Laud, William (15731645)

Laud, William, archbishop of Canterbury, born at Reading, son of a clothier; studied at and became a Fellow of St. John's College, Oxford, was ordained in 1601; early gave evidence of his High-Church proclivities and his hostility to the Puritans, whom for their disdain of forms he regarded as the subverters of the Church; he rose by a succession of preferments, archdeaconship of Huntingdon one of them, to the Primacy, but declined the offer of a cardinal's hat at the hands of the Pope, and became along with Strafford a chief adviser of the unfortunate Charles I.; his advice did not help the king out of his troubles, and his obstinate, narrow-minded pedantry brought his own head to the block; he was beheaded for treason on Tower Hill, Jan. 10, 1645; he “could see no religion” in Scotland once on a visit there, “because he saw no ritual, and his soul was grieved” (15731645).

Definition taken from The Nuttall Encyclopædia, edited by the Reverend James Wood (1907)

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