A Short Biographical Dictionary of English Literature/Daniel, Samuel

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Daniel, Samuel (1562-1619). -- Poet, s. of a music master, was b. near Taunton, and ed. at Oxf., but did not graduate. He attached himself to the Court as a kind of voluntary laureate, and in the reign of James I. was appointed "Inspector of the children of the Queen's revels," and a groom of the Queen's chamber. He is said to have enjoyed the friendship of Shakespeare and Marlowe, but was "at jealousies" with Ben Jonson. In his later years he retired to a farm which he owned in Somerset, where he d. D. bears the title of the "well-languaged," his style is clear and flowing, with a remarkably modern note, but is lacking in energy and fire, and is thus apt to become tedious. His works include sonnets, epistles, masques, and dramas. The most important of them is The History of the Civil Wars between York and Lancaster in 8 books, pub. in 1604. His Epistles are generally considered his best work, and his sonnets have had some modern admirers. Among his poems may be mentioned the Complaynt of Rosamund, Tethys Festival (1610), and Hymen's Triumph (1615), a masque, and Musophilus, a defence of learning, Defence of Rhyme (1602).