Master, Richard (DNB00)

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MASTER, RICHARD, M.D. (d. 1588), physician, was a younger son of Robert Master of Streetend, in the parish of Willesborough, Kent, On 29 Oct. 1533, being fellow of All Souls' College, Oxford, he graduated B.A., proceeding M.A. on 11 May 1537. He was converted from popery by the perusal of the works of Heinrich Bullinger. He seems to have been personally acquainted with Rudolph Walther when Walther visited England in 1537, and Master subsequently corresponded with him. About 1539 lie accepted a benefice in the church of England, but soon afterwards resigned it to the patron because he considered himself ill qualified for the function of a good clergyman. He then betook himself to medical studies at Oxford, and was admitted M.B. with license to practise in 1545 (Foster, Alumni Oxon. 1500-1714, iii. 986). In 1547 lie migrated to Christ Church, proceeded M.D. on 29 July 1555, and was incorporated at Cambridge in 1571. About 1549 he was seized with a fever, which confined him to his bed for more than eighteen months. He was carried in a litter into Kent for a change of air, but while there had a quartan ague of three months' continuance. Admitted fellow of the College of Physicians on 17 March 1553, he was censor in 1556, 1557, 1558, and 1560, elect in 1558, president in 1561, and consiliarius in 1564 and 1583. By patent dated 26 June 1559 he was constituted physician to Queen Elizabeth, with the yearly fee of 100l. 13 March 1562-3 he was made prebendary of York (Le Neve, Fasti, ed. Hardy, iii. 188), and on 6 Jan. 1564-5 the queen by letters patent, for the consideration of 590l. 16s. 4d., granted to him and his heirs the reversion of the site of the late monastery of Cirencester, and of the lands thereto belonging. He was present with the queen at Oxford in September 1566, and was moderator of the physic act kept there before her.

Master died at his house in Silver Street, St. Olave, London, in the enjoyment of a high reputation for professional skill, in January 1587-8 (cf. his will registered in P C. C. 34, Rutland). His wife was Elizabeth, eldest daughter of John Fulnetby of Fulnetby, Lincolnshire (Hervey, Visitation of Suffolk, ed. Howard, i. 307), by whom he had seven sons. The eldest son, George (b. 1556 ?), of St. John's College, Oxford, and Lincoln's Inn, M.P. for Cirencester in 1586 and 1588, was father of Sir William Master [see under Master, William]. Thomas (1560-1628), B.D., master of the Temple 1601, was canon of Lichfield 1613, and archdeacon of Salop 1614. Robert (1565-1625), D.C.L., was principal of Alban Hall 1599-1603, chancellor of Rochester and Lichfield, and M.P. for Cricklade 1601. Henry (b. 1566), M.A., was principal of Alban Hall 1603-1614.

Some of Master's letters in Latin and English are among the Lansdowne MSS. in the British Museum (xix. 83, xlvi. 38, cxxi. 19).

[Visitation of Gloucestershire, 1623 (Harl. Soc.), p. Ill; Burke's Landed Gentry, 1886; Cooper's Athenæ Cantabr. ii. 20; Munk's Coll. of Phys. 1878, i. 52; Wood's Fasti (Bliss), i. 122, 143; Lansd. MS. 984, f. 64; Foster's Alumni Oxon. 1500-1714.]

G. G.