Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Warmestry, Gervase

734495Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900, Volume 59 — Warmestry, Gervase1899Bertha Porter

WARMESTRY, GERVASE (1604–1641), poet, was the eldest son of William Warmestry, principal registrar of the diocese of Worcester, by his wife Cicely (d. 27 Jan. 1649), daughter of Thomas Smith of Cuerdley in Lancashire. Thomas Warmestry [q. v.] was his younger brother. The Warmestrys were an ancient family of Worcester who gave their name to the ‘Warmestry Slip,’ a narrow street leading down from the city to the Severn, where their residence formerly stood. The post of registrar of the diocese of Worcester had been held by a Warmestry since 1544. Gervase, who was born in Worcester in 1604, was educated first in the grammar school of his native city, whence he passed on to Westminster. He was elected a scholar of Christ Church, Oxford, in 1621. He matriculated on 24 July 1624, proceeded B.A. on 5 May 1625, and M.A. on 27 June 1628. In the same year he became a student of the Middle Temple. He succeeded his father as registrar of the diocese of Worcester, being appointed in reversion on 20 Nov. 1630. He died on 28 May 1641, and was buried in Worcester Cathedral. He left a widow, Isabella, to whom letters of administration were granted in London on 31 Aug. 1641.

He published a poetical tract entitled ‘Virescit vulnere virtus: England's Wound and Cure,’ in 1628. A copy of the work, which is scarce, is in the Bodleian Library. It bears no name of place of publication or of printer, and was probably privately printed. It was reprinted in 1875 in the second series of ‘Fugitive Tracts, written in Verse, which illustrate the Condition of Religious and Political Feeling in England, and the State of Society there during Two Centuries.’ Warmestry's work was chosen as being one of the few that throw light on the condition of England at the time of the death of Buckingham. He also contributed a Latin poem to ‘Camdeni Insignia: a Collection of Panegyrics on William Camden,’ Oxford, 1624.

[Foster's Alumni, 1500–1714; Welch's Alumni Westmon. p. 90; Wood's Athenæ, ed. Bliss, iii. cols. 1, 2, 3; Abingdon's Antiq. of Worcester Cathedral, pp. 47–9; Admon. Act Book, August 1641; Hunter's Chorus Vatum (Addit. MS. 24491, fol. 426); information from J. H. Hooper, esq.]

B. P.