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Sir Paul Rycaut

ricaut) (1628-1700. English traveler, diplomat, and writer. Born at Aylesford, Kent, he was educated at Trinity College, Cambridge, where he graduated in 1650. After traveling in Europe, Asia, and Africa, he spent eight years as secretary to H. Finch, earl of Winchelsea, ambassador extraordinary to Turkey. The Present State of the Ottoman Empire, in three books... (1670) resulted, a widely circulated history. In 1666 he became a member of the Royal Society and published in the Philosophical Transactions a treatise on sable mice. In 1667 he began a twelve-year consulate at Smyrna for the Levant Company. From this experience he wrote The Present State of the Greek and Armenian Churches... (1679). He was knighted in 1685 by James II, and served William III as resident in Hamburg and the Hanse towns where he remained until shortly before his death.