Lucar, Cyprian (DNB00)

LUCAR, CYPRIAN (fl. 1590), mechanician and author, was born in London in 1544. His grandfather was John Lucar of Bridgwater, Somerset (Visitation of London, 1568, Harleian Soc., p. 49). His father, Emanuel Lucar,was a member of the Merchant Taylors' Company in London in 1534, and was master in 1560-1, the year in which the Merchant Taylors' School was founded. He was a member of the jury which refused, on 17 April 1554, to convict Sir Nicholas Throckmorton of complicity in Wyatt's rebellion, and was consequently committed to the Tower. His first wife, daughter of Paul Withypoll, died 29 Oct. 1537, and was buried in the church of St. Lawrence Pountney, where her husband erected a monument with a eulogistic inscription in English verse (Machyn, Diary, pp. 239, 380; Stow, Survey of London, ed. Strype, vol. i. bk. iii. p. 189; Clode, Memorials and Early History of the Merchant Taylors' Company). He married his second wife, Joanna, daughter of Thomas Trumbull, 15 May 1541, and died 28 March 1574. Cyprian was the eldest child of the second marriage. A fifth son, John, entered Merchant Taylors' School 15 June 1569.

Cyprian was admitted a scholar of Winchester College in 1555 (Kirby, Winchester Scholars, p. 133), and became fellow or scholar of New College, Oxford, before 1564. In 1568 he entered Lincoln's Inn. He issued in 1588 'Three Bookes of Colloquies concerning the Arte of Shooting in great and small peeces of Artillerie,' translated from the Italian of Nicholas Tartaglia, with additions and an appendix by the translator' to shew vnto the Reader the Properties, Office, and Dutie of a Gunner, and to teach him to make and refine Artificial Saltpeter,' London, by Thomas Dawson, for John Harrison, 1588, fol. It was dedicated by the publisher to Leicester, and is fully illustrated. Lucar's appendix, 'collected out of divers good authors,' is far longer than the translation from Tartaglia.

A more interesting venture was 'A Treatise named Lucar Solace, devided into fower Bookes, which in part are collected out of diverse Authors in diverse Languages, and in part devised by Cyprian Lucar, Gentleman' (London, by Richard Field, for John Harrison, 1590), 4to. It is dedicated to William Roe, alderman of London, the author's brother-in-law. Books i. to iii. form a treatise on mensuration and geometry. Book iv. is a collection of useful information respecting modes of sinking wells, of building chimneys, of distinguishing between 'fruitful, barren, and minerall grounds,' and so forth. In addition to many drawings of geometrical figures printed in the page, there are some folding plates depicting newly invented machines; among the latter (p. 157) is a fire-engine, 'a kinde of squirt made to holde an hoggeshed of water,' whence more modern implements are possibly derived.

Lucar, who was at one time described as of Blackford, Somerset, left a son, Anthonie, who was a student at the Middle Temple in 1612; but his brother, Mark, succeeded to family property at Maydenbrook, a hamlet in Cheddon Fitz-paine. Mark's son, Emanuel, appears as captain of a troop of three hundred Devonshire soldiers, who embarked at Dartmouth for Flushing, 27 Aug. 1585 (Cal. State Papers, Dom. 1581-90, p. 262). Emanuel Lucar was seated at Maydenbrook in 1623, married twice, and had a large family (Visitation of Somerset, 1623, p. 71).

[Authorities cited; Lucar's Works in Brit. Mus.; Foster's Alumni Oxon. 1500-1714.]

S. L.