Salter, Thomas (fl.1580) (DNB00)

SALTER, THOMAS (fl. 1580), author, is said by Ritson to have been a schoolmaster. If so, he is probably the Thomas Salter, schoolmaster, of Upminster, Essex, who married, on 14 March 1583–4, Johanna, daughter of John Welshe, yeoman, of Thurrock in the same county (Chester, London Marriage Licenses), and not the Thomas Salter, minister, who matriculated from Christ Church, Oxford, on 24 Nov. 1581, aged 33, and was rector of St. Mellion, Cornwall, till his death in 1625 (Clark, Reg. Univ. Oxon. II. ii. 106; Parochial Hist. of Cornwall, iii. 306). His leanings were towards puritanism, and in 1579 he issued ‘A Mirrhor mete for all Mothers, Matrones, and Maidens, intituled the Mirrhor of Modestie,’ London, 8vo, n.d. (Brit. Mus. and Bodleian). It was licensed on 7 April 1579 to Edward White (Arber, ii. 351), who dedicated it to Anne, wife of Sir Thomas Lodge [q. v.], and mother of Thomas Lodge [q. v.] the poet. The publisher White has been erroneously credited with its authorship. The book was reprinted in ‘Illustrations of Old English Literature,’ 1866, vol. i., edited by Payne Collier, who erroneously described the copy in the British Museum as the only one extant. It contains much curious and amusing information about the habits and education of girls of the period, and protests against allowing them indiscriminate use of the classics. Robert Greene (1560?–1592) [q. v.] in 1584 issued a book of entirely different character under the same title, ‘A Mirrhor of Modestie.’

In 1580 Salter published ‘The Contention betweene Three Brethren, the Whoremonger, the Drunkard, and the Dice-player, to approve which of the three is the worst,’ 16mo; licensed to Thomas Gosson, 3 Oct. 1580 (Arber, ii. 378). A copy of this edition—the only one known—was bought by Heber in 1834. Hazlitt erroneously says another edition appeared in 1581, 16mo. In 1608 Henry Gosson issued an edition in quarto, a copy of which is in the British Museum. The work is a translation of Beroaldus's ‘Declamatio Ebriosi, Scortatoris, Aleatoris, de vitiositate disceptantium,’ which first appeared in 1499, and was translated into French (1556) and into German (1530).

[Authorities quoted; Ritson's Bibl. Anglo-Poetica; Works in Brit. Mus. Libr.; Cat. Bodleian and Huth Libraries; Collier's Bibl. Account, ii. 312–16; Hazlitt's Handbook, p. 531; information from Mr. R. E. Graves of the British Museum.]

A. F. P.