The Life of Samuel Daniel (1562-1619)
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Excerpted from Classic Library, © copyright 1993 Andromeda Interactive, Ltd.


The son of a music teacher, Samuel Daniel was educated at Magdalen Hall, Oxford. In 1585 he worked for the English ambassador in Paris before going to Italy. On his return he was employed as tutor to William Herbert, the future Earl of Pembroke, and then to Lady Anne Clifford at Skipton Castle in Yorkshire. In 1603 he wrote A Panegyric Congratulatory on James I's accession and the following year he gained a place at court.

Daniel's first book, Delia, was praised by Edmund Spenser in his Colin Clouts Come Home Again. He went on to become a successful court poet, writing occasional verses and dramatic entertainments. In 1604 Queen Anne commissioned a masque from him, The Vision of the Twelve Goddesses, and took part in the performance. Later that year he was in trouble for his tragedy Philotas, which was thought to represent the Earl of Essex's 1600 rebellion in a sympathetic light. Daniel prefaced the printed version of the play with an 'Apology' and was restored to favour. Towards the end of his life, he retired to his farm in Somerset.



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