1769 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Bp. John Hacket

James Granger, in Biographical History of England (1769; 1824) 5:10-11.



The motto of this worthy prelate was perfectly adapted to his character. He was pious and humane, learned and eloquent, and highly esteemed by all that knew him. As his temper was naturally lively, these advantages still added to his innate cheerfulness, and rendered him the happy man that he appeared to be be. He was chaplain in ordinary to James I. who preferred him to the rectories of St. Andrew's, Holborn, and Cheam, in Surrey. He was in the next reign promoted to a prebend and residentiary's place in the church of St. Paul, London; but was soon forced to quit that, and his rectory of St. Andrew's, which he recovered at the restoration. He was, the year after, advanced to the bishopric of Lichfield and Coventry. He caused the magnificent cathedral, which Dr. Plot calls "the finest public building in England," to be repaired and beautified, at the expense of £20,000. He wrote, during his retirement with his pupil Sir John Byron, at Newstede Abbey, his Latin comedy, entitled Loyola, which was twice acted before James I. His Sermons, and his Life of Archbishop Williams, to whom he was domestic chaplain, were published after his decease. The former are too much in the style of Bishop Andrews; the latter is thought to be too favourable to the character of the archbishop. But this is not to be wondered at, as it is as difficult for a good natured and grateful person to speak ill of his friend and patron, as it is to speak ill of himself. Ob. 28 Oct. 1670, Aet. 78.