A Short Biographical Dictionary of English Literature/Hoccleve, or Occleve, Thomas

Hoccleve, or Occleve, Thomas (1368?-1450?).—Poet, probably b. in London, where he appears to have spent most of his life, living in Chester's Inn in the Strand. Originally intended for the Church, he received an appointment in the Privy Seal Office, which he retained until 1424, when quarters were assigned him in the Priory of Southwick, Hants. In 1399 a pension of £10, subsequently increased to £13, 6s. 8d., had been conferred upon him, which, however, was paid only intermittently, thus furnishing him with a perpetual grievance. His early life appears to have been irregular, and to the end he was a weak, vain, discontented man. His chief work is De Regimine Principum or Governail of Princes, written 1411-12. The best part of this is an autobiographical prelude Mal Regle de T. Hoccleve, in which he holds up his youthful follies as a warning. It is also interesting as containing, in the MS. in the British Museum, a drawing of Chaucer, from which all subsequent portraits have been taken.