Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Holland, Henry (1583-1650?)

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HOLLAND, HENRY (1583–1650?), compiler and publisher, son of Philemon Holland [q. v.], was born at Coventry on 29 Sept. 1583. Although he proved in later life a good classical scholar, and was clearly well educated, he cannot be the Henry Holland of Lancashire who matriculated from Brasenose College, Oxford, 24 Oct. 1600, aged 16, and graduated B.A. 20 July 1604. He came to London as a youth, and usually designated himself ‘Londonopolitanus.’ He was made free of the Stationers' Company 5 Dec. 1608 (Arber, Transcript, iii. 683). The first book published by him was Thomas Draxe's ‘Sicke Man's Catechisme,’ London, 1609, 8vo, which was licensed to Holland and John Wright jointly on 4 Feb. 1608–9. In 1610 he published from a previously unprinted manuscript ‘A Royal Elegie’ on Edward VI, by Sir John Cheke; the book is now of great rarity. In 1613 he accompanied John, first lord Harington [q. v.], whose family had been on friendly terms with his father, to the Palatinate, when Harington accompanied the Princess Elizabeth to the home of her husband, the elector palatine. In 1614 Holland published, in conjunction with M. Laws, a compilation by himself, which bore the title ‘Monumenta Sepulchraria Sancti Pauli. The Monuments … of Kings, Nobles, Bishops, and others buried in the Cathedrall Church of St. Paul, London, untill this present yeare … 1614, and a Catalogue of all the Bishops of London … untill this present. … By H. H.,’ London, 4to [1614]. A reissue, entitled ‘Ecclesia Sancti Pauli illustrata,’ and continued to 1633, was published (J. Norton … sold by H. Seyle) in 1633, with a dedication by Holland, addressed to Laud, then bishop of London, and to the dean and chapter of St. Paul's Cathedral.

Holland's reputation as a bookseller was chiefly made by the issue of two elaborately illustrated antiquarian works, with letterpress from his own pen. The earlier venture was ‘Baziliωlogia. A Booke of Kings. Beeing the true and liuely effigies of all our English Kings from the Conquest vntill this present. With their seuerall Coats of Armes, Impreses, and Devises. And a briefe Chronologie of their Liues and Deaths. Elegantly graven in Copper. Printed for H. Holland, and are to be sold by Comp. [i.e. Compton] Holland ouer against the Xchange, 1618,’ fol. Compton Holland was probably Henry's brother. The engravers employed included R. Elstracke, Simon Pass, and Francis Delaram; to the last the fine portraits of Queens Mary and Elizabeth and Princes Henry and Charles are due. Perfect copies include thirty-one portraits besides the title-page engraved with portraits of James I and Queen Anne. The copy in the British Museum wants the portraits of John of Gaunt, Henry IV, Anne Boleyn, and Mary Queen of Scots. The title-page is sometimes found with portraits of Charles I and Henrietta Maria in place of James I and Queen Anne, and the plate was used with fresh lettering for the title of Biondi's ‘Civil Wars of England’ (1641), translated by Henry Carey, second earl of Monmouth [q. v.] The work is of the utmost rarity. Book-collectors have often inserted additional portraits, and Lowndes gives a list of twenty-three which are often found in addition to the original thirty-two. A copy belonging to the Delabere family, which included 152 portraits in all, was sold piecemeal by Christie, 29 March 1811, and fetched 601l. 12s. 6d.

Holland's second and more famous illustrated publication appeared in 1620 in two folio volumes, the first dedicated to James I and the second to the universities of Cambridge and Oxford. Holland's letterpress is in Latin throughout. The title runs: ‘Herωologia Anglica, hoc est, Clarissimorum et doctissimorum aliquot Anglorum qui floruerunt ab anno Cristi M.D. usque ad presentem annum m.d.c.xx. Viuæ effigies, Vitæ, et elogia. Duobus tomis, Authore H. H., Anglo-Britanno. Impensis Crispini Passæi Calcographus [sic] et Jansoni Bibliopolæ Arnhemiensis.’ The work opens with a portrait of Henry VIII, and closes with one of Thomas Holland (d. 1612) [q. v.] There are sixty-five portraits in all, and two engravings of monuments (of Prince Henry and Queen Elizabeth respectively). In one copy in the British Museum there is inserted an old manuscript list of the pictures whence the engravings were made. This was printed in 1809 for insertion in other copies. A presentation copy from Holland to Sir Thomas Holland is in the Grenville collection at the British Museum; another copy, with an inscription addressed by Holland to Robert Sidney, earl of Leicester, is described by Lowndes.

Until 1630 Holland seems to have carried on his publishing business. His less elaborate publications included ‘Newes from Frankfort,’ 1612, 4to; ‘Newes from Gulick and Cleve,’ 1615 (jointly with G. Gibbs). In 1626 he printed at his own expense and published at Cambridge his brother Abraham's posthumous works as ‘Hollandi Posthuma.’ To ‘Salomon's Pest House,’ by I. D., which he published with T. Harper in 1630, he added ‘Mr. Hollands Admonition,’ a poem by his brother Abraham. Holland helped his father with his later publications. He wrote the dedication to Charles I of his father's ‘Cyropædia’ of Xenophon (1632), and edited after Dr. Holland's death his Latin version of Bauderon's ‘Pharmacopœia’ in 1639, and his ‘Regimen Sanitatis Salerni’ in 1649.

Holland's last days were spent in great poverty. On 26 June 1647 was issued a broadsheet addressed ‘to men, fathers, and brethren,’ appealing for charitable aid. He had been, the paper stated, ‘a grandjury-man, and a subsidy-man, and one of the trained band charged with a corslet,’ and had acted as a commissioner under the great seal against bankrupts. His credit had been good, and he had rented a house in the parish of St. Mary-le-Bow. During the plague in London in 1625 he and his wife, Susannah, had worked hard among the poor. Mrs. Holland had since died ‘of a wolfe (10 Dec. 1635) ‘at the Black Raven in Cheapside’ (Smith, Obit. Camd. Soc. p. 11). As ‘a zealous hater and abhorrer of all superstition and Popery and prelaticall innovations in church government’ he had incurred the wrath of Laud, and had been imprisoned by order of both the high commission court and Star-chamber. He declared himself adverse to ‘all late sprung-up sectaries.’ In 1643 he served in the life-guards of Basil Feilding, earl of Denbigh, the parliamentary general, and was ‘eldest man’ of the troop, being sixty years old. Subsequently his eyesight and hearing had much decayed, he was crazy in his limbs, impotent in body, and so ‘indigent in estate’ owing to lawsuits that he had had to plead in a chancery suit in forma pauperis. The facts are attested by four persons, including William Gouge [q. v.], the puritan divine; but the facts that Holland dedicated his book about St. Paul's Cathedral to Laud in 1633, and that his imprisonment has not been corroborated, throw some doubt on the details. The title-page of his father's posthumously published ‘Regimen’ shows that Holland was still alive in 1649.

[Authorities cited; Wood's Athenæ Oxon. ed. Bliss, ii. 387; Thomas Sharp's Illustrations of the Antiquities of Coventry; Holland's Works; Holland's broadside petition, 1647 (Brit. Mus. press-mark 669, f. 11, No. 34); Lowndes's Bibl. Man.; Brit. Mus. Cat. of Books before 1640.]

S. L.