Timothy Bright 1549/50-1615

From Book Owners Online

Timothy BRIGHT 1549/50-1615

Biographical Note

Son of William Bright (possibly the man who was mayor of Cambridge in 1571). BA Trinity College, Cambridge 1568, after which he studied medicine on the continent. MB (Cambridge) 1574, MD 1579. Supported by the patronage of Francis Walsingham, he was appointed chief physician of St Bartholomew’s Hospital, London, 1585, but was dismissed in 1590 for failing to carry out his duties. Rector of Methley, Yorkshire 1591, and of Barwick in Elmet, 1594, where there is again evidence of complaints about his failing to fulfil his parochial responsibilities.

Bright’s reputation rests on his writings. After several early medical works, including A treatise … of English medicines, 1580 and Hygieina, 1582, he published A treatise of melancholie in 1586. In 1588 he published Characterie, a new and briefly influential system of shorthand of his own devising. His abridgement of Foxe’s Book of Martyrs appeared in 1589.


The extent of Bright’s collection is not known but by his will (transcribed by Carlton) he divided his books, including works in Latin, Greek and Italian, between his brother William and his son Titus (also a physician). Examples: Shrewsbury School A.IV.7.