Page:Dictionary of National Biography volume 56.djvu/202

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however, when his own trial came on, traversed the allegations of Arnold, who (he said) sought ‘to discharge himself if he could so transfer the devise to William Thomas.’ In support of his statement he asked that the court should examine Fitzwilliams, who was prepared to give evidence, but was denied audience, at the request of the attorney-general (cf. Strype, iii. i. 297). When, however, Thomas's own trial came on at the Guildhall on 8 May, he was found guilty of treason; and, on the 18th, was drawn upon a sled to Tyburn, where he was hanged, beheaded, and quartered, making ‘a right godly end’ (ib. p. 279), saying at his death that ‘he died for his country’ (Stow, Annales, p. 624). On the following day his head was set on London Bridge ‘and iii. quarters set over Crepullgate’ (Machyn, Diary, pp. 62–3), whereabouts he had perhaps previously lived (Strype, iii. i. 192).

In a private act of parliament, passed on the accession of Elizabeth, Thomas's name was included among those whose heirs and children were restored in blood after their attainder, but it is not known whether he was married or had a family (Strype, Annals of the Reform. i. i. 468).

In addition to the works already mentioned, Thomas wrote ‘Of the Vanitee of this World,’ 8vo, 1549. Some authorities date it 1545, in which case it was the author's first work (Strype, iii. i. 279; Ames, Typogr. Antiq. ed. Herbert, i. 449; cf. ib. ed. Dibdin, iii. 331). But no copy is extant either of this work or of another work attributed to Thomas by Tanner and Wood, ‘An Argument wherein the Apparel of Women is both Reproved and Defended: being a Translation of Cato's Speech and L. Valerius Answer out of the Fourth Decad of Livy’ (London, 1551, 12mo). He is also said by Bale to have translated from the Italian into English ‘The Laws of Republicks’ and ‘On the Roman Pontiffs,’ and during his imprisonment he wrote ‘many pious letters, exhortations, and sonnets’ (Strype iii. 279), but none of these survive.

Thomas was a shrewd observer of men and affairs, but, according to Wood, had a ‘hot fiery spirit,’ which was probably the cause of most of his troubles. He was certainly ‘one of the most learned of his time’ (Strype). His Italian grammar and dictionary were the first works of the kind published in English, while his ‘History of Italy’ was formerly held in the highest esteem for its comprehensive account of the chief Italian states. All his works are remarkable for their methodical arrangement, his style is always lucid, and his English shows ‘much better orthography than that current at a later period.’

[Authorities cited; Strype's works, especially his Ecclesiastical Memorials, which is always the work referred to in the text above when ‘Strype’ simply is quoted; Wood's Athenæ Oxonienses, ed. Bliss, i. 218–21, and Biographia Britannica (1747), ii. 947; Lansdowne MSS. (Brit. Mus.), vol. 980, folio 144; Burnet's Hist. of the Reformation, ed. Pocock, ii. 232–3; Anthony Harmer's Specimen of Errors (1693), p. 159; Richard Grafton's Chronicle (1569), p. 1341; Foulis's History of Romish Treasons (1681), pp. 317–18; Froude's Preface to the Pilgrim, and his History of England, v. 308–10, 349, vi. 145, 174, 189. Thomas's trial is briefly reported in Dyer's Reports, ed. 1688, p. 99 b, and its legal and constitutional aspects discussed in Willis Bund's Selection of Cases from the State Trials, i. 154–64. The indictment, together with notices of some other papers, was printed in the Deputy-Keeper of Records' 4th Rep. pp. 246–9, and in Lord Stanley of Alderley's Introduction to the Travels to Tana, while further particulars are given in the reports of the trials of Wyatt and Throckmorton in Cobbett's State Trials, i. 862–902. There is an excellent Welsh account of Thomas in Y Traethodydd for 1862, pp. 369–76; see also Cymru, 1895, p. 151.]

D. Ll. T.

THOMAS, WILLIAM (1593–1667), ejected minister, born at Whitchurch in Shropshire, was educated first in the high school there. On 1 Dec. 1609 he matriculated from Brasenose College, Oxford, graduating B.A. on 8 Feb. 1613 and M.A. on 17 June 1615. On 4 Jan. 1616 he was presented to the rectory of Ubley, near Pensford in Somerset, where he worked for over forty years. He was an earnest puritan. In 1633 he refused to read ‘The Book of Sports,’ and on 23 June 1635 he was suspended ab officiis, and on 28 July a beneficiis. He was restored after three years' suspension, on the intercession of friends with Archbishop Laud. He took the ‘covenant’ of August 1643, and the ‘engagement’ of October 1649. He was one of the subscribers to the ‘Attestation of the Ministers of the County of Somerset, against the Errors, Heresies, and Blasphemies of the Times’ in 1648. In 1654 he was assistant to the committee for the ejection of scandalous ministers.

Having addressed some letters of remonstrance to Thomas Speed, a merchant and quaker preacher at Bristol, Thomas was attacked by Speed in ‘Christ's Innocency Pleaded’ (London, 1656). The question of the lawfulness of tithes was chiefly in dispute, and Thomas was accused by his adversary of a readiness to preach ‘rather at Wells for