Lily, George (DNB00)

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LILY, GEORGE (d. 1559), Roman catholic divine, son of William Lily [q. v.] the grammarian, by Agnes, his wife, was a native of London, and became a commoner of Magdalen College, Oxford, in 1528 (Bloxam, Magdalen College Register, iv. 22 n.) Leaving the university without a degree he travelled to Rome, where he ‘was received with all humanity into the protection of Cardinal Pole,’ and became noted for his erudition. After his return to England he was collated to the prebend of Kentish Town or Cantlers, in the church of St. Paul, on 22 Nov. 1556 (Newcourt, Repertorium, i. 171). Cardinal Pole, to whom he was domestic chaplain, collated him on 13 March 1557–8 to a canonry in the first prebend of the church of Canterbury (Le Neve, Fasti, ed. Hardy, i. 47). He died in 1559 before 29 July, and it is supposed that he was buried near the body of his father in St. Paul's churchyard.

Lily wrote: ‘Virorum aliquot in Britannia, qui nostro seculo eruditione, et doctrina clari, memorabilesque fuerunt, Elogia, per Georgium Lilium Britannum, exarata.’ Dedicated to Paul Jovius, bishop of Nocera, and printed in that prelate's ‘Descriptio Britanniæ, Scotiæ, Hyberniæ, et Orchadum,’ Venice, 1548, 4to, together with other contributions by Lily, viz.: ‘Nova et Antiqua Locorum Nomina in Anglia et in Scotia,’ f. 42 b seq. (cf. Harrison, Description of England, ed. Furnivall, 1877, p. 245); ‘Anglorum Regum Chronices Epitome,’ down to the year 1547, ff. 57–123 (reprinted, Frankfort, 1565, 4to, with continuation to the accession of Elizabeth in 1558–9; Basle, 1577, &c.; Frankfort, 1614, 8vo; also in vol. i. of Polydore Vergil's ‘Historia Anglica,’ Douay, 1603); ‘Lancastriæ et Eboracensis de regno contentiones,’ f. 124; ‘Regum Angliæ Genealogia,’ f. 125 b.

Lily is also credited with ‘Catalogus sive Series Pontificorum et Cæsarum Romanorum,’ and a ‘Life of John Fisher, Bishop of Rochester’ (cf. Harmer [i.e. Henry Wharton], Specimen of Errors in Burnet's Hist. of the Reformation, p. 61; Gough, British Topography, i. 238 n.) The latter is probably the anonymous Latin life of Fisher, preserved in the Arundel MS. 152, art. 2 in the British Museum (Cat. of Arundel MSS. p. 41). Bale mentions ‘De vitâ, moribus, et fine Thomæ Cranmeri,’ by Lily, in his manuscript notes to the ‘Scriptores Majoris Britanniæ;’ and the first exact map of Great Britain, which was afterwards engraved, and is now scarce, is assigned to him (Gough, i. 87).

[Addit. MS. 5875, f. 37 b; Bale's Script. Brit. Cat. i. 723; Cat. of MSS. in Cambridge Univ. Library, v. 552; Cotton MSS. Nero B. vi. 152, 157; Gough's Brit. Topogr. i. 87, 348, 516; Harl. MS. 6989, art. 26; Le Neve's Fasti (Hardy), ii. 405; Nicholson's English Hist. Libr. p. 3; Pits, De Angliæ Scriptoribus, p. 740; Tanner's Bibl. Brit. p. 481; Wood's Athenæ Oxon. (Bliss), i. 302.]

T. C.