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Friday, May 1, 2015

Sir Thomas Browne, MA, MD, knighted by Charles II

My 9th great grandfather Thomas Browne was knighted by Charles II in 1671 for his support of Charles the first during the English Civil War. Thomas was an author and physician, born in London to Thomas Browne and Anne Garraway. He married Dorothy Mileham and was the father of my ancestor Clemment Browne.

The son of a silk merchant from Upton, Cheshire, he was born in the parish of St Michael, Cheapside, in London on 19 October 1605.[1]His father died while he was still young and he was sent to school at Winchester College.[2] In 1623 Browne went to Oxford University. He graduated from Pembroke College, Oxford in 1626, after which he studied medicine at Padua and Montpellier universities, completing his studies at Leiden, where he received a medical degree in 1633. He settled in Norwich in 1637, where he practiced medicine and lived until his death in 1682.


Browne's first literary work was Religio Medici (The Religion of a Physician). This work was circulated as amanuscript among his friends and it caused him some surprise when an unauthorised edition appeared in 1642, since the work contained a number of religious speculations that might be considered unorthodox. An authorised text, with some of the controversial matter removed, appeared in 1643. The expurgation did not end the controversy: in 1645, Alexander Ross attacked Religio Medici in his Medicus Medicatus (The Doctor, Doctored)and, in common with much Protestant literature, the book was placed upon the Papal List of Prohibited Books in the same year.
In 1646, Browne published his encyclopaedia, Pseudodoxia Epidemica, or, Enquiries into Very many Received Tenets, and commonly Presumed Truths, whose title refers to the prevalence of false beliefs and "vulgar errors". A sceptical work that debunks a number of legends circulating at the time in a paradoxical and witty manner, it displays the Baconian side of Browne—the side that was unafraid of what at the time was still called "the new learning". The book is significant in the history of science, because it promoted an awareness of up-to-date scientific journalism, it cast doubt, for example, on the widely believed hypothesis of spontaneous generation.
Browne's last publication during his lifetime, in 1658, were two philosophical Discourses intrinsically related to each other. The first,Hydriotaphia, Urn Burial, or a Brief Discourse of the Sepulchral Urns lately found in Norfolk, inspired by the discovery of some Bronze Ageburials in earthenware vessels found in Norfolk, resulted in a literary meditation upon death, the funerary customs of the world and the ephemerality of fame. The other discourse in the diptych is antithetical in style, subject-matter and imagery. The Garden of Cyrus, or The Quincuncial Lozenge, or Network Plantations of the Ancients, Artificially, Naturally, and Mystically Considered features the quincunx, the arrangement of five units (as with the "five-spot" in dice) and is used by Browne to demonstrate evidence of the Platonic forms in art and nature.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thomas_Browne          


LINKS:

https://familysearch.org/tree/#view=ancestor&person=9Z48-P76&spouse=LHZL-C7W  
http://www.geni.com/people/Sir-Thomas-Browne/5070522609870039927                        
http://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Browne-1876      

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