Biography of Archbishop John Tillotson 1630-1694

1678 Gunpowder Plot

1685 Popish Plot

1689 Coronation William III and Mary II

In Oct 1630 Archbishop John Tillotson was born.

Pepy's Diary. 24 Feb 1667. By and by comes Sir Robert Viner (age 36) and my Lord Mayor to ask the King's directions about measuring out the streets according to the new Act for building of the City, wherein the King (age 36) is to be pleased1. But he says that the way proposed in Parliament, by Colonel Birch (age 51), would have been the best, to have chosen some persons in trust, and sold the whole ground, and let it be sold again by them, with preference to the old owner, which would have certainly caused the City to be built where these Trustees pleased; whereas now, great differences will be, and the streets built by fits, and not entire till all differences be decided. This, as he tells it, I think would have been the best way. I enquired about the Frenchman2 that was said to fire the City, and was hanged for it, by his own confession, that he was hired for it by a Frenchman of Roane, and that he did with a stick reach in a fire-ball in at a window of the house: whereas the master of the house, who is the King's baker, and his son, and daughter, do all swear there was no such window, and that the fire did not begin thereabouts. Yet the fellow, who, though a mopish besotted fellow, did not speak like a madman, did swear that he did fire it: and did not this like a madman; for, being tried on purpose, and landed with his keeper at the Tower Wharfe [Map], he could carry the keeper to the very house. Asking Sir R. Viner (age 36) what he thought was the cause of the fire, he tells me, that the baker, son, and his daughter, did all swear again and again, that their oven was drawn by ten o'clock at night; that, having occasion to light a candle about twelve, there was not so much fire in the bakehouse as to light a match for a candle, so that they were fain to go into another place to light it; that about two in the morning they felt themselves almost choked with smoke, and rising, did find the fire coming upstairs; so they rose to save themselves; but that, at that time, the bavins3 were not on fire in the yard. So that they are, as they swear, in absolute ignorance how this fire should come; which is a strange thing, that so horrid an effect should have so mean and uncertain a beginning.

Note 1. See Sir Christopher Wren's (age 43) "Proposals for rebuilding the City of London after the great fire, with an engraved Plan of the principal Streets and Public Buildings", in Elmes's "Memoirs of Sir Christopher Wren", Appendix, p.61. The originals are in All Souls' College Library, Oxford. B.

Note 2. "One Hubert, a French papist, was seized in Essex, as he was getting out of the way in great confusion. He confessed he had begun the fire, and persisted in his confession to his death, for he was hanged upon no other evidence but that of his own confession. It is true he gave so broken an account of the whole matter that he was thought mad. Yet he was blindfolded, and carried to several places of the city, and then his eyes being opened, he was asked if that was the place, and he being carried to wrong places, after he looked round about for some time, he said that was not the place, but when he was brought to the place where it first broke out, he affirmed that was the true place. "Burnet's Own Time", book ii. Archbishop Tillotson (age 36), according to Burnet, believed that London was burnt by design.

Note 3. brushwood, or faggots used for lighting fires.

Evelyn's Diary. 14 Nov 1668. To London, invited to the consecration of that excellent person, the Dean of Ripon, Dr. Wilkins (age 54), now made Bishop of Chester; it was at Ely House, the Archbishop of Canterbury (age 70), Dr. Cosin (age 73), Bishop of Durham, the Bishops of Ely (age 77), Salisbury, Rochester (age 43), and others officiating. Dr. Tillotson (age 38) preached. Then, we went to a sumptuous dinner in the hall, where were the Duke of Buckingham (age 40), Judges, Secretaries of State, Lord-Keeper, Council, Noblemen, and innumerable other company, who were honorers of this incomparable man, universally beloved by all who knew him.

Evelyn's Diary. 10 Jul 1669. After this ribaldry, the Proctors made their speeches. Then began the music art, vocal and instrumental, above in the balustrade corridor opposite to the Vice-Chancellor's seat. Then Dr. Wallis, the mathematical Professor, made his oration, and created one Doctor of music according to the usual ceremonies of gown (which was of white damask), cap, ring, kiss, etc. Next followed the disputations of the Inceptor-Doctors in Medicine, the speech of their Professor, Dr. Hyde, and so in course their respective creations. Then disputed the Inceptors of Law, the speech of their Professor, and creation. Lastly, Inceptors of Theology: Dr. Compton (age 37) (brother of the Earl of Northampton) being junior, began with great modesty and applause; so the rest. After which, Dr. Tillotson (age 38), Dr. Sprat (age 34), etc., and then Dr. Allestree's (age 47) speech, the King's (age 39) Professor, and their respective creations. Last of all, the Vice-Chancellor, shutting up the whole in a panegyrical oration, celebrating their benefactor and the rest, apposite to the occasion.

In 1670 Archbishop John Tillotson (age 39) was appointed Prebendary of Canterbury.

In 1672 Archbishop John Tillotson (age 41) was appointed Dean of Canterbury.

In 1672 Archbishop John Tillotson (age 41) was elected Fellow of the Royal Society.

Gunpowder Plot

Evelyn's Diary. 05 Nov 1678. Dr. Tillotson (age 48) preached before the Commons at St. Margaret's [Map]. He said the Papists were now arrived at that impudence, as to deny that there ever was any such as the gunpowder-conspiracy; but he affirmed that he himself had several letters written by Sir Everard Digby (one of the traitors), in which he gloried that he was to suffer for it; and that it was so contrived, that of the Papists not above two or three should have been blown up, and they, such as were not worth saving.

Popish Plot

Evelyn's Diary. 10 Apr 1685. I went early to Whitehall [Map] to heare Dr. Tillotson, Deane of Canterbury (age 54), preaching on 9 Eccles. 18. I returned in the evening, and visited Lady Tuke, and found with her Sr Geo Wakeman, the physician, whom I had seene tried and acquitted J, amongst the plotters for poisoning the late King, on the accusation of the famous Oates (age 35); and surely I believ'd him guiltlesse.

Evelyn's Diary. 05 Nov 1686. I went to St. Martin's [Map] in the morning, where Dr. Birch preached very boldly against the Papists, from John xvi. 2. In the afternoon I heard Dr. Tillotson (age 56) in Lincoln's Inn chapel, on the of same text, but more cautiously.

Evelyn's Diary. 08 Mar 1689. Dr. Tillotson (age 58), Dean of Canterbury, made an excellent discourse on Matt. v. 44, exhorting to charity and forgiveness of enemies; I suppose purposely, the new Parliament being furious about impeaching those who were obnoxious, and as their custom has ever been, going on violently, without reserve, or modification, while wise men were of opinion the most notorious offenders being named and excepted, an Act of Amnesty would be more seasonable, to pacify the minds of men in so general a discontent of the nation, especially of those who did not expect to see the government assumed without any regard to the absent King, or proving a spontaneous abdication, or that the birth of the Prince of Wales was an imposture; five of the Bishops also still refusing to take the new oath.

Evelyn's Diary. 29 Mar 1689. The Archbishop of Canterbury (age 58) and four other Bishops refusing to come to Parliament, it was deliberated whether they should incur Praemunire; but it was thought fit to let this fall, and be connived at, for fear of the people, to whom these Prelates were very dear, for the opposition they had given to Popery.

Evelyn's Diary. 12 Apr 1689. We discoursed likewise of the great disturbance and prejudice it might cause, should the new oath, now on the anvil, be imposed on any, save such as were in new office, without any retrospect to such as either had no office, or had been long in office, who it was likely would have some scruples about taking a new oath, having already sworn fidelity to the government as established by law. This we all knew to be the case of my Lord Archbishop of Canterbury (age 58), and some other persons who were not so fully satisfied with the Convention making it an abdication of King James, to whom they had sworn allegiance.

Coronation William III and Mary II

Evelyn's Diary. 12 Apr 1689. I went with the Bishop of St. Asaph (age 61) to visit my Lord of Canterbury (age 58) at Lambeth [Map], who had excused himself from officiating at the coronation, which was performed by the Bishop of London (age 57), assisted by the Archbishop of York (age 74). We had much private and free discourse with his Grace (age 58) concerning several things relating to the Church, there being now a bill of comprehension to be brought from the Lords to the Commons. I urged that when they went about to reform some particulars in the Liturgy, Church discipline, Canons, etc., the baptizing in private houses without necessity might be reformed, as likewise so frequent burials in churches; the one proceeding much from the pride of women, bringing that into custom which was only indulged in case of imminent danger, and out of necessity during the rebellion, and persecution of the clergy in our late civil wars; the other from the avarice of ministers, who, in some opulent parishes, made almost as much of permission to bury in the chancel and the church, as of their livings, and were paid with considerable advantage and gifts for baptizing in chambers. To this they heartily assented, and promised their endeavor to get it reformed, utterly disliking both practices as novel and indecent.

In 1691 Archbishop John Tillotson (age 60) was elected ArchbishopP Canterbury.

Evelyn's Diary. 19 Apr 1691. The Archbishop of Canterbury (age 74), and Bishops of Ely (age 53), Bath and Wells (age 53), Peterborough (age 63), Gloucester (age 69), and the rest who would not take the oaths to King William (age 40), were now displaced; and in their rooms, Dr. Tillotson (age 60), Dean of St. Paul's, was made Archbishop: Patrick (age 64) removed from Chichester to Ely; Cumberland (age 59) to Gloucester. Note. A mistake. Bishop Edward Fowler (age 59) was made Bishop of Gloucester. Bishop Richard Cumberland (age 59) was made Bishop of Peterborough.

Evelyn's Diary. 11 Jul 1691. I dined with Mr. Pepys (age 58), where was Dr. Cumberland (age 59), the new Bishop of Norwich [Note. Should be John Moore Bishop], Dr. Lloyd (age 54) having been put out for not acknowledging the Government. Cumberland [Note. John Moore Bishop 1646-1707] is a very learned, excellent man. Possession was now given to Dr. Tillotson (age 60), at Lambeth, by the Sheriff; Archbishop Sancroft was gone (age 74), but had left his nephew to keep possession; and he refusing to deliver it up on the Queen's message (age 29), was dispossessed by the Sheriff, and imprisoned. This stout demeanor of the few Bishops who refused to take the oaths to King William (age 40), animated a great party to forsake the churches, so as to threaten a schism; though those who looked further into the ancient practice, found that when (as formerly) there were Bishops displaced on secular accounts, the people never refused to acknowledge the new Bishops, provided they were not heretics. The truth is, the whole clergy had till now stretched the duty of passive obedience, so that the proceedings against these Bishops gave no little occasion of exceptions; but this not amounting to heresy, there was a necessity of receiving the new Bishops, to prevent a failure of that order in the Church. I went to visit Lord Clarendon in the Tower, but he was gone into the country for air by the Queen's (age 29) permission, under the care of his warden.

Evelyn's Diary. 28 Dec 1691. Dined at Lambeth [Map] with the new Archbishop (age 61). Saw the effect of my greenhouse furnace, set up by the Archbishop's son-in-law.

On 22 Nov 1694 Archbishop John Tillotson (age 64) died.

Evelyn's Diary. 22 Nov 1694. Visited the Bishop of Lincoln (age 58) [Tenison] newly come on the death of the Archbishop of Canterbury (age 64), who a few days before had a paralytic stroke,-the same day and month that Archbishop Sancroft was put out. A very sickly time, especially the smallpox, of which divers considerable persons died. The State lottery drawing, Mr. Cock, a French refugee, and a President in the Parliament of Paris for the Reformed, drew a lot of £1,000 per annum.

In 1734 William Hogarth (age 36). Titled "Edwards Hamilton family on a Terrace" the subjects are Anne Hamilton (age 24) and Mary Edwards (age 30) and their child Gerard Edwardes of Welham Grove. In her left hand she holds Addison's Spectator No.580 that describes the need to fill the mind with an awareness of the Divine Being. The books on the table beside her include poetry or sermons of Edward Young, the works of Swift, Pope's translation of the Iliad, and the devotional writings of Damuel Bowens and Archbishop Tillotson.

Anne Hamilton: On 12 Oct 1709 he was born to James Hamilton Duke Hamilton, 1st Duke Brandon and Elizabeth Gerard Duchess Brandon in St James' Square. He was named after his godmother Queen Anne of England Scotland and Ireland. His other godparents were John Churchill 1st Duke of Marlborough and Charles Spencer 3rd Earl of Sunderland. In or before 1731 Anne Hamilton and Mary Edwards were married in the Chapel of Fleet Prison. She was the richest woman in England at the time having aounrd £60000. Evidence of the marriage was scant; she never used the Hamilton name, although it was reported in the Gentleman's Magazine. She eventually separated from her husband making her children illegitimate. Somewhat curiously his baptism records show his surname as Edwardes. In Oct 1742 Anne Hamilton and Anna Charlotta Maria Powell were married. He the son of James Hamilton Duke Hamilton, 1st Duke Brandon and Elizabeth Gerard Duchess Brandon. On 25 Dec 1748 Anne Hamilton died.

Mary Edwards: In 1704 she was born. On 23 Aug 1743 she died in Kensington.

Gerard Edwardes of Welham Grove: In 1734 he was born to Anne Hamilton and Mary Edwards. Before 17 Jul 1759 Gerard Edwardes of Welham Grove and Jane Noel were married. She the daughter of Baptist Noel 4th Earl Gainsborough and Elizabeth Chapman Countess Gainsborough. In 1773 Gerard Edwardes of Welham Grove died.