He was from Cheshire, possibly the area near Congleton. According to Anthony Wood he was educated at Cambridge and subsequently at Oxford, but did not take a degree and his name is not in university records. He is reputed to have been a brother or near relation of John Stubbs. He married Katherine Emmes (1570/71 –1590) in 1586.
He started writing about 1581 and in 1583 published his best-known work, The Anatomie of Abuses. This consisted of a virulent attack on the manners, customs, amusements and fashions of the period, and is still valuable for its copious information on those matters. In 1591 Stubbs published A Christal Glass for Christian Women, of which at least seven editions were called for, and he followed this with other semi-devotional works. He died in about 1610.
- 1581, Two Wunderfull and Rare Examples
- 1582, A View of Vanitie, and Allarum to England, or, Retrait from Sinne (now lost)
- 1583, The Anatomie of Abuses
- 1583, The Display of Corruptions (part 2 of The Anatomie of Abuses)
- 1583, The Rosarie of Christian Praiers and Meditations (now lost)
- 1585, The Intended Treason of Doctor Parrie
- 1585, The Theater of the Popes Monarchie
- 1591, A Christal Glasse for Christian Women -- biography of his wife, Katherine Stubbes (née Emmes)
- 1592, A Perfect Pathway to Felicitie
- 1593, Motive to Good Workes
- "Stubbs, Philip (STBS555P)". A Cambridge Alumni Database. University of Cambridge.
- Alexandra Walsham, "Stubbes, Philip (b. c.1555, d. in or after 1610)," Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004. Online version -- access limited.
- This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press.