A Short Biographical Dictionary of English Literature/Ashmole, Elias

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Ashmole, Elias (1617-1692). -- Antiquary, was ed. at Lichfield, and became a solicitor in 1638. On the breaking out of the Civil War he sided with the royalists; went to Oxford and studied science, including astrology. The result of his studies in this region of mystery was his Theatrum Chymicum Britannicum, which gained him great repute and the friendship of John Selden. His last astrological treatise was The Way to Bliss, which dealt with the subject of "the philosopher's stone." He also wrote various works on antiquarian subjects, and a History of the Order of the Garter. A. held various posts under government, and presented to the University of Oxford a valuable collection of curiosities now known as the Ashmolean Museum. He also bequeathed his library to the University. His wife was a dau. of Sir W. Dugdale, the antiquary.