Nicholson, Samuel (DNB00)

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NICHOLSON, SAMUEL (fl. 1600), poet and divine, was perhaps the Samuel Nicholson of Catharine Hall, Cambridge, who graduated B.A. 1597–8. He took orders, and describes himself in 1602 as M.A. Nicholson has been identified with the author of ‘Acolastus his After-Witte. A Poem by S. N.,’ London, 1600; privately reprinted by J. O. Halliwell, London, 1866, and by Dr. Grosart (1876). The ‘Epistle Dedicatory’ is addressed to ‘his deare Achates Master Richard Warburton.’ The poem consists of 446 stanzas, each containing six decasyllabic or hendecasyllabic lines, and is of much interest on account of the doubtless conscious plagiarisms from Shakespeare (‘Rape of Lucrece’ and ‘Venus and Adonis’), and in a smaller measure from Nash's ‘Pierce Penniless’ and other works (cf. J. P. Collier, Bibl. Account, ii. 46, and Grosart, Introd.) Nicholson, in his dedication to Richard Warburton, describes the work as ‘the first borne of my barren invention, begotten in my anticke age’ [i.e. sportive years]. Nicholson also published: ‘God's New Yeeres Gift sent into England, or the Summe of the Gospell contaynd in these Wordes, “God so loved the world that he hath given his only begotten sonne that whosoever beleaveth in him should not perish, but should have life everlasting,” John iii. 1; the First Part written by Samuel Nicholson, M. of Artes,’ London, 1602, small 8vo. It is a devotional treatise, puritan in tone, but not in sermon form.

[Information from the Rev. R. M. Serjeantson, rector of St. Sepulchre's, Northampton, and from J. W. Clark, the registrar, Cambridge; Cooper's Athenæ Cant. ii. 309; Collier's Bibl. Account of Early English Lit. ii. 46; Hazlitt's Handbook of Early English Lit. p. 420; Reprints of Acolastus by Grosart and Halliwell; Ames's Typogr. Antiq. (Herbert), p. 1385; Ritson's Bibl. Poet, p. 287.]

W. A. S.