Anderton, Roger and Lawrence

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Seventeenth-century English Catholic writers and controversialists.

Roger, son of Christopher Anderton of Lostock and cousin of Lawrence; b. place and date unknown; d. 1640? Roger came into possession of Birchley Hall near Preston, c. 1615, and was probably the patron of the Catholic secret press in Lancashire, later called the Birchley Hall press. It operated from 1615 to 1621, when it was discovered and seized by the government. Several of the books printed at this press were issued under the pseudonym "John Brereley, Priest," who has sometimes been identified with Lawrence Anderton, though the evidence is far from conclusive.

Lawrence, Jesuit controversialist; b. County of Lancashire, England, c. 157576; d. there, April 17, 1643. He was the son of Thomas Anderton of Chorely, Lancashire, and was educated at Blackburn Grammar School and Christ's College, Cambridge, where he earned a reputation for intellectual brilliance and received his B.A. in 1596 or 1597. Anderton went abroad, probably on becoming a Catholic, and apparently returned to England in 1602 as a priest. He joined the Society of Jesus in 1604. Anderton spent much of his missionary life in his native Lancashire and was superior of the Lancashire district for several years after 1621. He labored principally in London and the South c. 1627 to 1642. He wrote several notable works of controversy against the English Protestants.

Bibliography: t. cooper, The Dictionary of National Biography from the Earliest Times to 1900, 63 v. (London 18851900; repr. with corrections, 21 v., 190809, 192122, 1938; suppl. 1901) 1:396397. j. gillow, A Literary and Biographical History or Bibliographical Dictionary of the English Catholics from 1534 to the Present Time, 5 v. (London-New York 18851902; repr. New York 1961) 1:3438, 3941. a. f. allison and d. m. rogers, A Catalogue of Catholic Books in English 15581640, 2 v. (London 1956).

[a. f. allison]