Biographia Hibernica/William Bathe

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AN eminent Jesuit, was born in Dublin, in 1564. The Bathes were formerly of considerable eminence in the counties of Dublin and Meath, but by extravagance, misfortunes, and injudicious intermeddling in civil dissensions, they were so reduced that no branch of any note remains in the country. The parents of William Bathe were citizens of Dublin, and of the protestant religion: but not feeling a very anxious regard as to the religious principles of their son, they put him under the tuition of a zealous catholic schoolmaster, through whose early instruction his mind was imbued with such a predilection for that persuasion, as fitted him for the course of life he afterwards embraced. From Dublin he removed to Oxford, where he studied several years; but the historian of that university, Anthony Wood, was unable to discover at what college or hall he sojourned, or whether he took any university degree. Afterwards, being weary of the heresy professed in England (as he usually called it) he went abroad; and, in 1596, was initiated into the society of the Jesuits. After remaining some time in Flanders, he was sent to Padua, in Italy; and from thence to Spain, where he presided over the Irish seminary at Salamanca, "ad formationem spiritûs." He is said to have been actuated by a very strong zeal for the propagation of the catholic faith, and to have been much esteemed for the integrity of his life; but it is on record, that his natural temper was gloomy, and far from sociable. In 1614 he took a journey to Madrid to transact some business on account of his order, and died in that city, and was buried in the Jesuit's convent. He had a high character for learning; and one of his works proves him entitled to it—"Janua Linguarum, ceu Modus maxime accommodatus quo parebit aditus ad omnes Linguas intelligendas," Salamanca, 1611. It was published by the care of the Irish fathers of the Jesuits at Salamanca, and became a standard book for the instruction of youth. He also wrote, in Spanish, "A Preparation for the administering of the Sacrament with greater Facility, and Fruit of Repentance, than hath been already done," Milan, 1604. It was published by Joseph Creswell, under the name of Peter Maurique. He wrote in English and Latin, and published, but without his name, "A Methodical Institution concerning the chief Mysteries of the Christian Religion." He published another religious work, "A Method for the performing of general Confession."

In his youth, at Oxford, he was much delighted with the study of music; on which he wrote a treatise. It was entitled "A Brief Introduction to the True Art of Music, wherein are set down exact and easy Rules, with arguments and their solution, for such as seek to know the reason of the truth," London, 1584, 4to.



This work was published before January 1, 1925, and is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.