Early Modern Mythological Texts: Troia Britanica XVI, Notes

Thomas Heywood. Troia Britanica (1609)

Notes to CANTO XVI (stanzas 1-40)

Ed. Nick MYERS



Seth: Heywood borrows his biblical genealogy from Hardyng’s Chronicle, fols. 10v-11r. See “Heywood’s Library”. Seth was Adam’s third son. Although there is no biblical authority for this, he was said to be pious and virtuous, following his father’s example. They supposedly mastered the fields of science and astrology to him and his descendants, who were known collectively as the sons of God, to distinguish them from Cain’s descendants, known as the sons of man. According to Josephus’ Jewish Antiquities, I,ii,3, ed. and transl. H. St. J. Thackeray (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1930, vol. 1), Seth’s descendants, having learnt from Adam that the world would perish by water and fire, erected two pillars of brick and stone, on which they engraved the knowledge they had acquired, so that it would survive such destruction. Back to text

Enos: His name is interpreted as meaning simply “Man”. He is said to have engendered Cainan at the age of 90, and lived to the age of 905: Genesis, 5:9-11.

Cayne: Hardyng’s Canayn. Cainan in Genesis, 5:12-14.

Melaliel: Hardyng’s spelling. Mehalaleel or Malaleel, Genesis, 5: 15-17. He engendered Jared when he was 65, and was supposed to have lived for 895 years.

Jareth: Jared, Genesis, 5:18-20. Back to text

Enoch: The first of Adam’s descent to be considered as a prophet, by Saint Augustine among others. He is supposed to have written a book of prophecies (the Book of Enoch), but there is no mention of it in the works of Josephus or Philo, both of whom were at pains to establish the venerable origins of the Jewish people from Adam onwards. In Genesis, 5:23-24, it is simply mentioned that Enoch was spirited away by God, by which it is understood that he was not subject to death in the ordinary manner. In the patristic literature (Saint Ambrose, Saint Augustine, Saint Jerome, Tertullian, etc.) this is considered by some to mean that he will return, with Elijah, at doomsday, to preach against the Antichrist.

Methusalem: Methuselah, Genesis, 5:26-27.

Lamech: Noah’s father: Genesis, 5:28-31. Not to be confused with another Lamech mentioned in Genesis 4:18-19, who was one of Cain’s nephews.

Noah: He was said to have taken 100 years to build the ark, a period that God granted to men for them to show penitence and stay his wrath. When the waters of the Flood dispersed, the ark was perched on a mountain in Armenia. Saint Jerome believed that it was Mount Taurus. Other patristic sources claim the Gordian mountains as the spot, but they are in any case part of the Mount Taurus massif. Noah is supposed to have divided the known world between his three sons: Shem ruled over east Asia, Japheth over west Asia and Europe, and Ham over Syria, the Arabian peninsula, and what was known of Africa. Back to text

Japheth: F, Jhapheth. Of the three sons, he was the only one whom his father specifically blessed on his deathbed. Noah promised that his race would be widespread (this last word being in fact the meaning of his name), and that it would inhabit the tents of Shem (Genesis, 9:27). The exact meaning of this remains obscure, and has been subject to diverse interpretations. Shem’s posterity includes the Semitic races, so one interpretation has been the peaceful co-existence between the non-Semitic and Semitic peoples.

Cichem, Cipre, Creete: Hardyng has Cichym, Cipre, Crete. Hardyng’s Cichym derives from a scribe’s mistranscription of Cethim (i.e. Kittim), Javan’s son and Japheth’s grandson, Genesis, 10:2, 4. Josephus’s statement in his Jewish Antiquities (I,vi,1) that “Chethimos held the land of Chethima—the modern Cyprus” [tr. H. St. J. Thackeray (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1930), vol. 1, pp. 62-63] opened the way to the mythological construction that Cethim (Cichym) engendered Cyprus (Cipre), who engendered Crete, Jupiter’s ancestor. Back to text



Dardanus: son of Jupiter by Electra, daughter of Atlas. He is said to have founded the kingdom of the Trojans in Phrygia. At the foot of Mount Ida he had the city of Dardania built, which subsequently became Troy. See Troia, canto II, stanzas 5-13.

Candame: See Troia, canto II, stanza 14. Back to text

Erichthonius: son of Dardanus and Candame. Disregarding that Hardyng calls him Eritonus, Heywood here gives him his Homeric name (Iliad, XX, 219) while, under the influence of Caxton’s “Erutonius”, he had called him Eruton in canto II, stanza 14.

Tros: eponymous hero and founder of the Trojan race: see canto II, stanza 14.

Ilion: see canto V, stanza 9.

next: i.e. after. Back to text

strove: at first sight, a surprising use of the word. The most plausible sense of “strive” here, it seems to us, is OED 10a “to make one’s way with effort”. It is cited as being used in this sense by Sidney, Arcadia, and Spenser, Faerie Queene. While not exact contemporaries of Heywood, they are not far removed.

Laomedon: see canto VI, stanza 52 onwards.

Priamus: Priam. On Priam, see cantos 8-15.

Creusa: On the death of Aeneas’ wife, see canto XV, stanzas 82-84.

Askanius: Ascanius.

Who: this refers back to Aeneas.

passed: died (passed away). Back to text



Hostia’s: F, Hostiaes. In Antiquity, Rome’s seaport Ostia, at the mouth of the Tiber 

behight: commanded, bad (OED, II, 5). Heywood follows Hardyng, “In Tiber mouth with travail and with pain / Where the town and port is of Hostia, / Where by the God he bidden was to ga”.

receives.: F, receives (no punctuation mark). The absence of punctuation after receives in F might erroneously suggest that Evander is Latinus (the Latins’ king), whom in fact, he fights. Back to text

king his: F, King, whose.

The Latins’ king his daughter: Lavinia, the daughter of Evander, the Latins’ king.  

Tuskayne: Tuscan. Back to text

Turnus: in the Aeneid (books VII to XII), king of the Rutuli and the rival for Lavinia’s love, whom Aeneas finally slays.

Silvius: so-called because Lavinia is supposed to have retired to a wood to give birth to her son. Being pregnant, she feared mistreatment by Ascanius, Aeneas’ son by his first marriage.

Brutus: legendary founder of Britain, according to Pseudo Nennius’s Historia Britonum, a foundation myth popularized by Geoffrey of Monmouth. 

Tuskayne: F, Tuskaine. Tuscany. Back to text



infest: i.e. infested. As the most plausible definition in this context, OED gives “to attack, assail, annoy or trouble”.

consort: OED, “to accompany, to escort”.

Corineus: the legendary founder, and first ruler, of Cornwall according to Geoffrey of Monmouth, Britannie utriusque regum et principum Origo (Paris: Ascensius, 1508, fols. 7r-8r), who writes that Corineus was at the head of four generations of Trojan exiles, when Brutus encountered him on the shores of the Tyrrhenian sea. Brutus immediately recognized his prowess and forged an alliance. In battle with the giants who were said to inhabit Cornwall at the time, he would easily win the day, and it was in clearing the region of these inhabitants that he became the de facto ruler. Back to text



Pandras: Pandrasus, the Greek king who had enslaved many Trojans. Aeneas defeated him in battle, and imposed on Pandrasus his daughter’s hand in marriage. In Geoffrey of Monmouth’s account, he was initially defeated by Brutus on the banks of the River Akalon. He was then captured by Brutus at the siege of Sparatinum, at which point he was obliged to assent to the terms previously mentioned, furthermore granting the enslaved Trojans safe passage out of Greece (1508, fols. 2r-6v). Heywood follows Hardyng’s Chronicle, fol. 14 r.

Innogen: Ignogen, Pandrasus’ only daughter. Back to text



Gaul: F, Guall.

Guienne:  the area more familiarly known as Aquitaine, which broadly corresponds to south-west France.

Guffor: Goffar. According to Geoffrey of Monmouth (1508, fols. 7v-9v), Brutus’s forces were accosted by Goffar’s scouts while hunting in the king’s forest. Corineus killed one of them, and this unleashed the short war between the two forces. In the conclusive battle, close to Tours, the role played by Corineus in carrying the day for Brutus was decisive. Heywood still follows Hardyng’s Chronicle: “He sailed so forth by the sea Aquitaine / Where that he arrived, that now is Guyan land / And slew the bucks of which they were full fain, / The bear and the boar and harts all that they fand, / Without licence or yet any warrand, / Wherefore Guffor, king of the land, full fell, / With Trojans fought; Corine there bare the bell” (fol. 14 v).

maugre: despite. Back to text



Hugh Genesis and Hardyng: Heywood borrows his account of the Albina myth from John Hardyng, who refers his reader to “Hugh de Genesis a Roman historiographer” (Chronicle, fol. 7r): see “Heywood’s Library”.

Ayoth: According to Hardyng, Danaus’ daughters landed “in the yere of Aioth, judge of Israel, /... / Seventy and two as Hugh doth tell, / Which was, I say, an hundred year afore / That Brute came into this land” (Chronicle, fol. 7 v). Hence Heywood’s dating the event “in the year / Threescore and twelve” of “Ayoth”’s reign.

Danaus: On the conflation of the Albina myth of origins and the story of the Danaides, see “Heywood’s Library”. Back to text



The year … line: Heywood borrows his chronology from Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle [See “Heywood’s Library”]: events are situated in time according to two scales, one starting with the creation of the world, the other moving backwards or forwards from the birth of Christ. In F, the first date is presented above a horizontal line, the second one under; in this edition, a slash separates the year after the creation and the year before or after Christ, which comes second. See also canto I, note to Arg. 1. Back to text  

Affinity: a tie by consanguinity.

Marian: Marianus Scotus’ Cronicon, written before 1080, seems to have been brought to England by Robert the Lotharingian, who became bishop of Hereford in 1079; it became a major source of Florence of Worcester’s chronicle. Heywood probably owes the reference to John Hardyng, who wrote that “Before Brute came, were xii M [twelve thousand] giants, what in this land that now is England and the north that now is Scotland, and the west that now is Wales, as the Scot Marian sayeth in his dialogue” (Chronicle, fol. 8 v). Back to text



Totnes: According to Geoffrey of Monmouth. “At Totnes so this Brutus did arrive”, Hardyng’s Chronicle, fol. 15 r.

New Troy: often referred to as Troynovant in the literature surrounding the origins of Britain, from the medieval period onward through to the work of the chronographers of the sixteenth century. Hardyng calls London “New Troy” in the section narrating how Brutus “builded the city of Troynovant, that now is called London” (fol. 15v). Back to text

debenter: debt.

Locrine: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 2855/1108, fol. 28r: “[Brute] divided this whole empire among his three sons, unto Locrine he gave the middle part of Britain, now called England, with the superiority of all this isle; unto Camber he gave Wales, and to Albanact Scotland”. Hardyng explains that “Brute departed Britain in three parts to his three sons, the two younger to hold of the elder, so that Wales and Scotland should do homage to England” (fol. 16v).

2878/1085: At this date, Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, fol. 28 v, indicates that “Samuel, the 15th judge” became “high priest of the Israelites”. Heywood makes him roughly contemporary with Brutus’ three sons. Back to text



10: F, 2. Numbering is wrong for stanzas 10-47, 64.

his wife: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 2879/1084, fol. 28v: “[Locrine] was slain by his wife Guendoleyn, for the much as for the love of an harlot he had forsaken her”. In his Life of Merlin (London: J. Okes, 1641), in which he partly draws from Geoffrey of Monmouth, Heywood gives the whole story: “Locrine, who had espoused Guendolina, daughter to Corineus, Duke of Cornwall, grew enamoured of Estrild, a beauteous lady ... by whom he had a daughter named Sabrina, of which his queen having intelligence, she accited her father and friends to make war upon her husband and slew him in fight, when he had governed the realm for the space of twenty years” (sig. a2v). Back to text

Sabrine: Sabrine (or Sabrina) was Locrine’s daughter with his mistress, Estrild: see preceding note.

Severn: John Hardyng’s Chronicle, fols. xviii v-xix r: “She [Guendoline] drowned Estrild and her daughter dear [Sabrina] / In a river which that time had no name / But from thence forth ... / ... / Was called then Severn”. Heywood repeats the story in The Life of Merlin: “then the masculine-spirited lady [Guendoline] took his concubine Estrild with her beautiful young daughter Sabrina and caused them to be both drowned in tha river which parts England and Wales and from Sabrina is called Severn to all posterity” (sig. a2v). The most notable incidents in Locrine’s reign are powerfully recounted in Spenser’s Faerie Queene, II, x, 14-19. 

2889/1074: The date when David, according to Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, fol. 29r, was crowned king of Israel. Heywood substitutes the episode of the battle with Goliath.

Goliah:  Goliath. Back to text



Madan: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 2910/1053, fol. 29v, does not specify the length of his reign, an information provided by Hardyng, fol. 19r.

Absolom: usual spelling for Absalom in early modern English. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 2916/1047, fol. 30r, only mentions that Absalom flourished then, like David’s other children. Heywood adds the reference to his beauty (2 Samuel, 14:25) and to Joab’s murder (2 Samuel, 18:15). Back to text

Memprisius: Usually called Mempricius, although Memprisius and Memprise can occasionally be found.

Manlius: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 2954/1009, fol. 31r: “Between [Mempricius] and his brother Manlius was great strife for the sovereign dominion. But finally Mempricius slew his brother by treason”.     

In lust and riot: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 2916/1047, fol. 30r: “after he had continued his reign in tyranny and all unlawful lusts the space of 20 years, he was in hunting by wild beasts devoured”. According to Hardyng, he abandoned his wife, “Using the sin of horribility / With beasts oft”, in retribution of which he was devoured by wolves (fols. 19v-20r). Back to text



Ebranke: Ebraucus. Ebrancus in the 1508 and 1517 editions of Geoffrey of Monmouth’s Historia Regum Britanniae. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 2974/989, fol. 30v: “Ebranke, the son of Mempricius, reigned among the Britons 60 years; he builded the city of York, and the castles of Dunbar and Edenborough”. He is mentioned as “Famous for many charitable deeds” in none of Heywood’s sources. He reigned sixty years according to Hardyng, Lanquet, and Stow; forty according to the first printed editions of Geoffrey of Monmouth’s Historia Regum Britanniae, 1508 and 1517, fol. 12r; and Holinshed, 1577: I.5.13, p. 17. Back to text

Edenborowe: Edinburgh.

Brute Green-shield: “Brutus Viridescutum” (green shield) in Geoffrey of Monmouth (1508, fol. 12v). Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3034/929, fol. 31v: “Brute surnamed Greenshield, as the vulgar history calleth him, reigned here in Britain 12 years”. Back to text

weeds: garments.

B’Elias: By Elias (shortened for the scansion). Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3034/929, fol. 31v: “By the commandment of Helias the prophet, all the priests and prophets of Baal were slain”. Elias is an Old Testament prophet to be found in 1 and 2 Kings. He lived under the reign of Achab, King of Israel (married to Jezabel). After several years of drought and famine in the kingdom, Elias denounced the cult of Baal, maintained by Achab and—having established that he was the sole true prophet of God by obtaining rain with his prayers—he ordered the people to kill the priests of the false cult. Back to text



Leill: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3046/917, fol. 31v: “Leyl, the son of Brute, succeeded his father in this realm of Britain. He builded the city of Caer-leil, and reigned 25 years”.

Carleil: Carlisle, meaning “The city of Leyle, for in Britain tongue plainly / Cair is to say a city in their language” (Hardyng, fol. 21v). “King Leill” built “Cairleill”: Spenser, Faerie Queene, II, x, 25.

Lud Hurdibras: Rud Hud Hudibras in mss. of Geoffrey of Monmouth, Hurdibras in Geoffrey, 1508, fol. 12v and 1517, fol. 12v. Hardyng has Rudhudebras (fol. 21v) and Stow Rudhudibras (Annals, p. 14). The spelling Lud Hurdibras is common to Fabyan (I, 12, fol. 10v), Grafton (Chronicle at large, p. 45) and Holinshed (1577, I, 5, 16, p. 19). Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3071/892, fol. 32r (misnumbered 28): “Lud Hurdibras, son of Leyl, began to reign in Britain; he builded the cities of Canterbury and Winchester, and the town of Shaftsbury; when he had reigned 29 years, he deceased”. Named Huddibras by Spenser, Faerie Queene, II, x, 25. Back to text

rears: builds.

obits: death, from Anglo-Norman and Middle French. There is no clear explanation as to why this should occur in plural form.

Zachary: Zechariah. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3093/870, fol. 32v: “After the death of Joiada [Jehoiada], the high priest, king Joas [Joash] falling into idolatry, commanded the prophet Zachary, the son of Joiada, to be stoned to death”. See 2 Chronicles 24, 20-22. Back to text



3097/896: moved down from stanza 13.

Bladud: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3097/866, fol. 33r; with more or less detail as well as more or less detachment, Hardyng, Higden, Fabyan, Grafton, Holinshed and Stow repeat the same story, which derives from Geoffrey of Monmouth. Back to text

Amos and Amazia: Amaziah, an idolatrous priest from Bethel who followed the cult of the Golden Calf, persecuted the prophet Amos, under the reign of Jeroboam II (Amos 7:10-17). Heywood is content with reproducing a brief note in Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3109/854, fol. 33r: “Amos and Amazia [Amaziah], prophets, flourished”.

Leir next him: Leir succeeded to Bladud. This is the king on whom Shakespeare based his tragedy, radically changing many elements in the story, as recounted in Geoffrey of Monmouth, Polydore Vergil, and many other sources. 

Jonas: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3123/840, fol. 33v: “Jonas the prophet about this time was cast out of the whale’s belly”. Back to text



Cordeilla: Heywood follows Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3111/852, fol. 33v when he mentions Leir’s forty-year reign and the foundation of Leicester. But while Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle merely states that Leir “left after him three daughters, of the which the youngest, for her wisedom, was chosen to be governor”, Heywood’s insistence on Cordeilla’s faithful love, and his condemnation of “they that promised most” and “least thankful prove” (not found in Lanquet), might echo Shakespeare’s play although it might also merely elaborate on Hardyng summing up Geoffrey of Monmouth. Unlike Shakespeare, Hardyng, Fabyan, Lanquet, Grafton, Holinshed, Stow and Heywood follow the sources according to which Cordelia succeeded her father to the throne. So does Spenser, Faerie Queene, II, x, 27-32, in accordance with Geoffrey of Monmouth. Back to text

sits above: reigns.

3158: F, 1358, reproducing a misprint in Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 1358 (for 3158)/805, fol. 34r.

Morgan and Cunedagius: F, Cunedadgius. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3158 (misnumbered 1358)/805, fol. 34r: “Cordeilla, the youngest daughter of Leir, ruled Britain five years. She by the rebellion of her two nephews, Morgan and Cunedagius, was taken and cast in prison, where for sorrow she killed herself”. See Geoffrey of Monmouth, 1508 and 1517, fol. 15v, where Marganus and Cunedagius are, respectively, the sons of Maglaunus and Henninus, the husbands of Cordelia’s two sisters.

unhappy: that is, years during which Morgan and Cunedagius had waged incessant war on the queen, since they could not accept that a woman should rule over the kingdom. Back to text



They jointly reign, etc.: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3162/801, fol. 34r-v: “Cunedagius and Morgan jointly succeeded Cordeilla, but they continued not long together but there began strife for the sovereign dominion, in which Morgan was slain in a county of Wales called now Glaumorgan. After which victory, Cunedagius gloriously ruled the whole isle 33 years”. 

the title: According to Geoffrey of Monmouth, 1508, fol. 16r, Marganus was killed in a region of Wales (“in pago Cambriae”), which, after his death, was named “Marganus” after him. Instead of Marganus, Lanquet and Heywood use the form Morgan, in which they see the origin of Glamorganshire. So do several other authors, including Spenser, Faerie Queene, II, x, 33. See preceding note. Back to text

Naum: Nahum. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3183/780, fol. 35r: “Naum and Micheus [Micah] prophecied among the Hebrews”. Nahum is considered to be one of the minor Prophets of the Old Testament. The Book of Nahum entirely concerns the destruction of the Assyrian city of Nineveh.

Rivallo: son of Cunedagius. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3197/766, fol. 35r: “Rivallo succeeded Cunedagius, a prince peaceable and fortunate. He reigned 46 years”.

Esay, etc.: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3197/766, fol. 35r: “Uria [Uriah], high priest, Oseas [Hosea], Esaias [Isaiah], Amos, Micheas [Micah], and Adad, prophets, flourished”.  

Adad: possibly Hadad the Edomite. Not usually considered to be one of the Prophets, either major or minor, although his biblical role was to punish Solomon, who had reverted to idolatry. See 1 Kings 14. Back to text



Rome: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3211/752, fol. 35v: “In the year 1554 after the universal flood, and after Comerus, the first king of Italy, 1414; after the destruction of Troy, 432, and after Brute arrived in England, 356, Rome was builded in Italy by Remus and Romulus”.

Sybil: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3221/742, fol. 36r: “In this time Sibilla Erythrea lived, who prophesied most plainly of Christ”. Back to text

saws: pieces of wisdom, maxims (see Hamlet, I.v.100).

Ezechy: Ezechiah. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3222/741, fol. 36r: “Ezechias, in his extreme sickness, was healed by God; his life was prolonged by 15 years. The sun, to the wonder of all the world, returned his course backward by ten degrees”. When Ezechiah had fallen into great sickness, Isaiah prophesied his death. His tears, however, caused God to relent, and as a miraculous sign that Ezechiah would be allowed fifteen years’ grace, God caused the shadow to regress ten degrees on his father’s sundial, thus adding ten hours to the normal twenty-four for that day. See 2 Kings, 20:1-11 and Isaiah, 38:1-8. Back to text

Thales Milesius: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3213/750, fol. 36r: “Thales Milesius, one of the seven wise men, flourished in natural philosophy among the Grecians”. Thales of Miletus was traditionally considered as one of the Seven Wise Men of Greece since Plato’s Protagoras, 342e-343b. 

blood: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3197/766, fol. 35r, notes that during Rivallo’s reign, “it rayned blood, whereof ensued great mortality of people”. According to Geoffrey of Monmouth, “in tempore eius tribus diebus ceccidit pluvia sanguinea et muscarum affluentia; moriebant homines” (in his time, a rain of blood fell for three days and there was a multitude of flies [and] people died), 1508, I, xvi, fol. 16r). Spenser mentions Rivallo, “In whose sad time bloud did from heaven raine” (Faerie Queene, II, x, 34).

waned: came to the end of his life.

Gurgustius: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3242/721, fol. 37r: “Gurgustius succeeded Rivallo in this realm of Britain and reigned 38 years”. Merely mentioned as Rivallo’s son and successor in Geoffrey of Monmouth, 1508, fol. 16r. Back to text



Joel: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3252/711, fol. 37v: “Joel, Naum [Nahum, already mentioned stanza 16], prophets among the Jews”. Joel is the second of the twelve minor Prophets of the Old Testament.

taught: F, taughts. Back to text

Iliads: Iliad. Heywood’s is the usual early modern spelling.

Homer: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3258/705, fol. 37v: “In this time, as many write, Homer, the prince of Greek poets, feigned his works; he both amended and increased the Greek letters, and first set forth the rules of grammar”. 

wrate: wrote. Back to text

Glaucus Chius: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3270/693, fol. 37v: “Glaucus Chius first invented soldering of metals”. This affirmation is made by Eusebius of Caesarea, in his Chronicon (early 4th century A.D.): “Glaucus Chius primus ferri inter se glutinum excogitavit” in Jerome’s rendering, Chronicon ... Eusebii Pamphili Caesariensis D. Hieronymo interprete (Basel: Henricus Petrus, 1529), fol. 48r. It was repeated in Flores Historiarum, ed. Luard, Rolls Series, 95, 1890, vol. 1, p. 46 and by Polydore Vergil in his De Inventoribus Rerum (Basel: Froben, 1521), II, xix, p. 24. The information was drawn from Herodotus’ Histories, I, 25: “Glaucus the Chian, the only man of that age who discovered how to weld iron”, The Persian Wars, transl. A. D. Godley (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1920), vol. 1, pp. 28-29. Glaucus Chius was said to be a native of the island of Chios. Back to text

soldering: F, sodering.

Sisillius: Sisillius I. F, Sicillius, Sisillus in the marginal note and Sisillius (stanza 19), which is also Geoffrey of Monmouth’s spelling, 1508 and 1517, fol. 16r, and mss. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3279/684, fol. 37v: “Sisillus, brother to Gurgustius, reigned in Britain 49 years”. He appears as Caecily in Spenser’s Faerie Queene, II, x, 34. Back to text

Amon: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3292/671, fol. 38r: “Amon, the 18th king of Juda, reigned three years, a wicked prince, wherefore he perished by the sword of his own servants”. An impious king, who received divine punishment by being assassinated by his own palace servants only two years into his reign. See 2 Kings 21:18-23.

Zaleucus: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3302/662, fol. 38v: “In this time, Zaleucus, the most severe lawyer of the Locrenses, flourished, who commanded the eyes of his only son, which was condemned for adultery, to be put out, lest that the general law should be frustrate in him. At length, by the prayer of the people gainsaying it, in such wise moderated his sentence that he commanded one of his own eyes and another of his son’s to be put out, that the law might be fulfilled”. He thus proved himself both a merciful father and a stern upholder of the laws that he had promulgated. It was said that this exemplary behaviour so filled the people with admiration that adultery entirely disappeared. The story was widely spread by Diodorus Siculus, The Library of History, XII, 20-21; Aelian, Historical Miscellany, XIII, 24; Valerius Maximus, Memorable Doings and Sayings, VI, 7. In De Legibus, II, 14-16, Cicero considered the episode sufficiently well known not to have to repeat it. Back to text

sate: sat.

Jeremy: Jeremiah.

King Josias: Josiah, a pious king, who succeeded Amon as ruler over Judah. He vigorously prosecuted a campaign against idolatry in the kingdom. He was killed by an archer from the opposing Egyptian army. Jeremiah was said to have composed funeral verses for him, which were chanted by the people at his burial. See 2 Kings, 22, 23:1-30. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3295/668, fol. 39r-v and 3325/638, fol. 30r, provide a detailed account.

Olda: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3325/638, fol. 39r: “Helchias, high priest, Hieremias [Jeremiah], Sophonias, Baruch and Olda, prophets, flourished among the Jews”. Olda was a common early modern spelling for the prophetess Huldah (2 Kings, 22:14-20; 2 Chronicles, 34:22-28). She appears as Olda in Richard Taverner’s and Mathew Parker’s translations of the Bible (1539 and 1568 respectively). In The History of the World (1617), Walter Raleigh refers to her as “the Prophetesse Huldah, or, Olda” (II, xxviii, p. 629). Back to text

Baruch: the scribe, secretary and, in many ways, disciple of Jeremiah. The latter is supposed to have dictated what became the “scroll of Baruch”, to the extent that it is very difficult for scholars to determine what is proper to the master, and what to the disciple. The more so in that at the time of the canon formation of the Hebrew bible, in the first century after Christ, there was no surviving Hebrew text for the Book of Baruch. This survived only in a Greek text, and therefore only figures as part of the bibles containing the Septuagint, otherwise known to Protestant churches as the Apocrypha. For references to Baruch, see Jeremiah 32:12-15; 36; 43:1-7; 45; 51:59.

Sophonius: Zephaniah, ninth of the minor Prophets in the Old Testament. He began to prophecy during the reign of Josias (see above). 2 Kings, 25:18; Jeremiah, 29:25, 29; Book of Zephaniah. Back to text



Phalaris: F, Phalleris. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3311/652, fol. 38v: “Phalaris, tyrant of Agrigentine [Agrigentum], flourished, under whom the cunning artificer Perillus suffered in his own invention”. Perillus, a sculptor and metal-worker, made a bronze bull, which he presented to Phalaris, destined to roast criminals alive inside it. When the tyrant realised the true purpose of the object that he initially found beautiful, he had the metalworker shut inside it and subjected to the same sentence. Back to text

swayed: held the sceptre.

Perillus: F, Perilles.

Iago: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3327/635, fol. 39r: “Jago, called also Lago, governed this realm of Britain 25 years”. He was the nephew of Gurgustius, according to Geoffrey of Monmouth, 1508, fol. 16r.  Hardyng calls him Jago (fol. 25r); Fabyan (I, 22, fol. 9v), Holinshed (1577, I, 5, 24, p. 27) and Stow (Annals, p. 16) all say  “Iago or Lago”. Spenser calls him Lago (Faerie Queene, II, x, 34). Back to text

Nebuchadnezar: F, Nabuchadnezar. Also sometimes written Nabuchodonosor. Nebuchadnezzar in King James Bible. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3327/635, fol. 39v: “Nabuchodonosor the great, the 9th king of Babylon, called of the Jews Nabucadnazer, reigned 44 years. He subdued the Syrians, Egyptians, Libyans, Hiberians, and brought the Jews into captivity. Finally he, rebelling as it were against almighty God, by the company of beasts with whom, by the stroke of God, he was compelled to live, was made humble and acknowledged the godhead, to whom he gave the praise and glory...”. King of the Chaldeans, he suppressed several rebellions by the inhabitants of Judah, who were carried off to Babylon into exile. 2 Kings, 24, 25; Daniel, 1-4.

Susanna: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3339/623, fol. 39v: “Susanna, the most chaste matron of the Hebrews, by two false priests was accused of adultery, but by the policy of young Daniel she was purged and the priests committed to the fire”. The story of Susanna does not appear in the Hebrew bible, but it features in the passages of the Book of Daniel considered to be part of the Apocrypha by the Protestant churches. Back to text



Kinimachus: Geoffrey of Monmouth’s Kimarcus (mss.), presented as Sisillius’ son and called Kinimacus in the editions of 1508 and 1517, fol. 16r. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3351/612, fol. 40v: “Kinimachus succeeded Jago in this realm of Britain wherein he reigned 54 years”. Geoffrey, Hardyng, Higden and Fabyan do not mention the length of his reign, fifty-four years according to Lanquet, Grafton (p. 52), Holinshed (1577, I, 5, 25, p. 27) and Stow, (Annals, 1605, p. 16).

Arion: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3353/610, fol. 40r: “Arion, the excellent harper, by a dolphin, as it is written, was borne through the sea”. Arion was a poet and luthist who, having become wealthy, wished to return to his home island of Lesbos. During the voyage, he was thrown overboard by sailors who wished to rob him. The quality of the elegy he sang before being thrown overboard charmed the dolphins, who bore him to safety. The story is told by Herodotus, Histories, I, 23-24; Ovid, Fasti, II, 79ff.; Hyginus, Fabulae, 194. Back to text

the three children: What Heywood found in Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3353/610, fol. 40v was: “Nabuchodonoser erected a golden statue or idol which he commanded to be adored, by which occasion the holy men Ananias, Azarias and Misael triumphed in the fire”. He identified the idol as Bel (Baal), whose cult is referred to in Jeremiah 19: 5, and completed Lanquet with what he knew of the story as told in the Book of Daniel. The “trumpets blown” in front of him echo “the cornet, flute, harp, sackbut, psaltery, dulcimer” at the sound of which people were ordered to worship the idol (Daniel, 3:4-7). He also substituted “three children” to Lanquet’s “holy men”, remembering that Hananiah, Azariah and Mishael were described as “the children of Judah”, and “Children in whom was no blemish” (Daniel, 1: 4, 6).  

Solon: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3353/610, fol. 41r: “Solon, who for his wisdom is called one of the Seven Wise Men of Greece, gave laws to the Athenians [...] and abolished the cruel and bloody laws of Draco, which were tempered with no equity”.

Sappho: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3361/602, fol. 40v: “Sapho, a poetess and prophetess, in this season was greatly renowned”. Heywood’s “sweet poetess” suggests a more literary appreciation of the poetess from Mytilene, on the island of Lesbos. Back to text



Anaximander: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3383/580, fol. 41v: “Anaximander, a renowned philosopher and physician, in this time flourished. He taught the course of the celestial bodies and first made the horoscope, or ascendant, and also descrived the circuit of the land and sea”. A pre-Socratic philosopher, not to be confused with Anaximander, the historian, his contemporary, as Diogenes Laertius warns in his Vitae Philosophorum, II, 1-2.

Aesop: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3390/573, fol. 42r: “Aesopus, a Phrygian, by fortune bound but in wit free and excellent, in this time flourished by feigning his pleasant fables”. Herodotus refers to him as “Aesopus the story writer” and a slave in his Histories, II, 134. Back to text

Gorbodug: Gorboduc in the eponymous play by Thomas Sackville and Thomas Norton (first performed, 1562); Gorbodug in Geoffrey, 1508 and 1517, fol. 16r (Gorbodugo in some mss.). Heywood adopted the spelling in Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3404/559, fol. 43r: “Gorbodug succeeded his father Kinimachus in this realm of Britain, as our chroniclers write, 63 years”. Geoffrey of Monmouth mentions only that he had two sons, Ferrex and Porrex. Like Lanquet, Fabyan (I, 23, fol. 9v), Grafton (p. 53), Holinshed (1577, I, 5, 26, p. 27) and Stow, (Annals, 1605, p. 16) attribute to Gorbodug, as they also name him, a reign of 63 years—which Holinshed, 1587, II, 2, 8, p. 14 changes to 62.

In the lions’ den: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3417/546, fol. 43v: “Daniel, by the envy of the princes, was cast into a den of lions, where, by the power of God, he remained unhurt”; see Daniel, 6:16-23. Back to text

Cyrus: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3415/548, fol. 43v: “Cresus [Croesus], a king of Lydia, was taken by Cyrus in battle, toward whom Cyrus showed great gentleness, granting him both his life and a noble living”. King of the Persians, commander of the combined army of Medes and Persians, Cyrus invaded Lydia and defeated Croesus on the banks of the river Halys (in Anatolia). Back to text

Cressus: Croesus, see preceding note.

Zacharias, Aggeus, Malach’: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3424/539, fol. 43v: “Malachias, Aggeus, and Zacharias, prophets, lived”. Zechariah, Haggai, and Malachi in the King James Bible. Classified as being among the twelve Minor Prophets, all exercised their ministry c. 520 years BCE, and all exhorted the Jews to reconstruct the destroyed Temple, on their return from the Babylonian exile.

Lucrece: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3430/533, fol. 44r, sums up the well-known story. Heywood’s play, The Rape of Lucrece, was staged in 1608/09 at the Red Bull: for his staging of the story of Lucrece, he drew on Livy, Ovid, and Shakespeare’s poem. Back to text



Ferrex and Porrex: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3467/495, fol. 47v: “Ferrex, with his brother Porrex, ruled this land of Britain 5 years, but it was not long ere they fell at civil discord for the sovereign dominion, in which Ferrex was slain. And Porrex, afterwards by his mother was killed in his bed. Thus cruelly was the house and blood of Brute destroyed, when that this realm by the space of 616 years had been governed by that lineage”. The fratricidal war is reported by Geoffrey of Monmouth, 1508, fol. 16r-v, dramatised in Sackville and Norton’s Gorboduc and recounted in Spenser’s Faerie Queene, II, x, 35-36. Back to text

their mother: Widen, according to the early printed editions of Geoffrey of Monmouth, 1508 and 1517, fol 16r, but differently in manuscripts, where she is Judon  (e.g. British Library Royal MS 13 D. ii; Cologny, Foundation Martin Bodmer, Cod. Bodmer 70; Biblioteca National de España, MS 6319; BNF, MS Lat. 6040) or Juden (e. g. St. Gallen Stiftsbibliothek Cod. Sang. 633). Widen for Grafton (p. 53), Wyden for Spenser (Faerie Queene, II, x, 35), Videna according to Sackville and Norton—but Idoine for Stow (Annals, p. 16). In The Life of Merlin, Heywood calls her “Widen or, as some authors name her, Judon” (sig. b v). She allegedly loved Ferrex the better of the two. Deranged with grief, she hacked Porrex to pieces in his sleep: “in plurima sectiones dilaceravit”, Geoffrey of Monmouth writes, 1508, fol. 16r; in Gorboduc (IV.ii.190), she is said to have stabbed him in the heart. According to Heywood, “she, setting aside all motherly pity, entered his chamber and by the help of her women, in the dead of night when he was fast sleeping, most cruelly slew him; and after, not sated with his death, she cut his body into small pieces” (The Life of Merlin, sig. bv). Back to text

imbrue: OED, 2a “to stain, dye (one’s hand, sword, etc.) in or with (blood, slaughter, etc.)”.

sedition was maintained: According to Geoffrey of Monmouth, “Exinde civilis discordia multo tempore populum afflixit, ut regnum quinque regibus submissum fuerit, qui sese mutuis cladibus infestabant” (Thenceforth, civil discord afflicted the people for a long time, as sovereignty was disputed between five kings who harassed one another with mutual devastation”, 1508), fol. 16r. What Geoffrey vaguely calls “multo tempore” is a gap of “Full one and fifty years” for Heywood, a detail that is not given by Lanquet. Fabyan calculated that “this foresaid discord continued near to the term of 51 years” (Cronycle, I, 26, fol. 10r), an information Holinshed accepted (1577, I, 5, 27, p. 27). Back to text

Darius: Darius I, elected king of the Persians in the year 522 BCE. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle refers to Darius’ reign between 3427/522, fol. 45r and 3475/488, fol. 48r.  

Xerxes: second son of Darius. Succeeded to the throne in the year 484 BCE. He was the commander of the Persian army at the disaster of Thermopylae. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle refers to Darius’ reign between 3477/486, fol. 48r and 3496/467, fol. 49v. Back to text

Queen Hester: F, Hestor. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3503/460, fol. 50r: “This year also Hester began to reign as queen”. Biblical criticism dates the composition of the Book of Esther to c. 160-150 BCE. However, the events it relates are much older. Esther was effectively made queen by Ahasuerus (Esther 2:17), and the latter has been identified by certain currents of biblical scholarship with Xerxes I, although there is some ambiguity since that part of the Book of Esther, which includes the Greek supplements, refers to the king as Artaxerxes, the name of Xerxes’ three successors. Back to text



Sophocles: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3513/450, fol. 50v: “Sophocles, a poet of Athens and writer of tragedies, flourished”. Thought to have been born in the mid 490s BCE.

Plato: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3508/455, fol. 50r:”Cratinus and Plato, comedy writers, and Aristarchus, maker of tragedies, lived”. Plato Comicus (Plato, the comic writer) is a contemporary of Aristophanes; the titles of thirty plays and a little less than three hundred fragments have come down to us. See “Plato, Testimonia and Fragments” in Fragments of Old Comedy, vol. 3, ed. and translated by Ian C. Storey (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2011). Back to text

Cratinus: no precise dates available for his life, but dateable comedies are The Cheimazomenoi, 425 BCE [date uncertain], Nemesis, 431? BCE, Dionysalexander, 430 or 429 BCE, and Pytine (Wine-flask), 423 BCE. He is grouped with Aristophanes and Eupolis as the greatest of the comic playwrights in the style of Attic comedy known as Old Comedy. The surviving fragments of his works are collected in Fragments of Old Comedy, vol. 1, ed. and translated by Ian C. Storey (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2011). Back to text

Aristarchus: Although Heywood lists him among writers of comedy, Aristarchus of Tegea was a tragedian, as indicated in Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3508/455, fol. 50r (see note on Plato, above).  Of Aristarchus the tragedian we know little except that he was a contemporary of Euripides. See Matthew Wright, The Lost Plays of Greek Tragedy, vol. 1 (London: Bloomsbury, 2016), pp. 45-48.

Empedocles: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3508/455, fol. 50r: “Empedocles and Parmenides, philosophers of Athens, in this time flourished. The first in music was notable”. Lanquet and Heywood allude to an episode reported in Iamblichus’ Life of Pythagoras, XXV: influenced by Pythagoras, the pre-Socratic philosopher soothed a young man’s murderous rage by singing with the accompaniment of the lyre Homer’s line about “a drug that relieves pain, calms anger, and makes one forget all evils” (Odyssey, IV, 221). The main source for Empedocles is Diogenes Laertius (Lives and Opinions of Eminent Philosophers, VIII, 51-77). He is thought to have lived c. 492-432 BCE. He was not from Athens but from the Greek city of Akragas (Agrigento) in Sicily. Back to text

Parmenides: Presocratic philosopher from Elea, thought to have lived c. 500 BCE. He divided philosophy into two parts, the way of truth, and that of opinion. According to Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3508/455, fol. 50r, “sequestering himself from all company on the mountain Caucasus, [he] devised the science of logic”.

Caucasus: F, Cancasus.

Esdras: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3503/460, fols. 49v-50r: “Esdras, by the licence of Artaxerxes, came from Babylon to Jerusalem with 1775 Jews, to repair the law and city of God, and to teach the people, for he gathered and brought in order the books of Holy Scripture, before scattered and destroyed, and invented the Hebrew characters, which be used at this day”. Esdras is often associated with Nehemiah as one of the two leading figures in the Jewish return from the Babylonian exile. A scion of the elite priestly caste, there is a consensus in biblical scholarship in attributing to him the credit for giving the Pentateuch (Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deutoronomy) its final form, accepted as such by both Jews and Samaritans. Back to text



Mulmutius Dunwallo: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3522/441, fol. 51r-v: “Mulmutius Dunwallo, the son of Cloten, duke of Cornwall, reduced this realm into one monarchy, being before by civil wars and dissension lacerated and brought into divers dominions. He was the first that was crowned king, and constituted good laws, which long after were called Mulmutius laws [the Molmutine laws]; he gave privileges unto temples, and ploughs, and began to make the four notable ways in Britain. In London, called then Troynovant, he builded a great temple which some suppose to be Saint Paul’s, some Blackwell Hall.” All the details Heywood borrowed from Lanquet are found in Geoffrey of Monmouth, 1508, fols. 16v-17r and Holinshed’s Chronicles (1577, I, 5, 28, p. 23), except the association with Saint Paul’s. The Temple of Concord, which he had had built at Troynovant, is said to have been “Paul’s church in London” in John Hardyng’s Chronicle, fol. 27v. On William Rankins’s lost play, Mulmutius Dunwallo (1598), see Martin Wiggins and Catherine Teresa Richardson, British Drama, 1533-1642: A Catalogue, vol. 4 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2014), p. 74. The reign of Dunwallo, “a man of matchlesse might / And wondrous wit to menage high affaires”, is praised in Spenser’s Faerie Queene, II, x, 37-40.

Cloten: Mulmutius Dunwallo’s father.

Cornwayle: F, Corweyle (Cornwall). Back to text

translated: spirited away.

Socrates: Socrates’ life (469-399 BCE) is summed up in Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3550/413, fol. 53r-v.

Demosthenes: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3550/413, fol. 53v, only mentions Demosthenes’ death. His being “famous for arts” is Heywood’s addition. Demosthenes (384-322 BCE) is generally considered Athens’ greatest orator; his reputation as such was constructed not only on his public orations, but also on the brilliant speeches that he made in various lawsuits; he also resolutely opposed Philip of Macedon and the increasing Macedonian domination of Athenian territory, although he had to accept Philip’s son, Alexander the Great, as the de facto monarch of Athens.

arts: must taken in this context as signifying the ars rhetoricaBack to text



Beline, Bren: Belinus and Brennius in Geoffrey of Monmouth, 1508, fols. 17r-21v; Bellinus and Brennus in Spenser’s Faerie Queene, II, x, 40. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3562/401, fols. 55v-56r: “Belinus and Brennus, sons of Mulmutius, divided this whole isle of Britain between them. Unto Beline, as elder, was appointed England, Wales and Cornwall; unto the other the north part beyond Humber”. After several internecine wars arising from the jealousy of the younger brother, Bren, towards the older, Beline, they were reconciled on the battlefield as they were preparing to engage the fight, by the mother’s heartfelt speech to Bren. According to Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, “Brennus, given wholly to the study of wars, leaving his country to the governance of his brother, went unto France among the Gauls”. Meanwhile, Beline “increased his realm” and “subdued and made tributary unto him Denmark”. Back to text

Belinsgate: the modern Billingsgate, in London. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3563/400, fol. 56r: “In London he made the haven which at this day retaineth the name of him, called Beline’s gate”. Beline had this built, with a high tower placed on top of it. When he died, his ashes were placed in an urn on the top of the tower, according to Geoffrey of Monmouth, 1508, fol. 21r-v. Back to text

Rome: The sack of Rome by Brennus derives from Geoffrey of Monmouth and is described at length in Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3579/384, fol. 57v. Geoffrey of Monmouth conflated his own British Brennius with the Brennus who sacked Rome according to Livy (V, 36-43). Fabyan (II, 30, fol. 12v) expresses scepticism, underlining discrepancies between Geoffrey’s account and that of the Roman historians.

Delphos: This episode, which does not exist in Geoffrey of Monmouth, is the result of yet another conflation between Geoffrey’s hero and the Brennus of Pausanias (X, 22-23) and Justin’s Epitome of Pompeius Trogus  (XXIV, 6-8). After reporting the invasion of Rome by Belinus and Brennus, the Flores Historiarum added that their army divided to march some towards Greece, some towards Macedonia, some towards Thracia (ed. Luard, Rolls Series, 95, 1890, vol. 1, p. 62), but did not mention the attack on Delphi.  Fabyan (II, 31, fol. 13v), followed by Grafton (VI, p. 59), develops the episode. By sending Brennus to Greece after the capture of Rome, Heywood parts company with Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3685/278, fols. 66v-67r, which distinguishes Belinus’ brother from a different, later Brennus, “captain of the Gauls, which invaded Greece, after many spoils there done, robbed the temple of Apollo at Delphos [Delphi]”. A captain of the Gauls, also known as Brennus, entered Macedonia and Greece at the head of an army of 150,000 men in 278 BCE and sacked the sanctuary of Delphi, which Heywood refers to as Delphos in Troia, canto XV, 103, and The Golden AgeBack to text

In his Anglica Historia (Basel: Bebelius, 1534), p. 24, Polydore Vergil was careful to specify, at the end of his account of Brennus’ sack of Rome, that 110 years later, another Brennus invaded Greece: “Hic commodum de altero Brenno Gallorum duce commemorare volui, ut ne similitudo nominis efficeret, quò veterum historiarum ignari crederent eundem fuisse Brennum, qui urbem Romam cepisset, incendisset, spoliasset, ac qui Gallorum alteram manum [...] primum in Graeciam, deinde in Macedoniam duxerat” (Here, I thought it relevant to recall another Brennus, captain of the Gauls, lest the similarity of their names induced those not conversant in ancient history to believe that it was the same Brennus who took, burned and sacked Rome and who, with another troop, first invaded Greece, then Macedonia). However, in a systematic refutation of Polydore Vergil, John Price had a whole chapter to demonstrate that there was only one Brennus, a British hero: Historiae Brytannicae Defensio (London: Bynneman, 1573), pp. 97-108. Similarly, the Welsh historian Humphrey Llwyd attacked Polydore Vergil’s argumentation, which he did not think credible, “quando nullus ante eum scriptor id unquam memoriae tradidit” (since no writer before him ever mentioned it), Commentarioli Britannicae Descriptionis Fragmentum, Auctore Humfredo Lhuyd (Cologne: Joannes Birckmann, 1573), fols. 44r-45r. But Llwyd’s nationalistic belief in one single Brennus was in turn severely rebuked in Buchanan’s Rerum Scoticarum Historia (Edinburgh: Alexander Arbuthnot, 1582), II, fol. 27v: “At duos inquit Luddus Brennos nemo praeter Polydorum Vergilium tradit. Fugit te Ludde ratio” (But Llwyd says that apart from Polydore Vergil nobody reported the existence of two Brennus. Your reason, Llwyd, has deserted you). Holinshed summed up the debate in his Chronicles (1577, I, 5, 29, p. 27) and non-committedly concluded “I doubt not but that the truth of this matter shall be more fully sifted out in time by the learned and studious of such antiquities”. In spite of the historians’ controversy, and as if they were not aware of it, poets went on praising the exploits of that British Brennus who sacked Rome and conquered Greece: not only Heywood, but Spenser before him (Faerie Queene, II, x, 40). In Poly-Olbion (1612), Michael Drayton still has British Brennus invade Italy then Greece, but John Selden’s note specifies that “Like liberty as others takes the author in affirming that Brennus, which was general to the Gauls in taking Rome, to be the same which overcame Greece and assaulted the Oracle. [...] Examination of time makes it apparently false; nor indeed doth the British chronology endure our Brennus to be either of them, as Polydore and Buchanan have observed” (p. 124). Back to text

stoned with hail and thunder-stroke: no mention of this in Geoffrey of Monmouth. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3685/278, fol. 67r, merely states that Brennus committed suicide and that his army, “being destitute of a captain, with lightning, hail hunger and pestilence was vexed”. Classical authors, among whom Diodorus Siculus (The Library of History, XXII, ix, 2) mention Brennus’ suicide after he was wounded and defeated at Delphi. According to Pausanias, the battle was preceded by portentous signs, heavy snow and rocks falling from Mount Parnassus upon the Gauls (The Description of Greece, “Phocis”, X, xxiii, 4). It is after the battle, in Justin’s Epitome of the Philipic History of Pompeius Trogus (XXIV, viii, 10-11), that in an earthquake, rocks fall upon the defeated army, which is decimated by hail and frost. More soberly, Cicero (De Divinatione, I, xxxvii) and Valerius Maximus (Memorable Doings and Sayings, I, i, 9) simply report that the army was oppressed by heavy snow. But Humphrey Llwyd, in his Commentarioli Britannicae Descriptionis Fragmentum, (Cologne: Joannes Birckmann, 1573), fol. 44v, had his own version: “Et cum tandem templum Apollinis Delphici spoliare conabatur, prodigiosè exercitus eius casu rupis maxime et imbribus coelestibus fere deletus est” (When he intended to ransack Apollo’s Delphian temple, miraculously, his army was almost wholly destroyed by a huge rockslide and rain from heaven). Llwyd’s interpretation of the falling rocks as divine punishment of a sacrilege prompted Languet’s wry irony in a letter to Philip Sidney reproduced and analyzed in Philip Schwyzer’s edition of Humphrey Llwyd’s Breviary of Britain (Tudor and Stuart Translations, vol. 5, London: MHRA, 2011, pp. 8-11). But Heywood, who could find the story of divine revenge narrated in Fabyan (II, 31, fol. 13v), Grafton (p. 59) and Stow’s Annals (pp. 17-18) found it adequate for his poetic purpose, and striking enough to repeat it in The Life of Merlin: “Thence he came to Delphos where the Oracle was, and robbed the temple of Apollo. Upon which, there was a great earthquake, and hail stones of mighty weight and bigness, which destroyed some part of his host, and upon the rest an huge part of the rocky mountain fell and buried them in the earth; and Bren being wounded and despairing of safety, drew his sword and killed himself” (sig. B4r). Back to text 

Italy: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3576/387, fol. 57v: “He [Brennus] first builded [...] Milan, Pavy [Pavia], Bergamum [Bergamo], Comum [Como], Bricia [Brescia], Verona, Tridentum [Trento], Vincentia [Vicenza], with divers other cities”. Back to text



supply: most plausibly OED 4a, “to support, maintain”.

Dionysius: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3568/395, fol. 57r: “Dionyse, tyrant of Sicily, about this time overcame the Locrenses and shortly after, he himself was vanquished by the Crotonians”. Dionysius I of Syracuse, archon of Sicily, and one of ancient Greece’s foremost military men. Back to text

Damon and Pythias: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3568/395, fol. 57r: “Damon and Pythias, an example of most sure and rare friendship, in this time lived”. Both were followers of the school of Pythagoras. Dionysius of Syracuse having condemned Damon to death, Pythias offered to take his friend’s place. Dionysius was so impressed by such steadfastness that he pardoned Damon as a mark of deep respect for their friendship.

Xenophon: soldier, mercenary, and author of a vast output, including among others a history of the Peloponnesian War that was intended to complement Thucydides’s account, and a defence of Socrates, whose disciple he considered himself to be. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, devotes a paragraph to him, 3586/377, fol. 58v. Back to text

Plato: The paragraph devoted to Xenophon is followed by a longer development on Plato in Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3586/377, fol. 58v.

Mausolus: F Mansolus. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3586/377, fol. 58v: “Mausolus, king of Caria, reigned, whose wife Artemisia builded for him a wonderful sepulchre, which was taken for one of the goodly works of the world, of which all goodly monuments of dead men were called Mausolea”. Mausolus died 353 years BCE. His tomb was begun at Halicarnassus, by his own order, in 367 BCE, but was finished after his death by his wife and sister, Artemisia.

nine: the ancient world was traditionally considered to contain seven wonders, although this list was augmented in post-Christian culture. Heywood lists the seven wonders in canto II, 63-65 and may have increased them here to nine as a poetic licence, for the sake of the rhyme. Back to text



Gurguintus: after Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3588/375, fol. 59r. Gurgunt in Spenser’s Faerie Queene, II, x, 41. Gurguintus Brabtrucus in Geoffrey of Monmouth, 1508 and 1517, fol. 21v, Gurguint Barbtruc in mss. He is said by Geoffrey to have been buried “in urbe legionum” (in the City of the Legions), which Hardyng, Fabyan, Grafton and Stow identify as Caerleon, in Wales. Back to text

Aristotle: 384–322 BCE. Second only to Plato in his prestige as a philosopher of antiquity, and in any case much better known to Christendom during the medieval period (albeit in a heavily Christianised form). See Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3595/368, fol. 59v, where Heywood could also read that Aristotle was “son of Nicomachus the physician”.

Philip: Philip II, son of Amyntas, succeeded to the throne of Macedonia in 358 BCE, and conquered much of Greece, as well as adjacent territories. His portrait is developed in Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3603/360, fol. 60r-v. Back to text

Marcus Curtius: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3604/359, fol. 60v: “In Rome, by an earthquake in the market place the earth opened, which made an horrible gulf or pit out of which issued such a vapour that it infected all the city with pestilence. The diviners declared that this hole could not be closed till some noble man would cast himself into it. Then Marcus Curtius, a worthy knight of Rome, for the safeguard of the people, armed at all pieces, riding on a great courser richly trapped, leapt into the gulf and incontinent the earth closed. The place was after called Curtius’ lake”. Livy’s History of Rome, VII, vi, and Valerius Maximus, Memorable Doings and Sayings, V, vi, are the best-known sources for the legend. There are alternative legends to explain the existence of the lacus Curtius in Rome. Back to text



Guintheline: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3607/356, fol. 61r: “Guinthelinus, after the death of his father, was crowned king of Britain. A prince sober and quiet, who had to wife a noble woman named Marcia, of excellent learning and knowledge. She devised certain laws which long time among the Britons were greatly esteemed and named Marcian laws”. Lanquet follows Geoffrey of Monmouth, 1508, fol. 22r. See Spenser, Faerie Queene, II, x, 42. Marcia is also sometimes referred to as Marcia Proba. Her laws were translated into Latin by Gildas, and into Saxon by Alfred the Great. She was regent during the minority of her son. Back to text

flood: river.

The clouds rained stones: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3622/341, fol. 62r: “In Rome it rained stones, and the day appeared as night”. At the same date of 341 “ante natum Christum”, Conrad Lycosthenes’s reconstitution of Julius Obsequens indicates that “Cum Iunoni Monetae [...] aedes dedicaretur, prodigium extemplo dedicationem secutum [...] lapidibus enim pluit, et nox interdiu visa est intendi” (As a temple was consecrated to Juno Moneta, a prodigy immediately followed the dedication: it rained stones and night was seen to spread in the middle of the day), Iulii Obsequentis Prodigiorum Liber ... per Conradum Lycosthenem integritati suae restitutus (Basel: Oporinus, 1552), p. 18. Lycosthenes repeats the story in his Prodigiorum ac Ostentorum Chronicon (Basel: Henricus Petrus, 1557), p. 89, at the same dates as Lanquet’s 3622 (anno mundi), 341 BCE. First mentioned in Livy’s History of Rome, VII, xxviii, 6, this phenomenon was said to have been roughly contemporary with the birth of Alexander the Great in Paul the Deacon’s Historia Romana (Basel: Froben, 1532), p. 13 and Flores Historiarum, ed. H. R. Luard, Rolls Series 95, 1890, vol. 1, p. 49. Back to text

3628/335: F, 3628/311.    

Alexander: Heywood compresses several entries from Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle reporting Alexander’s career between 3628/335, fol. 62v and 3639/324, fol. 64r, where he is said to have been “poisoned by his own men, whom for his outrageous cruelty and drunkenness they began to detest”. Alexander III, more usually known as Alexander the Great, 356-323 BCE. He waged a series of wars, all successful, against the Persian empire, and more specifically against Darius III. The claim that he was poisoned is not substantianted by subsequent historians.

Cecilius: Sisillius II. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3633/330, fol. 63v: “Cecilius, the son of Guentheline and Mercia, reigned seven years”. Sisillius in Geoffrey of Monmouth, mss., 1508 and 1517, fol. 22r; Sicilius for Hardyng (fol. 30v), Polydore Vergil (p. 21) and Holinshed (1577, I, 5, 32, p. 29). Fabyan admits “Sisillius or Cecilius” (II, 34, fol. 14v), Grafton “Cecilius or Sisillus” (p. 61); Stow chooses Cecilius (Annals, p. 19). Sisillus in Spenser’s Faerie Queene, II, x, 43. 

Kimar: Kinarius. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3640/323, fol. 64r: “Kimarus succeeded Cecilius and reigned three years in Britain”. Kimarus in Geoffrey of Monmouth, 1508 and 1517, fol. 22r (mss. read Kimarus or Kamarus, but mainly Kynarius or Kinarius). Kymar in Hardyng (fol. 31r), Kimarus in Fabyan (II, 35, fol. 14v), Grafton (p. 61), Holinshed (1577, I, 5, 33, p. 29), Stow (Annals, p. 19), Spenser’s Faerie Queene, II, x, 43. Chimarius for Polydore Vergil (p. 21). Back to text



Elanius: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3642/321, fol. 64v: “Elanius, called also Danius, was king of Britain nine years”. Manuscripts of Geoffrey of Monmouth read either Danius or Elanius. He appears as Elanius in Geoffrey, 1508 and 1517, fol. 22r and in Fabyan (II, 36, fol. 14v), Grafton (p. 61), Stow (Annals, p. 19). Holinshed mentions the two versions (1577, I, 5.34, p. 29). Danius in Flores Historiarum (p. 64), Hardyng (fol. 31r), Polydore Vergil (p. 21), Spenser’s Faerie Queene, II, x, 43. Back to text

Morindus: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3652/311, fol. 65r: “Morindus, a cruel prince, began to reign in Britain. He, as our chronicles say, fought with a king who came out of Germany and arrived here, and slew him with all his power. Moreover, as they write, out of the Irish seas came forth a wonderful monster, which destroyed much people, whereof the king hearing, would of his valiant courage needs fight with it, by whom he was clean devoured, when he had reigned eight years”. Morvidus and Morindus in manuscripts of Geoffrey of Monmouth, Morindus in 1508 and 1517, fol. 22r-v. Morindus in Fabyan (II, 37, fol. 14v), Grafton (pp. 61-2), Holinshed (1577, I, 5.35, pp. 29-30), Stow (Annals, p. 19) and Spenser’s Faerie Queene (II, x, 43). But Morvidus in Flores Historiarum (p. 64) and Polydore Vergil (p. 21). Morvyle in Hardyng (fol. 31r). According to Geoffrey, he was known in equal measure for his prowess and his extreme cruelty. A monster emerged from the Irish Sea, and all Morindus’ weapons and courage proved impotent against it. It devoured him as though he had been a tiny fish (“ipsum velut pisciculum devoravit”, 1508, fol. 22v). Back to text

Onias: Onias I, chief rabbi of Jerusalem from 323 to 300 BCE. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3652/311, fol. 64v.

Jaddus: F, Taddus. According to Josephus (Jewish Antiquities, XI, viii, 7), Onias was the son of the chief rabbi, Jaddus. Also referred to as Jaddua in Nehemiah 12:11.

Gorbomanus: F, Gorbomannus. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3660/303, fols. 65v-66r: “Gorbomannus, eldest son of Morindus, reigned 11 years. A prince just and religious, he renewed the temples of his gods and governed his people in peace and wealth”. Fabyan, Gorbamannus (II, 38, fol. 15r), Grafton (p. 62), Stow (Annals, p. 19). But Gorbonianus in mss. of Geoffrey of Monmouth, as well as in 1508 and 1517 eds., fol. 22v and Polydore Vergil (p. 21). Gorbonian in Hardyng (fol. 31v) and Holinshed (1577, I, 5.36, p. 30). Geoffrey portrays him as the paragon of the wise and just ruler; “Gorboman a man of virtuous life” in Spenser’s Faerie Queene, II, x, 44.

Simon: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3660/303, fol. 66r: “Simon, son of Onias, surnamed the just, was high priest of the Jews”. Simon I, son of Onias I. In 3668 according to Bede, “Judaeorum pontifex maximus religiosissimus ac piissimus Simon Oniae filius clarus habetur”, De Temporum Ratione (Cologne: Johannes Prael, 1537), fol. 89r. Back to text

Onias: F, Onyas.

Archigall: Archigallo in Monmouth, 1508 and 1517, fol. 23r, Arthgallo in mss. Argallo in Flores Historiarum (p. 64), Arthegall in Hardyng (fols. 31v-32r). Known as “Archigallo or Artogallo” by Grafton (p. 62), Archigallo—or Artogaill—by Holinshed (1577, I, 5.37, p. 30). Archigallo in Fabyan (II, 39, fol. 15r), Polydore Vergol (p. 21) and Stow (Annals, p. 19). Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3671/292, fol. 66v: “Archigallo, brother to Gorbomannus, was crowned king of Britain. He was in conditions unlike to his brother, for he deposed the noble men and exalted the unnoble. He extorted from men their goods to enrich his treasury, for which cause, by the Estates of the realm he was deprived of his royal dignity when he had reigned five years”. The most transparent way of reading these two lines, syntactically, would be “After just Gorboman, fierce Archigall began to tyrannise”. Noting that “in omnibus suis actibus germano diversis extitit”, 1508, fol. 23r (misnumbered 10), Geoffrey—followed by Lanquet and Heywood— is at pains to contrast the two kings as sharply as possible. Back to text



in the style of: by the name of.

Elidure: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3676/287, fol. 67r: “Elidurus, the third son of Morindus, was elected king of Britain, a virtuous and gentle prince, who governed his people justly”. Elidurus in Geoffrey of Monmouth, mss. and 1508 and 1517 eds, fol. 23r-v, the commonly accepted form of his name. Anglicized Eledoure by Hardyng (fol. 32r) and Elidure by Spenser, Faerie Queene, II, x, 44.

Five years himself did Archigallo smother: for five years, Archigallo lived in obscurity.

To Archigallo he resigns his throne: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3676/287, fol. 67r: “When he [Elidurus] reigned five years, as he was hunting in a forest, by chance he met with his brother Archigallo whom most lovingly he embraced and found the means to reconcile him to his lords, and then resigned to him his royal dignity”. Lanquet’s narrative agrees with Geoffrey of Monmouth’s. Back to text



Vigenius and Peridure: Ingenius (or Vigenius) and Peredurus in mss of Geoffrey; Vigenius and Peredurus in 1508 and 1517 eds, fol. 23v, Flores Historiarum (p. 64), Fabyan (II, 43, fols. 15v-16r), Holinshed (1577, I, 5.41, p. 41), Stow (Annals, p. 19). Polydore Vergil calls them Vigenius and Perydorus (p. 21). Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3691/272, fol. 68r: “Elidurus, afore named, after the death of his brother Archigallo, for his piety and justice, by the general consent of the Britons, was again chosen king. But he reigned not passing two years ere that his younger brethren, Vigenius and Peredurus, raised war against him and took him prisoner, where he remained—as they write—in the tower of London during their reign”; 3693/270, fol. 68v: “Vigenius and Peredurus, after the taking of their brother, reigned together 7 years. Vigenius then died and Peredurus reigned after alone 2 years”; 3702/261, fol. 68v: “Elidure the third time was made king of Britain, who continued his later reign honourably and justly; but being sore bruised with age and troubles, he finished his life when he had now lastly reigned 4 years”. Lanquet’s account is based on Geoffrey of Monmouth, 1508, fols. 22v-23r. See Spenser, Faerie Queene, II, x, 44-45. Back to text



Epire Pyrrhus: that is, Pyrrhus of Epirus, 319-272 BCE. In the struggle of Greece against Rome he gained several victories (Heraclea, Ausculum), albeit with heavy losses. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, between 3673/290, fol. 66v and 3689/274, fol. 68r.

Lysimachus: F, Lisimachus. Lived c. 355-281 BCE. Initially a prominent member of Alexander the Great’s bodyguard, he joined forces with Pyrrhus in 287 BCE to expel Demetrius from Macedonia. He was killed at the battle of Corupedium. Back to text

Eleazar: F, Eleasar. Son of Onias I and brother of Simon (see preceding notes). The Egyptian embassy is recorded in Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3680/283, fol. 67r: “Ptolomeus Philadelphus, king of Egypt, reigned 38 years. A prince above all other given to study and learning, he made a library in Alexandria, which he furnished with innumerable books of all sciences, among which as chief was the volume of Moses’ law, for the king, hearing that the divine law was in Jerusalem, being very desirous to have it translated, first discharged out of bondage all the Jews in his realm, who were above 100 000. Then sent he Demetrius and Aristeus to Eleazar, the high priest, with great gifts to the temple of God, desiring that the law might be sent with learned men to translate it into Greek. Incontinent, Eleazar sent 72 interpreters, who commonly be called Septuaginta interpretes. These the king honourably received and sent them to Demetrius, clerk of his library in Alexandria, who provided a place for them, where they assembled daily to interpret the Holy Scripture, and in 72 days finished it”. Back to text

Seleucus: Seleucus I Nicator (358-281 BCE), one of the Diadochi, who allied with Ptolemy, Cassander and Lysimachus to fight Antigonus (315-308 BCE).

Ptolemy: Ptolemy I Soter (c. 367-283 BCE), one of the three Diadochi who succeeded Alexander the Great. With Seleucus he invaded Syria and they won the battle of Gaza in 312 BCE. Back to text

Silver: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3694/269, fol. 68v: “In this year the Romans first coined silver”. See Johann Funck’s Chronologia (Nuremberg: Georgius Wachterus, 1545), which specifies, at the same date, that “Argento primum signato usi sunt Romani” (The Romans first made use of coined silver), fol. 58v. Also mentioned in the Flores Historiarum, ed. Luard, Rolls Series, 95, 1890, vol. 1, p. 69 and in Sabellicus, Enneades, IV, viii (Paris: Ascensius, 1513), vol. 1, fol. 298v, in 485 ab Urbe condita. Most of Rome’s silver was mined after the conquest of Spain, although Gaul and Britain were minor sources for the metal. Back to text

Theos Antiochus: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3703/260, fol. 68v: “Antiochus, surnamed Theos, the third king of Syria, reigned 15 years”. Antiochus II, 286-246 BCE. It was his marriage to Ptolemy’s sister, Berenice, which led to the contested claims of sovereignty and the war mentioned above.

blood sprang out of a well, / And from the clouds milk in abundance fell: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3684/279, fol. 67v: “About these days blood was seen to spring out of a well and milk to fall from the clouds”. The earliest extant source is Orosius’s Historiae Adversus Paganos, IV, 5, where the prodigy is said to have occurred in 480 ab Urbe condita. This report found its way into many chronicles, among which Paulus Diaconus’s Historia Romana (Basel: Froben, 1532), p. 22 and Freculphus Lexoviensis’s Chronicon, I, iv, 28, Patrologia Latina 106, col. 1028. It was transmitted to early modern chroniclers not only by Orosius and Paulus Diaconus but also by Vincent of Beauvais’s Speculum Historiale (13th century), printed by Antonius Koburger at Nuremberg in 1483 (VI, xxv); and by the Flores Historiarum, ed. Luard, Rolls Series, 95, 1980, vol. 1, p. 52; and reported in Sabellicus’s Enneades, IV, iii (Paris: Ascensius, 1513), vol. 1, fol. 241v. Unlike Lanquet, Lycosthenes situates the event in 3691 anno mundi, 272 ante ChristumBack to text



Manasses: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3712/251, fol. 69r: “Manasses was made high priest of the Jews”. See Josephus’ Jewish Antiquities, XII, iv, 1, “when Eleazar died, his uncle Manasses took over the high priesthood, and after he departed this life, the office came to Onias, who was a son of Simon”, transl. Ralph Marcus (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1943, vol. 5), pp. 82-83. Back to text

Gorboman: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3705/258, fol. 69r: “Gorbonian reigned in Britain 10 years”. According to Geoffrey of Monmouth, one of the sons of Gorbonianus, whom he does not name, succeeded and imitated Elidurus: “Post Elidurum regnat Gorboniani filius avunculi morum imitator”, 1508), fol. 24r. Hardyng names him “Gorbonian that was Gorbonian’s son” (fol. 33r). Not everybody agreed. Flores Historiarum calls him Regin, Gorbonianus’s son (p. 76) and Polydore Vergil simply mentions Reginus (p. 21), providing no other information. According to Holinshed, it was Regny, son of Gorbonian, who succeeded Elidure (Chronicles, 1577 ed., I, 5.42, p. 32). For Fabyan, Gorbonianus or Gorbomannus was the son of Regny, son of Elidure (II, 46, fol. 16v). Richard Grafton names two kings, both “Regin” and “Gorbomannus or Gorbonanius” who was “the son of Elidure”, A Chronicle at large (London: Henry Denham, 1569), p. 65. In his Life of Merlin, Heywood is confident that Elidurus left a son who became “Gorbomanus the Second” (sig. c2v). Fabyan was careful to warn his readers that concerning the 32 (or 33) kings that reigned in between Elidure and Lud, “the writers of the story of Britons written diversely, so that the one varieth greatly from the other, both in the names, and also in the times of their reigns, the which would ask a long time to rehearse in order the diversity of that one from the other and also to some readers the matter thereof should be but small pleasure”, Fabyans cronycle (London: William Rastell, 1533), II, 45, fol. 16r. In The Faerie Queene, Spenser discreetly skipped over that period (II, x, 45). Back to text

Morgan: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3715/248, fol. 69v: “Morgan was crowned king of Britain, who guided the realm peacebly fourteen years”. Morgan for Hardyng (fol. 33r). Marganus in Geoffrey of Monmouth (mss. and 1508 and 1517, fol. 24r), Flores Historiarum (p. 76) and in Heywood’s Life of Merlin, sig. c2v. According to Grafton, “Morgan was a cruel king and reigned 9 years, but Lanquet saith he was a merciful king and reigned 14 years” (A Chronicle at large, p. 65). Lanquet had followed Geoffrey’s remark that “serenatus gentem Britonum cum tranquillitate tractavit”, 1508, fol. 24r.

Emerianus: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3719/134, fol. 70r, “Emerianus, brother to Morgan, succeeded in the realm of Britain. When he had tyrannously reigned seven years, he was deposed”. Enniaunus in manuscripts of Geoffrey of Monmouth, Ennianus in Flores Historiarum, Emman in Hardyng (fol. 33v), Ennanus for Polydore Vergil (p. 21), but Emerianus in 1508 and 1517 eds of Geoffrey (fol. 24r), followed by most early modern chroniclers. Grafton calls him “Emerianus or Ennian”, A Chronicle at Large (London: Henry Denham, 1569), p. 65. According to Geoffrey, he was deposed in the sixth year of his reign, not the seventh (“sexto anno regni sui a sede regia depositus est” 1508, fol. 24r).

Inall: In manuscripts of Geoffrey of Monmouth, Iduallo, Idvallo or Idwallo; Yduallo and Iduallo in 1508 and 1517 eds respectfully, fol. 24r.  An alternative form Ivall, spelt Iuall attested in Hardyng (fol. 33v) could easily become Inall. Heywood has “Iuall called also Ivall” in The Life of Merlin, sig. B2r. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3736/227, fol. 70r: “Inal was chosen king of Britain for his justice and temperance, which he governed twenty years peacebly”. Back to text

Amilcar: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3730/233, fol. 70r: “Amilcar with an army was sent into Spain, where he dilated the empire of Carthage”. The second of that name, known as Hamilcar Barca, and father of Hannibal. As commander of the Carthaginian fleet from 247 years BCE, he extended Carthage’s power throughout the western Mediterranean, and ravaged the Italian coast as far up as Cumae. He drowned in the year 229 BCE.

Illyrian: Illyria corresponds broadly to the area on the far side of the Adriatic from Rome that is designated by the Balkans.

Teuta: F, Teuca. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3732/231, fol. 70r: “Teuca [Teuta], queen of Illyria, slew the Roman ambassadors; 3735/228, fol. 70r: “The wars of Illyria. The consuls took many cities and subdued both the realm and the queen”.  Teuta was queen of the Illyrian Aridiaei. War was declared by Rome and lasted from 229 to 228 BCE. The syntax should be understood to mean that it was Rome that invaded Illyria. See Polybius, Histories, II, 4-11. Back to text



Rimo: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3756/207, fol. 72r: “Rimo governed this realm of Britain 16 years”. Runo in manuscripts of Geoffrey of Monmouth, Flores Historiarum (p. 76); Rynio in Polydore Vergil (p. 21); Rimo in 1508 ed. of Geoffrey (fol. 24r), followed by most early modern chroniclers. Back to text

Hannibal: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, from 3744/219, fol. 70v to 3762/201, fol. 72v. Born in the year 247 BCE, Hannibal waged a series of wars against Rome, and threatened its very survival, especially after the Battle of Cannae (216 BCE), which was the heaviest military disaster Rome ever suffered. After a series of betrayals, in either 183 or 182 BCE he took poison to avoid being given up to the Romans.

Scipio: Cornelius Scipio Africanus the Elder, born 236 BCE. He was said to have rallied the surviving Romans at Cannae. He took the war very successfully to Carthage, first in Spain, then in Africa itself. Although mainly successful against Hasdrubal, he defeated Hannibal himself at the Battle of Zama (although the battle did not take place at that location), in 202 BCE. The victim of intrigues at home, however, he was finally obliged to retire into semi-voluntary exile and died there in the year 183 BCE. Back to text

Cato: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3768/195, fol. 73r: “Cato subdued the Spaniards and triumphed”. Marcus Porcius Cato, soldier and statesman, and by reputation the pre-eminent orator in Roman history, 234-149 BCE, although none of his speeches survive entirely intact. Also known as Cato the Censor. He is known to every schoolchild that has studied Latin as being the originator of the exhortation to the Roman senate, Carthago delenda est — that is, “Carthage must be destroyed” – which is sometimes presented as being the clarion call for the launching of the Punic Wars. Cato’s involvement in the Spanish wars is reported by Livy, History of Rome, XXXIII-XXXIV and Appian, Roman History, VI.

Geruntius: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3771/192, fol. 73r: “Geruntius reigned here in Britain 20 years”. Gerennus, Gerontius or Geroncius in mss of Geoffrey of Monmouth, Geroncius in Flores Historiarum (p. 76), Gerennes in Hardyng (fol. 33v). Geruntius in 1508 and 1517 eds of Geoffrey, fol. 24r and in Polydore Vergil (p. 21). Later early modern chroniclers vary between Gerontius and Geroncius. Back to text

Fulvius Flaccus: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3784/180, fol. 73v: “Fulvius Flaccus overcame again the Spaniards”. The marginal dates and the context would indicate that this refers to Quintus Fulvius Flaccus, aedile and then praetor at Rome. He fought triumphantly in Spain from 182-179 BCE.

doom: although he is said to have been driven mad later in life by grief, and committed suicide in the year 172 BCE, it seems more plausible that the word be taken to indicate Fulvius Flaccus’ subjugation of the Iberian peninsula. But since his insanity was attributed to the anger of Juno for his having stripped a temple dedicated to her of its tiling, the alternative interpretation is certainly sustainable (i.e. the judgement of the goddess on him; or the judgement of Rome over Spain). Back to text

Catellus: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3790/173, fol. 74r. Only indicated in Geoffrey of Monmouth as being the son of Gerennus (Geruntius), and succeeding to the throne on his death, 1508, fol. 24r.

foiled: defeated.

Antiochus: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3795/168, fol. 74r-v: “Antiochus took Jerusalem, spoiled the temple, forced the Jews to forsake their laws and defiled the temple with an idol”. Antiochus IV, c. 215-164 BCE. A great propagator of Hellenic culture in the eastern Mediterranean. King of the Seleucid empire, he sacked Jerusalem in the year 168 BCE, proscribed the Jewish religion, and established the cult of Zeus. However, the Maccabean Revolt obliged him to allow the Jews to practice their religion again, in 164 BCE. Back to text



The mother and her seven sons martyred were: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3795/168, fol. 74v: “Eleazar, a Jew of 90 years of age was slain because he would not contrary to his laws eat swine’s flesh. At the same time, 7 young men with their mother were put to terrible death because they would not offend their law”. The martyrdom of Eleazar and of the mother with her seven sons, who were all tortured and put to death by Antiochus for following the strictures of the Mosaic Law in refusing to eat “swine’s flesh is narrated in 2 Maccabees, 6:18-31 and 7 (part of the Apocrypha).

Judas Maccabeus: third son of Mathatias, and leader of the Jewish revolt against the Seleucid empire. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3796/167, fol. 74v: “Judas Machabeus governed the Jews 7 years. In short time, he delivered them from their enemies and restored the laws and sacrifices again”. Back to text

3800/163: F, 3800/263.

Coill: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3800/163, fol. 75r. Coillus in Geoffrey of Monmouth, 1508 and 1517, fol. 24r. He lived “in law and peace” according to Hardyng (fol. 34r).

Carthage: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3818/145, fol. 76r: “Scipio, after the continual assault of six days, took Carthage. [...] The city burned continually 17 days, showing a miserable spectacle to her beholders”.  It was destroyed in 146 BCE.

Corinth: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3818/145, fol. 76r: “The same year, Corinth, a noble city in Greece, was destroyed with fire by Mummius the consul”. Mummius chose to make an example of the city for having taken part in the revolt of the Achean Confederacy. Back to text

Pharisees and Saducees: F, Pharisei and Sadducei, after Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3818/145, fol. 76v. Mentioned by Flavius Josephus as emerging at the time of Jonathan Maccabeus (161-143 years BCE’s birth), both were sects of high priests, often mentioned as in conflict, which considered themselves as separate from the mass of the Israelite faithful, as having a deeper and purer knowledge of the Mosaic Law: Jewish Antiquities, XVIII, i, 2-5. Heywood does not mention the Essenes, unlike both Josephus and Lanquet.

just Porrex: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3820/143, fol. 77r: “Porrex, a virtuous and gentle prince reigned in Britain five years. Geoffrey of Monmouth is content with listing him, with no comment on his reign, but John Hardyng’s Chronicle insists on his justice (London: Richard Grafton, 1543, fol. 34r). Back to text

Cherimus: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3825/138, fol. 77v: “Cherimus, king of Britain, through his drunkenness, as our chroniclers write, reigned but one year”. Cherimus in 1508 and 1517 eds of Geoffrey, fol. 24r, Kerin, Cherin or Cherim in manuscripts; Cherin in Flores Historiarum (p. 76), Cherinus in Polydore Vergil (p. 21). Geoffrey merely mentions him, but John Hardyng insists that his drunkenness, “to which followed all kind of vice”, and which “exiled wit out of his brain”, Chronicle (London: Richard Grafton, 1543), fol. 34r.

Fulgen: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3826/137, fol. 77v: Fulgen, son to Cherimus. Fulgenius in Geoffrey of Monmouth. He “reigned but one year” according to Hardyng (fol. 34v), two years according to Grafton (p. 65) and Stow (Annals, p. 20). Back to text

Eldred: Thus in Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3828/135, fol. 77v, as in Hardyng (fol. 34v) and Stow (Annals, p. 20. Edadus and Eldadus in manuscripts of Geoffrey, Eldadus in 1508 and 1517 eds., fol. 24r. Eldalus in Polydore Vergil (p. 21). Eldadus in Flores Historiarum (p. 76) and Grafton  (A Chronicle at large, p. 65). Eldad in Holinshed (1577, I, 5.42, p. 32).

Androgeus: Androgeus in Polydore Vergil (p. 21). Androgius in Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3829/134, fol. 77v, followed by Grafton (p. 65), Stow (Annals, p. 20) all in agreement with 1508 and 1517 eds. of Geoffrey, fol. 24r. Holinshed uses both Androgeus and Androgius (1577, I, 5.42, p. 32). Andragius in manuscripts of Geoffrey and Flores Historiarum (p. 76). Back to text



Dendantius, Detonnus: There is some shuffling in the succession of kings here. Heywood’s Dendantius and Detonnus correspond to Lanquet’s Dedancius and Detonus (3837/126 and 3843/10, fol. 78v). They appear as Dedancus and Clotenus in Geoffrey of Monmouth’s 1508 and 1517 eds, fol. 24r—Cledaucus (or Debancus) and Clotenus or (Cletonus) in the mss—, as Eledauchus and Clotenus in Flores Historiarum (Rolls Series 95, 1890, p. 77), and as Dedancius and Detonus in Hardyng’s Chronicle (London: Richard Grafton, fol. 34r), Dedantius and Detonus in Stow’s Annals (1605), p. 20, Eledancus and Clotheus for Grafton, A Chronicle at large (London: Henry Denham, 1569), p. 65, Dedaicus and Clotinus in Holinshed, 1577, I, 5.42, p. 33. But however much their spelling may differ, all authors agree that Urianus and Eliud (Lanquet) or Urianus and Eliud (Geoffrey of Monmouth, Flores Historiarum, Holinshed, Stow), Urian and Eliud (Grafton) or Uryan and Elynde (Hardyng) precede “Dendantius” and “Detonnus”, although Heywood makes them their successors, stanza 37. Back to text

monstrous birth: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3828/135, fol. 77v: “In Rome a child was born with four feet, four hands, four eyes, as many ears, and having both natures”. Ultimately derives from Julius Obsequens’s Prodigiorum Liber, 134 BCE (p. 79 in Lycosthenes’s edition), “Puer ex ancilla quatuor pedibus, manibus, oculis, auribus, et duplici obscoeno natus”, repeated by Orosius, Historiae Adversus Paganos, V, vi, 1 whose phrasing, “auribus totidem, natura virili duplex” is closer to Lanquet’s. It was reproduced in medieval chronicles, as for example Paulus Diaconus’s Historia Romana (Basel: Froben, 1532), IV, fol. 47r-v, Conrad of Lichtenau’s (early 13th century), Conradi a Liechtenaw ... Chronicum (Basel: Petrus Pernas, 1569), p. 36, or the 14th-century Eulogium Historiarum, XIII (ed. F.S. Haydon, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2012), p. 311. Back to text

corn: After mentioning the monstrous baby discussed in the preceding note, Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle (3828/135, fol. 77v) continued: “In the land of Bonony corn grew out of trees”. The origin is the same: Julius Obsequens, 133 BCE and Orosius, Historiae Adversus Paganos, V, vi, 2: “In Bononiensi agro fruges in arboribus enatae sunt”. Paulus Diaconus’s Historia Romana (Basel: Froben, 1532), IV, fol. 48r. “Corn”, like “fruges”, could refer to any kind of cereals, oats, barley, or wheat.  

Bonony: known to the Romans as Bononia, and originally part of Cisalpine Gaul. Now Bologna.  

Arsaces: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3821/142, fol. 77r: “Demetrius was taken by Arsaces, king of Parthia, and put to death”. See 1 Maccabees, 14:1-3, where Demetrius, taken prisoner, is “put in ward” by Arsaces but not put to death. According to Josephus, he was defeated by Alexander, called Zebinas, in a later battle, then captured and “put to death after suffering severely at the hands of those who hated him”, Jewish Antiquities, XIII, ix, 3, transl. Ralph Marcus (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1943), vol. 5, pp. 362-3. Back to text

Scipio Africanus: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3835/128, fol. 78v: “Scipio Africanus the younger, who destroyed Carthage and Numantia, being accused of his enemies, made answer thereto, and in the morning after was found dead in his bed, strangled, as some affirmed, by his wife Sempronia”. Cornelius Scipio Aemilianus Africanus, born 185/184 before the birth of Christ. Responsible for the destruction of Carthage, mentioned above. He died in 129 before the birth of Christ. Although foul play was suspected, it was stated in his funeral oration that he had died of natural causes. Back to text



Urianus: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3830/133, fol. 77v: “Uranius, the son of Androgius, succeeded his father in the realm of Britain and reigned three years. He wholy gave himself to the desires of the flesh”. Geoffrey of Monmouth does not mention either his penchant or the length of his reign. According to John Hardyng, “Uryan, the son of king Androge, / Three years reigned, that was full lecherous” (fol. 34v). Heywood is going back in time since Urianus and his successor precede “Dendantius” and “Detonus” presented above, stanza 36.

Eliud: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3833/130, fol. 78r: “Eliud, king of Britain, reigned 5 years”. Geoffrey of Monmouth does not specify the length of his reign. In Hardyng’s Chronicle, “Elinde [Eliud] was king and five year bare the crown, / Full well ruled the realm” (fol. 34v). Back to text

Merianus: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3848/115, fol. 79r: “Merianus was king of Britain 2 years”. He is preceded by Eliud’s successor, Gurgineus (Lanquet, Stow); Gurgineus (1508, 1517) or Gurguintius (mss) in Geoffrey of Monmouth. Gurguncius (Flores Historiarum, Hardyng, Grafton), Gurguntius (Polydore Vergil, Holinshed)—a king Heywood omits.

Bladunus: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3850/113, fol. 79r: “Bladunus governed Britain 2 years”. Called Bladunus too in Stow’s Annals (p. 20), Bledud or Bladunus in Grafton’s Chronicle at large (p. 66), Bladanus in Polydore Vergil’s Anglica Historia (Basel: Johannes Bebelius, 1534), p. 24. Geoffrey of Monmouth has Bleduus (1508, 1517, fol. 24v), Bledudo, Bleduno (mss); Bledudo in Flores Historiarum (p. 77) and Hardyng’s Chronicle (fol. 34v). Bledus for Holinshed, 1577, I, 5.42, p. 33. Back to text

twain: two.

Capenus: Thus in Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3852/111, fol. 79, in Polydore Vergil (p. 24), Grafton’s Chronicle at large (p. 66), Stow’s Annals (p. 20). Cap, in Geoffrey of Monmouth (1508, 1517, fol. 24v and mss.) and Flores Historiarum (p. 77), Cappe in Hardyng’s Chronicle (fol. 34v), Cop in Holinshed, 1577, I, 5, 42, p. 33.

Ovinius: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3855/108, fol. 79v, has Owinus. Ovinus for Polydore Vergil (p. 24), Grafton’s Chronicle at large (p. 66), Stow’s Annals (p. 20); Owen according to Hardyng (fol. 34v) and Holinshed, 1577, I, 5, 42, p. 33. Geoffrey of Monmouth has Oenus and so Flores Historiarum (p. 77). Back to text

Silius: F, Sisilus in marginal note. The discrepancy between the two names—Silius in the stanza and Sisilus in the marginal note—reflects a double tradition. This king is Silius in Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3857/106, fol. 79v as well as in Polydore Vergil (1534 edition, p. 24), in Grafton’s Chronicle at large (p. 66) and in Stow’s Annals (p. 20). But he is Sisillius in Geoffrey of Monmouth (1508 and 1517 eds, fol. 24v and mss.) and Flores Historiarum (p. 77); Sicilius in Hardyng’s Chronicle (fol. 34v) and Holinshed, 1577, I, 5.42, p. 33.

Bledgabredus: F, Bladgabred in marginal note. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3859/104, fol. 80r: “Bledgabredus was 20 years king of Britain. He delighted much in music and gave himself to the study thereof”. Beldgabred’s fame for music was merely mentioned by most authors, but later emphasized by Heywood in The Life of Merlin (sig. c2v) where he describes him as “a cunning musician, who for his excellency in that faculty was called of the Britons, God of Glee-men or minstrels”. Heywood is quoting Fabyan: “Blegabridus, a cunning musician, the which for his excellence in that faculty was called of the Britons god of glee-men” (II, 46, fol. 16v); Fabyan himself translates Geoffrey of Monmouth’s remark that “hic omnes cantatores quos praecedens aetas habuerat, et in modulis et in omnibus musicis instrumentis excedebat: ita ut deus joculatorum videretur” (he outmatched all the musicians of the preceding ages, both in his sense of melody and his mastery of all musical instruments, so that he was considered as the god of joculatorum—which Fabyan prettily translates as “glee-men”), 1508, fol. 24v. Lanquet, Grafton and Heywood give Bledgabred a twenty-year reign, unlike Hardyng and Stow, who allot him ten years. Geoffrey of Monmouth did not specify the length of his reign. Back to text

Hircanus: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3831/132, fol. 78r: “Hircanus, called also Joannes, son of Simon”. John Hyrcanus, one of the three sons of Simon Maccabeus. Succeeded his father as high priest. See 1 Maccabees, 16:24, 2 Maccabees, 3: 11 and Josephus, Jewish Antiquities, XIII, viii, 1.

Marius, Jugurth: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3859/104, fol. 80r: “Marius triumphed, having Jugurth with his children led before his chariot”. Gaius Marius, c. 157-86 BCE, fought unsuccessfully against Jugurth for two years, before capturing him through the cunning of his quaestor, Sulla. See Sallust’s Jugurthine War, of which Heywood published his own translation, The Warre of Jugurth (London: William Jaggard, 1609), printed the same year as Troia BritanicaBack to text



Archemalus: F, Archemachus. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3869/94, fol. 80v, has Archemalus, like Polydore Vergil (1534 edition, p. 24) and Stow adopts the same spelling (Annals, p. 20); Grafton has Archimalus in A Chronicle at large, p. 66. Archemailus in Geoffrey of Monmouth 1508 and 1517, fol. 24v (Arthmail and Archmail in mss); Archemail in Holinshed, 1577, I, 5.42, p. 33; Archinail in Flores Historiarum (p. 77), Archyval in Hardyng’s Chronicle, fol. 35r.

Eldolus: F, Eldotus. Eldolus in Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3871/92, fol. 80v as in Polydore Vergil (p. 24), Grafton’s Chronicle at large (p. 66), and Stow’s Annals (p. 20). Eldon in 1508 and 1517 eds of Geoffrey of Monmouth (fol. 24v) but Eldol in mss and 1587 ed. (p. 23); Eldol in Flores Historiarum (p. 77), Hardyng’s Chronicle (fol. 35r) and Holinshed, 1577, I, 5.42, p. 33. Back to text

Rodianus: thus in Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3875/88, fol. 81r, as in Polydore Vergil (p. 24) and Stow’s Annals (p. 20); Rodian in Grafton’s Chronicle at large (p. 66). Redion in Geoffrey of Monmouth (1508 and 1517 eds, fol. 24v and mss) and in Flores Historiarum (p. 77); Redon in Hardyng’s Chronicle (fol. 35r), Red in Holinshed, 1577, I, 5.42, p. 33.

Redargius: thus in Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3877/86, fol. 81r, as in Polydore Vergil (p. 24), Grafton’s Chronicle at large (p. 66) and Stow’s Annals (p. 20); Geoffrey of Monmouth has Rodrecius (1508 and 1517 eds, fol. 24v) and Rederchius (mss and 1587 ed.), the latter form also in Flores Historiarum (p. 77); Redrike in John Hardyng’s Chronicle (fol. 35r), Rodieck for Holinshed, 1577, I, 5.42, p. 33. Back to text

Samulius: F, Samillius; Samillus in marginal note. Samulius in Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3880/83, fol. 81v, as well as in Polydore Vergil (p. 24), Grafton’s Chronicle at large (p. 66) and Stow’s Annals (p. 20). Geoffrey of Monmouth has Samul in 1508 and 1517 eds (fol. 24v), Samuil and Samuel in different mss; Samuil in Flores Historiarum (p. 77) and Holinshed, 1577, I, 5, 42, p. 33; Samuel in Hardyng’s Chronicle (fol. 35r).

Penisellus: F, Penesellus; Penesillus in marginal note. Penisellus in Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3882/81, fol. 81v, as well as in Polydore Vergil (p. 24), Grafton’s Chronicle at large (p. 66) and Stow’s Annals (p. 20); Geoffrey of Monmouth: Penisel in 1508 and 1517 eds (fol. 24v), Penissel in mss, Penissel in Flores Historiarum (p. 77), Penisel in Holinshed, 1577, I, 5.42, p. 33; Peneysel in Hardyng’s Chronicle (fol. 35r). Back to text

Pyrrhus: F, Pirrhus. Pyrrhus in Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3884/79, fol. 81v as in Polydore Vergil (p. 24), Stow’s Annals (p. 20); Pyrrus in Grafton’s Chronicle at large, where one learns that “the hair of his head was as bright as the shining gold” (p. 66), which strengthens an association with Achilles’ son and the kings of Macedonia. Pir in Geoffrey of Monmouth (1508 ed. and mss.) and Holinshed, 1577, I, 5, 42, p. 33; Pyr in Flores Historiarum (p. 77), Pirre in Hardyng’s Chronicle (fol. 35r).

Caporus: thus in Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3887/76, fol. 82r, as in Polydore Vergil (p. 24), Grafton’s Chronicle at Large (p. 66) and Stow’s Annals (p. 20); Capoir in Geoffrey of Monmouth (1508 and 1517, fol. 24 v and mss) and Holinshed, 1577, I, 5.42, p. 33; Capoyr in Flores Historiarum (p. 77); Capre in John Hardyng’s Chronicle (fol. 35r). Back to text

Now grew the wars twixt Scilla and Marius: Heywood sums up several entries in Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle between 3879/84, fol. 81v and 3885/78, fols. 81v-82r. Sulla, as he is more commonly known, gained the backing of the Senate, was appointed consul and commander of the army. Having been initially obliged to flee to Cercina, Marius joined forces with Cornelius Cinna, sacked Ostia, and left the capture of Rome to his ally. Both were made consuls in 86 BCE. See Thomas Lodge’s play, The Wounds of Civil War (probably first performed 1588).

Dinellus: F, Divellus. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3889/74, fol. 82r: “Dinellus, the son of Caporus, a just and virtuous prince, governed this realm of Britain 4 years”. He is Dinellus for Polydore Vergil (p. 24) and Stow, Annals (p. 20); Divellus in Grafton’s Chronicle at large (p. 66); Geoffrey of Monmouth: Gligueillus (1508 and 1517, fol. 24v), Digueillus becoming Cligueillus and Eliguellus in different mss.; Digueillus in Flores Historiarum (p. 77); Elynguellus for John Hardyng, who describes him as “wise and sad” (fol. 35r); Gligweil for Holinshed, 1577, I, 5.42, p. 33. According to Geoffrey, he was renowned for modesty and prudence, “vir in omnibus actibus modestus et prudens”, 1508, fol. 24v. Back to text

Helyus: F, Helyas. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3893/70, fol. 82v: “Helius, the son of Dinellus, reigned not full one year king of Britain. Of this prince the isle of Ely took the name”. Polydore Vergil (p. 24) and Lanquet use Helius, a latinate form of the name; so does Stow (Annals, p. 20); Hely (or Heli) according to Geoffrey of Monmouth, Hely in Flores Historiarum (p. 77), John Hardyng (fol. 35v), Grafton (Chronicle at large, p. 66), Holinshed, 1577, I, 5.42, p. 33, Spenser (Faery Queene, II, x, 45) and Heywood in The Life of Merlin, sig. c2v. Geoffrey, affirms that Hely ruled for forty years (1508, fol. 24v) so does the author of the Flores Historiarum. Stow, however, claims that “he reigned not fully one year” (Annals, p. 20), thus agreeing with Grafton (Chronicle at large, p. 66). Fabyan notes that “Hely, after some writers reigned 40 years, after some but bare 7 months” (cronycle, II, 46, fol. 16v); mistakenly believing that Geoffrey of Monmouth gave Hely a reign of 60 years, Holinshed thinks that the debate stands between 60 years, 40 years, or seven months (1577, I, 5.42, p. 33). John Hardyng does not commit himself as to the length of Hely’s reign, but connects him with “the isle of Hely” (fol. 35v), an association Holinshed comments upon at length (1577, I, 5.42, p. 33)—a paragraph omitted in the 1587 edition. Back to text

Commenting on the series of kings between Gurguntius and Hely’s successor, Lud, Polydore Vergil remarks that “De iis regibus praeter Lud, quia prae socordia, atque desidia, nullas bonas coluere artes, nihil scriptu dignum memoriae proditum est” (Of these kings, apart from Lud, nothing worth memory was left in writing because, out of their indolence and inaction, they did not practice any good activity), Anglica Historia (Basel: Johann Bebel, 1534), p. 24. Back to text



Lud: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3894/69, fol. 82v: “Lud, the son of Hely, succeeded his father and reigned 11 years in Britain. As soon as he was made king, he reformed the state of his common weal, for he amended his laws and took away all usages that were naught. Moreover, he repaired the city of London, then called Troynovant, with fair buildings and walls, and builded on the west part thereof a strong gate, which unto this time retaineth the name of him and is called Ludgate.  [...] Our chroniclers write that London took the name of this Lud”. See Spenser, Faerie Queene, II, x, 46. London is “Lud’s town” in Shakespeare’s Cymbeline, III.i.32. Lanquet’s information about Lud ultimately derives from Geoffrey of Monmouth except for the length of his reign, which is accepted to be 11 years by Fabyan (II, 47, fol. 16v), Grafton (p. 66) and Holinshed (1577, I, 5.43, p. 33), although Hardyng mentions 40 years (fol. 36r). Back to text

Cassibelan: Cassivelan in Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3905/58, fol. 84r, Cassivellaunus in Polydore Vergil (p. 24); Cassibellanus in Geoffrey of Monmouth (1508 and 1517 eds, fol. 24v and mss) and in Stow’s Annals (p. 21); Cassibellaunus in Flores Historiarum (p. 77). Grafton knows him as “Cassibelan, or as some write, Cossivelan” (Chronicle at large, p. 67). Cassibelan, with orthographic variants like Hardyng’s Cassibalayn (fol. 36r), Holinshed’s Cassibelane (1577, I, 5.44, p. 34) or Spenser’s Cassibalane (Faerie Queene, II, x, 47), is the most common form. Fabyan calls him Cassibelan (II, 48, fol. 16v) and so does Shakespeare in Cymbeline, I.i.36, III.i.5, 30. Cassibelan was Lud’s brother, who ruled during the minority of Lud’s two sons. Geoffrey and Polydore Vergil inform us that he gave over the rule of a substantial part of the realm to them when they were older. Back to text

By all the British peers was king elected: i.e. chosen. For Geoffrey of Monmouth, he was raised to the throne (“in regem sublimatur”, 1508, fol. 24v), for Polydore Vergil, “regnum obtinuit”, Anglica Historia (Basel: Johann Bebel, 1534), p. 24. In Spenser’s words, when Hely’s sons were young, “Cassibalane [...] / Was by the people chosen in their stead”, Faerie Queene, II, x, 47.

in his days twice repelled, / The Roman Caesar the bold Britons quelled: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3911/52 and 3912/51, fol. 83r, narrates how, over a two-year period, Julius Caesar was twice repulsed, before he finally submitted Cassibelan. Back to text



Nennius won Caesar’s sword: In the first of two open battles between Cassibelan’s forces and the Romans, Cassibelan’s brother, Nennius, came face to face with Caesar. Julius Caesar struck a blow so hard into Nennius’ shield that he could not withdraw it, and they were then separated by the press of men. Nennius kept it as a trophy. However, the wound that Caesar had initially inflicted on Nennius proved fatal after fifteen days. Neither Lanquet nor Polydore Vergil, Fabyan and Stow report that anecdote. It derives from Geoffrey of Monmouth (1508, fol. 26r) and was often repeated, notably by Spenser, Faerie Queene, II, x, 49 as well as by Flores Historiarum (p. 78), Hardyng (fol. 38r), Richard Grafton (Chronicle at large, p. 68) and Holinshed (1577, I, 5.44, p. 39). 

Pompey the Great / with Julius Caesar in Pharsalia fought: Caesar defeated Pompey at Pharsalus in Thessaly in 48 BCE. The civil war opposing Caesar and Pompey is covered in three entries in Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3914/49 to 3917/46, fols. 85v-86r. See Lucan’s De Bello Civili (Pharsalia), of which Christopher Marlowe translated Book I. Also reported in Plutarch’s Life of AntonyBack to text

Julius usurps in Rome’s imperial seat: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3918/45, fol. 86v: “Julius Caesar, of whom the Roman princes were called Caesars, was the first among the Romans that took on him the name of emperor”. Julius Caesar was several times a limited-term dictator through the years from 49 to 44 BCE, but he was appointed (or rather appointed himself) dictator perpetuo from roughly February, 44. He was assassinated during the Ides of March (15 March) of the same year.

bodkins: according to the OED, a short pointed weapon; a dagger, poniard, stiletto, lancet.

Cicero: Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle gives an extensive praise of Cicero, 3901/62, fols. 83r-84r.

Hermius: probably a compositor’s misreading of Herennius. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3922/41, fol. 87v, reports how “Antonius sent one Herennius, whom Cicero had saved from death by his eloquence [a reference to the Rhetorica ad Herennium, once thought to be attributable to Cicero, but now of uncertain authorship], to slay him”. Lanquet’s narration of Cicero’s death is loosely based on Plutarch’s account in his Life of Cicero, 48. Back to text

Catiline: Lucius Sergius Catilina. Lanquet and Cooper’s Chronicle, 3901/62, fol. 83v: “Catiline enterprised his conspiracy, which by the great wisdom and diligence of Cicero was suppressed and Catiline slain in battle by Antonius. Who list to read that history at length let him resort to a book intituled the conspiracy of Catiline, translated into English by Thomas Paynell, where it is abundantly and eloquently set forth”. First published in 1541, Paynell’s version was not a translation of Sallust but of Costanzo Felici’s Historia de Conjuratione Catilinae (Rome: Jacobus Masochius, 1518).

In the same year as the publication of Troia Britanica (1609), William Jaggard, also printed Heywood’s translation of Sallust’s  Bellum Catilinae. See also Ben Jonson, Catiline his Conspiracy (1611)Back to text


On to Notes to stanzas 41-70


How to cite

Nick Myers, ed., 2019.  Troia Britanica Canto XVI (1609).  In A Dictionary of Shakespeare's Classical Mythology: A Textual Companion, ed. Yves Peyré (2009-).


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