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John Ho ADLY, grandfather of BENJAMIN Hoadly, the subject of the present memoir, emigrated to America about the year 1639. His son, Samuel Hoadly, was born two years after at Guilford, Connecticut. The family remained in that place fourteen years, and then went back to England. From that period little is known of the grandfather, except that he became chaplain to the garrison of Edinburgh Castle.
His son Samuel was educated at King James's College, Edinburgh, and at an early age commenced the employment of schoolmaster. He followed this vocation in different places, till he was called to be head master of the public school at Norwich, which station he held during the remainder of his life. He was the friend and correspondent of Graevius, and Several of his letters to that eminent critic have been preserved.
BENJAMIN Hoadly, son of Samuel Hoadly, was born at Westerhaven, Kent, November 14th, 1676, while his father was teacher of a private school in that place. He continued under his father's tuition till he entered the University of Cambridge, as a pensioner of Catherine hall. We hear little of him at the University, except that he took his degrees in due course, was elected a fellow, and discharged the office of tutor with much credit for two years. During the first years of his life he was of a sickly constitution, and seldom in good health. By an accident also at the University he contracted a lameness, which never left him. He always walked with a cane, or a crutch, and then with difficulty. But his constitution gained vigour as he advanced in age. It was a custom, which he rarely omitted, to exercise daily by riding in the open air. This practice preserved his health and cheerfulness to the close of a long and sedentary life. He took orders in 1700, and was appointed lecturer at St Mildred in the Poultry, London. This appointment he retained for ten years. The income was very small, and through the kindness of Dr William Sherlock, Dean of St Paul’s, he obtained in addition the Rectory of St Peter's Poor, Broadstreet, in 1704. Already he began to be distinguished by his writings and sermons in vindication of natural and revealed religion, and of the principles of civil and religious liberty. So valuable were his services accounted, that, in 1709, he was complimented by a vote of approbation in the House of Commons, and recommended to the Queen as worthy of advancement in the church. The Queen promised to comply with the wishes of the House, but she never found an opportunity to fulfil her promise. By Mrs Howland he was presented to the Rectory of Streatham, Surry. As a qualification for this appointment, he became chaplain to the Duke of Bedford. The degree of doctor of divinity was conferred on him by Archbishop Wake, and, when George I. came to the throne, he was appointed king's chaplain. He had warmly espoused the cause of the Hanover succession, and deserved the patronage of a family, whose interests he had so earnestly defended. In 1715 he was advanced to the bishopric of Bangor, and, in the course of the twenty years following, he was appointed successively bishop of Hereford, Salisbury, and Winchester. He died, 1761, at his residence in Chelsea, aged eighty five years. Bishop Hoadly was twice married, and had five children. One of his sons became an eminent physician, and was the author of several works of merit in his profession, as well as of the popular comedy, called the Suspicious Husband. He died before his father. Another son, John Hoadly, obtained considerable preferment in the church, and after his father's death published a complete collection of his works in three folio volumes. It is remarkable, that, on the death of this person, the name of Hoadly became extinct. The younger brother of bishop Hoadly, who was Primate of Ireland, left no male descendants. Justice could hardly be done to a biographical notice of Hoadly without detailing many of the most important events in England, both ecclesiastical and civil, for nearly half a century. His writings had a wide and powerful influence, and contributed much to give a tone to public sentiment and feeling. They were admirably suited to the times, and in the multitude of topics, which they embrace, we always discover the same strong intellect, clear perception, forcible argument, and plain, practical sense. In religion, he admitted no authority but the Scriptures; in civil government, he built every thing on the foundation of liberty and right. This was a bold stand to take at the end of the seventeenth century; and to maintain it with dignity required a firmness and zeal, as well as a weight of talents, not among the attributes of a common mind. Hoadly’s earliest writings are chiefly devoted to a defence of the reasonableness of conformity to the church of England. On this subject he was engaged in a controversy with Calamy, an able and learned divine among the dissenters. Hoadly argued for conformity on protestant principles, and not from the traditionary notion of hereditary right, nor from the pretence of any authority in the church, except what it