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Thomas Beard

Thomas Beard, D. D.—This person was a puritan minister of considerable eminence, and a famous schoolmaster at Huntingdon. In the year 1628, when the Bishop of Winchester was accused before the house of commons, Dr. Beard was sent for as witness against him, when his information was presented to the house by Sir Daniel Norton.t In the year 1630, he was made justice of peace for the county of Huntingdon, being esteemed a person of great celebrity. He was schoolmaster to the famous Oliver Cromwell, who was born at this place, and who, being a youth of an aspiring and obstinate temper, often received his sharp discipline. It is observed, that when Oliver was a boy at school, " he averred that, when lying on his bed, he saw a gigantic figure, which came and opened the curtains of his bed, and told him that he shoidd hereafter

• Raihworth't Collect, vol. ii. p. 110.
+ Prynne's Cant. Doome, p. 175,176.
± Wood's Athena Oxon. Vo1, ii. p. 824.
^ Palmer's Noncnn. Mem. vol. ii. p. 26.

I Wood's Athena, vol. i. p. 781. f MS. Remark), p. 867.

be the greatest person in the kingdom, but did not mention the word king; and though he was told of the folly, as well as the wickedness of such an assertion, he still persisted in it; for which, at the request of his father, he was flogged by Dr. Beard." Cromwell, it is added, often mentioned this circumstance when arrived at the height of his glory.* Dr. Beard and Dr. Thomas Taylor, whose memoir is given in the next article, were .joint authors of " The Theatre of God's Judgments;" and he published a work entitled, " Pedantius, Comaedia, olim Cantab, acta, in Coll. Trin. nunquam ante hsc Typis evulgata," 1631. His portrait, prefixed to this work, says Granger,t is a neat whole length, with two scholars standing by him, a rod in his hand, and a label proceeding from his mouth, inscribed, As in prcesenii.