Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Crowder, Anselm

CROWDER or CROWTHER, ANSELM (1588–1666), Benedictine monk, was a native of Montgomeryshire. He was among the earliest novices in the Benedictine monastery of St. Gregory at Douay, where he was clothed on 15 April 1609, and professed on 3 July 1611. He became subprior and professor of philosophy in that monastery, and was definitor in 1621. Afterwards he was sent upon the English mission in the south province of his order, and the titles of cathedral prior of Rochester (1633) and of Canterbury (1657) were conferred upon him. A document in the State Paper Office describes him as ‘sometime masquing in the name of Arthur Broughton.’ He was appointed provincial of Canterbury in 1653, and held that office until his death. His missionary labours were principally in or about London, where he established a confraternity of the rosary which was influentially supported, Robert, earl of Cardigan, being prefect of the sodality. The dean of this confraternity kept the relic of the Holy Thorn which had belonged to Glastonbury Abbey before the Reformation. Crowder died in the Old Bailey, London, on 5 May 1666. His works are: 1. ‘The First Treatise of the Spiritual Conquest; or, a Plain Discovery of the Ambuscades and evil Stratagems of our Enemies in this our daily Warfare. Enabling the Christian Warrier to presee and avoid them,’ Paris, 1651, 12mo, with curious cuts, in five treatises, each having a separate title-page. Other editions appeared at Paris 1652, 12mo; Douay, 1685, 12mo; London (edited by Canon Vaughan, O.S.B), 1874, 12mo. 2. ‘Jesus, Maria, Joseph, or the Devout Pilgrim of the Ever Blessed Virgin Mary, in his Holy Exercises, Affections, and Elevations. Upon the sacred Mysteries of Jesus, Maria, Joseph. Published for the benefit of the Pious Rosarists, by A. C. and T. V. [i.e. Thomas Vincent Sadler], Religious Monks of the holy Order of S. Bennet,’ Amsterdam, 1657, 12mo. Another contracted edition which appeared at Amsterdam in 1663, 16mo, is dedicated to Queen Catharine, and has an elaborate frontispiece containing her portrait. This prayer-book was a favourite with the queen. Gee, in his 'Foot out of the Snare,' 1624, sig. S. 1, alludes to a book with this title, and attributes it to Simons, a Carmelite, then in London, and he states that the work had lately issued from a press in London, and that the same author also wrote two other books, called 'The Way to find Ease, Rest, and Repose unto the Soul.' 3. 'The Dayley Exercise of the Devout Rosarists,' Amsterdam, 1657, 12mo; 6th edit. Dublin, 1743, 8vo; 8th edit. Cork, 1770, 12mo, frequently reprinted. In the dedication to Sir Henry Tichborne, bart., reference is made to the Tichborne dole, given to all comers on 25 March.

[Gillow's Bibl. Dict. of the Engl. Catholics, i. 604; Weldon's Chronological Notes, pp. 71, 89, 166, 189, 194, 196, 202, App. 4, 7; Snow's Benedictine Necrology, p. 62; Oliver's Catholic Religion in Cornwall, p. 510.]

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