Master John Davies

Master John Davies
(1569 - 1626)
Portrayed by James Mares

Master John Davies - Elizabethan Poet

John Davies was born in 1569 to John and Mary of Chicksgrove, Wiltshire. John was the third son. His older brothers, Matthew and Edward were born approximately three years earlier.

John's father was a well-to-do tanner.

Davies father died in 1580. Leaving his mother to raise her three boys and her two daughters, Edith and Mary, aged 9 and 6 respectively.

Davies studied at Oxford. Then went on to read law at Middle Temple.

He and his friends were rather rambunctious. He and his friends were suspended on a couple of occasions for "breaking open chambers at night and demanding the Lord of Misrule's rent".

However, sometime during his stay at Middle Temple he fell out of favor with his friends. They began to make fun of him. Finally he took his frustration out on his friend Richard Martin

The event is recorded in the the Middle Temple's minutes:

9. Feb. 1597[/8]. While the Masters of the Bench and other fellows were quietly dining publicly in the Hall, John Davyes, one of the Masters of the Bar, in cap and gown, and girt with a dagger, his servant and another with him being armed with swords, came into the Hall. The servant and the other person stayed at the bottom of the Hall, while he walked up to the fireplace and then to the lower part of the second table for Masters of the Bar, where Richard Martyn was quitetly dining. Taking from under his gown a stick, which is commonly called 'a Bastianado', he struck Martyn on the head with it till it broke, and the running to the bottom of the Hall he took his servant's sword out of his hand, shoot it over his own head (super caput suum propium quatiebat), and rand down to the water steps and jumped into a boat. He is expelled, never to return.