1952 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Bp. John Hacket

Mary Alden Hopkins, in Dr. Johnson's Lichfield (1952) 9-10.



By the time the war was over, one spire was down, images of the holy saints were mutilated, windows smashed, carved stalls broken and bells stolen. What was valuable was carried away and what was left was ruined. After the mad excitement of destruction came the slow atonement of rebuilding. John Hacket, the first Bishop after the Restoration of the Monarchy, was a practical man willing to work with his own hands. The morning after his arrival in Lichfield he mustered his carts and his coach horses, hired others, gathered his servants and the farmers from round about, and set to work removing the rubbish. He solicited subscriptions from every village in the Diocese of Lichfield and Coventry, from the nobility of the entire kingdom, and from the Ministers of State. The canons gave half the salaries. Bishop Hacket not only gave large sums from his own fortune, but, standing at the door of the inn, begged twenty-thee thousand pounds from travellers in eight years. His Gracious Majesty, King Charles the Second, gave one hundred fair trees out of Needwood Forest, a lord gave candlesticks, a lady provided the communion utensils, and someone saw to the south steps.