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was pastor of a considerable congregation in London, and died with great calmness and composure of mind, on Bartholomewday 1683. His works are very numerous, and still in esteem among the dissenters; though his style is a little intricate and perplexed.
[In this year died, aged seventy-two, Dr. Benjamin Whichcote, the friend of Tillotson. He was of an ancient and honourable family in the county of Salop, and was born at Whichcote-hall in the parish of Stoke, March 11, 1609. He was admitted in Emanuel-college, Cambridge, 1626, and graduated bachelor of arts 1629, master of arts 1633, and bachelor in divinity 1640. In the same year that he took his second degree, he was elected fellow of the college, and his tutor, Mr. Thomas Hill, leaving the university the year after, Mr. Whichcote took pupils, and became very considerable for his learning and worth, his prudence and temper, his wisdom and moderation, in those times of trial; nor was he less famous for the number, rank, and character, of his pupils, and the care he took of them. Wallis, Smith, Worthington, Cradock, &c. studied under him. In 1626, he set up an afternoon lecture in Trinity-church at Cambridge, which he served twenty years. In 1643, the master and fellows of his college presented him to the living of North Cadbury, in Somersetshire. But he was soon called back to Cambridge, and admitted provost of King's college, March 19, 1644*. In 1649, he was created doctor in divinity. Here he employed his credit, weight, and influence, to advance and spread a free and generous way of thinking, and to promote a spirit of sober piety and rational religion. Many, whose talents and learning raised them to great eminence as divines, after the Restoration, were formed by him. To his predecessor in the provostship he was generous. His spirit was too noble, servilely to follow a party. At the Restoration he was removed from his post, on accepting of which he had resigned the living of Cadbury, and he was elected and licensed to the cure of St. Anne's Blackfriars, November 1662. This church was burnt down in the fire of 1665, and he retired for a while to Milton, a living given to him by his college. He was after this presented, by the crown, to the vicarage of St. Lawrence Jury, which was his last stage. Here he continued, in high and general esteem, preaching twice every week, till his death in 1683. One volume of his sermons, entitled "Select Discourses," was published, after his death, by the earl of Shaftesbury, author of the "Characteristics," in 1698. Three others by Dr. John Jeffery, archdeacon of Norwich, in 1701 and 1702, and a fourth by Dr. Samuel Clarke. A collection of his "Aphorisms," was printed by Dr. S. Salter, in 1753. See the second preface to which, p. 16-27.-Ed.]
See before, vol. 2. p. 253, text and note, where we have already made respectful mention of Dr. Whichcote.
This year the king, by the assistance of the tories and Roman Catholics, completed the ruin of the constitution, and assumed the whole government into his own hands. The whigs and Nonconformists were struck with terror, by the severe prosecutions of the heads of their party *. Mr. Hampden was fined 40,0007. sir Samuel Barnardiston 10,000l. for defaming the evidence in the Ryehouse plot. Mr. Speke 20007. and Mr. Braddon 10007. for reporting that the earl of Essex had been murdered in the Tower. Mr. John Duttoncolt 100,000l. for scandalum magnatum against the duke of York, who now ruled all at court. Oates was fined for the same crime 100,000l. and never released till after the Revolution. Thirty-two others were fined or pilloried for libelling the king or the duke of York. In short, the greatest part of the history of this year consists of prosecutions, penalties, and punishments, says Mr. Echard. At the same time the earl of Danby and the Popish lords were released out of the Tower on bail, the garrison of Tangier was brought over into England, and augmented to a standing army of four or five thousand resolute men, fit for any service the court should employ them in. And the corporations throughout England, having been prevailed with, by promises or threatenings, to surrender their charters, after the example of London, the whole kingdom was divested of its privileges, and reduced to an absolute monarchy. Whole peals of anathemas were rung out against those patriots, who stood in the way against this inundation of power. The Scriptures were wrested to prove the divine right of tyrants. The absolute government of the Jewish kings was preached up as a pattern for ours §. And Heaven itself was
* Rapin, p. 733, and note. Echard, p. 1043, 1044.
† Among others, the charter of the city of Chester was surrendered, and a new one joyfully accepted, by which a power was reserved to the crown to put out magistrates and put in at pleasure. This is mentioned to introduce an instance of the conduct of the dissenters of that day, which reflects honour on their integrity, and shews how far they were from the affectation of power; as it was also a proof of a disinterested and inviolable attachment to the rights and liberties of their country. About August 1688, one Mr. Trinder was sent to Chester to new-model the corporation according to the power above mentioned. He applied to Mr. Henry, in the king's name, and told him, that "his majesty thought the government of the city needed reformation, and if he would say who should be put out, it should be done." Mr. Henry said, "he begged his pardon, but it was none of his business, nor would he in the least intermeddle in a thing of that nature." Trinder, however, got instructions from others. The charter was cancelled, and another of the same import was made out and sent down, nominating to the government all the dissenters of note in the city, the seniors to be aldermen, and the juniors common-councilmen. When the persons named in it were called together to have notice of it, and to have the time fixed for their being sworn, like true Englishmen, they refused it, and desired that the ancient charter might be re-established, though they knew that none of them would come into power by that, but many of those who were their bitter enemies would be restored. Accordingly the old charter was renewed in the same state wherein it was when the tories surrendered it. Mr. Thompson's MS. collections, under the word Chester.-ED.
Welwood's Memoirs, p. 130.
§ Mr. Waldron, of Exeter, has written here in his copy of Mr. Neal's work the following note: "The public orator of Cambridge, in a speech to the king ta Newmarket, told him, that they hoped to see the king of England as abso
ranked on that side, by some who pretended to expound its will. Instead of dropping a tear over our expiring laws, liberties, and parliaments, fulsome panegyrics were made upon their murderers, and curses denounced on those who would have saved them from destruction.
In this melancholy situation of public affairs the prosecution of the Nonconformists was continued, and egged on with an infatuation hardly to be paralleled in any Protestant nation. Dr. Barlow, bishop of Lincoln, published a letter for spiriting up the magistrates against the dissenters, in concurrence with another drawn up by the justices of peace of Bedford, bearing date January 14, 1684. Many were cited into the spiritual courts, excommunicated, and ruined. Two hundred warrants of distress were issued out upon private persons and families, in the town and neighbourhood of Uxbridge, for frequenting conventicles, or not resorting to church*. An order was made by the justice of Exeter, promising a reward of 40s. to any one who should apprehend a Nonconformist minister, which the bishop of the diocess, Dr. Lamplugh, commanded to be published in all th churches, by his clergy, on the following Sunday. The reverena Dr. Bates, Dr. Annesley, and many of their brethren in the ministry, had their goods seized and confiscated. Mr. Mayot of Oxford, a moderate Conformist, having left Mr. Baxter 600l. to distribute among sixty poor ejected ministers; the lord-keeper North took it from him, as given to a superstitious use; but it lying unappropriated in the court of chancery till after the Revolution, it was restored by the commissioners of the great seal under king William. Soon after the justices sent warrants to apprehend Mr. Baxter, as being one in a list of a thousand names, who were to be bound to their good behaviour upon latent convictions, that is, without seeing their accusers, or being made acquainted with their charget. Mr. Baxter refusing to open his doors, the officers forced into his house, and finding him locked up in his study, they resolved to starve him from thence, by setting six men at the door, to whom he was obliged next day to surrender. They then carried him to the sessionshouse two or three times, and bound him in a bond of 4007. so that if his friends had not been sureties for him, contrary to his desire, he must have died in prison, as many excellent persons did about this time.
Jefferies, now lord-chief-justice of England, who was scandalously vicious, and drunk every day, besides a drunkenness of fury in his temper that looked like madness, was prepared for any dirty work the court should put him upon ‡. September 23, 1684, Mr. Thomas Rosewel, the dissenting minister at Rother
lute as the kings of Israel: as Thomas Quicks, Esq. told me, who stood behind him. J. W." + Baxter, part 3. p. 198.
Howe's Life, p. 80.
Burnet, vol. 2. p. 444, 445.
hithe, was imprisoned in the Gate-house Westminster, for high treason; and a bill was found against him at the quarter-sessions, upon which he was tried November 8, at the King's-bench-bar, by a Surrey jury, before lord-chief-justice Jefferies, and his brethren, viz. Withins, Holloway, and Walcot. He was indicted for the following expressions in his sermon, September 14. That the king could not cure the king's evil, but that priests and phets by their prayers could heal the griefs of the people-That we had had two wicked kings (meaning the present king and his father), whom we can resemble to no other person but to the most wicked Jeroboam; and that if they (meaning his hearers) would stand to their principles, he did not doubt but they should overcome their enemies (meaning the king), as in former times, with rams' horns, broken platters, and a stone in a sling. The witnesses were three infamous women, who swore to the words without the innuendoes; they were laden with the guilt of many perjuries already, and such of them as could be found afterward were convicted, and the chief of them pilloried before the Exchange. The trial lasted seven hours, and Mr. Rosewel behaved with all the decency and respect to the court that could be expected, and made a defence that was applauded by most of the hearers. He said it was impossible the witnesses should remember, and be able to pronounce so long a period, when they could not so much as tell the text, nor any thing else in the sermon, besides the words they had sworn: several who heard the sermon, and wrote it in short hand, declared they heard no such words. Mr. Rosewel offered his own notes to prove it, but no regard was had to them. The women could not prove, says Burnet, by any one circumstance, that they were at the meeting; or that any person saw them there on that day: the words they swore were so gross, that it was not to be imagined that any man in his wits would express himself so, before a mixed assembly; yet Jefferies urged the matter with his usual vehemence. He laid it for a foundation, that all preaching at conventicles was treasonable, and that this ought to dispose the jury to believe any evidence upon that head, so the jury brought him in guilty*; upon which, says the bishop †, there was a shameful rejoicing; and it was now thought, all conventicles must be suppressed,
As soon as Mr. Rosewel was convicted, sir John Talbot, who was present at the trial, went to the king, and urged on his majesty, that if such evidence as had appeared against Mr. Rosewel were admitted, no one of his subjects would be safe. Upon this, when Jefferies soon after came into the royal presence, with an air of exultation and triumph to congratulate his majesty on the conviction of a traitor, the king gave him a cold reception, which damped his ardour in the business. When the court met to hear Mr. Rosewel's counsel, this corrupt judge, who on the trial had intermingled with the examination of the witnesses virulent invectives against him, and with his usual vehemence had endeavoured to prejudice and inflame the jury, now assumed a tone of moderation, and strongly recommended to the king's counsel caution and deliberation, where the life of a man was depending. See the Trial.-ED.
N. B. This trial has been reprinted in the Protestant Dissenters' Magazine. + Page 446.
when such evidence could] be] received against such a defence. But when the words came to be examined by men learned in the law, they were found not to be treason by any statute. So Mr. Rosewel moved an arrest of judgment till counsel should be heard; and though it was doubtful, whether the motion was proper on this foundation after the verdict, yet the king was so out of countenance at the accounts he heard of the witnesses, that he gave orders to yield to it; and in the end he was pardoned *. The court lost a great deal of reputation by this trial; for besides that Rosewel made a strong defence, he proved that he had always been a loyal man even in Cromwell's days, that he prayed constantly for the king in his family, and that in his sermons he often insisted upon the obligations to loyalty.
Among other sufferers for nonconformity, we must not forget the reverend Mr. William Jenkins, M. A. the ejected minister of Christ-church, who died this year in Newgate: he was educated in St. John's-college, Cambridge; and about the year 1641 was chosen minister of this place, and lecturer of Blackfriars, both which pulpits he filled with great acceptance till the destruction of monarchy, after which he was sequestered, for refusing to comply with the orders of parliament +. He was sent to the Tower for Love's plot, but upon his humble petition, and promise of submission to the powers in being, he was pardoned, and his sequestration taken off, but he carefully avoided meddling in politics afterward. He was summoned before the council January 2, 1661, and reprimanded, because he forgot to pray for the king; and being ejected with his brethren in 1662, he retired into the country; but upon the indulgence in 1671, he had a new meeting-house erected for him in Jewin-street, where he preached to a crowded audience. He was one of the merchant's lecturers at Pinners'-hall. And when the indulgence was revoked, he continued preaching as he could till this year; but September 2, 1684, being at a private fast with some of his brethren, the soldiers broke in, and carried Mr. Jenkyn before two aldermen, who treated him very rudely, and, upon his refusing the Oxford oath,
Calamy, vol. 2. p. 756. Palmer's Non. Mem. vol. 2. p. 512.
+ Mr. Jenkyns was, by his mother, the grandson of Mr. John Rogers, the protomartyr in the reign of queen Mary. The order of parliament, to which he refused obedience, was one that enjoined a public thanksgiving. The brethren, with whom he was keeping a fast, when he was apprehended in 1684, were Mr. Reynolds, Mr. Keeling, and Mr. Flavel, who made their escape, which Mr. Jenkyns might have done, had it not been for a piece of vanity in a lady, whose long train hindered his going down stairs; Mr. Jenkyns, in his great civility, having let her pass before him. At his funeral, which was attended by many eminent persons, and some scores of mourning coaches, his son gave rings with this motto, "William Jenkyns murdered in Newgate." Upon his death, a nobleman said to the king, "May it please your majesty, Jenkyns has got his liberty." On which he asked with eagerness," Aye! who gave it him?" The nobleman replied, " A greater than your majesty, the King of kings;" with which the king seemed greatly struck, and remained silent. Granger, vol. 3. p. 317. Palmer, vol. 1. p. 98-100; and History of the Town of Taunton, p. 157.-ED.
Kennet's Chron. p. 601.