Meric Casaubon

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(Florence Estienne) Meric Casaubon (1599–1671), son of Isaac Casaubon, was a French-English classical and Anglo-Saxon scholar and a Canon of Canterbury. He was educated at Christ Church, Oxford.[1]

He was appointed to prebendal stall IX at Canterbury Cathedral in 1628 by King James I.[2] During the Civil War he was deprived of his livings. At the Restoration he was reinstated to his benefice in Canterbury where he remained until his death.[3]

He was rector of St Mary in the Marsh, Kent (1630–1634); rector of Old Romney, Kent (1634–1634); vicar of Minster, Kent (1634–1662); vicar of Monkton with Birchington, Kent (1634–1662); rector of Ickham, Kent (1662–1671).

Casaubon supervised the 1634 inventory of the Cathedral Library which was compiled as part of Archbishop Laud's visitation.

He was a close friend of William Somner with whom he shared interests in Anglo-Saxon philology. Edward Stillingfleet bought many of his books, which are now in Archbishop Marsh's Library, Dublin.

Gifts recorded in the Benefactors' Book

His gifts to the Library are recorded in the Benefactors' Book (f. 111r), though it seems possible that some of these in fact came in via his gifts to William Somner (or possibly have been discarded as duplicates):

Mericus Casaubonus sacræ Theolog: Dr. et Canonicus Cantuariensis dedit
Ruperti Abbatis Com[m]entariorum libros 3 vol: fol [W2/X-5-8/10 ?] Laertij Diogenis de Vit: Dogm: & Apophtheg: Philos: lib 10. i vol. fol. [W/K-5-11 ?] A true Rela[t]ion of Dr Dee his actions wth spirits &c fol [W/I-5-29] The Necessity of Reforma[t]ion in & before Luther’s tyme. 4° [W/P-3-9 ?] A Treatise of Vse & Custome 4° [W/L-1-4 ?] Optati Afri Milevit Episcop. de Schism: Donat. lib: 7. Not suis 8o. [W/L-2-63 ?] A. Persii Satyr: Comment: Is: Casauboni, P. 8° [W/T-8-1 ?] A Treatise of Preaching as Antiently used 4° [W/R-3-27(2) ?] Dissert: bin. de nupera Homerj Edit: 8° Meric: Casaub: Piet: contra Maledicos Pat: Nominis hostes 8° A Vindica[t]ion of the Lds Prayer 12° Vindic: Pat: Is. Cas: adversus impostores 4° [W/R-3-27(1)] A Discourse concerning Xt his Incarn: & Exinanition 4°. The Originall cause of Temporall Evills 4° An Answ. to the Author of sure footing 4° [W/I-4-36 ?] Epictetj Enchirid. Græ & Lat: suis Not: 8° Diatrib: de Vsu Verborum [W/P-5-55 ?] Hierocl: de Provid. & Fato, cum suis Not 8° [W/P-4-46 ?] A Treat: of Credulity & Incred: in Things Nat: & Civill 8° [W/T-8-8 ?] A Treat: of Enthusiasme 8° [W/T-8-15 ?] Lucij Flori Hist: Englished, & Illustrated wth his Notes 12° Marci Antonini Imper: lib. 12. suis Notis. 12° Tractat de quatuor Linguis, pars prior 8° [W2/X-3-12 ?] Marc: Aurel: Anton: Medit: Translated wth ye Not: Of M. C. Is: Fi. 4° [W/D-3-9 ?]
Shelfmark W/I-5-29
John Dee. A true and faithful relation [with a Preface by Meric Casaubon]. 1659.
Manuscript corrections to the Preface are apparently in the hand of Meric Casaubon.
Shelfmark W/R-3-27(1)
Meric Casaubon. Vindicatio patris, adversus impostores. 1624.
Inscription on leaf A1 preceding title page: C C C.
Shelfmark W/T-8-1
Aulus Persius Flaccus. Auli Persii Flacci Satirarum liber. Isaacus Casaubonus recensuit, & ... illustravit. ... Cura & opera Merici Casauboni ....
London: 1647.
Inscription on verso of front free endpaper: Liber Joannis Luddj ex dono Reuerendj Doctorjs, quj tertiam hanc editionem excudenda[m] curavit, et Londino missam ipsj tradendam iussit 26. Junij 1647. J: L:. [with extensive annotations in the same hand].

Gifts to William Somner

Some other volumes from his library came into the Cathedral Library through gifts he made to William Somner.

Shelfmark W/P-3-24
Christophorus Besoldus. De natura populorum, eiusque pro loci positu, ac temporis decursu variatione: et ... de linguarum ortu atque immutatione, philologicus discursus. 1632.
Inscription on verso of second front free endpaper: Gul. Somneri Ex dono Amici sui colendiss. D. D. Casauboni. A°. 1645.
Shelfmark W2/X-3-35
Willerami abbatis in Canticum Canticorum paraphrasis gemina: prior rhythmis Latinis, altera veteri lingua Francica. Addita explicatio, lingua Belgica; & notae quibus veterum vocum Francicarum ratio redditur. Edente Paullo ... Merula.
Lugduni Batavorum : ex officina Plantiniana apud Christophorum Raphelengium, 1598.
[28], 179, [1]p. ; 8°.
The Frankish text with transcript.
Inscription on seventh front free endpaper: Guilielmi Somneri Cantuariensis, Ex dono (Ob libri tum dignitatem, tum raritatem, nunquam satis æstimando) Viri doctrinâ & moribus consumatissimi, D. Merici Casauboni, Is. Filij, Amici et Mecœnatis sui longè colendissimi, charissimique; qui plures alios optimæ notæ libros & tractatus, à seipso editus, ornatosque dante dignissimos, accipienti gratissimos, eidem Somnero suo dono dedit, Viz. [list of 10 books].
Shelfmark W/P-5-55
Meric Casaubon. Merici Casauboni, ... De verborum usu, et accuratae eorum cognitionis utilitate, diatriba. 1647.
Inscription on verso of front free endpaper: Gul. Somneri, ex dono Authoris.
Shelfmark W/R-3-27(2)
Meric Casaubon. Question, to whom it belonged anciently to preach: and whether all priests might, or did: ... also, what preaching is, ... By Meric Casaubon, ... 1663.
Inscription on verso of blank leaf before title page: Guil. Somneri, ex dono Authoris. 1663.
Inscription on leaf A1 preceding title page of W/R-3-27(1): C C C.

Isaac Casaubon's papers

Meric Casaubon collected and preserved the papers of his father Isaac Casaubon; he bequeathed his father's journal or Ephemerides to the Chapter Library and the bulk of the remainder of his father's papers, including six volumes of Adversaria, to the Bodleian Library but they were not received until 1673.[4]

Other books from Meric Casaubon's library

The Library has other books with Casaubon's name in them:

Shelfmark W/L-1-53
Adrianus Junius. Nomenclator octilinguis omnium rerum : propria nomina continens. Ab Adriano Iunio ... collectus. Nunc ... renouatus, ... Hermanni Germbergii opera. 1602.
Inscription on title page: MERICUS Casaubonus
Listed in the Benefactors' Book as given to the Chapter Library by William Somner.
Shelfmark W/R-4-44
Church of England. Articles of religion. Articles agreed vpon by the Archbishops and Bishops of both Prouinces, and the whole cleargie: In the Conuocation holden at London, in the yeere 1562. For the auoiding of diuersities of opinions, ... reprinted by His Maiesties Commandement: with his ... Declaration prefixed .... 1628.
The copy of the Thirty-nine Articles subscribed by canon Meric Casaubon (1599–1671) on his installation as rector of Ickham in 1662. This edition of the Articles was printed in 1628 (STC 10051).

  1. Clergy of the Church of England Database, CCED PersonID 25253
  2. A History of Canterbury Cathedral, OUP 1995, p.209.
  3. R. W. Serjeantson, ‘Casaubon, (Florence Estienne) Meric (1599–1671)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004 [1], accessed 6 March 2010
  4. Bodleian Library, MSS. Casaubon 1-17, 19-48, 51-3, 59-61 [2]

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