GEORGE ABBOT

1562 - 1633 AD

 

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GEORGE ABBOT, an English prelate under the Stuarts - chiefly remarkable for the position he held, and the part he acted, as the opponent of the policy of Laud and a despotic court - was the son of a cloth-manufacturer in Guildford, and was born 1562. After studying at Oxford, he was appointed chaplain to the Earl of Dunbar (1608), with whom he went to Scotland. This appointment was the basis of Abbot's subsequent promotion. For a short time he held the see of Lichfield and Coventry, and in 1610 was made Archbishop of Canterbury. As a learned and able man, but more especially as a friend of toleration, he gained the esteem of all parties in an age of religious animosities. James I. employed the advice of Abbot in the most important affairs of state, and the prelate often opposed the arbitrary principles of the king. Abbot's intolerance of Arminian doctrines was an exception to his general rule of conduct. His independent and liberal spirit incurred the displeasure of Charles I. Abbot was employed on the authorised translation of the Bible under James I. His other literary productions are not important. He died at Croydon, 1633, and a monument was erected to his memory in his native town, Guildford. - His brother, Robert Abbot, bishop of Salisbury (b. 1560 - d. 1617), was a learned theologian, and the author of a treatise De Suprema Potestate Regia (1616), written to controvert the doctrines of Bellarmine and Suarez.

 

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UPDATED: 17 April 2014

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