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Archbishop Thomas Secker

Archbishop Thomas Secker

Birth
Rushcliffe Borough, Nottinghamshire, England
Death 3 Aug 1768 (aged 74)
London, City of London, Greater London, England
Burial Lambeth, London Borough of Lambeth, Greater London, England
Memorial ID 12317 · View Source
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Archbishop of Canterbury. He served in this position from April 1758 until his death. Born in Sibthorpe, Nottinghamshire, England, he attended Richard Brown's free school in Chesterfield, England, staying with his half-sister and her husband. In 1708 he attended Timothy Jollie's dissenting academy at Attercliffe, Sheffield, Yorkshire, England but left one and one-half years later due to its poor teaching. In 1710 he moved to London, England and stayed in the house of the father of John Bowes, who had been one of Jollie's students and would one day become Lord Chancellor of Ireland. Also boarding at Bowes's house was future English hymnwriter and theologian Isaac Watts, who encouraged him to attend the dissenting academy at Gloucester, England, established by Samuel Jones. There he recovered his ability at languages, supplementing his understanding of Greek and Latin with studies in Hebrew, Chaldean, and Syrian. Jones's course was also famous for his systems of Jewish antiquities, logic, and mathematics. In June 1714 he left Jones' academy and pursued the study of medicine in London, England, Paris, France, and Leiden, in the Netherlands, receiving his Doctorate degree at Leiden University in 1721. Having decided to take orders he graduated, by special letters from the chancellor, at Exeter College in Oxford, England and was ordained as a priest in 1722. In 1724 he became rector of Houghton-le-Spring, Durham, England, resigning in 1727 on his appointment to the rectory of Ryton, Tyne and Wear in Durham, and to a canonry of Durham. In 1733 he became rector of St James's, Westminster, England, and bishop of Bristol, England in 1735. Around this time, King George II commissioned him to arrange a reconciliation between the prince of Wales and himself, but the attempt proved unsuccessful. In 1737 he transferred to Oxford, and he received the deanery of St Paul's Cathedral in London in 1750. On April 21, 1758, a month after the death of his predecessor, he became Archbishop of Canterbury. His advocacy of an episcopate in the American Colonies, in connection with which he wrote the "Answer" to Boston, Massachusetts minister Jonathan Mayhew's "Observations on the Charter and Conduct of the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts" (London, 1764), raised considerable opposition in England and America. In his later years he suffered severely from the gout. He died of a caries of the thigh-bone on August 3, 1768 in London at the age of 75. His principal work was "Lectures on the Catechism of the Church of England" (published the year following his death).

Bio by: William Bjornstad


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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Added: 9 Sep 2000
  • Find A Grave Memorial 12317
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Archbishop Thomas Secker (21 Sep 1693–3 Aug 1768), Find A Grave Memorial no. 12317, citing St. Mary's Churchyard, Lambeth, London Borough of Lambeth, Greater London, England ; Maintained by Find A Grave .