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Cavendish, George

George Cavendish, 1500–1561?, English gentleman, usher to Cardinal Wolsey. His biography of Wolsey, written in 1557, remained in manuscript until 1641 and first appeared in entirety in Christopher Wordsworth's Ecclesiastical Biography (1810). One of the great books of the English Renaissance, the work imparts tragic stature to Wolsey's life by contrasting the splendor of his early career with the ignominy of his last days. The book was long attributed to Cavendish's brother William, but in 1814 Joseph Hunter clearly established its authorship.

See S. W. Singer, ed., The Life of Cardinal Wolsey (1825).

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