William Fowler - Encyclopedia




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WILLIAM FOWLER (c. 1560-1614), Scottish poet, was born about the year 1560. He attended St Leonard's college, St Andrews, between 1574 and 1578, and in 1581 he was in Paris studying civil law. In 1581 he issued a pamphlet against John Hamilton and other Catholics, who had, he said, driven him from his country. He subsequently (about ?1590) became private secretary and Master of Requests to Anne of Denmark, wife of James VI., and was renominated to these offices when the queen went to England. In 1609 his services were rewarded by a grant of 2000 acres in Ulster. His sister Susannah Fowler married Sir John Drummond, and was mother of the poet William Drummond of Hawthornden. On the title-page of The Triumphs of Petrarke, Fowler styles himself "P. of Hawick," which has been held to mean that he was parson of Hawick, but this is doubtful. A MS. collection of seventy-two sonnets, entitled The Tarantula of Love, and a translation (1587) from the Italian of the Triumphs of Petrarke are preserved in the library of the university of Edinburgh, in the collection bequeathed by his nephew, William Drummond. Two other volumes of his manuscript notes, scrolls of poems, &c., are preserved among the Drummond MSS., now in the library of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland. Specimens of Fowler's verses were published in 1803 by John Leyden in his Scottish Descriptive Poems. Fowler contributed a prefatory sonnet to James VI.'s Furies; and James, in return, commended, in verse, Fowler's Triumphs.

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