Illuminator and calligraphist Petruccio Ubaldini was born about 1524 in Tuscany. He was probably an illegitimate child. He started his career as a mercenary. He came to England in 1545, entered the service of the Crown, and fought in the Scottish War. Having been introduced to the court of Elizabeth I, he taught Italian, transcribed and illuminated manuscripts, and wrote or translated into Italian historical and other tracts.
In 1551, he recorded his experience of English manners, customs, and institutions in a Relatione delle cose del Regno d’Inghilterra (now among the Marco Foscarini manuscripts in Vienna’s Imperial Library). In 1588, he translated into Italian the account of the defeat of the Spanish Armada compiled for Howard of Effingham. He returned to Italy (Venice) for some time, but returned in the early 1560s. In 1588, he wrote Descrittione del Regno di Scotia. He died in 1599 in London.