Dolben, David (DNB00)

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DOLBEN, DAVID (1581–1633), bishop of Bangor, born in 1581 at Segrwyd, near Denbigh, was of a respectable family of some position, whose names constantly occur in the municipal and commercial records of that town. His father's name was Robert Wynn Dolben. In 1602 he was admitted into St. John's College, Cambridge, where he still remained in 1606, when he wrote some verses on the death of a former fellow, Sir Edward Lewknor. In 1609 he proceeded master of arts. On 18 Jan. 1618 he was appointed vicar of Hackney in Middlesex, which benefice he held until May 1633. In 1621 he was made vicar of Llangerniew in his native county. In 1625 he became prebendary of Vaynol, or the golden prebend, in the cathedral of St. Asaph, a post he held until 1633, just before his death. In 1626 he was sworn capital burgess of Denbigh. In 1627 he became doctor of divinity. Towards the end of 1631 he was appointed bishop of Bangor. He was elected on 18 Nov., and the temporalities restored on the same day. He was consecrated on 4 March 1631-2 by Archbishop Abbot at Lambeth, on which occasion he distributed four pounds to the archbishop's servants. A Mr. Austin preached the sermon. Dolben was, however, in failing health. In June 1633 hunters after bishoprics declared that he was 'crazy and very sickly,' and intrigued for the succession to his post. In the autumn of the same year he was seized with a mortal sickness at the town house of his see in Shoe Lane, Holborn, where he died on 27 Nov. He was buried in Hackney parish church, where his monument, containing a half-length statue and a eulogistic description of him, still remains. On 11 Nov., just before his death, he left 30l. to repair the 'causeway or path that runs from Hackney Church to Shoreditch, for the benefit of the poorest sort of people, that maintain their livelihood by the carriage of burdens to the city of London.' The surplus was to be devoted to the poor of the parish in which most of his active life was spent. He also left 20l. to buy Hebrew books for St. John's College Library. His successor as bishop, Edward Griffith, dean of Bangor, was recommended by Dolben himself for the post. Dr. Dolben, archbishop of York, belonged to the same family, to which Archbishop Williams was also related.

[Baker's Hist. of St. John's Coll. Cambridge, ed. Mayor, pp. 264, 339, 677; D. E. Thomas's Hist. of St. Asaph; Cal. of State Papers, Dom. 1631-3 pp. 84, 283, 1633-4 pp. 110, 318; Wood's Athenae Oxon., ed. Bliss, ii. 881; Browne Willis's Survey of Bangor, pp. 111-12; Le Neve's Fasti Eccles. Angl. ed. Hardy, i. 85, 106; Robinson's Hist. of Hackney, ii. 22, 108, 157, 364 ; J. Williams's Records of Denbigh and its Lordship, v. 130.]

T. F. T.