James Merrick attended Trinity College Oxford (B.A. 1739, M.A. 1742, Fellow 1744); while he was ordained ill health prevented his taking a church. In 1749 he left Oxford for Reading, where he attended to scholarly pursuits. Merrick was a friend of Shenstone and the Wartons; his poems and translation of the Psalms were frequently reprinted in anthologies.
The Messiah: a divine essay. 1734.
A dissertation on Proverbs. 1744.
The destruction of Troy [Tryphiodorus, trans.] 1763.
Poems on sacred subjects. 1763.
Annotations ... on the Gospel of John. 1764.
A letter to Joseph Warton chiefly relating to the composition of Greek indexes. 1764.
Psalms translated, or paraphrased. 1765.
Annotations on the Psalms. 1768.
A short manual of prayers for common occasions. 6th edition, 1788.