Daniel Rogers (diplomat)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Daniel Rogers (1538?–1591) was an Anglo-Flemish diplomat and politician, known as a well-connected humanist poet and historian.

Early life[edit]

The eldest son of John Rogers and his wife Adriana van der Weyden of Antwerp, he was born at Wittenberg about 1538. John Rogers the civilian was a brother, and went on some diplomatic missions with him. On his mother's side Rogers was related to Emanuel van Meteren and Abraham Ortelius.[1]

Rogers came to England with his family in 1548, and was naturalised with them in 1552. After his father's death in 1555 he returned to Wittenberg, and studied under Philip Melanchthon.[2] He was taught also by Hubert Languet and Johannes Sturm.[1] He returned to England on Elizabeth I's accession, and graduated B.A. at Oxford in August 1561. Nicasius Yetswiert, Elizabeth's secretary of the French tongue, who had known his father, and whose daughter Susan Rogers afterwards married, introduced him to court.[2]

Rogers was then in Paris for nine years, with a break in Antwerp in 1565, and came under the influences of Petrus Ramus, and the contemporary eirenicism.[3] He may have worked in some capacity in Paris for Sir Thomas Hoby;[4] he was employed as a tutor by Sir Henry Norris, the next English ambassador in Paris, between 1566 and 1570, and sent home intelligence to Secretary William Cecil. After that Francis Walsingham took over as ambassador there.[2][5]

Dutch and German diplomacy[edit]

In 1572 Rogers was in Ireland, acting as a guide to German aristocratic visitors.[6] In October 1574 Rogers went with Sir William Winter to Antwerp, and he accompanied a major embassy to the Netherlands, to treat with William the Silent, in June 1575.[2] Thomas Wilson the diplomat was a friend, and Rogers wrote epigrams for him;[7] Wilson took on Rogers as a secretary by the end of 1574.[1]

Rogers, Wilson and Walsingham were in effect Elizabeth's staff for the Anglo-Dutch alliance, given final form by the Treaty of Nonsuch in 1585.[8] Rogers has been called "the key figure in many diplomatic Anglo-Dutch exchanges".[9] By 1575 he had fresh status as secretary to the Merchant Adventurers, and was a diplomat receiving personal instructions.[1][10] As was the case for his friend and colleague Robert Beale, but even more so, the circle of humanist contacts Rogers built up was also a network that facilitated diplomatic contact.[11] Identified as a Philippist (a former student of Melanchthon), Rogers would have been exposed to a Protestant view of international politics that was providentialist, strongly opposed to the Papacy, and intended to combat the Council of Trent.[12]

Rogers was engaged in diplomatic business in the Low Countries throughout 1576, and in March 1577 was there again to negotiate the terms on which Queen Elizabeth was to lend £20,000 to the States-General.[2] In the same month he was in Frankfurt with Sir Philip Sidney, a mission on a new front designed to tackle the theological splits that were hampering Protestant diplomacy in Germany. Rogers started to shuttle across the North Sea in support of an ambitious Protestant League.[13] Dutch business occupied him till March 1578.[2] At this period Philips of Marnix, Lord of Saint-Aldegonde deciphered intercepted Spanish correspondence dealing with an invasion of England. Rogers passed it on to Walsingham.[14]

Discussions with William in July 1577 gave Rogers some perspective on the German issue. The suggestion was that Frederik II of Denmark might act as honest broker. William considered that Frederik's close relationship with Augustus, Elector of Saxony offered some hope.[15] In early 1579 Rogers was sent by Robert Dudley, 1st Earl of Leicester to reconcile John Casimir of the Palatinate-Simmern, a friend, and William, who had fallen out over the Calvinists of Ghent.[16]

The publication of the Book of Concord in the middle of 1580 in fact aggravated the difficulties.[17] In September 1580 Rogers was sent to Augustus of Saxony, in an effort to calm the dissensions among Lutherans.[2] Beale was sent to contact a dozen German courts, too, in a drive to counter the troubles over Crypto-Calvinism.[18]

In captivity[edit]

Map showing the Lordship of Anholt in upper centre (as in 1789)

During September 1580 Rogers was sent to Nuremberg, the Imperial Diet and a further mission to the Emperor Rudolf II, mainly on trade matters. He was kidnapped in October, removing him from play, as he passed through the Duchy of Cleves on his way.[17][19] He was captured near Cleves by the irregular forces of Maarten Schenck van Nydeggen, who took him to Kasteel Bleijenbeek.[20] He was then arrested on Imperial territory by Baron von Anholt, at the request of Philip II of Spain.[2] William, Duke of Jülich-Cleves-Berg gave an account to Queen Elizabeth in June 1584, stating that Rogers was detained at the tiny Lordship of Anholt, and then Bredevoort.[21]

Rogers spent four years in captivity. Hubert Languet wrote to Sir Philip Sidney, but the response from the English court was languid.[1][2][22] George Gilpin of the Merchant Adventurers also made some unavailing efforts for his release.[23] The Queen wrote in September 1583 to Duke Casimir, by which time Rogers was held at Bredevoort by Anholt's widow.[24]

Etienne Lesieur, an agent of Walsingham, attempted to free Rogers by visiting the Duke of Cleves, and the Duke of Parma at Tournai. He was himself captured in 1585.[25][26][27] In one version Rogers was ransomed through the baron's counsellor-at-law, Stephen Degner, a fellow-student under Melanchthon at Wittenberg.[2] He was finally freed from Bredevoort in October 1584.[28] The matter was not yet closed, as Lesieur reported, with Rogers detained again and taken to Boucholt, on pretexts, which amounted to further financial demands.[29]

Later life[edit]

On 5 May 1587 Rogers was appointed a clerk of the privy council; he had already filled the office of assistant clerk.[2] He transacted further official business abroad, visiting Denmark in December 1587, and was able to get the king to subsidise Henry of Navarre.[30] He was there again in June 1588, when he conveyed expressions of sympathy from Queen Elizabeth to the young king on the death of his father Frederick II. On his own responsibility he made an arrangement under which the subjects of Denmark and Norway undertook not to serve the king of Spain against England. He was Member of Parliament for Newport, Cornwall in 1589.[2]

Rogers died on 11 February 1591, and was buried in the church of Sunbury-on-Thames beside his father-in-law's grave.[2]


Janus Dousa was a close friend: they had met during the time Rogers spent in Paris.[5][31] About three months after the foundation of the University of Leiden in 1575 by Dousa, Rogers wrote a commemorative poem.[32] In Paris Rogers also knew some of the poets of La Pléiade (Jean-Antoine de Baïf, Jean Daurat and Guillaume des Autels), Florent Chrestien, George Buchanan, Franciscus Thorius and Germanus Valens Pimpontius.[33] An English friend was the translator of Ronsard, Thomas Jenye.[34] Another contact of this period was Lucas de Heere.[11]

Rogers first met Sir Philip Sidney around the beginning of 1576,[10] and became one of Sidney's intellectual circle, the nature of which is still debated: his letters and poetry are significant sources for its activities. Evidence for the composition and interests of this group, the so-called Areopagus including Edward Dyer and Fulke Greville, in prosody, religious poetry and music, is in his correspondence.[35] Rogers wrote a long flattering poem addressed to Sidney, about his associations and future, from Ghent, dated 14 January 1579 and thought to have been delivered by Languet a few weeks later.[36][37] In that year Rogers formed part of the opposition to Elizabeth's proposed marriage to the Duc d'Alençon, evidence of his attachment to Leicester and the Sidney circle.[38] Through the group around Sidney, Rogers knew Paulus Melissus.[39]

Rogers had kept up with George Buchanan from Paris days, and worked on the London edition of his De jure regni apud Scotos in 1579, communicating through Thomas Vautrollier. Rogers consulted Dousa, Sturm and François Hotman on the edition.[40] Rogers further acted as an apologist for Buchanan's ideas on limited monarchy.[41] They had an extensive correspondence, in particular on the proposed marriage at this period, and it has been inferred that Sidney was informed about it.[42]

Rogers also had antiquarian tastes, and was a close friend of William Camden, who quotes some Latin poems by him in his account of Salisbury. Camden is known to have used notes of Rogers. Ortelius and Camden asked Rogers to transcribe in Germany the Peutingerian Table, relevant in their view to the Antonine Itineraries. Rogers in fact never found enough time for his scholarly projects.[43]

Rogers was known to Jan Gruter, and wrote to Hadrianus Junius asking him for early references to the history of Ireland;[2] he was acquainted with Justus Lipsius, perhaps from a meeting in 1577.[1][44] In the late 1570s Rogers was having discussions with John Dee, concerned with the conquests made by King Arthur, and the titles of Queen Elizabeth. He may have brought Ortelius to Mortlake in 1577. As a consequence of a meeting Dee and Rogers had in 1578, the conquests of King Malgo were added to Dee's imperial schematic.[45][46][47] Ortelius tried to have Rogers continue Humphrey Llwyd's work in ancient chorography, but without success, Rogers preferring the humanist literary approach.[48] At the end of his life Rogers was in touch with Bonaventura Vulcanius, through Philips of Marnix, on the subject of runic alphabets.[49]

In Denmark for the state funeral in 1588, Rogers visited Tycho Brahe at Hven. Plans for Rogers to help him with publication in England were cut short when Rogers died.[50]


Roger wrote copiously in neo-Latin verse. Most of it remained unpublished, much surviving in manuscript.[51] An obituary poem for Walter Haddon appeared in 1576.[52] Verses in praise of John Jewel were appended to Lawrence Humphrey's Life of the bishop. Latin verses by Rogers also figure in the preface to Ortelius's Theatrum Orbis Terrarum and in Ralph Aggas's description of Oxford University, 1578.[2]


In a Visitation of Middlesex dated 1634 it was said that Rogers had two children—a son Francis, who married a lady named Cory; and a posthumous daughter, Posthuma, who married a man named Speare.[2]


  • J. A. van Dorsten (1962). Poets, Patrons and Professors: Sir Philip Sidney, Daniel Rogers, and the Leiden Humanists. University of Leiden.
  • J. J. Levy, Daniel Rogers as Antiquary, Bibliothèque d'Humanisme et Renaissance T. 27, No. 2 (1965), pp. 444–462. Published by: Librairie Droz. Stable URL: https://www.jstor.org/stable/41429710


  1. ^ a b c d e f Loudon, Mark. "Rogers, Daniel". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/23969. (Subscription or UK public library membership required.)
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p  Lee, Sidney, ed. (1897). "Rogers, Daniel (1538?-1591)" . Dictionary of National Biography. 49. London: Smith, Elder & Co.
  3. ^ Howell, pp. 158–9.
  4. ^ Levy, pp. 446–7.
  5. ^ a b Charles Wilson (1 January 1970). Queen Elizabeth and the Revolt of the Netherlands. University of California Press. p. 82. ISBN 978-0-520-01744-3. Retrieved 26 July 2013.
  6. ^ Levy, at p. 448.
  7. ^ Albert J. Schmidt, Thomas Wilson and the Tudor Commonwealth: An Essay in Civic Humanism, Huntington Library Quarterly Vol. 23, No. 1 (Nov., 1959), pp. 49-60, at p. 60 note 29. Published by: University of California Press.Stable URL: https://www.jstor.org/stable/3816476
  8. ^ Charles Wilson (1 January 1976). The Transformation of Europe: 1558 - 1648. University of California Press. p. 159. ISBN 978-0-520-03075-6. Retrieved 26 July 2013.
  9. ^ Roze Hentschell; Kathy Lavezzo (1 December 2011). Essays in Memory of Richard Helgerson: Laureations. Lexington Books. p. 245. ISBN 978-1-61149-381-8. Retrieved 27 July 2013.
  10. ^ a b Levy, p. 449.
  11. ^ a b Natalie Mears (8 December 2005). Queenship and Political Discourse in The Elizabethan Realms. Cambridge University Press. p. 65. ISBN 978-0-521-81922-0. Retrieved 27 July 2013.
  12. ^ Robert E. Stillman (28 April 2013). Philip Sidney and the Poetics of Renaissance Cosmopolitanism. Ashgate Publishing, Ltd. pp. 12–4. ISBN 978-1-4094-7502-6. Retrieved 27 July 2013.
  13. ^ Glyn Parry, John Dee and the Elizabethan British Empire in Its European Context, The Historical Journal Vol. 49, No. 3 (Sep., 2006), pp. 643-675, at p. 659 note 74. Published by: Cambridge University Press. Stable URL: https://www.jstor.org/stable/4091576
  14. ^ Simon Singh (24 June 2010). The Code Book: The Secret History of Codes and Code-breaking. HarperCollins Publishers. p. 62. ISBN 978-0-00-737830-2.
  15. ^ Paul Douglas Lockhart (1 January 2004). Frederik II and the Protestant Cause: Denmark's Role in the Wars of Religion, 1559-1596. BRILL. p. 178. ISBN 978-90-04-13790-5. Retrieved 26 July 2013.
  16. ^ Adams, Simon. "Davison, William". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/7306. (Subscription or UK public library membership required.)
  17. ^ a b Melanie Barber; Gabriel Sewell; Stephen Taylor (2010). From the Reformation to the Permissive Society: A Miscellany in Celebration of the 400th Anniversary of Lambeth Palace Library. Boydell & Brewer. p. 33. ISBN 978-1-84383-558-5. Retrieved 27 July 2013.
  18. ^  Stephen, Leslie, ed. (1885). "Beale, Robert" . Dictionary of National Biography. 4. London: Smith, Elder & Co.
  19. ^ Levy, p. 450.
  20. ^ J. A. Van Dorsten (1962). Poets, Patrons and Professors: Sir Philip Sidney, Daniel Rogers and the Leiden Humanists. J. A. Van Dorsten. BRILL. p. 69. ISBN 978-90-04-06605-2. Retrieved 27 July 2013.
  21. ^ Sophie Crawford Lomas (editor) (1914). "Elizabeth: June 1584, 1-10". Calendar of State Papers Foreign, Elizabeth, Volume 18: July 1583-July 1584. Institute of Historical Research. Retrieved 27 July 2013.CS1 maint: Extra text: authors list (link)
  22. ^ Sir Philip Sidney (2012). The Correspondence of Sir Philip Sidney. Oxford University Press. p. 1015 note 18. ISBN 978-0-19-955822-3. Retrieved 26 July 2013.
  23. ^ Bell, Gary M. "Gilpin, George". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/10758. (Subscription or UK public library membership required.)
  24. ^ Sophie Crawford Lomas (editor) (1914). "Elizabeth: September 1583, 16-30". Calendar of State Papers Foreign, Elizabeth, Volume 18: July 1583-July 1584. Institute of Historical Research. Retrieved 27 July 2013.CS1 maint: Extra text: authors list (link)
  25. ^ H. R. Woudhuysen (23 May 1996). Sir Philip Sidney and the Circulation of Manuscripts, 1558-1640. Oxford University Press. p. 216. ISBN 978-0-19-159102-0. Retrieved 26 July 2013.
  26. ^ Gary M. Bell (1 January 1995). Handlist of British Diplomatic Representatives, 1509-1688. Cambridge University Press. p. 136. ISBN 978-0-521-55154-0. Retrieved 27 July 2013.
  27. ^ E. A. Beller, The Negotiations of Sir Stephen Le Sieur, 1584-1613, The English Historical Review Vol. 40, No. 157 (Jan., 1925), pp. 22-33, at p. 22. Published by: Oxford University Press. Stable URL: https://www.jstor.org/stable/552606
  28. ^ Levy, p. 451.
  29. ^ Sophie Crawford Lomas (editor) (1916). "Elizabeth: December 1584, 26-31". Calendar of State Papers Foreign, Elizabeth, Volume 19: August 1584-August 1585. Institute of Historical Research. Retrieved 27 July 2013.CS1 maint: Extra text: authors list (link)
  30. ^ Walther Kirchner, England and Denmark, 1558-1588, The Journal of Modern History Vol. 17, No. 1 (Mar., 1945), pp. 1-15, at p. 14. Published by: The University of Chicago Press. Stable URL: https://www.jstor.org/stable/1871532
  31. ^ F.S. Thomson, Douglas (2011). "Propertius, Sextus" (PDF). Catalogus Translationum et Commentariorum. 9: 241. Retrieved 28 August 2015.
  32. ^ Van Dorsten, p. 9.
  33. ^ Van Dorsten, p. 13.
  34. ^ Van Dorsten, p. 18.
  35. ^ Roger Howell (1968). Sir Philip Sidney: The Shepherd Knight. Hutchinson of London. pp. 160–2. ISBN 978-0-09-086190-3.
  36. ^ Van Dorsten, pp. 61–7.
  37. ^ Katherine Duncan-Jones. Sir Philip Sidney: Courtier Poet. Yale University Press. p. 159. ISBN 0-300-05099-2.
  38. ^ James E. Phillips, George Buchanan and the Sidney Circle, Huntington Library Quarterly Vol. 12, No. 1 (Nov., 1948), pp. 23-55 at p. 24. Published by: University of California Press. Stable URL: https://www.jstor.org/stable/3815873
  39. ^ Peter J. French (1984). John Dee: The World of an Elizabethan Magus. Routledge & Kegan Paul. p. 155. ISBN 0-7102-0385-3.
  40. ^ I. D. MacFarlane (1981). Buchanan. Duckworth. pp. 264–5. ISBN 0-7156-1684-6.
  41. ^ Blair Worden (1996). The Sound of Virtue: Philip Sidney's Arcadia and Elizabethan Politics. Yale University Press. p. 239. ISBN 0-300-06693-7.
  42. ^ Roger Howell (1968). Sir Philip Sidney: The Shepherd Knight. Hutchinson of London. pp. 217–8. ISBN 978-0-09-086190-3.
  43. ^ F. J. Levy, The Making of Camden's Britannia, Bibliothèque d'Humanisme et Renaissance T. 26, No. 1 (1964), pp. 70-97, at pp. 87–8. Published by: Librairie Droz. Stable URL: https://www.jstor.org/stable/41429804
  44. ^ Gilbert Tournoy; Jeanine De Landtsheer; Jan Papy (1 January 1999). Iustus Lipsius, Europae Lumen Et Columen: Proceedings of the International Colloquiium, Leuven, 17-19 September 1997. Leuven University Press. p. 38 note 17. ISBN 978-90-6186-971-9. Retrieved 27 July 2013.
  45. ^ Nicholas Clulee (15 February 2013). John Dee's Natural Philosophy: Between Science and Religion. Routledge. p. 291 note 53. ISBN 978-0-415-63774-9. Retrieved 26 July 2013.
  46. ^ Roberts, R. Julian. "Dee, John". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/7418. (Subscription or UK public library membership required.)
  47. ^ Donald F. Lach (15 January 2010). Asia in the Making of Europe, Volume II: A Century of Wonder. Book 3: The Scholarly Disciplines. University of Chicago Press. p. 472. ISBN 978-0-226-46713-9. Retrieved 27 July 2013.
  48. ^ Peter J. French (1984). John Dee: The World of an Elizabethan Magus. Routledge & Kegan Paul. p. 203. ISBN 0-7102-0385-3.
  49. ^ Hélène Cazes (19 November 2010). Bonaventura Vulcanius, Works and Networks: Bruges 1538 - Leiden 1614. BRILL. p. 423. ISBN 978-90-04-19209-6. Retrieved 26 July 2013.
  50. ^ Victor E. Thoren (1990). The Lord of Uraniborg: A Biography of Tycho Brahe. Cambridge University Press. p. 316. ISBN 978-0-521-35158-4. Retrieved 26 July 2013.
  51. ^ Van Dorsten, p. 11.
  52. ^ Lawrence V. Ryan, Walter Haddon: Elizabethan Latinist, Huntington Library Quarterly Vol. 17, No. 2 (Feb., 1954), pp. 99-124, at p. 120. Published by: University of California Press. Stable URL: https://www.jstor.org/stable/3816213

 This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainLee, Sidney, ed. (1897). "Rogers, Daniel (1538?-1591)" . Dictionary of National Biography. 49. London: Smith, Elder & Co.