He was back at Whitehall in May ; but during his short service he had been present at the Battle of Breitenfeld and in many sieges. Suckling wrote An Account of Religion by Reason, a Socinian tract, which he dedicated to Edward Sackville, fourth Earl of Dorset, in late published in with Fragmenta Aurea and may have revised the works of others around this time.
The coterie aspects of such writing are evidenced in these verses of an older, experienced woman, trying to dissuade a romantic youth from sincerity and constancy: the coterie poet aimed at variety of circumstances, logical arguments, and attitudes, using an assortment of verse forms and meters.
Landing at Dieppe, Suckling proceeded to Paris on 14 May. On the other hand Aubrey presents a despondent Suckling, who acquired poison from an apothecary and proceeded to commit suicide. In Suckling's works in prose and verse were edited by A. A portrait reputedly painted by Sir Anthony Van Dyck, in the Frick Collection in New York City, is the only authenticated one, all others—such as William Marshall's frontispiece to Fragmenta Aurea and eighteenth-century versions—deriving ultimately from it.
These gallant gentlemen vied with each other in the costly equipment of their forces, which led the king facetiously to remark, that "the Scots would fight stoutly, if only for the Englishmen's fine clothes.
Strafford, who had been condemned and imprisoned in the Tower, abortive schemes to free him having failed, was executed on 12 May Suckling fled to Paris, where, according to a biography published later in the century, he committed suicide in because he was unable to face poverty.
A further threat from the Scots in saw Suckling commissioned as captain of a troop of carabineers. The Whitton estate, which now consisted of two conjoined properties was sold the following year and John had little difficulty in matching his gaming losses to the proceeds.
Yet among the early poems seldom reprinted and little known are such epigrams as "Upon Christ his birth," "Upon Stephen stoned," "Upon the Epiphanie Or Starr that appear'd to the wisemen," and others.
Most of Suckling's work first appeared posthumously in Fragmenta Aurea of