Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Glover, Robert (1544-1588)

GLOVER, ROBERT (1544–1588), Somerset herald, son of Thomas Glover of Ashford, Kent, and Mildred his wife, was born there in 1544. His grandfather, Thomas Glover, was one of the barons of the Cinque ports at the coronation of Henry VIII. He entered the College of Arms at an early age, was appointed Portcullis pursuivant in 1567, and created Somerset herald in 1571. Several of the provincial kings-at-arms availed themselves of his rare skill as a herald and genealogist, and employed him to visit many of the counties within their jurisdictions. In company with William Flower [q. v.], Norroy, he made the heraldic visitation of Durham in 1575, and of Cheshire in 1580. In 1582 he attended Lord Willoughby when that nobleman bore the insignia of the Garter to Frederick II of Denmark [see Bertie, Peregrine], and in 1584 he, with Robert Cooke, Clarenceux, accompanied the Earl of Derby on a similar mission to the king of France. In 1584 and 1585 he was engaged in the heraldic visitation of Yorkshire. He died in London on 10 April 1588, and was buried in the church of St. Giles Without, Cripplegate. Over his grave there was placed a comely monument, in the south wall of the choir, with an inscription, which is printed in Weever's 'Funerall Monuments.'

He married Elizabeth, daughter of William Flower, Norroy king-of-arms, and left three sons, one of whom, Thomas, was born in 1576, and two daughters, Elizabeth, born in 1573, and Ann, born in 1575.

Glover was certainly one of the most accomplished heralds and genealogists that this country has produced. No work of his was printed in his lifetime, but he left an enormous quantity of manuscript collections, which have been utilised, often with scanty or no acknowledgment, by subsequent writers, who have thus gained credit properly due to him. Dugdale declared that Camden and Glover were the two greatest ornaments of their profession. Many suppose that Glover collected the valuable materials afterwards arranged and published by Dugdale in the 'Baronage' which bears his name (Gough, British Topography, ii. 406). Some of Glover's collections were purchased by his friend the lord-treasurer Burghley, who deposited them in the College of Arms, but there yet remain scattered in different libraries throughout the kingdom scores of volumes which, though unknown as his, have afforded matter for nearly all the topographical surveys which have been written since his time (ib.) He assisted Camden in his pedigrees for the 'Britannia,' communicated to Dr. David Powell a copy of the 'History of Cambria' translated by H. Lloyd, made a collection of the inscriptions upon the funeral monuments in Kent, and in 1584 drew up a most curious survey of Herewood Castle, Yorkshire. His ‘Catalogue of Northern Gentry whose surnames ended in son′ was formerly in the possession of Thoresby. The 'Defence of the Title of Queen Elizabeth to the English Crown' against the book by John Lesley, bishop of Ross, in 1584, in favour of Mary Stuart, queen of Scots, was considered by Dugdale to be one of Glover's best performances. It has never been published. A work entitled 'Nobilitas Politica et Civilis,' London, 1608, fol., was edited from Glover's manuscripts, with many additions, by his nephew Thomas Milles, who afterwards inserted a translation of it in the 'Catalogue of Honor.' Glover's manuscript genealogies of the nobility in Latin were reduced to method by Milles, with the assistance of Sir Robert Cotton, Robert Beale, clerk to the council, William Camden, Clarenceux king-of-arms, Nicholas Charles, Lancaster herald, Michael Heneage, keeper of the records in the Tower, Thomas Talbot, and Matthew Pateson. They appeared under the title of 'The Catalogue of Honor, or Treasury of true Nobility, peculiar and proper to the Isle of Great Britaine,' London, 1610, fol. Milles explains that his intention in bringing out this work was to revive the name and memory of his uncle, 'whose private studies for the public good deserved a remembrance beyond forgetful time.' The 'Catalogue of the Chancellors of England,' edited by John Philipot in 1636, was principally based on Glover's collections. This was also the case with Arthur Collins's 'Proceedings, Precedents, and Arguments on Claims and Controversies concerning Baronies by Writ and other Honours,' 1735. Glover's famous 'Ordinary of Arms' is printed in an augmented and improved form in vol. i. of Edmondson's 'Complete Body of Heraldry,' 1780. His and Flower's 'Heraldic Visitatione of ye Countye Palatyne of Durham in 1575' was published at Newcastle in 1820, fol., under the editorship of N. J. Philipson; their 'Visitation of Cheshire in 1580' forms vol. xviii. of the publications of the Harleian Society, London, 1882, 8vo; and Glover's 'Visitation of Yorkshire, made in 1584-5,' edited by Joseph Foster, was privately printed in London in 1875, 8vo.

[Addit. MSS. 12453, 26890 ff. Ib. 32, 30323 f. 2; Dallaway's Inquiry, p. 243; Gent. Mag. 1820, i. 596; Harl. MSS. 245 art. 1, 374 art. 6, 1160 art. 1 et seq. 1388, 6165 art. 30; Hasted's Kent (1790) iii. 262; Kennett's MS. 48, f. 108; Lansd. MSS. 58 art. 47, 205 art. 3, 843 art. 8, 872; Moule's Bibl. Heraldica, pp. 30, 66, 67, 119; Noble's College of Arms, pp. 180, 186; Calendars of State Papers, Dom. 1547-80 p.458, 1581-90 pp. 360, 448, 636. Addend. 1566-79 p. 475, 1580-1625 p. 199; Stow's Survey, 1720, bk. iii. p. 83; Weever's Funerall Monuments, pp. 676, 682.]

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