conversed with him, and he readily consented to rejoin the church of England. The supplications of his aged father contributed to this decision. To prove the sincerity of his conversion he published in 1624 ‘The Foot out of the Snare; with a detection of sundry late practices and impostures of the Priests and Iesuites in England; whereunto is added a Catalogue of Popish Bookes lately dispersed in our Kingdome, the Printers, Binders, Sellers, and Dispersers of such Bookes, Romish Priests, and Iesuites resident about London, Popish Physicians practising about London,’ London, 1624. The dedication is to the Archbishop of Canterbury and the members of both houses of parliament. The book is full of stories, many purporting to be drawn from the author's personal experience, of the deceptions and vices practised by popish priests. Its publication caused intense excitement, and it rapidly passed through four editions. Some Roman catholics, according to Gee, threatened to cut his throat. Many protestants deprecated its vindictive tone. To one Musket, a secular priest, who complained that Gee had falsely called him a jesuit, Gee replied with biting sarcasm in the fourth edition. The work is historically interesting from its wealth of contemporary allusions. It was reprinted in the ‘Somers Tracts,’ and the valuable catalogues appear in Foley's ‘Records of the Society of Jesus’ (i. 671–83). An appendix also appeared in 1624 entitled ‘New Shreds of the Old Snare, containing The apparitions of two new female ghosts. The copies of diuers Letters of late intercourse concerning Romish affaires. Speciall Indulgences purchased at Rome, granted to diuers English gentle-beleeuing Catholiques for their ready money. A Catalogue of English Nunnes of the late transportations within these two or three yeares.’ And in the same year Gee preached a sermon at St. Paul's Cross, which he published with a dedication to Sir Robert Naunton. A very popular book of prayers, entitled ‘Steps of Ascension to God, or a Ladder of Heaven,’ 12mo, London, 1625, is ascribed by Wood to Gee's uncle Edward. But the preface shows that it was Gee's own work. The twenty-seventh edition bears date 1677. Gee was afterwards beneficed at Tenterden, Kent, where he died in 1639.
A brother, Sir Orlando Gee (1619–1705), twenty-three years John Gee's junior, was in the service of Algernon, earl of Northumberland, through whose influence he became in 1660 registrar of the court of admiralty, and was knighted 18 Aug. 1682. He married, first, Elizabeth, daughter of Sir William Maxey, and, secondly, Ann, daughter of Robert Chilcot of Isleworth, Middlesex. Sir Orlando was a benefactor to the parish church of Isleworth, where he was buried in 1705 (Notes and Queries, 4th ser. iv. 21–2). He married Elizabeth Barker by license dated 17 May 1662 (Chester, Marriage Licences, ed. Foster, p. 535).
[Boase's Register of Exeter College, pp. 211, 232; Foley's Records, i. 74; Wood's Athenæ Oxon., ed. Bliss, ii. 390–3; Hasted's Kent, iii. 102.]
GEERAN or GUERIN, THOMAS (d. 1871), reputed centenarian, was, according to his two credulous biographers, son of Michael Geeran, a farmer, and was born at Scarriff, co. Clare, on 14 May 1766. The same authorities make the following doubtful statements respecting him. He remained at school until his twentieth year, during which time he learnt a little French and Latin, and became a master of arithmetic. On the death of his father he removed to Limerick, where he lived some years, until he enlisted in the army in March 1796. After a voyage of twelve months and two days he landed at Madras, joined the 71st highlanders, and was present in 1799 at the siege of Seringapatam. In 1801 his regiment was sent to Egypt. In 1809 he was present with his regiment at the battle of Corunna, and in 1815 at Waterloo. He returned to England in 1819, and was discharged from the army at Gosport, but without any pension. After this he worked at his trade of a sawyer in various parts of the country. Finally he settled at Brighton, where he made a living by relating his military experiences and dilating on his great age. He died in the infirmary of the Brighton union on 28 Oct. 1871, aged, according to his friends, 105 years and five months.
Mr. W. J. Thoms, F.S.A., investigated this case, and at the Public Record Office, London, obtained access to the original muster-rolls, pay-sheets, and description-rolls of the 71st regiment. From these he established the facts that Geeran had never served abroad with that regiment, and that the regiment had not been in many of the places as mentioned by him. Geeran's case was, on his own applications for a pension, investigated several times by the authorities of Chelsea Hospital, who failed to find any record of his services. However, from the pay-sheets of the regiment it appeared that a Michael Gearyn or Gayran enlisted on 3 March 1813, and deserted on 10 April following. If this were the same person as T. Geeran, as is most likely, he was in the army for about a month only, and at the time of his death was probably about eighty-three. Two lives of Geeran