Frankland, Thomas

, an English physician and historian of singular character, was born in Lancashire in 1633, and was entered a student in Brasenose college, | Oxford, in 1649. He took a degree in arts, and obtained a fellowship in 1654. Afterwards studying divinity, he became a preacher according to the form of ordination during the usurpation. In 1662 he served the office of proctor, and the year after, having taken orders regularly, he was, but with much difficulty, admitted to the reading of the sentences. He afterwards studied physic, and settled in London, where he imposed upon the public for some time, by pretending to have taken his doctor’s degree in that faculty, and at length offering himself as a candidate for fellow of the college of physicians, he produced a forged diploma, was admitted fellow, and afterwards was censor. His ungracious manners, however, procuring him enemies, an inquiry was made at Oxford in 1677, which discovered the fraud, and although by the connivance of some of the college of physicians, he remained among them, yet his credit and practice fell off, and being reduced in circumstances, he was imprisoned in the Fleet, where he died in 1690, and was interred in St. Vedast’s church, Foster-lane. He wrote, “The Annals of King James and King Charles I. containing a faithful history and impartial account of the great affairs of state, and transactions of parliament in England, from the tenth of king James, 1612, to the eighteenth of king Charles, 1642. Wherein several passages relating to the late civil wars (omitted in former histories) are made known,” Lond. 1681, fol. He was supposed also to be the author of a folio pamphlet, Lond. 1679, entitled “The honours of the Lords Spiritual asserted, and their privileges to vote in capital cases in parliament maintained by reason and precedents;” but Wood does not give this as certain. Dr. Frankland was esteemed a good scholar while at Oxford, but in the subsequent part of his character appears deserving of little esteem. 1

1 Ath. Ox. vol. II.