Bathe, William

, an Irish Jesuit, was born in Dublin in 1564. It is said that he was of a sullen, saturnine temper, and disturbed in his mind, because his family was reduced from its ancient splendour. His parents, who were Protestants, having a greater regard to learning than religion, placed him under the tuition of an eminent popish school-master, who fitted him for that station of life which he afterwards embraced. He then removed to Oxford, where he studied several years with indefatigable industry: but the inquisitive Anthony Wood could not discover in what college or hall he sojourned, or whether he took any university degree. The same writer alledges, that growing weary of the heresy professed in England (as he usually called the Protestant faith), he quitted the nation and his religion together, and in 1596 was initiated among the Jesuits, being then between thirty and forty years of age; though one of his own order says he was then but twentyfive, which certainly is erroneous. Having spent some time among the Jesuits in Flanders, Ik; travelled into Italy, and completed his studies at Padua; from whence he passed into Spain, being appointed to govern the Irish | seminary at Salamanca. He is said to have had a most ardent zeal for making converts, and was much esteemed among the people of his persuasion for his extraordinary virtues and good qualities, though he was of a temper not very sociable. At length, taking a journey to Madrid to transact some business of his order, he died on the 17th of June 1614, and was buried in the Jesuits 7 convent of that city, bearing among his brethren a reputation for learning; particularly on account of a work which he published to facilitate the acquirement of any language, entitled “Janua Linguarum, seu modus maxime accommodatus, quo patent aditus ad omnes linguas intelligendas,Salamanca, 1611. Besides one or two tracts on confessions and penance, he wrote, when a youth at Oxford, “An introduction to the art of Music,London, 1584, 4to. In this work, which is dedicated to his uncle Gerald Fitzgerald earl of Kildare, the author displays a good opinion of his own performance, but thought proper, some years after its first publication, to write it over again in such a manner, as scarcely to retain a single paragraph of the former edition. This latter edition was printed by Thomas Este, without a date, with the title of “A briefe introduction to the skill of Song; concerning the practice; set forth by William Bathe, gent.” From sir John Hawkins’s account of both these productions, and his extracts from them, it does not appear that they have any great merit. The style, in particular, is very perplexed and disagreeable. 1

1 Bio. Brit. —Ath, Ox. vol. I.Dodd’s Church History, vol. If.where he is called Batks.