James Montague (bishop)

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James Montague
Bishop Montague
Bishop Montague
Born 1568 (1568)
Died 1618 (1619) (aged 50)
Occupation British bishop

James Montague (c.1568–1618) was an English bishop.[1]


He was the son of Sir Edward Montague of Boughton, and grandson of Edward Montagu.[2]

He was a graduate of Christ's College, Cambridge, and became in 1596 the first Master of Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge, for which he laid the foundation stone.[3] He was connected to Frances Sidney, founder of the college, his great-aunt: his maternal grandmother was her sister Lucy Sidney.[4] From that time he was a patron of Thomas Gataker. In 1603 he became Dean of the Chapel Royal.[5][6][7] Montague was both a courtier and a Calvinist, and closer to the king than George Abbot, Archbishop of Canterbury; he is considered to have influenced James I against the Arminians.[8][9] With the other courtiers Sir Robert Darcy and John Harington, 1st Baron Harington of Exton, Montague introduced to court circles, and especially those around Henry Frederick, Prince of Wales, the Puritan Arthur Hildersham, and the radical religious figures Henry Jacob and John Burges.[10]

He edited the collected works of James I; it has been said that his introductions "push the art of panegyric close to deification".[11] He had worked with James on An Apologie for the Oath of Allegiance in 1607, at Royston and Newmarket, reading to James the four volumes of the works of Cardinal Bellarmine.[12][13]

He was Dean of Lichfield in 1603, Dean of Worcester in 1604, Bishop of Bath and Wells in 1608 and Bishop of Winchester in 1616.[14] At Bath and Wells, he contributed to the legend of the Holy Thorn of Glastonbury, in an entertainment for Anne of Denmark, when the character of Joseph of Arimathea presented boughs to the Queen.[15] He is buried in an alabaster tomb in Bath Abbey.[16]


  1. ^  "Montagu, James (c. 1568-1618)". Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co. 1885–1900. 
  2. ^ "James MONTAGUE (Bishop of Winchester)". tudorplace.com.ar. Retrieved 2014-04-12. [unreliable source]
  3. ^ "Montagu, James (MNTG585J)". A Cambridge Alumni Database. University of Cambridge. 
  4. ^ "HARRINGTON". tudorplace.com.ar. Retrieved 2014-04-12. [unreliable source]
  5. ^ "The colleges and halls - Sidney Sussex | A History of the County of Cambridge and the Isle of Ely: Volume 3 (pp. 481-487)". british-history.ac.uk. Retrieved 2014-04-12. 
  6. ^ Peter Le Huray, Music and the Reformation in England, 1549–1660 (1978), p. 59.
  7. ^ "Gataker_Marriage_Duties_Biography". usask.ca. Retrieved 2014-04-12. 
  8. ^ Nicholas Tyacke, Lancelot Andrewes and the Myth of Anglicanism, p. 29 in Peter Lake, Michael C. Questier (editors), Conformity and Orthodoxy in the English Church, c. 1560 – 1660 (2000).
  9. ^ Ralph Anthony Houlbrooke, James VI and I: Ideas, Authority, and Government (2006), p. 173.
  10. ^ Christopher Hill, Intellectual Origins of the English Revoluation (1965), p. 217.
  11. ^ Graham Parry, The Golden Age Restor'd: The Culture of the Stuart Court 1603–1642 (1981), p. 26.
  12. ^ Alan Stewart, The Cradle King: A Life of James VI & I (2003), p. 227.
  13. ^ Doris Jones-Baker, Hertfordshire in History: Papers Presented to Lionel Munby (2004), p. 99.
  14. ^ Concise Dictionary of National Biography
  15. ^ "Isle of Avalon | the History of Glastonbury". isleofavalon.co.uk. Retrieved 2014-04-12. 
  16. ^ "Bath Abbey: Places to visit in Bath". historicbritain.com. Retrieved 2014-04-12. 
Academic offices
New title Master of Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge
Succeeded by
Francis Aldrich
Church of England titles
Preceded by
John Still
Bishop of Bath and Wells
Succeeded by
Arthur Lake
Preceded by
Thomas Bilson
Bishop of Winchester
Succeeded by
Lancelot Andrewes