Front Page Titles (by Subject) PREFACE TO THE FIRST EDITION OF THE LIFE OF HOOKER, PUBLISHED IN 1665. - The Works of Richard Hooker, vol. 1
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PREFACE TO THE FIRST EDITION OF THE LIFE OF HOOKER, PUBLISHED IN 1665. - Richard Hooker, The Works of Richard Hooker, vol. 1 
The Works of that Learned and Judicious Divine Mr. Richard Hooker with an Account of His Life and Death by Isaac Walton. Arranged by the Rev. John Keble MA. 7th edition revised by the Very Rev. R.W. Church and the Rev. F. Paget (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1888). 3 vols. Vol. 1.
Part of: The Works of that Learned and Judicious Divine Mr. Richard Hooker with an Account of His Life and Death by Isaac Walton, 3 vols.
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TO THE READER.
I think it necessary to inform my reader, that Dr. Gauden (the late1 Bishop of Worcester) hath also lately wrote and published the life of Master Hooker2 . And though this be not writ by design to oppose what he hath truly written, yet I am put upon a necessity to say, that in it there be many material mistakes3 , and more omissions. I conceive some of his mistakes did proceed from a belief in Master Thomas Fuller, who had too hastily published what he hath since most ingenuously retracted4 . And for the bishop’s omissions, I suppose his more weighty business, and want of time, made him pass over many things without that due examination, which my better leisure, my diligence, and my accidental advantages, have made known unto me.
And now for myself, I can say, I hope, or rather know, there are no material mistakes in what I here present to you that shall become my reader. Little things that I have received by tradition (to which there may be too much and too little faith given) I will not at this distance of time undertake to justify; for though I have used great diligence, and compared relations and circumstances, and probable results and expressions, yet I shall not impose my belief upon my reader; I shall rather leave him at liberty: but if there shall appear any material omission, I desire every lover of truth and the memory of Master Hooker, that it may be made known unto me. And, to incline him to it, I here promise to acknowledge and rectify any such mistake in a second impression1 , which the printer says he hopes for; and by this means my weak (but faithful) endeavours may become a better monument, and in some degree more worthy the memory of this venerable man.
I confess, that when I consider the great learning and virtue of Master Hooker, and what satisfaction and advantages many eminent scholars and admirers of him have had by his labours, I do not a little wonder, that in sixty years2 no man did undertake to tell posterity of the excellences of his life and learning, and the accidents of both; and sometimes wonder more at myself, that I have been persuaded to it; and, indeed, I do not easily pronounce my own pardon, nor expect that my reader shall, unless my introduction shall prove my apology, to which I refer him.
[1 ][Dr. Gauden died in 1662. His edition of Hooker, dated that year, bears marks of great haste.]
[2 ][By Archbishop Sheldon’s desire, as Gauden states himself in p. 1, which perhaps made the Archbishop the more anxious to obtain a more correct life by Walton: see note on p. 3. of this volume.]
[3 ][E. g. “A little living called Buscomb in the West, to which the college of C. C. presented him: and afterward, that other, not much better, in Lincolnshire, called Drayton Beauchamp.” p. 12. “He ever lived a single life.” (Fuller C. H. IX. 235, “living and dying a single man.”) ibid. “He was prebendary of Canterbury.” p. 25. “He made no will.” ibid.]
[4 ][Fuller, Worthies of England; p. 276, ed. 1662. “Here I must retract two passages in my Church History. For whereas I reported him to die a bachelor, he had wife and children,” [marg. “From the mouth of his sister lately living at Hogsden” (qu. Hoxton?) “near London.”] “though indeed such as were neither to his comfort when living, nor credit when dead. Secondly, his monument was not erected by Sir E. Sandys, (a person as probable as any man alive for such a performance,) but by Sir W. Cooper, now living in the castle of Hartford.”]
[1 ][Of Walton’s care to fulfil this engagement, some instances will be pointed out in the notes on the ensuing Life.]
[2 ][In round numbers: from his death in 1600, to the publication of his Life by Bishop Gauden in 1662.]