Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Adams, Thomas (d.1620?)

ADAMS, THOMAS (d. 1620?), printer, son of Thomas Adams, yeoman, of Neen Savage, Shropshire, was first apprenticed to Oliver Wilkes, stationer, on 29 Sept. 1582, for seven years, and turned over to George Bishop on 14 Oct. 1583, for the same period. He was admitted a freeman of the Stationers' Company on 15 Oct. 1590, and came upon the livery 1 July 1598. He appears to have commenced business by having the books, ballads, &c., printed by Robert Walley, assigned to him 12 Oct. 1591, and from that time to 1614 a considerable number of entries may be found to his name in the registers (Arber's Transcript, vols. iii. and iv.). They include books in all classes; some were issued jointly with John Oxenbridge, Peter Short, and John Newbury, &c. He also printed music books; among others, pieces by John Dowland, the lutenist, and Thomas Ravenscroft. On 14 March 1611, he is described as younger warden, and as the purchaser of the entire stock of Bishop, his former master, including the remainders of sixty important works (ib. iii. 453–5). He became warden in 1614, and died about 1620. In the latter year he is recorded as a benefactor to the company in the sum of 100l., to be defrayed for public charges at the discretion of the court.

[Ames's Typogr. Antiquities, ed. Herbert, ii. 1305; Nichols's Lit. Anecdotes, iii. 593.]

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