Open main menu

Page:Dictionary of National Biography volume 50.djvu/382

This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.

to Wood (Bernard, Cat. MSS. Angliæ, p. 232). There was another contemporary Henry Savile, captain of H.M.S. Adventure in 1596, who wrote ‘A Libell of Spanish Lies, found at the Sack of Cales … with an “Answer by H. Savile”’ (London, 1596, 4to; reprinted in Hakluyt's ‘Principal Navigations,’ 1600, vol. iii.).

Sir Henry's younger brother, Thomas Savile (d. 1593), graduated B.A. from Merton College on 14 March 1579–80, M.A. on 18 Jan. 1584–5, was elected fellow of Merton in 1580, and proctor in 1592. He was learned in British antiquities, and fifteen of his letters to Camden on the subject (written between 1580 and 1582) are printed in ‘Camdeni et Ill. Virorum Epistolæ’ (1691, pp. 4–26). He took part in the ceremonials attending the queen's visit to Oxford during 1592, his year of office as proctor, and died before his term expired, being accorded a public funeral. He was buried in Merton College Chapel on 12 Jan. 1592–3. Richard Montagu [q. v.] mentions him as one of England's most learned men (Diatribæ, 1621, Pref. p. 126; cf. Tanner MS. 27, f. 142). He was not fellow of Eton College, and has been confused by Harwood (Alumni, p. 63) and others with the Thomas Savile who graduated B.A. from Emmanuel College, Cambridge, in 1595–6, and M.A. in 1604, and was elected fellow of Eton College on 17 April 1613; he was apparently author of: 1. ‘The Prisoner's Conference,’ 1605, 8vo. 2. ‘The Raising of the Fallen,’ 1606, 4to (Brit. Mus.) (cf. Camdeni Epistolæ, esp. pp. 3, 22; Clark, Reg. Univ. Oxon.; Brodrick, Mem. of Merton; Cooper, Athenæ Cant. ii. 447).

[Wood's Athenæ, ed. Bliss; Macray's Annals of the Bodleian Library; Maxwell-Lyte's Hist. of Eton Coll.; Beloe's Literary Anecdotes, vol. v.; Watson's Halifax; Aubrey's Lives of Eminent Men; Owen's Epigrams, 3rd ser. ii. 33; Birch's Queen Elizabeth; Cat. of British Museum and Bodleian Libraries; Foster's Alumni Oxon. 1500–1714, and Yorkshire Pedigrees; Bernard's Cat. MSS. Angliæ; Rawlinson's MSS. passim authorities quoted in text.]

W. C.-r.

SAVILE, HENRY (1642–1687), diplomatist, youngest surviving child of Sir William Savile and Lady Anne (Coventry), and brother of George Savile, marquis of Halifax [q. v.], was born at Rufford Abbey in Sherwood Forest in 1642. He was probably educated abroad, and acquired as a young man a thorough knowledge of French. In 1661 he made a tour by way of Paris, Lyons, and Bordeaux to Madrid, in company with the Earl of Sunderland and Henry Sidney. He had already, he says, spent so much of his life abroad that he would ‘hardly be an absolute stranger to any place his majesty might be pleased to send him.’ On the king's refusal in 1665 to ennoble his brother ‘to please Sir William Coventry,’ the Duke of York, though a stranger to Savile, appointed him a gentleman of his bedchamber ‘to show how willing he was to oblige the family.’ He was a dashing young fellow, and the Duchess of York found his person highly agreeable (Pepys). A boon companion of Killigrew, Dorset, Baptist May, and Sir Fleetwood Sheppard, Savile declared that ‘no man should keep company with him without drinking except Ned Waller;’ and his drunken pleasantries, though they might be condoned by the king, were highly offensive to his patron, the Duke of York (cf. Hatton Corresp. i. 129). Clarendon admitted him to be witty, but condemned his ‘incredible confidence and presumption.’

In August 1666, having a predilection for the sea, Savile sailed in the duke's flagship, the Royal Charles, and took part in the second fight with the Dutch off the North Foreland, when De Ruyter's line was broken, and the English, he wrote, ‘lost nobody worth hanging.’ In the June of next year he accompanied the duke to Chatham after the disaster at the hands of the Dutch, and shortly afterwards, with a view to promotion at court, he proposed to stand as parliamentary candidate for Nottingham. The expected vacancy did not, however, occur, and he reverted to his courtier's life until March 1669, when for carrying a challenge from his uncle, Sir William Coventry, to the Duke of Buckingham, he was sent, not to the Tower with his principal, but to the Gatehouse. The Duke of York was ‘mightily incensed,’ regarding the indignity as due ‘only to contempt of him’ (Pepys, v. 126–7). At the duke's request he was eventually removed to the Tower, and discharged in a fortnight's time; but the king refused to see him, and ordered James not to receive him into waiting. He accordingly went to Paris, where he met Evelyn, and in July renewed his efforts to enter parliament. Shortly afterwards, however, while staying with Sunderland at Althorpe, he grossly affronted Elizabeth, widow of Jocelyn Percy, eleventh earl of Northumberland, and was pursued to London by his outraged host and William, lord Russell, who demanded satisfaction; but the king intervened, and Savile again went abroad. In the summer of 1672 he was with the Duke of York on board the Prince in Burlington Bay, and wrote an able ‘Relation of the Engagement with the Dutch Fleet on 28 May 1672, in a Letter to the Earl of Arlington’ (London, fol.) The performance