John Bargrave and the Jesuits

By Brennan, Michael G. | The Catholic Historical Review, October 2002 | Go to article overview

John Bargrave and the Jesuits

Brennan, Michael G., The Catholic Historical Review

I. An English Exile During the Civil War

In May, 1645,John Bargrave (c. 1610-1680), a member of a prominent Protestant family from Kent and a former fellow of Peterhouse, Cambridge, crossed the Channel to begin, like many other royalist emigres of the period, an extended peregrination through France and Italy.1 As a Cambridge student, Bargrave had matriculated from St. Peter's College (Peterhouse) in July, 1629, and had proceeded to B.A. (1633) and M.A. (1636) degrees before being elected a fellow in 1637.2 In 1643, however, as a firm opponent of Archbishop Laud's liturgical reforms, he had fallen foul of both the University and college authorities, resulting in the loss of his fellowship. The likelihood of John Bargrave gaining any other form of employment commensurate with his abilities and qualifications was also significantly hampered by his being the nephew of the Dean of Canterbury Cathedral, Isaac Bargrave (1586-1643). Dean Bargrave (who had served as King Charles I's personal chaplain before his coronation in 1625) was a vociferous supporter of the King and had been hounded out of his deanery by the notorious Parliamentarian, Colonel Edwin Sandys, resulting in a brief incarceration in the Fleet Prison and an early death in January, 1643.3 It seems likely that John Bargrave's decision to spend an extended period of time traveling abroad was simply the resuit of no other viable employment options then being available to him.

During these travels John Bargrave acted as a tutor-governor to three Kentish youths,Alexander Chapman and John Richards (or Rycaut), and his own nephew, John Raymond, who were probably being sent abroad by their families primarily to avoid the aftermath of the Kentish Rebellion of 1643. Both Raymond and Rycaut belonged to prominent Protestant royalist families and Chapman was either the son or nephew of Alexander Chapman (d. 1629), formerly a prebendary of Canterbury Cathedral.4 When Bargrave's small party arrived at Paris, one of his first concerns was to ensure that there would be adequate provision for their spiritual welfare and regular worship, as he recorded in his diary:5

On Sunday I went to Sir Richard Browns lodgings whoe was Agent for his Majesty of England, where wee had read the English liturgie, and an English sermon by Mr Crowder, chaplaine to the Lord Germie Earle of Yarmouth; which being ended, wee received the sacrament in the forme appointed by the Church of England. On this day I mett with Dr Cosins att the Loover (or Court) whoe is Master of the same Coll: whereof I am a [member deleted] fellow. viz. St Pet Coll Cantabrig.6

In view of this clearly stated commitment to the Church of England, it is interesting to learn from numerous other entries in Bargrave's diary just how extensive his contacts were with French Catholicism, especially through the Society of Jesus. His hitherto unexamined autograph diary, which has recently surfaced in Canterbury Cathedral Archives (U11/8), covers the period May, 1645, until February, 1646, and is crammed with his incidental observations, jottings, sketches, and reminiscences. Although many of the surviving records of English travelers in France and Italy during the 1640's and 1650's-both Protestant and Catholic alike-- reveal a passing interest in the religious practices and church architecture of these countries, John Bargrave's diary is notable for its detailed record of the Society of Jesus at Bourges. Unlike most of the other surviving English travel accounts from the period, which usually satisfy themselves with a cursory description of the buildings and/or educational practices of the various Jesuit colleges visited (or merely passed by), John Bargrave's diary records detailed descriptions of the academic pursuits of the college at Bourges (which, as far as I am aware, does not figure in any other of the surviving diaries compiled by seventeenth-century English travelers).7 Secondly, the subject matter and argumentative tactics of Bargrave's frequent debates with three student members of the Jesuit order-two Scottish men, named by Bargrave as "Father Sprowd" (Robert Spreule) and "Father Browne" (James Browne), and one English man,"Father Carew" (Thomas Cary)-are fully documented in his diary. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Cite this article

Cited article

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)


1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25,

Cited article

John Bargrave and the Jesuits


Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25,

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.