William Tooke.

A new and general biographical dictionary; 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 of time to the present period .. (Volume 9) online

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Online LibraryWilliam TookeA new and general biographical dictionary; 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 of time to the present period .. (Volume 9) → online text (page 29 of 48)
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his quotations had been doubted by feveral people ; and
the falfehood of them was foon after demonftiated by Dr.
Douglas, in a pamphlet, intituled, " Milton vindicated from the
Charge of Plaqiarifm brought ae-ainil him by Lauder, and

d5 _ DO * . \ .

Lander himfelf convicted of forgeries and grofs impofitions on
the public. In a Letter humbly addreffed to the Right
Horiourable the Earl of Bath, 1751," 8vo. The appearance
of this detection overwhelmed Lauder with confalion. He
fubfcribed a confeiTion, dictated by a learned friend, wherein
he ingenuoufly acknowledged his offence, which he profefied
to have been occasioned by the injury he Siad received from the
difappointment of his expectations of profit from the publica-
tion of " Johnfton's Pfahns." This misfortune he afr.ribed
to a couplet in Mr. Pope's Dunciad, book iv. vcr. iii. and
thence originated his rancour againft Milton. He after-
wards imputed his conducl to other motives, abufcd the few


L A U N O I. 251

friends who continued to countenance him -, and, finding that
his own character was noi to be retrieved, quitted the kingdom,
ard went to Barbadoes, where he iome time taught a khool.
His behaviour there was mean and defpicable ; and he palled
the remainder of ins life in univerfal contempt. " He died,"
favs Mr. Nichols, *' feme time about the year 1771, as my
friend Mr. P v ced was informed by the gentleman who read the
funeral-fervice over him."

LAUGIER (MARK ANTHONY), born at Manofque in
Provence in 1713 ; was, at rirft, a jefuit, but, leaving them in
difcontent, he turned his attention to letters and the arts. He
wrote a good tc Eifay on Architecture ;" and his " Hiftoryof
the Republic of Venice" entitles him to no mean rank among
the biftoiical writers of his country. He wrote alfo the
" Hiflory of the Peace of Belgrade'' with much elegance and
perfpicuity. He died in 1769, in great reputation.

LAVIR1TTE (Louis ANNE), a phyfician and very in-
genious man. He tranilated many books from the Englifh
into French, arid in particular " Maclaurin's Newton."
He wrote alfo " Original Obfei rations on the Hydrophobia,*'
and did in i 759.

LAUNAY (FRANCIS DE), a celebrated French advocate.
He wrote a learned " Commentary oi\ the Inftitutes Coutu-
mieres of Antonv Lav lei," and " Remarks on the Roman
and French Syftem of Juriff rudence.' ; He was highly efteemed
in his profeiiion, and died in 1693.

LAUNOi (JOHN DE, or LAUNOIUS), a moft learned
man, and a moft voluminous writer, was born about 1601,
and took a doctor of divinity's degree in 1636. He made a
journey to Rome, for the lake ot enlarging his ideas and
knowledge ; and there procured the eiteem- and friendihip of
Leo Allatius and Holitcnius. Upon his return to Paris, he
(hut himfelf up, and fell to reading all forts of books, and
making collections, upon all lubjecls as hard as he could.
The conferences, he held at his houie every Monday, were
a kind of academic Ichool, where the learned met to inform
and exercife each other. The difcipline of the church, and
particularly the rights of the Gallican church, were common
topics with them. They attacked vehemently Ultramcntain
prefenfions ; as they did legends and canonizations. The
apoftoiate of St. Dionyfius the Areopagite into France, the
voyage of Lazarus and Mary Magdalene into Provence, and
a multitude of other traditions and faints, were all profcribed
at this tribunal. Launoi was called the banilher of faints :
and Voltaire records a curare ot St. Euftachius, as faying,
" i always make the moft profound obeitance to Mr. Lau-
noi, for tear he Ihould take from me my St. Euftachius,"
- Nothing

252 L A U R.

Nothing could (often the critical rigour of this fage doctor*
he not only did not feek, hut he even refufed, benefices. He
Jived always in Simplicity and poverty. He died in 1678, after
having publifhed writings which made many volumes in
folio. A catalogue of them may be feen in Niceron's " Vies,"
&c. torn. 32.

LAUR (FiLiFPo), an eminent painter, was born at Rome
in 1623. His father, Balthafar Laur, was originally of
Antwerp, but fettled in Italy, where he had two fon.s : the
eldeft, Francifco, became an able painter by the inftruUon
of Sacchi, and died when he was but 25 years old . Philip was
the fecond. Baithafar, who was a good painter, and adiiciple
of Paul Bril, perceived with joy that his ion Philip, without
learning to draw, when he went to fchool, took the faces of
his playfellows. So remarkable a difpofition was an earneft
of his becoming a great painter. His father placed him under
his fon Francifco, who taught him the firft elements of his
art. The premature death of his brother obliged him to pals
into the fchool of Angelo Carofelli, his brother-in-law, who
had acquired fome reputation in painting. Philip's progrefs
was fo great, that he foon furparTed his mafter. In the mean
time he loft his father; and, foon after, his mafter, who was
fo fond of him, that he brought all the curious ftrangers that
came to Rome to fee him. Philip, who had ftudieu much,
foon quitted his rirft manner, and applied himfelf to paint
finall hiflorical fubjects, with back-grounds of landfcape, in
a lively beautiful manner. He alfo painted feveral large
pictures for churches, but did not fucceed fo well in them as
in fmaller works. He left ieveral pieces unhnilhed.

Nature, who had not beftowed her graces on his perfon,
endowed his mind with many accompliihments. He was
mailer of perfpe6tive, had a turn for poetry, and a know-
ledge of hi flory mid fable. His chearful temper, and the lively
failles of his wit, rendered him dear to his friends. His bar-
ber, hearing he had prefented his apothecary with a picture for
the care of him when he was ill, flattered himfelf with hopes
of the fame favour, and begged a picture of him. Philip, who
knew his intention, made his caricature imitating the ridicu-
lous geftures he ufed in talking to him : he wrote under the
picture, " This man looks for a dupe, and can't find him ;"
and fent it to the barber's at a time whin he knew feveral of
his friends would meet in his fhop. Every one of them was
ftruck with the oddnels of the character, and laughed at


and joked the poor barber, whom they prevented from vent-
ing his rage on the picture ; and, though Philip diverted hiiii-
fdf at his expence, he never ventured to corne under his
bund afterwards. One cannot fay that Laur was one of the

L A U R E N S. 253

rlrft painters of Rome, yet he defigned well and gracefully.
His landicape was chearful and in good taite ; his colouring
varied, but fometimes too faint. The fubjecls he generally-
painted were metamorpholes, bacchanals, and often hiftoiical
fubjetts, which he treated with great judgement. His pieces
of this fort are fpread all over Europe.

He would never marry, nor give himfelf the trouble of
forming difciples. His pleafure was to amufe himfelf with
his friends. He would, on public holidays, diftinguifh him-
felf by playing off fire-works. He was always diverting hiin-
felf with one merry prank or other, the failles of his lively
imagination. He loved expence ; and, by his mirth and
good humour, ieemed to forget he grew old, till a diftemper
iurpriled and carried him off at Rome in 1694, at the age of
71. His corpfe was attended to St. Lawrence in Lucina, his
parim-church, by the academy of St. Luke, who had received
him into their body in 1652. He left a confiderable fortune
to his great nephews, betides feveral legacies.

The " Four Seafons" are engraved on four plates, after

LAURA, the beloved miftrefs of Petrarch, under which
name Ihe is better known than by that of Laura de Noves,
which was that of her family. She was born at Avignon,
and married to Hugo de Sades. Petrarch firft faw her in 1327,
and conceived a paffion for her, which exiOed during her life.
N otwithftanding the conftancy and tendernefs of the poet, it
does not appear that the chaftity of Laura was ever called in
qneilion. Petrarch wrote 318 ionnets and 88 fongs, of which
Laura was the fubjecr., moil of which breathe the warmed and
mod tender fpirit of poetry. This celebrated female died of
the plague, in 1348^ aged 38. She is reprefented as of a mod
elegant form, expreffive eyes, a countenance which infpired
tendernefs, and manners which conciliated universal edeein ;
her voice was faid to be irrefiilibly Iweet, and her air that of
a noble and diftinguifhed character.

phyfician and a native of Aries, a difciple of Lewis Duret,
was profeffor of phyfic, chancellor of the univcrfity of Mont-
pel tier, and phyfician to Henry IV. of France, died Aug. 16,
1 609. His anatomical works are more remarkable for ele-
gance of ftyie, than correclnefs with refpeft to the fubjecl:;
for he is laid to have made a great many raiftakes, and to have
laid claim to many important difcoveries, which were, how-
ever, known to preceding authors, and which Riolan attributes
to his truiHngtothe reports of others without examining the
parts himfelf. His anatomical works and figures were printed
info!. Paris 1600. Francf. fol. 1627.


254 L A W E S.

LAURENTIO (NICOLAS), a very extraordinary charac-
ter, though the fon of a mean vintner, and a laundrefs.
By early application he became an accomplifhed orator, and
when he was deputed by his fellow-citizens to attend the pope,
at Avignon, he made an impreilion on all who heaid him
which procured him the favour and protection of the pontiff.
Returning to Rome he found means fb to influence the popu-
lace, that they expelled the grandees, and in particular the
Colonnas and made Laurentio fuprenic magiftrate, under the
title of tribune auguft. He was now at the head of a new-
Roman republic, and wrote letters to the emperor, to other
flates, and even to the pope. He exercifed the authority of a
fovereign prince, and put many people to death. The war
which was conducted againft him by the nobles, with wonder-
ful jfkill and courage, he entirely fupprefTed ; but he now
became a tyrant in his turn, upon which he was driven from
the city and hanged in effigy at Rome. He however rofe a
fecond time to power, but his feverity made him finally fo ob-
noxious, that the people fet fire to his palace, and in his
endeavour to efcape he was run through the body and
killed by innumerable wounds. He was afterwards hanged up
by the feet,, where he remained till the jews of Rome took
him down and buried his corpfe in the fields. Some ot his
writings yet remain.

LAWES (HENRY), an Englishman, eminent in mufic,
was the fon of Thomas Lawes % a vicar-choral of the church of
Salifhury, and born thereabout iboc. In 1625, he became
a gentleman of the chapel royal ; and was afterwards ap-
pointed one of the private mime to Charles I. In 1653, weie
published his " Ayres and "Dialogues,'' cVc. folio, with a
preface by himfelf, and commendatory verfes by the poet
Waller, Edward and John Phillips nephews of Milton, and
others. In the preface, fpeaking of the Italians, he acknow-
ledges them in general to be the greateft mailers of muiic ; yet
contends, that this nation has produced as able muficians as
any in Europe. He cenfures the fondncfs of his age for
fongs in a language which the hearers do not underftand;
and, to ridicule it, mentions a fong of his own compofition,
printed at the end of the book, which, is nothing but an
index, containing the initial words of fome old Italian fongs
or madrigals : and this index, which read together made a
ftrange medley of nonfenfe, he fays, he fet to a varied air, and
gave out that it came from Italy, by which it palled for an
Italian fong. In the title-page of this book is a very fine en-
graving of the aurhor's hea.d by Faithorne.

Twenty years before, in )6s3> Lawes had been chofen to
coinpoiing the airs, leffons, and fongs of a mafque,


L A W E S. 255

preferred at Whitehall on Candlemas-night, before the king
and queen, by the gentlemen of the four inns of court, under
the direction of Noy, the attorney general ; Hyde, afterwards
earl of Clarendon ; Selden, Whitelock, and others. White-
lock has given an account of it in his " Memorials/' &c.
Lawes alib compofed tunes to Mr. George Sandys's ct Para-
phnife on the Pfalms," p-iblifhed in 1638: and Milton's
" Comus" was originally iet by him, and publifhed in 1637,
with a dedication to lord Bracly, fon and heir of the carl of
Bridgewater. Of the hiilory of this elegant poem little more
is known than that it was written for the entertainment of
the above noble earl, and represented as a mafque by his
children and others ; but the fact is, fays Hawkins, that it is
founded on a real {lory ; for, the earl of Bridgewater, being
prefident of Wales in 1634? had his refidence at Ludlow
caitie in Shropihire ; when lord Bracly and Mr. Egerton, his
fons, and lady Alice Egerton, his daughter, pafling through
the Hay -Wood-fo reft, in Hertfordshire, were benighted, and
the lady for fonie time loft. This accident furniflied Milton
with the fubje,ct of his poem ; and, being a drama, was rcprc-
fented, in 1634, at Ludlow-caftle, Lawes himfelf performing
in it the character of attendant fpirit. The mufic to " Comus*'
was never printed; and there is nothing in any of the printed
copies of the poem, or in t- e many accounts of Milton, to
alcertain the form in which it was compofed.

Lawes taught mufic to the family of the earl of Bridge-
water : he was intimate with Milton, as may be conjectured
from that fon net of the latter, " Harry, whofe tuneful and
well-meafured fong " Peck lays, that Milton wrote his
mafque of " Comus" at the requeft of Lawes, who engaged
to fet it to mufic. Moil of the longs of WalUr are let by
Lawes ; and Wailer has acknowledged his obligation to him
for one in particular, which he had fet in 1635, in a poem,
wherein he celebrates his fkill as a mufician. Fenton, in a
note on this poem, fays, that the heft poets of that age were
ambitious of having their verfes fet by this incomparable
artift ; who, having been educated under >ignor Corperario,
introduced a iofter mixture of Italian airs than before had been
practifed in our nation. But, as Hawkins informs us, Co-
perario was not an Italian, but an Engliihman ; who, having
vifited Italy for improvement, upon his return Italianized his
name, ar.d affected to be called Signior Giovanni Coperario,
inftead of Mr. John Cooper.

He continued in the fervice of Charles I. no longer than
till the breaking out oi c the civil wars ; vet retained his place
in the roval chapel, and compofed the anthem f jr the coronation
of Charles II, He cikd Oct. 21, 1662, and was buried in


256 L A W S O N.

Weftminfter- abbey. " If," fays Hawkins, " we were to
judge of the merit of Lawes as a Mutician from the numerous
teftimonies of authors in his favour, we fhould rank him
among the firfl that this country has produced; but, fetting
thefe afide, his title to fame will appear to be but ill-grounded.
Notwithitanding he -was a fervant of the church, he contri-
buted nothing to the increafe of its {lores : his talent lay
chiefly in the compofition of fongs for a fingle voice, and in
thefe the great and almoft only excellence is the exact corre-
fpondence between the accent of the mutic and the quantities
of the verfe ; and, if the poems of Milton and Waller in his
commendation be attended to, it will be found that his care
in this particular is his chief praife."

LAWtS (WILLIAM), brother of the former, and, like
him, excellent as a mufician ; for, there was no Jnftrument in.
ule on which he could not perform with Ikill. He was com-
miiTary under General Gerard, in the civil war; and, to the
extreme regret of the king, was killed at the fiege of Chefter.
He was by fome thought fuperior even to his brother. T he
inufic-room at Oxford contains two large manufcript volumes
of his works in (core for various inftruments.

LAWSON (Sir JOHN), was the fon of a perfon in low
circumftances at Hull, and was bred to the fea. In procefs
of time he obtained a fhip by his mem, and, ferving in the
ileet under the parliament, was made a captain for his extra-
ordinary defert. So long as the parliament retained their
power he ferved with great fidelity againft all their enemies ,*
and, toward the end of the war, carried a flag, together with
Penn, under Monk. On the change of government, and
Cromwell s affuming the fupreme power to hirrrfelf, he was
continued in the command ; but his principles did not in-
cline him to a& fo heartily under the former; for, with refpec~t
to civil government, he was known to be a republican ; and
liis religious profeffion was that of a baptiil. As foon as he
heard of general Monk's marching to England, he determined
to co-operate with him, and conceiving nothing could be done
but through the medium of the parliament, he got the fleet to
declare roundly on that head ; for which he received their
folemn thanks. He came early and heartily into the reilora-
tion, and ferved under the duke of York as rear-admiral in
1665, when he failed with a grand fleet to the coait of Hol-
land Toward the latter end of the engagement, which hap-
pened on June 3, that year, he was dilabled from enjoying the
victory he had laboured fo hard to gain by a mufquet ihot in
the knee; but did not die without the fatisfa&ion of knowing
that his country triumphed,


L E A K E. 257

LAZARELLI (JoiiN FRANCIS), an Italian poet, and
hative of Gubio, author of fonncts and fatyrical verfes, which
have palled through more than one edition, and have con-
fiderable merit. He died in 1694.

LEAKE (RICHARD), mailer-gunner of England, was
born at Harwich, in 1629. He diftmguifhed himfelf by his
fkill and bravery in rnauy actions at lea. Tn one of them
he engaged with his two ions Henry and againil Van
Trump in 1673. His fhip was the Royal Prince, a fuft-rate
man of war, all the mafts of which were fhot away, fen*
hundred other men killed or di fabled, and moft of her upper
tier of guns dismounted. Whilft fhe was thus a wreck, a
large Dutch fhip of war came down upon her, with two fire-
fhips, meaning to burn or carry her off. Captain, afterwards
Fir George Rooke, thinking her condition hopelefs, ordered
the men to fave their lives, and ftrike the colours. Mr. Leake,
hearing this, ordered the lieutenant off the quarter-deck, and
took the command upon himfelf, faying, " the Royal Prince
lhall never be given up while I am alive to defend her." The
chief-gunner's gallantry communicated itfeJf to all around ;
the crew returned with fpirit to their guns, and, under the
direction of Mr. Leake and his two Ions, compelled the
Dutchman to fb,eer off, and funk both the firefhips. Leake
afterwards brought the Royal Prince fafe to Chatham ; but
the joy of his victory was damped by the lofs of his fon
Henry, who was killed by his fide. He was afterwards made
mailer-gunner of England, and ftore-keeper of the ordnance
at Woolwich. He had a particular genius for every thing
which related to the management of artillery, and was the
firfl who contrived to fire off a mortar by the blaft of a piece,
which has been ufed ever fince. He was alfo very ikilful in
the competition of fire-works, which he otten and luccefsfully
exhibited for the amufement of the king, and his brother ths
duke of York.

LEAKE (Sir JOHN), a brave and fuccefsfui Englifh ad-
miral, was defcended from the Leakes of Derbvfhire, and
born, in 1656, at Rotherhithe, in Surrey. His father
inftrucled him both in mathematics and gunnery, wit!) a
view to the navy, and entered him early into that fcrvicc as
a midfhipman ; in which flation he diftinguilhed himtelf,
under his father, at the memorable engagement herween Sir
Edward Spragge and Van Trump, in 1073, being then no
more than feventeen. Upon the conclulion of that war loon
after, he engaged in the merchants' fervice, and h-ad the
command of a Ihip two or three voyages up the mediterranean;
but, his inclination lying to the navy, he did not ftay long out
of it. He had indeed refuted a lieutenant's commiflion ; but

VOL. IX, S this

L E A K . E.

this was done with a view to the place of mafcer-p-unner,
which was then a place of much greater efteem than it is at
prefent. When his father was advanced, not long after,
to the command of a yacht, he gUdly accepted the offer of
fucce'-ding- him in the pcft of gunner to the Neptune, a
feconcl -rate man of war. This happened about 1675; an ^
the tiroes being peaceable, he remained in this poft, without
anv promotion, till 1688. Then James II. having refolved
to fit cut a ftrong fleet,, to prevent the invafion from Holland,
Leake had the command of the Firedrake firemip, and dif-
tinguiibed h.imfeif by feveral important fervices ; particularly,
by the relief of Londonderry in Ireland, which was chiefly
effected by his means ; for, it is to be noted, that he was in
this Ihip in the fleet under lord Dartmouth, when the prince
of Orange landed; after which, he joined the reft of the
Proteftant officers in an addrefs to the prince. The im-
portance of refcuins; Londonderry from the hands of king
James raifed him in the navy ; and, after fome removes, he
had the command given him of the Eagle, a third-rate of
70 guns. In 1692, the dilling ui (he d figure he made in the
famous battle off La Hogue procured him the particular
fritndfhip of Mr. (afterwards admiral) C. hurchill, brother to
the duke of Marlborough ; and he continued to behave on all
occasions with great reputation till the end of the war; when,
upon concluding the peace of Ryfwick, his iliip was paid off
Dec. 5, 1697. Mean while, he had loft his father in 1696;
when, though abfent, his friends had procured for him his
father's places of matter- gunner in England, and {lore -keeper
of Woolwich. But he declined thefe places, having fixed his
eye upon a commiffioner's place in the navy; and, no doubt,
lie might have obtained it, by the intereft of admiral RuiTel,
Sir George Rooke, and Sir Clcudeily Shovel, who were all
of them his friends, besides admiral' Churchill but, upon
opening his mind to this laft, that gentleman prevailed with
him not to think of quitting the lea, and foon brought him
into action there again, procuring him a cornmiffion for a
third-rate of 70 guns, which he entered upon, May 1699.
Afterwards, upon the profpel of a new war, he was removed
t6 the Britannia, the fmeft firft-rate in the navy, of which
he was appointed, Jan 1701, firfr captain of three under the
earl of Pembroke, newly made lord-high-admiral of England.
This was the higheft ftation he could have as a captain, and
higher than any private captain ever obtained either before or
fmce. But, upon the earl's removal, to make way for prince
George of Denmark, foca after queen Anne's acceffion to the
throne, Leake's commirlion under him becoming void, May
27, 1702, he accepted of the Aflbciation, a fecond-rate, till



an opportunity offered for his farther promotion. This wa$
not long ; for, upon the declaration of war againft France,
he received a commiflion, June the 24th that year, from
prince George, appointing him commander in chief of the
fhips defigned againrt Newfoundland. He arrived there with
his fqucidron in Auguft, and, deftroying the French trade and
fettlements, rsftored the Englifh to the poffeilion of the
whole ifbnd, This gave him an opportunity of putting a
confideribie fum of money in his pocket, hy the fale of the
captures, at the fame time that it gained him the favour o'f
the nation, by doing it a fignal fervice, without any great
danger of not fucceecling ; for, in truth, all the real tame he
acquired thereby arofe from his extraordinary difpatch and
diligence in the execution.

Upon his return home, he was appointed rear-admiral of
the Blue, and vice-admiral of the fame fquadron; but de-
clined the hpnonr of knighthood, which, however, he ac-
cepted the following year, when he was engaged with admiral
Rooke in taking Gibraltar. Soon after this, he particularly
dirunguifbed himfelf in the general engagement off Malaga;
and, being left with a winter- guard at Lifbon for thole parts,
he relieved Gibraltar in 1705, which the French had be-
fieged by fea, and the Spaniards by land, and reduced to the
laft extremity. He arrived Oct. 29, and ib opportunely"
for the befieged, that tvro days w r ould, in ail probability,
have funk them beyond hope. Fo r , the enemy, by the help
of rope ladders, found means to climb up the rocks, and got
upon the mountains through a way that was thought in-

Online LibraryWilliam TookeA new and general biographical dictionary; 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 of time to the present period .. (Volume 9) → online text (page 29 of 48)