Godden, Thomas (Tylden)
GODDEN, THOMAS (TYLDEN)
Catholic controversialist; b. 1624; d. 1688. He was educated at Oxford and then Cambridge, where he was converted to Catholicism by John sergeant, himself a convert. In 1642 both went to the English College in Lisbon, where they were ordained. There, after 1650 Godden became successively lecturer in philosophy, lecturer in theology, prefect of studies, vice president and president, and also won fame for his eloquent sermons in Portuguese. In 1661 he was appointed chaplain and tutor to Princess Catherine of Braganza, destined consort of Charles II, and accompanied her to London, where he engaged in controversy with Edward Stillingfleet, the king's chaplain. In 1678 Godden was falsely accused of complicity in the murder of Sir Edmund Berry Godfrey at the time of Titus Oates's alleged Popish Plot. Godden escaped to Paris, but returned, under James II, as chaplain to the Queen Dowager. In 1686, in the presence of the king, he publicly defended the Catholic doctrine of the Real Presence against Dr. William Jane, the Protestant dean of Gloucester.
Bibliography: 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 1885–1902; repr. New York 1961) 2:503–506, lists and summaries of Godden's writings. j. d. carr, The Murder of Sir Edmund Godfrey (London 1936). j. lane, Titus Oates (London 1949).