Petit, Thomas (DNB00)

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PETIT or PETYT or PETYTE, THOMAS (fl. 1536–1554), printer, was supposed by Ames ‘to be related to the famous John Petit,’ the Paris printer (Typogr. Antiq. i. 553). His house was at the sign of the Maiden's Head in St. Paul's Churchyard, London, where he produced in 1536 an edition of the ‘Rudder of the Sea.’ He also printed Taverner's New Testament (1539), the ‘Sarum Primer’ (1541, 1542, 1543, 1544, 1545), Chaucer's ‘Workes’ (n. d.), and ‘Sarum Horæ’ (1541, 1554).

On 6 April 1543 he, ‘Whitchurch, Beddle, Grafton, Middleton, Maylour, Lant and Keyle, printers, for printing of suche bokes as wer thowght to be unlawfull, contrary to the proclamation made on that behalff, wer committed unto prison’ (Acts of the Privy Council, 1890, new ser. i. 107). All except Petit were subsequently released from the Fleet, on declaring ‘what nomber off bookes and ballettes they have bowght wythin thiese lij yeres,’ and what merchants had introduced ‘Englisshe bokes of ill matter’ (ib. pp. 117, 125). Between 1536 and 1554 about thirty-nine books bear his name as printer or publisher, among them being several law-books.

[Ames's Typogr. Antiq. (Dibdin), iii. 507–16; Arber's Transcript of the Stationers' Registers, i. 394, vol. v. p. cii; Dickinson's List of Service Books, 1850; Catalogue of Books in British Museum to 1640; Hazlitt's Handbook and Collections, 1867–89; Hansard's Typographia, 1825, p. 118.]

H. R. T.