Richard Hakluyt, an English author, born about 1553, died Oct. 23, 1616. He was educated at Westminster school and at Oxford university, where he was appointed lecturer on cosmography and was the first to teach the use of globes. In 1582 he published "Diuers Voyages touching the Discouerie of America and Islands adjacent unto the same" (new ed., 1850). In 1584 he accompanied the English ambassador Sir Edward Stafford to Paris, probably as chaplain, as he was at this time professor of divinity. While there he published in French (1586) the narrative of the voyages of Loudonniere and others, which he afterward translated and published under the title "Foure Voyages unto Florida," etc. (1587). He also published in Paris an improved edition of Peter Martyr's De Orbe Novo (1587), which at his suggestion was translated into English by Michael Lok, the London agent of the Muscovy company, under the title "The Historie of the West Indies." On his return to England in 1589 he was appointed by Sir Walter Raleigh a member of the company of gentlemen adventurers and merchants for colonizing Virginia; and in the same year he published his great work, "The principal Navigations, Voyages, and Discoveries made by the English Nation " (fob, London; enlarged ed., 3 vols, in 2, fob, 1598, '99, 1600; new ed. with additions, 5 vols. 4to, London, 1809-'12). Besides the different voyages, this work contains many curious public documents, such as charters granted by the czar, the sultan, and other monarchs, to English merchants.
In many copies the voyage to Cadiz (pp. 607-'19, vol. i., 2d ed.) is omitted, having been suppressed by order of Queen Elizabeth after the disgrace of the earl of Essex. The additions to the last edition comprise all the voyages and travels printed by Hakluyt, or at his suggestion, which were not included in his collection. In 1605 Hakluyt was appointed prebendary of Westminster, having previously been prebendary of Bristol; and he received afterward the rectory of Wetheringset in Suffolk. He was buried in Westminster abbey. His unpublished MSS. were used by Purchas in his "Pilgrims." His name is perpetuated in Hakluyt's head, a promontory on the N. W. end of Spitzbergen, named by Henry Hudson in 1608; in Hakluyt's island in Baffin bay, named by Bylot; and in the Hakluyt society, founded in 1846 for the republication of early voyages and travels. For an analysis of the contents of his chief work, see Oldys's "British Librarian."