Men of Kent and Kentishmen/Simon Fish

Simon Fish


Was a native of Kent, but the place of his birth seems unknown. He was educated at Oxford, and subsequently studied law at Gray's Inn. In consequence of his taking part in a play which reflected upon Wolsey he found it necessary to leave the country, and fled into Germany, where he became acquainted with William Tyndale. Here he wrote a treatise satirizing the popish clergy, entitled "The Supplication of Beggars," which was fortunate enough to obtain the approbation of Henry VIII, who gave the author leave to return to England. Fish's pamphlet was deemed of sufficient importance to draw a reply from Sir Thomas More, who answered it in another entitled "The Supplication of Souls in Purgatory." The king, however, continued his protection to him till his death by the plague in 1531. He is said to have been the author of other works entitled "The Boke of Merchants," and "The Spiritual Nosegay," and he translated a treatise from the Dutch, entitled "The Summe of the Scriptures," 1530. He lies buried in St. Dunstan's Church, Fleet Street.

[See Wood's " Athenæ Oxon," by Bliss.]