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"Letters and Remains of the Lord Chancellor Bacon; collected by Robert Stephens *, Esq.; late Historiographer Royal," 4to.
wish to be as sincerely and intentionally virtuous. The book is perhaps more capable of inspiring emulation of goodness than any professed book of devotion, for the author perpetually describes the peace of his mind, from the satisfaction of having never deviated from what he thought right.
* Fourth son of Richard Stephens, esq.; of the elder house of that name at Eastington in Gloucestershire, by Anne the eldest daughter of Sir Hugh Cholmley, of Whitby, in Yorkshire, baronet. His first education was at Wotton school, whence he removed to Lincoln college, Oxford, May 19, 1681. He was entered very young in the Middle Temple, applied himself to the study of the common law, and was called to the bar. As he was master of a sufficient fortune, it may be presumed that thetemper of his mind, which was naturally modest, detained him from the public exercise of his profession, and led him to the politer studies, and an acquaintance with the best authors, antient and modern; yet he was esteemed by all who knew him, to have made a great proficiency in the Law, though History and Antiquities seem to have been his favourite study. When he was about twenty years old, being at a relation's house, he accidentally met with some original letters of the Lord Chancellor Bacon; and finding that they would greatly improve the collections then extant relating to King James's reign, he immediately set himself to search for whatever might elucidate the obscure passages, and published a complete edition of them in 1702, with useful notes, and an excellent historical introduction. He intended to have presented his work to King William; but, that Monarch dying before it was published, the dedication was omitted. In the Preface he requested the communication of unpublished pieces of his noble author, to make his collection more complete; and obtained in consequence as many letters as formed the second collection published in 1734, two years after his death. Being a relation of Robert Harley, Earl of Oxford (whose mother, Abigail, was daughter of Nathaniel Stephens of Eastington), he was preferred by him to be chief solicitor of the Customs, in which employment he continued with undiminished reputation till 1726, when he declined that troublesome office, and was appointed to succeed Mr. Madox in the place of Historiographer Royal. He then formed a design of writing a History of King James the First, a reign which he thought to be more misrepresented than almost any other since the Conquest; and, if we may judge by the good impression which he seems to have had of these times, his exactness and care never to advance any thing but from unquestionable authorities, besides his great candour and integrity, it could not but have been a judicious and valuable performance. He married Mary, the daughter of Sir Hugh Cholmley, a lady of great worth; died at Gravesend, near Thornbury, Gloucester
"A Sermon preached at St. Paul's, before the Lord Mayor, Nov. 5, 1734, on Ezra ix. 13, 14. By William Crowe*, D.D.” 4to.
"The Advantages of a National Observance of Divine and Human Laws; an Assize Sermon, at Maidstone in Kent, March 13, 1733-4. By James Bate, M. A."
shire, Nov. 9, 1732; and was buried at Eastington, the seat of his ancestors, where the following epitaph preserves his memory: "ROBERT STEPHENS, Esq.
fourth son of Richard Stephens, Esq. Lord of this Manor,
He was Barrister at Law of the Middle Temple,
In his voluntary resignation of which,
he was for a testimony of his fidelity made Historiographer. A Gentleman for his skill in the Law, Antiquity, and Polite Learning, and for his justice and integrity in all his actions, worthy to be remembered. He married MARY, daughter of Sir Hugh Cholmley, Bart.
of Whitby, in the County of York,
and relict of Nath. Cholmnley, of Leicestershire, Esq.
* Chaplain to Bp. Gibson, and in ordinary to King George II; rector of St. Botolph Bishopsgate, and of Finchley in Middlesex, in the church-yard of which parish he was interred, with a tombstone over him to his memory. He published four other single Sermons: 1. "The Duty of securing the public Peace, Psalm cxxii. 6, preached before the Lord Mayor, Jan. 30, 1724;” 2. Before the House of Commons, Prov. xvii. 14, Jan. 30, 1735; 3. "On the Death of Queen Caroline, 1737;" "The Duty of Public Spirit recommended," from Phil. ii. 4. "On the intended Settlement of a Colony at Georgia."-Eleven of his "Sermons on several Occasions" were also published in one volume Svo, 1744.
+ Son of Richard Bate, vicar of Chilham, in Kent; of Ben'etcollege, Cambridge, B. A. 1723; M. A. 1727, where he was preelected fellow, but removed to St. John's, where he became fellow on an immediate vacancy, and distinguished himself by his skill in the Hebrew language. He accompanied the Right Hon. Horatio Walpole, in his Embassy to France, as his chaplain; and was made the first rector of the new church of St. Paul Deptford, in 1731. [Had he not also the vicarage of Houghton Parva in Northamptonshire in 1729?]--In 1752 he published "An Essay towards a Rationale of the literal Doctrine of Original Sin; a Vindication of God's Wisdom, Goodness, and Justice, in permitting the Fall of Adam, and the subsequent Corruption of Nature;” which in 1767 he republished in a much larger octavo volume. Besides the Sermon noticed above, he published also six others; 1. “The Practice of Religion and Virtue, the only sure Foundation of Friendship," 2 Kings, x. 15, 1738; 2. "The Faith and Practice of a Christian the only true Foundation of rational Liberty,
"Remarks on Spenser's Poems, and on Milton's Paradise Regained;" 8vo. This little volume, though published anonymously, was soon known to be the production of the learned Mr. Jortin, who very modestly thus closes his judicious and instructive Remarks: "What I have here offered on Spenser, may be called an Essay, or rough draught of a Commentary, deficient indeed in many points, yet, I hope, useful and entertaining to all lovers of this Poet. Much more might be done; particularly towards settling the Text, by a careful collation of Editions, and by comparing the Author with himself; but that required more time and application than I was willing to bestow."
John viii. 36, 1740; 3. "Human Learning useful to true Religion, Acts vii. 2, 1740;" (these two were "preached at St. Paul's Deptford, before a select number of gentlemen who styled themselves the Order of Ubiquitarians). 3. A Sermon on Psalm cxii. 3, 4, 1742. 4. "Human Learning highly useful to the Cause of true Religion; preached at Canterbury, Sept. 13, 1753, at the Annual Meeting of the Gentlemen educated at Canterbury School;” Prov.ii, 3-5. 6. The practical Use of public Judgments, a Fast Sermon at Deptford, Feb. 6, 1756.-He died in 1775; and a Funeral Sermon, preached at St. Paul's Deptford, by the Rev. Colin Milne, LL.D. was published under the title of "The Boldness and Freedom of Apostolical Eloquence recommended to the Imitation of Ministers." "No
* The Author of "The Republick of Letters" says, one who takes any pleasure in reading Spenser or Milton will be displeased with perusing these Remarks; which indeed are essential to the understanding of the former, as they are very useful in illustrating the other."-Mr. Jortin, who was then a young Author, was so gratified with what he termed a "favourable mention of his Remarks," that he sent to "The Republick of Letters" an additional letter, containing farther Remarks on his own publication, which appeared in March 1735, vol. IX. p. 175; where we are told that the publick were obliged to the same learned Writer for the "Remarks on Seneca," which had been printed in vol. VIII. p. 85; and "the favour of his continued correspondence" was requested.
+ Happily for the publick, both Spenser and Milton have found in the Rev. John-Henry Todd a Commentator, who to a profound knowledge of the subject-matter of the originals, has fortunately united leisure and perseverance to perform the task recommended by Dr. Jortin.
Montesquieu's "Reflections on the Causes of the Grandeur and Declension of the Romans; translated from the French *."
"The Usefulness and Authority of the Christian Clergy's Instructions; a Sermon preached Feb. 21, 1733, before the Sons of the Clergy, on Mal. ii. 7. By the Rev. Dr. Mangey;" being the last single Sermon which he published.
"Lettres ecrites de Londres sur les Anglois, et autres Sujets. Par M. Voltaire."
A large impression of the Second Volume of Archbishop Tillotson's Sermons.
"Some Thoughts concerning a proper Method of studying Divinity. By William Wotton, D. D." 8vo, "Fables and Tales, from the celebrated La Fontaine, in French and English. To which is prefixed the Author's Life."
Colonel Montague's "Journal of the War."
Dr. Wilkins's "Proposals for printing the Councils." As a complete Collection of the British and Irish Councils and Constitutions, and other pieces relating to the Ecclesiastical History of England, has long been very much wanted and desired, Dr. Wilkins, Archdeacon of Suffolk, has entered on, and completed that important and laborious work, under the following title: Concilia Magnæ Britanniæ et Hiberniæ, à Synodo Verulamensi, A. D. 446, ad Londinensem, A. D. 1717. Accedunt Constitutiones, et alia ad Historiam Ecclesiæ Anglicanæ spectantia.' The Reverend Compiler has spent many years in this work, and made a proper use of all the advantages in his power; which have been very considerable. A List of the Contents, published with the Proposals, and filling 42 columns in folio, give the publick an assurance that the Doctor has taken uncommon pains in the execution of his useful project. We are assured that the whole
* Of this work see more particularly under the year 1759.
work is now ready for the press, and will begin to be printed as soon as 250 books shall be subscribed for, and delivered within twelve months after that time. It will consist of about 900 sheets, in four volumes in folio. The price to Subscribers is six guineas; three to be paid at the time of subscribing; the remainder on the delivery of a perfect book in sheets. Such gentlemen as are willing to encourage the undertaking, are desired to subscribe before Lady-day next *."
"Proposals for printing by Subscription, An History of the Life of James Duke of Ormonde, from his Birth in 1610 to his Death in 1688. In which will be contained, an Account of the Affairs of Ireland under his Government; and a very valuable Collection of Letters, written by his Grace, the King, the Secretaries of State, and other great Men of his Time. In Three Volumes in folio. By Thomas Carte, M.A. The Conditions: 1. This Work will consist of three volumes, amounting to upwards of 400 sheets, and will be printed on the same paper, and with the same letter as the specimen annexed. 2. The price to Subscribers is three guineas; one to be paid down, and the other two upon the delivery of the three volumes in sheets. 3. A number will be printed on royal paper, at the price of six guineas. 4. The work will be put to the press in July next (by which time the Author hopes to compute the number of his Subscribers), and will be carried on with all possible expedition. Subscriptions are taken in by G. Strahan, at the Golden Ball in Cornhill; F. Gyles, near Middlerow, Holborn; R. Williamson, near Gray's-inn Gate; T. Wooton, at the Three Daggers overagainst St. Dunstan's Church in Fleet-street; W. Lewis, under Tom's Coffee-house, in Russel-street, Covent-Garden; and Mr. Clements, Bookseller in Oxford †."
* Present State of the Republick of Letters, Feb. 1734, p. 157. † Ibid. May 1734, p. 399.