Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Streat, William

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STREAT, WILLIAM (1600?–1666), divine, born in Devonshire about 1600, ‘became either a batler or a sojourner of Exeter College’ in the beginning of 1617. He matriculated on 8 May 1621, graduated B.A. on 31 Jan. 1621–2, and proceeded M.A. on 10 June 1624. He took holy orders and became rector of St. Edmund-on-the-Bridge, Exeter, in 1630, and in 1632 rector of South Pool, Devonshire. After 1641 he inclined to presbyterianism and, according to Wood, preached bitterly against Charles and his followers, styling them ‘bloody papists.’ After the Restoration he appears to have modified his opinions, for he contrived to keep his rectory until his death at South Pool in 1666. He was buried in the church. The neighbouring ministers, says Wood, agreed ‘that he was as infinite a rogue and as great a sinner that could be, and that 'twas pity that he did escape punishment in this life.’

He was the author of ‘The Dividing of the Hooff: or Seeming-Contradictions throughout Sacred Scriptures, Distinguish'd, Resolv'd, and Apply'd. Helpfull to every Household of Faith. By William Streat, Master of Arts, Preacher of the Word, in the County of Devon,’ London, 1654, 4to. This work is prefaced by a dedication to God (Notes and Queries, 2nd ser. ix. 266), and an epistle to God's people, signed ‘W. S.’

[Wood's Athenæ Oxon. ed. Bliss, iii. 728; Foster's Alumni Oxon. 1500–1714.]

E. I. C.