Account of the Lives and Writings of the Most Eminent Persons in Every Nation; Particularly the British and Irish; From the Earliest Accounts to the Present Time
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Excerpt from The General Biographical Dictionary, Vol. 9: Containing an Historical and Critical Account of the Lives and Writings of the Most Eminent Persons in Every Nation; Particularly the British and Irish; From the Earliest Accounts to the Present Time
Bourne, in Lincolnshire, Sept. 15, 1520, and was first edu osted at the grammar-school at Grantham, whence he afterwards removed to Stamford. On May 27, 1535, he entered of St. John's-college, Cambridge, and was no less distinguished by the regularity of his life, than by an nu commonly diligent application to his studies. Finding several persons of eminent talents at that time students there, this inspired him with such a thirst for learning, that he made an agreement with the bell-ringer to call him up at fouro'clock every morning, and this sedentary life brought on a humour in his legs, which, although removed with some difficulty, his physicians considered as one of the principal causes of that inveterate gout with which he was tormented in the latter part of his life. Dr. Nicholas Medcalfe, who was at this time master of the college, was his principal patron, and frequently gave him money to encourage him, but the strong passion he had to excel his contemporaries, and to distinguish himself early in the university, was the chief spur to his endeavours. At six teen he read a sophistry lecture, and at nineteen a Greek lecture, not for any pay or salary, but as a gentleman for his pleasure, and this at a time when there were but few who were masters of Greek, either In that college or in the university. But though he applied himself with so much assiduity to Greek literature, he laid up at the same time a considerable stock of general knowledge, having then no particular predilection 60 any single branch of science.
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