whose several writings the silver file of the workman recommendeth to the plausible entertainment of the daintiest censure." A man may live thrice Nestor's life, Thrice wander out Ulysses' race, Yet never find Ulysses' wife; Such change hath chaunced in this case; Less time will serve than Paris had, Small pain (if none be small inonghe) To find great' store of Helen's trade; Norton for a time turned his thoughts from the law, anu entered himself, in 1565, at Pembroke Hall, Oxford, where he was resident when the first edition of his play was published, and where he took his degree of M. Whilst at college, and in the year 1567, his excess of zeal displayed itself in three pamphlets, published by his printer, John Daye, but without the author's name." A bull graunted by the pope to Doctor Harding and other, by reconcilement and assoyling of English papistes, to undermyne faith and allegeance to the Quene; with a true declaration of the intention and frutes thereof, &c."" A disclosing of the sreat bull, and certain calves that he hath gotten, and specially the monster bull that roared at my lord by shops gate." Reprinted in the Harleian Miscellany, vol. 535, where the name of the writer is misprinted J/orton; and The close of the year in which he left the University was marked by the great northern insurrection, which broke out in Yorkshire in the beginning of November, and was quelled by Sussex at the end of December, 1569. The opportunity was too tempting, and Norton1 addressed an eloquent letter, published by Henry Bynneman " To the Queene's Maiestes poore decey ved subiectes of the north countrey, drawen into rebellion by the Earles of Northumberland and Westmerland."2 They had " purified Durham Cathedral" by burning the versions of the Bible and the books of public devotion, and for this they are soundly rated: " Christians I cannot term you, that have defaced the communion of Christians, and, in destroying thebooke of Christes most holie testament, renounced your partes by his testament bequethed vnto you." This tirade did not suffice; and in 1570 Norton published, at John Daye's,1 his " Warning against the dangerous practices of the Papists, and specially the Partners of the late rebellion;" and in it he gave a curious but evidently exaggerated account of the diligence of the disaffected in spreading rumours and news.
On 16th January, 1572-3, Norton in his letter stated that he was moved with some grief that Parker could believe upon his respect such matter as Mr. Thomas Norton, of Sharpenhoe, a manor and hamlet in the parish of Streatley,1 Bedfordshire, was a native of that county, and born in 1532. 2 Wood not inaptly calls him " a forward and busy Calvinist, and noted zealot;" but Strype incorrectly describes him as " a minister of good parts and learning," 3 conferring upon him the unattained degree of D. : a mistake into which the style and subjects of Norton's writings might well have led men more accurate than Strype. Nevertheless, he became an object of suspicion to Archbishop Parker, with whom he had to set himself right. Strype3 tells us, that This man was thought to stand somewhat affected to the Puritans, because he would often blame the favour of the state towards Papists, and the forbearance of the execution of laws, that were made against them. David Whitehead (whom I name with honorable remembrance), did among other compare with the Latine, examining every sentence thorowout the whole booke." * * " Since which time I have not beene advertised by any man of any thing which they would require to be altered. Neither had I myselfe, by reason of my profession, being otherwise occupied, leisure to peruse it; and that is the cause why not only at the second and third time, but also at this impression, you have Do change at all in the worke, but altogether as it was before." And he concludes by saying, " I confesse indeed it is not finely and pleasantly written, nor carrieth with it such delightfull grace of speech as some great, wise men have bestowed upon some foolisher things, yet it containeth sound truth, set forth with faithfull plainneness, without wrong done to the author's meaning."This book was by no means a light labour, yet it was not Norton's only literary effort at this time. Norton was known to Whitgift, and had indeed advised him, while he was meditating upon writing a book on behalf of the Church against these men, to consult with some wise men, whether it were not better to forbear writing, and to let the thing sleep of itself, than to blow up the controversy by more writing pro and con. But when he saw the scribbling humour of the other side, that they would not be quiet, then he told Whitgift plainly, that this keeping up the quarrel was on their part, and their fault, not his. His father was of a respectable family in the county,5 and belonged to the class of small landed proprietors from which have sprung so many eminent and learned men, but which has well nigh passed away. and 1st Elizabeth, Thomas Norton sat as member for Gatton; and in 13th and 14th Elizabeth Thomas Norton, a freeman of the Grocers' Company, sat for the city of London, and was an active member. MSS., 27, 61 (1578), is a pedigree of the Yorkshire " Nortons, the rebels," of whom Christopher and Thomas were executed for high treason at Tyburn 27th May, 1570. Thomas Norton was the eldest son by his first marriage; the mother dying, the father, when advanced in life, married a second wife—a lady who had been brought" et amplius," in March, 1582-3. m., taken at Luton 27th December, 26th Elizabeth, on his father's death. There is reason to suppose that he was our author's father. They were connected by marriage with the Plumptons, Mortons, Thurlands, Tanckerdes of Boroughbridge, and other Soman Catholics of the North.