Rev. Andrew Willett

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Andrew Willett

Birthplace: Ely, Hertfordshire, , England
Death: Died in Barley, Hertfordshire, , England
Immediate Family:

Son of Thomas Rev Willet and Elizabeth Willet
Husband of Jacobine Willett
Father of Elizabeth Willett; Anna Willett; Capt. Thomas Willett; Rebecca Willet; James Willett, ,Sr and 11 others
Brother of John Willlet, Sr.; Rebecca Ann Franklin; Richard Willett; Anne Willett; Thomas Willett and 1 other
Half brother of Thomas Willett

Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About Rev. Andrew Willett

Wikipedia Biographical Summary:

"...Andrew Willet (Ely, 1562 – 4 December 1621) was an English clergyman and controversialist. A prolific writer, he is known for his anti-papal works. His views were Calvinist, conforming and non-separatist, and he appeared as a witness against Edward Dering before the Star-chamber. Joseph Hall (who knew him well) eulogized Willet in Noah's Dove, and Thomas Fuller modeled 'the Controversial Divine' of his Holy State on him..."

"...He was born at Ely in 1562, son of Thomas Willet (1511?-1598)..."

"...Andrew had one brother and four sisters. After attending the collegiate school at Ely, he entered Cambridge University, matriculating at the age of fifteen (20 June 1577); he first went to Peterhouse, the master of which was Andrew Perne, his godfather, but in the same year moved to Christ's College, Cambridge. He was quickly elected a scholar, graduated B.A. in 1581, was elected to a fellowship at Christmas 1583 (aged twenty-one), proceeded M.A. in 1584, and in the same year was incorporated a member of the university of Oxford. He was B.D. in 1591, and D.D. 1601..."

"...In 1588 Willet left the university, and at Michaelmas, on his marriage with Jacobine, a daughter of his father's friend Roger Goad, provost of King's, gave up his fellowship..."

"...He was chaplain-in-ordinary and tutor to Henry Frederick, Prince of Wales, as well as a frequent preacher before the court..."

"...Willet's death was the result of an accident. On his return home from London his horse threw him near Hoddesdon. His leg was broken and was set badly. Ten days later he died at the inn to which he had been taken (4 December 1621), in his fifty-ninth year. On 8 December he was buried in the chancel of Barley parish church..."

"...Willet published his major work, the Synopsis Papismi, in 1594, adding the Tetrastylon two years later..."

SOURCE: Wikipedia contributors, 'Andrew Willet', Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, 20 March 2011, 10:20 UTC, <> [accessed 6 April 2011]

Biographical Summary:

Andrew Willet, D. D.—This learned and laborious divine was born in the city of Ely, in the year 1562, and educated first in Peter-house, then in Christ's college, Cambridge. He was blessed with pious parents, who brought him up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. His father, Mr. Thomas Willet, was sub-almoner to King Edward VI., and a painful sufferer during the cruel persecutions of Queen Mary. In the reign of Queen Elizabeth, be became rector of Barley in Hertfordshire, and was preferred to a prebend in the church of Ely. His son Andrew, while a boy at school, discovered an uncommon genius, and made extraordinary progress in the various rudiments of knowledge. He was so intense in his application, that his parents were obliged to use various methods to divert his attention from his books. At the age of fourteen, he was sent to the university, where he was soon preferred to a fellowship. Here he became intimate with Downham, Perkins, and other celebrated puritans, who encouraged each other in their studies. Willet soon distinguished himself by his exact acquaintance with the languages, the arts, and all the branches of useful literature. He was concerned not to have these things to learn, when he came forth to teach others; wisely judging that youth should prepare that which riper years must use. In the year 1586, he united with the master and fellows of Christ's college, in defence of themselves against the accusations of their enemies, in which they acquitted themselves with great honour.

Having spent thirteen years at the university, he came forth richly fraught with wisdom and knowledge. On the death of his father, the queen presented him to the rectory of Barley, and gave him his father's prebend in the church of Ely.

Dr. Willet obtained a great degree of celebrity by the numerous and valuable productions of his pen. One of his voluminous publications appeared in the reign of Queen Elizabeth, entitled, " Synopsis Papismi; or, a general View of Papistrie." This work, which was dedicated to the queen, contains upwards of thirteen hundred pages in folio. It is perhaps the best refutation of popery that ever was published. In this work, says Mr. Toplady, no less than fifteen hundred errors and heresies are charged against the church of Rome, and most ably refuted. It passed through five editions; and was highly approved by many of the bishops; held in great esteem by the two universities; and very much admired, both by the clergy and laity, throughout the kingdom. The author, it is incorrectly added, was most zealously attached to the church of England, and not a grain of puritanism mingled itself with his conformity.

He resigned his happy soul to God, December 4, 1621, aged fifty-eight years. His funeral was attended by a great number of knights, gentlemen, and ministers, who, having esteemed and honoured him in life, testified their respect to his memory when dead.

Dr. Willet's remains were interred in the chancel of Barley church, where there is a representation of him at full length, in a praying altitude; and underneath is a monumental inscription erected to his memory..."

SOURCE: The Lives of the Puritans By Benjamin Brook

Andrew Willet DD rector 1598-1621 author of "Synopsis . He married Jacobina 1637 daughter of Thomas Goad DD, provost of Kings College Cambridge Of his 18 children, 9 sons and4 daughters survived him His son, Henry Willet (d.1670), who lost a fortune by his loyalty to the king, was apparently ancestor of Ralph Willett. The fourth son, Thomas Willet, was the first mayor of New York


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Rev. Andrew Willett's Timeline

Ely, Hertfordshire, , England
Age 18
B.A., Cambridge Univ.
Age 22
M.A., Cambridge Univ.
Age 27
Ely, Cambridgeshire, , England
Age 28
Barley, Hertfordshire, , England
Age 29
B.D., Cambridge Univ.
November 26, 1592
Age 30
Barley, Hertfordshire, , England
October 4, 1598
Age 36
Barley, Hertfordshire, , England
June 14, 1601
Age 39
Barley, Hertfordshire, , England