Francis Holyoake

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Francis Holyoake (1567 – 13 November 1653) was an English cleric and lexicographer.


Holyoake was born at Nether Whitacre, Warwickshire. About 1582 he studied as a commoner at The Queen's College, Oxford, though it does not appear that he took a degree. Later he taught at a school, first at Oxford, and then in Warwickshire. In February 1604 he was instituted to the rectory of Southam, Warwickshire,[1] In 1625 he was elected a member of Convocation.

In 1642 Holyoake was forced from his house by the parliamentarians, his wife was roughly handled, his servant was killed, and his estate of ₤300 per annum was sequestered, so that he and his family were obliged to subsist on charity.[2] He died on 13 November 1653, aged 86, and was buried in the church of St. Mary at Warwick.


Holyoake compiled a Dictionarie Etymologocall, which was annexed to Riders Dictionarie correct, 2 pts., London, 1617, an edition of the lexicon of John Rider. The work was re-issued in 1626, with additions by Nicholas Grey, and in 1640. A fourth edition was published as almost Holyoake's own, with the title Dictionarium Etymologicum Latinum, 3 pts., London, 1633. The sixth edition is stated to be compositum et absolutum a Francisco de Sacra Quercu, 1648. His son Thomas made major additions to the work, but, dying before he could complete the edition, it was published by Thomas’s son Charles, as A large Dictionary in three parts, London 1677–1676.

Francis Holyoake presented a manuscript to Queen's College library, entitled Huguccionis, seu Huguitionis, Pisani, ep. Ferrariensis, Lexicon alphabeticum.


  1. ^ Dugdale, Warwickshire, ed. Thomas, i. 340
  2. ^ Cal. State Paper, Dom. 1660–1, pp. 133, 350


  •  This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainGoodwin, Gordon (1891). "Holyoake, Francis". In Lee, Sidney. Dictionary of National Biography. 27. London: Smith, Elder & Co.  The entry list these sources:
    • Wood’s Athenæ Oxon. (Bliss), iii. 346–7;
    • Frederick Leigh Colvile, Worthies of Warwickshire, pp. 426, 427;
    • Cal. State Papers, Dom. 1660-1, pp. 133, 232, 350; Brit. Mus. Cat.