Page:Dictionary of National Biography volume 26.djvu/439

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The loss of the Essex had been exceptionally heavy, and her hull above water was riddled. The Phœbe had four men killed and seven wounded, and the damage sustained by the ship herself was comparatively slight. Porter and his countrymen had expected great things from the tremendous armament of the Essex, and were naturally very sore. Hence arose many absurd charges against Hillyar. He was accused of ‘a deliberate and treacherous breach of faith,’ though his informal promise of neutrality, if made at all, could only refer to the port of Valparaiso. He was also said to have acted a cowardly part in attacking the Essex when disabled, and for keeping out of reach of her 32-pounders, while he destroyed her with his long 18's. A recent American writer, however, admits the absurdity of expecting a captain to give up the advantages of his armament and superior condition (Roosevelt, p. 301). The Essex Junior surrendered without resistance, and the Essex having been sufficiently repaired, sailed for England in company with the Phœbe, where they arrived in the following November. In 1830–1 Hillyar commanded the Revenge in the experimental squadron under Sir Edward Codrington, and for a short time as senior officer in the North Sea during the siege of Antwerp. He was then appointed to the Caledonia, and employed on the coast of Portugal during 1832 and the commencement of the following year. On 10 Jan. 1837 he became rear-admiral. He was nominated K.C.H. in January 1834, and K.C.B. on 4 July 1840. He died 10 July 1843. He married in 1805 Mary, a daughter of Nathaniel Taylor, naval storekeeper at Malta, and had issue, among others, Admiral Sir Charles Farrell Hillyar, K.C.B. (d. 1888), and Admiral Henry Shank Hillyar, C.B. Lady Hillyar died, aged 96, in 1884.

[Marshall's Roy. Nav. Biog. iv. (vol. ii. pt. ii.) 849; United Service Mag. 1843, pt. iii. p. 271; James's Naval Hist. edit. 1860, vi. 150; Roosevelt's Naval War of 1812, p. 291; Porter's Journal of a Cruise made to the Pacific Ocean, ii. 143; Porter's Life of Commodore Porter, p. 220; Loyall Farragut's Life of Farragut, chap. v., contains Farragut's account of the capture of the Essex, in which he was serving as a very young midshipman.]

J. K. L.

HILSEY or HILDESLEIGH, JOHN (d. 1538), bishop of Rochester, is stated by Wood to have belonged to the Hildsleys of Benham, Berkshire, a branch of the Hildsleys of Hildsley, Berkshire (E. Ashmole, Antiquities of Berkshire, 1723, i. 35, 36, ii. 329, iii. 317); to have devoted himself to learning and religion; to have received instructions from a friar of the Dominican house at Bristol, and to have entered the order of Dominican friars there. From Bristol, he removed to the Dominican house at Oxford and there in May 1527, he graduated B.D., and proceeded D.D. in 1532; it is probable that he studied also at Cambridge. In May 1533 he was prior of the Dominican house at Bristol, and wrote a letter to Cromwell, whom he apparently regarded as his patron, and with whom he seems to have had earlier dealings, to explain and excuse his conduct in preaching against Hugh Latimer, whose sermons had created great excitement in the city (Wright, Suppression of the Monasteries, Letters iv. and v., p. 37). In April 1534, Cromwell appointed him provincial of his order, and commissioner, along with Dr. George Browne [q. v.], provincial of the Augustinians, to visit the friaries throughout England. The commissioners were to administer to the friars the oath of allegiance to King Henry VIII, Anne Boleyn and their issue, to obtain from them an acknowledgment of the king as 'caput ecclesiae Anglicanae,' and to make inventories of their property. The commissioners visited the London houses 17-20 April, went in May to such friaries as were within easy reach of London and then proceeded towards the west, Hilsey gaining the nickname of 'the Blacke Friar of Bristowe'. On 21 June, he reported to Cromwell from Exeter, that on the whole, the oaths had been taken submissively and in July he reached Cardiff in pursuit of two Observant friars who were attempting to leave the kingdom. In October he told Cromwell that he was threatened with the loss of the provincialship of the Dominicans and complained that Browne was taking it upon himself to assume complete authority. Hilsey's manner of conducting the visitation made him very unpopular and he and Browne were specially denounced by the 'pilgrims of grace'. In 1535, on the death of Fisher, Hilsey succeeded him as Bishop of Rochester. According to an entry in Fisher's 'Register,' he was consecrated on 18 Sept. by Archbishop Cranmer at Winchester Le Neve. On 23 Sept., he begged Cromwell for his predecessor's mitre, staff and seal, as being himself too poor to procure such things. In a piteous reply to a complaint from Cromwell that he was 'covetous, and not sufficiently complaisant to the King's visitors,' he stated that, if Cromwell were not favourable to him, his income would only amount to 200l. In January 1636, Hilsey preached at Queen Catherine's funeral, alleging that, in the hour of death, she had acknowledged that she had never been Queen of England. In March, he obtained a faculty from Cromwell enabling him to remain prior of the London Black Friars and, when they were dispersed, he re-