Sir Thomas Berkeley
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Arthur Neuendorffer
2021-01-15 14:54:11 UTC

<<Sir Thomas Berkeley (11 July 1575 – 22 November 1611) was the son and heir apparent of Henry Berkeley, 7th Baron Berkeley, and a Member of Parliament for Gloucestershire from 1604 until 1611.

Thomas Berkeley was the son of Henry Berkeley, 7th Baron Berkeley (d. 26 November 1613), by his first wife, Katherine Howard (d. 7 April 1596), third daughter of Henry Howard, Earl of Surrey, and Frances de Vere, daughter of John de Vere, 15th Earl of Oxford, and Elizabeth Trussell.

Berkeley matriculated at Magdalen College, Oxford, on 27 June 1590 at the age of 14. On 2 February 1589 he entered Gray's Inn. He was created a Knight of the Bath on 25 July 1603 at the coronation of King James I. In 1604 he was elected Member of Parliament for Gloucestershire.

Berkeley married Elizabeth Carey, daughter and sole heir of George Carey, 2nd Baron Hunsdon, and his wife, Elizabeth Spencer, by whom he had an only son, George Berkeley, 8th Baron Berkeley, baptized 26 October 1601 at Low Leyton, Essex.>>


THE NATIONAL ARCHIVES PROB 11/102/245 1________________________________________________________________________

SUMMARY: The document below is the Prerogative Court of Canterbury copy of the will, dated10 and 14 May 1599with a codicil dated 26 April 1601,proved27 September 1603, of George Carey(26 February 1548 -8 September 1603), 2ndBaron Hunsdon, who leased, then purchased, the Jerningham mansion in the Blackfriars. See SRO D641/3/E/1/7/2; SRO D641/3/A/8/1; and TNA C 66/768, mm. 23-4.


Between 2 and 4 December 2015 one of the books owned by the testator’s son-in-law, Sir Thomas Berkeley, a copy of Herodotus’ Historico Delle Guerre De Greci Et De Persi, printed at Venice by Giovanni Bariletto in 1565, sold at Sotheby’s for $8,750 (US). The volume and its provenance were described as follows:

8vo (6 x 4 in.; 152 x 100 mm). Printer's device on title-page, woodcut initials, manuscript ownership inscriptions on title-page; title-page nearly loose, some stains, wormhole on upper margin of thefirst third of the volume. Contemporary Oxford binding: brown calfwith gilt crest of the Earl of Oxford, gilt fleurons in corners; first endpapers lacking, scratch on upper panel, joint fragile, spine and extremities rubbed

Edward de Vere, 17th Earl of Oxford (armorial binding) —Sir Thomas Berkeley (?) (ex-dono on title page "Th. Burkelei (?)ex-dono illustriss Ed Comitis Oxon" and Latin motto: "Nec temere nec timide") —Sir John Berkeley (?) (signature on second leaf) —Unidentified signature on title,dated "1719." acquisition:H.D. Lyon

The volume is stated to have been ‘Property From The Collection of Robert S Pirie Volumes I & II: Books and Manuscripts’.
Art Neuendorffer
Arthur Neuendorffer
2021-01-15 16:09:41 UTC

Shakespeare Oxford Fellowship

Earl of Oxford’s 1565 Herodotus Volume To Go On Display at SOF Hartford Conference

Posted by: SOF May 31, 2019

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“Delle Guerre de Greci et de Persi” by Herodotus, translated by Mattheo Maria Boiardo

<<Edward de Vere’s personal copy of a 1565 Herodotus volume on the Greek and Persian Wars—Delle Guerre de Greci et de Persi—has been purchased at auction in London by the SOF’s Ben August. The volume, said August, will go on display at the organization’s upcoming annual conference in Hartford.

The volume—published in Italian in Venice by Mattheo Maria Boiardo—contains material found in Shakespeare’s Titus Andronicus. The first complete translation into a modern language was the English one of Littlebury, published in 1737.

Sold by Forum Auctions in London for $60,000 (a $48,000 hammer price plus a $12,000 buyer’s fee), the volume had a pre-auction estimate of $8,000 to $12,000. The SOF in the two weeks prior to the auction had put together a grass-roots pledge campaign in an attempt to raise some $8,000 to purchase the book in association with a major library. That campaign raised an astounding $15,000 in pledges, but none of the libraries approached by SOF would announce an intention in advance to bid. As a result, SOF decided to bid on its own and asked August—based in Houston and Napa—to bid on its behalf.

But others around the world were bidding as well on “Shakespeare” and the price quickly went beyond the SOF maximum. August, who clearly does not like to lose, decided to stay in the hunt and committed his own money.

“I believe this is one of many volumes owned by de Vere, the real Shakespeare,” said August after the auction. “The auction house also called it that: ‘Shakespeare-Edward de Vere’s copy’ in the catalogue. Obviously, I was not the only one bidding who believed it is a genuine Shakespeare volume. Yes, the price was high but who knows what it could be worth years from now when the world accepts de Vere as Shakespeare.

“My plan is to make it available through SOF and those details will have to be worked out. I hope it can be kept in a public way so it is available to researchers. But SOF will have first call. I didn’t want to have it go into the hands of people who would keep it away from the light as it has been over the last number of years. In any event, if it ever has to go on sale again, SOF will have the first shot at it. In the meantime, SOF will be more than welcome to promote it and display it.”

The volume—with a 16th century binding of calf with a gilt armorial device of the Earl of Oxford (a boar) on its cover—has an ink inscription on the title page saying “Tho: Burkelei Ex dono illustriis Ed. Comitis Oxon” and the Latin motto “Nec temere nec timide” (“Neither rashly nor timidly”). There is also an ink signature on the second leaf of Sir John Burkeley; an ink inscription dated 1719 Chetwode; and a bookplate of Robert S. Pine.

SOF member Michael Morse, who examined the book in advance in London, says that the first inscription seems to indicate that the book, owned by Oxford, was later apparently given as a gift to his first cousin, once removed, Thomas Berkeley (1575-1611). Berkeley was the son of Katherine Howard, Oxford’s first cousin) who was herself the daughter of Henry Howard, Earl of Surrey, and his wife, Frances de Vere, the sister of the 16th Earl of Oxford, Edward’s father.

“Who knows what occasioned the gift,” said Morse, “but Thomas did matriculate from Oxford University in 1590 at the age of 14 and shortly thereafter entered Gray’s Inn to study law. Oxford’s personal copy of Herodotus would probably have made a nice gift for this budding scholar.” Thomas appears to have been later knighted by James I.

“The SOF pledge campaign took off very quickly,” said Prof. Don Rubin, who coordinated it and worked with Ben August throughout. “Over 60 SOF members pledged amounts ranging from $10 to $1,000. It was an extraordinary outpouring of real support for the organization and this opportunity to own a tiny bit of Edward de Vere—Shakespeare. Ben has said that purchasing the book is his personal way of supporting the cause and he is not asking for financial help.”

Reactions to the purchase have been numerous and immensely enthusiastic. “Bravo for Ben” said one. “I am speechless” said another. “The big winner here,” said a third, “is the idea that de Vere is Shakespeare.”>>