Bogue, David (DNB00)

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BOGUE, DAVID (1750–1825), one of the founders of the London Missionary Society, was born at Hallydown, parish of Coldingham, Berwickshire, on 18 Feb. 1750. He was fourth son of John Bogue, laird of Hallydown—a farm—and Margaret Swanston his wife. His elementary education was obtained at the parish school of Eyemouth He proceeded, while still in his teens, to the university of Edinburgh, and studied for the ministry; he received license as a preacher of the gospel, though never destined to excel as a pulpit orator, In 1771 he was in London as usher in an academy at Edmonton; he was afterwards in the same capacity at Hampstead, and later at Camberwell, with a Rev. Mr. Smith, whom he assisted also in his ministerial duties. He subsequently became minister of an independent or congregational chapel at Gosport. In 1780 he added to his clerical work a tutorship in an institution of the town for the education of young men destined for the independent ministry. There grew out of this his scheme of foreign missions, which led to the formation of the London Missionary Society. Among its missionaries were John Williams of Erromanga, Dr. Robert Moffat, and Dr. David Livingstone. Bogus also took an active part in founding the two kindred institutions—the British and Foreign Bible Society and the Religious Tract Society. To the latter he contributed the first of a series of long-popular tracts. In 1790 he published ‘Reasons for seeking it Repeal of the Test Acts. By a Dissenter.'

In 1796 he and the Rev. Greville Ewing of Glasgow and the Rev. William Innes of Edinburgh who like himself had left the church of Scotland and become the one an independent, and the othera baptist minister, agreed with Robert Haldane, of Airthrie—who sold his family estate in order to provide the funds—to go out to India that they might act as missionaries to the natives. The East India Company refused to sanction the scheme. It was afterwards noted that a massacre of Europeans took place on the very spot at which the three friends had intended to settle.

In 1801 Bogue published ‘An Essay on the Divine Authority of the New Testament;’ prepared at the request of the London Missionary Society, and quickly translated into French, German, Italian, and Spanish. In 1807 a peared his ‘Catechism for the Use of all the Churches in the French Empire. From the French.’ In 1808 he published a striking sermon ‘preached before the promoters of the Protestant Dissenters' Grammar School, Mill Hill.’ In 1809 he edited a volume of sermons by the Rev. Dr. Grasomer. In the same year was published the ‘History of Dissenters from the Revolution in 1689 to the year 1808’ (3 vols.), prepared in association with Dr. James Bennet [q. v.] A second edition, enlarged, was issue in 1812 (4 vols. 8vo), and another in 1833. It is a standard work the fruit of infinite research and painstaking zeal, although at times somewhat partisan and embittered. In 1815 the Senatus Academicus of Yale College, Connecticut, conferred upon Bogue the degree of D.D.

Bogue was well known in all the churches. He was wont to make an annual missionary preaching tour on behalf of the London Missionary Society. In one of these journeys he was seized with a sudden illness at Brighton. There he died on 25 Oct. 1825, in the seventy-fifth year of his age.

[History of Religious Tract Society (Jubilee); British and Foreign Bible Society Reports; Bogue's Works; Lives of the Haldanes; Anderson's Scottish Nation]

A. B. G.