Argall, John

, an English writer, was the third son of Thomas Argall by Margaret his wife, daughter of John Talkarne of the county of Cornwall. He was born in London, and entered a student in Christ-church in Oxford towards the latter end of queen Mary’s reign. He took the degree of master of arts in 1565, and was senior of the act celebrated the eighteenth of February the same year. Afterwards he applied himself to the study of divinity, and, having taken holy orders, obtained the living of Halesvvorth in Suffolk. Being at a feast at Cheston, a mile distant from that town, he died suddenly at the table, and was buried at Halesworth, Octobers, 1606. During his stay at the university, he was a noted disputant, and a great actor of plays at Christ-church, particularly when the queen was entertained there in 1566. He was esteemed a very good scholar, and was so much devoted to his studies that he lived and died like a philosopher, with a thorough contempt for the things of this world. He wrote “De veva Pctnitentia,” Lond. 1604, 8vo, and “Introductio ad artem Dialecticam,” ibid. 1605, 8vo. In this book, which Mr. Wood calls “very facete and pleasant,” the author says of himself, that “whereas God had raised many of his companions and contemporaries to high dignities in the church, as Dr. Thomas Bilson to the see of Winchester, Dr. Martin Heton to that of Ely, Dr. Henry Robinson to that of Carlisle, Dr. Tobias Mathews to that of Durham, &c. yet he, an unworthy and poor old man, was still detained in the chains of poverty for his great and innumerable sins, that he might repent with the prodigal son, and at length by God’s favour obtain salvation.2


Biog. Brit. —Ath. Ox. vol. f.