Briefest of Lives

Charles Cowling

 
 

Here is the entire brief life of Dr Richard Stokes:

Scholar to Sir William Oughtred for Mathematiques (Algebra). Made himself mad with it, but became sober again, but I feare like a crackt glasse. Became Roman Catholique. Married unhappily at Liège, dog and catt, etc. Became a sotte. Dyed in Newgate, prisoner for debt, April 1681.

John Aubrey, Brief Lives, 1693

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Ariadne
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Ariadne

…but I feare lie a crackt glasse….

Ah yes. Wonderful.

Evelyn
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You’re right – witless, foolish, drunkard…

gloria mundi
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Well thanks for the clarification, but the other meaning of “sotte” or “sot” is drunkard, isn’t it? So…I’ll get back to you on that when I’ve checked a few local opinions…

Evelyn
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Sotte=numbskull=Dr Stokes, not Gloria…

Evelyn
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Numbskull.

gloria mundi
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Lives don’t come much briefer, yet less is more. How eloquent! How sad. “dog and catt etc.”