Laurence was born about 1548 a son of protestant printer John Bodlegh and his wife, Joan Hone. During the reign of Mary Tudor he lived with his family in Geneva but they returned to England on the accession of Elizabeth. He was educated at Christ Church, Oxford, graduating BA in 1566 and MA in 1588 and then at the University of Basel. He became committed to Calvinism which did not prevent him from becoming a great pluralist.
Laurence never married and died on 19 April 1615, aged sixty-seven, being buried in Exeter Cathedral close on 9 May.
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