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Denham, Sir John

Denham, Sir John (1615–69). English poet, courtier, and administrator. He was Surveyor-General of the King's Works (1660–9), with John Webb as his deputy at Greenwich Palace. In 1669 Wren was appointed Denham's sole deputy, and succeeded him on the latter's death two weeks later. Although he does not appear to have designed anything, Denham was probably a competent administrator, and, as the holder of the same position as Inigo Jones and Wren, deserves mention.

Bibliography

Colvin (1995);
Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (1917)

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Denham, Sir John

Sir John Denham (dĕn´əm), 1615–69, English poet and dramatist. His fame rests largely on two works: Cooper's Hill (1642), a topographical poem, combining descriptions of scenery with moral reflections, and The Sophy, a historical tragedy of the Turkish court, acted in 1641. He served the royalists during the Puritan revolution and as a result was made surveyor general of the royal works. He was knighted in 1661.

See ed. of his works by T. H. Banks, Jr. (1928); biography by B. O'Hehir (1968).

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