The perfect mans practice, November 25 1630, by Symon Jory

  • This material is held at
  • Reference
      GB 206 Brotherton Collection MS Lt 37
  • Dates of Creation
  • Name of Creator
  • Language of Material
  • Physical Description
      1 vol. 35 ff. are extant, with remains of one or two ff. before fol.[1] and of one leaf after it. F.1r bears the signature "Will Lightfoot" in an 18th-century hand. The last pastedown has the signature "Joseph Parsonage" in a hand of ca.1700. Bound in limp vellum; some writing and diagrams are on the binding.

Scope and Content

Outspoken criticism of the vanity of the world and the folly of mankind's material ambitions and pleasures, illustrated by numerous stories; describing the unhappiness of old age, and urging a virtuous life leading to death and heaven. With a prefatory prose dedication to Sir Julius Caesar (imperfect owing to loss of leaves), praising him and revealing that the poem was written in prison. Also contains later (18th-century?) moralising epigram on human mortality and the inevitability of death; copied twice and followed by similar prose material.

Administrative / Biographical History

Nothing is known of Symon Jory, the author of this poem, though the surname at that time originates from the West Country. Sir Julius Caesar, 1558-1636, was a judge. He became a member of the Inner Temple in 1580 and was knighted in 1603. In 1614 he was appointed Master of the Rolls.

Access Information

Access is unrestricted

Acquisition Information

Bought from Quaritch (Sotheby), July 1971


In English

Other Finding Aids

Custodial History

Seemingly once in the possession of Edward Edwards, William Lightfoot, and Joseph Parsonage