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BISHOP OF WINCHESTER.
THIS eminent Prelate, the second son of the Rev. Samuel Hoadly, was born at Westerham in Kent, November 14, 1676. He was educated under the care of his father, who kept a private seminary, till he became a member of Catharine Hall, Cambridge, under Mr. Leng, afterward Bishop of Norwich. As soon as he had taken the degree of M. A., he was, appointed Tutor, and discharged that office for two years with the highest reputation. In 1698, he was ordained Deacon, and in 1700, Priest by Dr. Compton, Bishop of London. The Lectureship of St. Mildred in the Poultry he retained ten years; officiating at the same time for Mr. Hodges, Rector of St. Swithin's, during his absence at sea as Chap lain General of the Fleet in 1702. Two years afterward, he obtained the Rectory of St. Peter le Poor, Broad Street, and about the same time published his Treatise called The Reasonableness of Conformity to the Church of England, presented to
* AUTHORITIES. Biographia Britannica, and British Bion graphy.
the Dissenting Ministers in an Answer to the Tenth Chapter of Mr. Calamy's Abridgement of Mr. Baxter’s ‘ History of his Life and Times.” This engaged him in a long controversy with Calamy.
In 1705, he preached a sermon * before the Lord Mayor, which gave great offence to the Tories and High Churchmen. This he subsequently printed, and also defended in his · Measures of Submission to the Civil Magistrate considered.' The following year, he preached and published an assize-sermon at Hertford, under the title of · The Happiness of the present Establishment, and Unhappiness of Absolute Monarchy.' · In 1709, he was involved in a dispute with Dr. Atterbury, concerning Passive Obedience, occasioned by the latter's Concio ad Clerum Londinensem, habita in Ecclesia s. 'Elphegi, containing some animadversions upon Hoadly's • Measures of Submission't
In a pamphlet, also, called Some Pro
* His text, says Burnet (who calls him “a pious and judicious divine") was, the first verses of Rom. xiii.; and these he fairly interprets, as directed only “ against resisting good governors upon the Jewish principles, not having any relation to bad and cruel governors; whom, he asserted, it was not only lawful, but a duty incumbent on all men to resist: concluding all with a vindication of the Revolution, and the existing government." (Hist. of his Own Time, vi. 1710.)
+ They had previously skirmished upon two other subjects (see the Life of Atterbury), upon both which occasions Hoadly displayed his usual strength of reasoning and dispassionate in. quiry, confuted the erroneous opinions of his antagonist without anger, and conquered him without triumph. Equanimity, indeed, is allowed by all to have been eminently his characteristic: the meek and candid Christian was never lost in the disputer of this world. Calm and composed in the midst of the conflict,
ceedings in Convocation, A. D. 1705, faithfully represented,' Atterbury had charged Hoadly with “ disdainfully treating the whole body of the established Clergy,* and preaching up rebellion in the State.” The latter, therefore, now set about a particular examination of the Latin Sermon; and in his · Large Answer to the charge of rebellion,' endeavoured to lay open his adversary's artful management of the controversy. This. Answer' was attached to another Treatise, entitled • The Original and Institution of Civil Government discussed, viz. 1. An Examination of the Patriarchal Government: 2. A Defence of Mr. Hooker's Judgement, &c. against the Objections of several late Writers.' In the course of the debate, , Hoadly so highly distinguished himself by his exertions in the cause of civil and religious liberty, that the House of Commons passed a vote in his favour in the following terms: “ Resolved, 1. That the Reverend Mr. Benjamin Hoadly, Rector of St. Peter's le Poor, London, for having often justified the principles on which her Majesty and the nation proceeded in the late happy Revolution, has justly merited the favour and recommendation of this House. 2. That an humble Address be presented to her Majesty, that she would be graciously pleased to bestow some dignity in the church on Mr. Hoadly, for his eminent services both to the church and state.” To this the
he forgets the man, while he is animadverting upon the writer: as well knowing that passionate or personal reflexions add neither strength to a bad argument, nor grace to a good one. Happy would it be for the cause of religion and truth, if all whe engage in controversy would imitate this pattern, and guard against those asperities of language, which least of all ought to find a place in religious disquisitions, where “the wrath of man cannot be supposed to work the righteousness of God."
* See the Life of Atterbury.
Queen replied, “ That she would take a proper opportunity to comply with their desires ;” but she forgot her promise.
Though not dignified however with royal patronage, his just and manly principles recommended him to the protection of private munificence. In February, 1710, he was presented by Mrs. Howland to the Rectory of Streatham in Surrey. This act of generosity was attended with circumstances, of which Hoadly has gratefully endeavoured to perpetuate the remembrance : “ I cannot but think it a due, in point of gratitude to her memory (says he, speaking of his liberal patroness) publicly to acknowledge this singular obligation to her; that in the year 1710, when fury seemed to be let loose and to distinguish me particularly, she herself unasked, unapplied to, without my having ever seen her or been seen by her, chose by presenting me to the Rectory of Streatham (then just vacant) to show, in her own expression, “That she was meither ashamed, nor afraid, to give me that public mark of her regard at that critical time. To her, likewise, he subsequently inscribed his volume of sermons on The Terms of Acceptance;' and on the first of May, 1719, he preached her Funeral Sermon in Streatham church.
Hoadly was the reputed author of several occasional little political pieces which made their appearance about this time, and were republished some years afterward, under the title of A Collection of several Pieces printed in the year 1710. He gave to the world also, at the same period, his . Discourses on the Terms of Acceptance with God,' * in
* This publication was followed by some Occasional Sermons, and Political Tracts, which together with many other compositions of an earlier date were printed in one volume, in 1715.
consequence of an opinion which he had formed (to borrow his own expressions) that the bad lives of Christians are not owing so much to their ignorance of what is truly evil and sinful, as, to a certain secret hope of God's favour, built upon something separated from the constant practice of all that is virtuous and praiseworthy “This (he adds) made me choose to spend some time in establishing, after the most unexceptionable manner, the true grounds upon which only it is reasonable to build our expectations of hap piness, and in demonstrating the great danger and weakness of depending on any other methods. He was also the concealed, but undoubted author of 'A large Dedication to the Pope (Clement XI.), giving him a particular Account of the State of Religion among Protestants, and of several other Matters of Importance relating to Great Britain ;' annexed to Steele's State of the Roman Catholic Religion throughout the World, and therefore commonly ascribed to that writer.
Soon after the accession of George I., Hoadly was admitted and sworn one of his Chaplains, as a prelude to higher promotions. These were not long delayed. In December, 1715, he was appointed to the bishopric of Bangor,* and consecrated on the eighteenth of March following; with which he held both his livings in Commendam.
The next year, he published a Tract entitled, “A Preservative against the Principles and Practices of the Nonjurors both in Church and State; or, An Appeal to the Consciences and Common Sense of the Christian Laity. And, in 1717, he preached before
* On the translation of Dr. Evans to the see of Meath, in Ireland,