Floyd, John

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Jesuit theologian and controversialist; b. Cambridge-shire, England, 1572; d. Saint-Omer, France, Sept. 15, 1649. Admitted to English College, Reims (1588), he proceeded to Rome, where he entered the English College (1590). He joined the Society of Jesus in 1592. On the mission in England at the time of the Gunpowder Plot (1605) he visited Father Edward Oldcorne in Worcester Gaol and was himself captured and imprisoned. A year later he was exiled but afterward returned to England and underwent several further imprisonments. Floyd spent much of the later part of his life abroad, mostly at the English Jesuit College of Saint-Omer. He enjoyed a great reputation as a theologian and controversialist and wrote many books in defense of the Catholic cause against the English Protestants. He also defended in print, against certain of the English Catholic clergy and against the Sorbonne, the policy of the papacy in temporarily withholding a bishop from the Church in England. He used various pseudonyms: Daniel of Jesus, I. R. Student in Divinity, Fidelis Annosus, and Hermanus Loemelius.

Bibliography: t. cooper, Dictionary of National Biography from the Earliest Times to 1900 (London 18851900) 7:344345. Publications of the Catholic Record Society v.37. j. gillow, A Literary and Biographical History or Bibliographical Dictionary of the English Catholics from 1534 to the Present time (New York 1961) 2:300306. c. sommervogel et al., Bibliothèque de la Compagnie de Jésus (Brussels-Paris 18901932) 3:812818. a. f. allison, "John Gerard and the Gunpowder Plot," Recusant History 5 (1959) 4363. a. f. allison and d. m. rogers, A Catalogue of Catholic Books in English 15581640, 2 v. (London 1956).

[a. f. allison]