Page:Dictionary of National Biography volume 03.djvu/162

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Barcaple

156

Barclay


The only manuscripts of the fragments on the Trojan war are appended to two manuscripts of Lydgate's poem on the same subject, one in the Bodleian and the other in the Cambridge University Library. They have been printed by the Early English Text Society. The ‘Legends of the Saints’ exists only in a single manuscript in the same Cambridge Library. The ‘Legend of St. Machar’ was printed from it by Horstmann in his ‘Altenglische Legenden, neue Folge,’ Heilbronn, 1881, and the remainder, along with the fragments of the poem on the Trojan war, were published by the same editor at Heilbronn in 1882.

[Exchequer Rolls of Scotland, vols. ii. and iii.; Registrum Episcopatus Aberdonensis, Spalding Society; Rymer's Fœdera. Brief memoirs are prefixed to the various editions of the Bruce, and his position as a poet is estimated in Warton's History of English Poetry, Irving's History of Scottish Poetry, and Mätzner's Altenglische Sprachproben.]

Æ. M.

BARCAPLE, EDWARD FRANCIS MAITLAND, Lord (1803-1870), Scottish judge. [See under Maitland, Thomas, Lord Dundrennan.]

BARCHAM, JOHN (1572–1642), antiquary and historian. [See Barkham.]

BARCLAY, ALEXANDER (1475?–1552), poet, scholar, and divine, was born about the year 1475. The question whether he was by birth a Scotchman or an Englishman has been abundantly disputed, but there is no evidence to support the latter contention. Pits considered that Barclay's native district was probably Devonshire, apparently on no other ground than that of his having held preferment there. Wood adds a de to his name (for which the occurrence of the same prefix in the Prologe of James Locker, ‘Ship of Fools,’ ed. Jamieson, i. 9, is hardly a sufficient voucher), and idly supposes him to have been born at Berkeley in Somersetshire, for which should be read Gloucestershire. On the other hand, not only do his baptismal name and the spelling of his surname primâ facie suggest a Scotch origin, but there remains the distinct statement of a contemporary, Dr. William Bulleyn, who lived many years in the northern counties of England, that ‘Bartley’ was ‘borne beyonde the colde River of Twede.’ In his ‘Scriptorum Summarium’ Bale introduces Barclay simply as ‘Scotus;’ and Holinshed, cited by Ritson, likewise calls him a Scot. The Scotchman Dempster also claims him as his countryman (Historia Ecclesiastica Gentis Scotorum, i. 106), adding that he lived in England, having been expelled from his native country for the sake of religion; which statement, however, cannot be correct, if Barclay was settled in England by 1508 or earlier, up to which time no religious disputes had occurred in Scotland (Ritson). Little importance attaches to the cavil that, had Barclay been a Scot, he would have taken more frequent opportunities of singing the praises of his native land. This would not have added to his comfort in England; moreover, one of his chief patrons, as will be seen, was the victor of Flodden Field. In the ‘Ship of Fools,’ however (sec. ‘Of the ruyne, &c. of the holy fayth’) occurs, subjoined to ‘a specyall exhortacion and lawde’ of Henry VIII, a warm tribute to James IV of Scotland, consisting of several stanzas, one of them an acrostic, and including a recommendation of a close alliance between the lion and the unicorn. At the time of their publication, hardly any one but a Scotchman would have indited these stanzas. Lastly, the argument in favour of Barclay's Scottish nationality is still further strengthened by the Scottish element in his vocabulary. The words in question are not numerous, but it is difficult otherwise to account for their presence (Jamieson, i. xxix–xxx).

Possibly Barclay may have first crossed the border with the view of obtaining a university education in England, according to a practice not unusual among his countrymen even in his day (Irving, 326). He is conjectured to have been a member of Oriel College, as it would seem solely on the ground that he afterwards dedicated his chief literary work to Dr. Cornish, bishop of Tyne (suffragan bishop of Bath and Wells), who was provost of Oriel from 1493 to 1507. As a matter of course, we have a suggestion that Cambridge and not Oxford, and a third that Cambridge as well as Oxford, may have been Barclay's university. Warton cites a line from ‘Eclogue I,’ which at all events shows that Barclay once visited Cambridge; to this it may be added that in the same Eclogue ‘Trompyngton’ and ‘good Manchester’ (query Godmanchester, though the reference may be to Manchester, with which James Stanley, bishop of Ely, 1506–15, was closely connected) are mentioned among the well-known places of the world. But so much familiarity with Cambridge and its neighbourhood might well be acquired by an Ely monk. At the one or the other of the English universities, if not at both, he may be assumed to have studied and to have taken his degrees. In his will he calls himself doctor of divinity, but where and when he took this degree is unknown. Either