A Short Biographical Dictionary of English Literature/Stow, John

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Stow, John (1525-1605). -- Historian and antiquary, b. in London, s. of a tailor, and brought up to the same trade. He had, however, an irresistible taste for transcribing and collecting ancient documents, and pursuing antiquarian and historical researches, to which he ultimately entirely devoted himself. This he was enabled to do partly through the munificence of Archbishop Parker. He made large collections of old books and manuscripts, and wrote and ed. several works of importance and authority, including The Woorkes of Geoffrey Chaucer, Summarie of Englyshe Chronicles (1561), afterwards called Annales of England, ed. of the chronicles of Matthew Paris and others, of Holinshed's Chronicle, and A Survey of London (1598). It is sad to think that the only reward of his sacrifices and labours in the public interest was a patent from James I. to collect "among our loving subjects their voluntary contributions and kind gratuities."