1812 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Rev. John Goad

Alexander Chalmers, in General Biographical Dictionary (1812-17) 16:36-37.



JOHN GOAD, an eminent classical teacher, the son of John Goad, of Bishopsgate- street, was born there Feb. 15, 1615. He was educated at Merchant Taylors' school, and elected thence a scholar of St. John's college, Oxford, in 1632. He afterwards received his master's degree, became fellow of his college, and took orders. In 1643 he was made vicar of St. Giles's, Oxford, and continued to perform his parochial duties, although at the risk of his life, during the siege of the city by the parliamentary forces. In June 1646 he was presented by the university to the vicarage of Yarnton, and the year following was created B.D. When the loyalists were turned out by the parliamentary commissioners, Mr. Goad shared their fate; and although Dr. Cheynel, who was one of the parliamentary visitors, gave him an invitation to return to his college, he refused it upon the terms offered. Yet he appears to have been so far connived at, as to be able to keep his living at Yarnton until the restoration. He also taught at Tunbridge school until July 1661, when he was made head master of Merchant Taylors' school. Over this seminary he presided for nearly twenty years, with great success and approbation, and trained for the college many youths who did honour to their teacher and to their country; but in 1681 a suspicion was entertained that he inclined towards popery; and it was said that the comment which he made on the Church Catechism savoured strongly of popish tenets. Some particular passages having been selected from it, and laid before the grand jury of London, they on March 4 of the above year, presented a complaint to the Merchant Taylors' company, respecting the catechism taught in their school. After he had been heard in his own defence, it was decided that he was "popishly and erroneusly affected," and immediately was discharged from his office; but such was their sense of his past services, that they voted him a gratuity of £70. It soon appeared that the court of the company had not been deceived in their opinion of his principles. After being dismissed, he taught a school in Piccadilly, and in 1686, the reign of James II. openly professed himself a Roman catholic; which, Wood says, he had long been covertly. He died Oct. 28, 1689, and was buried in the church of Great St. Helen's, Bishopsgate-street, his memory being honoured by various elegies. He published, besides some single sermons, 1. "Genealogicon Latinum," a small dictionary for the use of Merchant Taylors' school, 8vo, 1676, second edit. 2. "Declamation, whether Monarchy be the best form of government?" printed at the end of Richards's "English Orator," 1680, 8vo. 3. "Astro-Meteorologica, or aphorisms and discourses of the Bodies Celestial, their natures and influences, &c." 1686, fol. This gained him great reputation. The subject of it is a kind of astrology, founded, for the most part, on reason and experiment, as will appear by comparing it with Boyle's "History of the Air," and Dr. Mead's book "De lmperio Solis et Lunae." 4. "Autodidactica, or a practical vocabulary, &c." 1690, 8vo. After his death was published "Astro-meteorologia sana, &c." 1690, 4to.