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LIVEWELL CHAPMAN--THE PUBLISHER OF ABRAHAM CHEARE

Livewell Chapman, Abraham Cheare’s London publisher (see previous post but two), had started as an apprentice at the publishing house Crown in Pope’s Head Alley. This publishing house was owned by Benjamin Allen (d.1646) and his wife Hannah. After her husband’s death in 1646, Hannah ran the business by herself till she married Livewell Chapman in 1651. During the early part of her career as a publisher, she published a number of prominent authors, including Jeremiah Burroughes (1601-1646), John Cotton (c.1585-1652), Henry Jessey (1603-1663), and Vavsor Powell (1617-1670).

When she married Livewell, the books of Fifth Monarchist authors began to appear on their booklist. Livewell had clear Fifth Monarchist sympathies, which led to plotting and numerous problems with authorities in the 1660s after the restoration of Charles II. Livewell’s eschatological convictions eventually caused the financial ruination of his wife and family, for he spent so much time in prison. It was not the first time, nor would it be the last, that a misguided eschatology had such dire results.