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(born Oct. 31, 1620, Wotton, Surrey, Eng.died Feb. 27, 1706, Wotton) British writer. A country gentleman from a wealthy landowning family, he wrote some 30 books on the fine arts, forestry, and religious topics. His Diary (published 1818), which he kept from 1631 to 1706, is an invaluable source of information on 17th-century social, cultural, religious, and political life. His Life of Mrs. Godolphin (published 1847) is one of the most moving of 17th-century biographies.
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