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curate and candid description of primitive Christianity; and of the services, doctrines, and institutions of the Church in it's earliest period.


Author of the Filices Britannici,' or History of British Ferns, 4to, 1786.


An eminent dissenting minister, born at Leeds in January 1660, had his early education at a private academy near Kendal in Westmoreland, and was afterward under the care of the Rev. Edward Veal, teacher of a similar seminary at Stepney. He frequently heard the sermons of Drs. Tillotson, Calamy, Scott, and Stillingfleet; as well as of the Non-conformists, Charnock, Baxter, Howe, and Veal. During his residence at Amsterdam for one summer, he was invited (in the absence of the minister) to preach at the Brownists' Church; and upon his return home he officiated occasionally at Leeds, and in the neighbouring places till the year 1683, when he went over to Dublin, and was ordained jointpastor with Mr. Williams to a congregation in that city. Upon the retiring of his collegue, he had for a second coadjutor the Rev. Thomas Emlyn, noted for his writings and sufferings,

against whom Mr. Boyse is said to have exerted himself with too much ardor of orthodox zeal. Bad health, and narrow circumstances, rendered his life uncomfortable. He died in 1728, with the character of “ a learned, pious, able, and useful Divine.” Cibber (or rather, Shiel) in his • Lives of the Poets' says, he had two brothers, one a clergyman of the Church of England, and the other a Cardinal at Rome :" but of this circumstance there is no absolute certainty. His works form two volumes folio, 1728: the first containing seventy-one Sermons, with six Dissertations on the Doctrine of Justification, and a Paraphrase of those Passages in the New Testament which chiefly relate to that Doctrine; and the second consisting, chiefly, of Controversial Pieces.

He is blamed for having replied to Emlyn's • Humble Inquiry into the Scripture-Account of Jesus Christ,' &c. at a time when it's author was under prosecution for it.

He was the father of Samuel Boyse, no less remarkable for his poetry, than for his imprudence and extravagance: of whom see the · Lives of the Poets' above-quoted, and the Biographia Britannica.




Was born at Pontefract in 1593, and educated at Sydney Sussex College, Cambridge.

Popery, ever eager to disseminate her doctrines, professly instructs her votaries in all the sophistries of controversy. The amiable simplicity of evangelical truths requires no superior skill in disputation : but when religion once deviated from the code of Scripture, and the rash speculations of men introduced strange articles of faith and rules of practice, the novel systems derived their sole support from the perplexedness of logical distinctions. In 1623, a secular Priest and a Jesuit, animated with the hopes of times more favourable to their interest from the

prospect of the marriage of Prince Charles and the Infanta of Spain, openly challenged the protestant Clergy of the County of York to a public discussion on the controverted points of religion.

These champions of the Church of Rome found in Mr. Bramhall an antagonist equally willing and able to contend with them. Northallerton was the place appointed for the contest. Transubstantiation, and the denial of the Cup to the Ldity, were the two great topics of debate. Victory declared in favour. of Mr. Bramhall One of his antagonists was driven to the necessity of asserting that eating and drinking were synonymous terms ;' and that all possibility of evasion might be precluded, he added the voluntary subscription of his name to this strange proposition. The event of the disputation transpiring, Archbishop Matthews, after a mild reprimand to Mr. Bramhall for his boldness in having commenced an engagement apparently so unequal, with the warmest congratulations upon his success appointed him to be his domestic Chaplain, and from that time continued to honour him with his confidential esteem. His Grace experienced from him, indeed, many singular proofs of his tenderness and affection. His increasing years and infirmities having rendered the care of his extensive diocese a matter of great difficulty, the management of it devolved upon Mr. Bramhall, who was thus qualified successfully to conduct the arduous undertakings of his subsequent life.

Upon the demise of the Archbishop, who had preferred him to a Prebend in the Churches of York and Ripon, he retired to the latter place, where he discharged the office of Sub-Dean with the utmost discretion. In the mean time, he neglected not to improve himself in theological learning; having the use of an excellent collection of books, deposited in the Church of Ripon by Dean Higgins. Here he preached with uninterrupted assiduity for seven years; and while by his eloquence in the pulpit he commanded the applause and admiration of his parishioners,

by liis conscientious discharge of parochial duty he conciliated their most affectionate regard. Even when a pestilence raged amidst his flock, he did not desert them. Like his contemporary master, who was afterward the good Bishop of Durham, he “ visited them in their greatest necessity.”

Here also he acted in another capacity, dispensing justice with unbiassed integrity; and, by referring differences to the mediation of honest and intelligent men, promoting peace and unity in his neighbourhood.

It is deeply to be regretted that, while his controversial works remain, only three Sermons are now extant: 1. On 2 Sam. x. 12; 2. On Psalms, cxxvi. 7.; and 3. On Prov. xxviii. 13.

He was appointed Sub-Dean of Ripon in 1624; in 1633, he attended the Lord Deputy Wentworth into Ireland, and became Archdeacon of Meath ; Bishop of Derry, in the year following; and in 1660, Archbishop of Armagh, and Primate of that kingdom.

In the Parliament of 1661, he was made Speaker of the House of Lords; and in all his successive stations uniformly exerted himself to improve the revenues and the discipline of the sister Church. He died of a stroke of the palsy in June, 1663. He was an acute and learned man, but with a temper inclined to warmth, which leis eventful life must have greatly exercised. With some austerity


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