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HAWKINS, WILLIAM (d. 1637), poet, was probably born at Oakington, near Cambridge. He was educated at Christ's College, Cambridge, graduating B.A. 1622–3, and M.A. 1626. In the interval he became master of the free grammar school at Hadleigh, Suffolk, but gave up the post to become curate to the rector of Hadleigh, Dr. Thomas Goad (1576–1638) [q. v.], who admired his Latin verses. He died in 1637 probably of the plague then raging, and was buried at Hadleigh on 29 June of that year.

Hawkins was author of: 1. A lyrical drama entitled ‘Apollo Shroving’ (London, 1627), which was acted by the boys of Hadleigh school on Shrove Tuesday, 6 Feb. 1626–7, Joseph Beaumont (1616–1699) [q. v.] taking a prominent part. Some lines in the siren's song (act iii. sc. 6, ll. 10–15) may have been remembered by Milton when describing Eve visiting her fruits and flowers (Paradise Lost, bk. viii. ll. 40–7). 2. A volume of Latin verse entitled ‘Corolla varia … (Eclogæ tres Virgillanæ declinatæ … Nisus verberans et vapulans, decantatus per Musas virgiferas, juridicas),’ 3 pts. 8vo, Cambridge, 1634. A full analysis of this curious and clever volume is given in Pigot's ‘Hadleigh,’ pp. 179–85. 3. Verses in the Cambridge collections called ‘Rex redux,’ on the king's return from Scotland in 1633; ‘Carmen Natalitium,’ on the birth of the Princess Elizabeth, 1635; and ‘Σγνῴδια sive Musarum Cantabrigiensium concentus,’ &c., on the birth of the Princess Anne, 1637. 4. Latin elegies by him on Edward Gale, apothecary of Hadleigh, 1630, in Brit. Mus. Addit. MS. 15227, f. 63.

[Pigot's Hadleigh, 1860, pp. 176–86; Brydges's Restituta, iii. 236; Hunter's Chorus Vatum, vol. iv. (Addit. MS. 24490, f. 299).]

G. G.