Reference > Cambridge History > Cavalier and Puritan > English Grammar Schools > St. Paul’s school
  The Edwardian grammar schools Westminster  


The Cambridge History of English and American Literature in 18 Volumes (1907–21).
Volume VII. Cavalier and Puritan.

XIV. English Grammar Schools.

§ 7. St. Paul’s school.

Meanwhile, St. Paul’s school had continued to prosper until it became the pride and admiration of London. Its catholicity—its doors being open “to the children of all nations and countries indifferently”—the discernment manifest in every detail alike of its curriculum and of its discipline, together with the sound sense and scientific insight which had guided the construction and arrangement of its new buildings, had won for the school an almost unrivalled reputation, which was further enhanced when Richard Mulcaster  9  was appointed to the office of highmaster. His successor, Alexander Gill the elder, numbered John Milton among his pupils, and deserves mention here as one who, in his Logonomia Anglica, showed that he was well read in the poets of his day.   10
  Under the same auspices, and with the same governors, had been founded (1541) the Mercers’ school, which rose on the site of the ancient hospital of St. Thomas of Accon, one of the once famous order of the Knights Hospitallers. The house of that order had been closed in 1538; but, three years later, it was opened as a free grammar school, and already reckoned Colet, Sir Thomas Gresham and Davenant (afterwards bishop of Salisbury) among its alumni; while, to quote the language of Carlisle, it subsequently “vied, both in number and eminence with the greatest schools in London and in the disputations of scholars on festival days.”  10    11

Note 9. As to Mulcaster, see ante, Vol. III, pp. 494, 495. [ back ]
Note 10Endowed Grammar Schools, II, 42. [ back ]

  The Edwardian grammar schools Westminster  

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