Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Hill, Joseph

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HILL, JOSEPH (1625–1707), nonconformist divine and lexicographer, was born at Bramley, near Leeds, Yorkshire, in October 1625. His father, Joshua Hill (d. 1636), was minister successively at Walmesley Chapel, Lancashire and Bramley Chapel, and died a few hours before a citation a reached his house to answer in the archbishop’s court for not wearing a surplice. Joseph Hill was admitted at St. John’s College, Cambridge, in 1644, graduated B.A. earlier than usual, was elected fellow of Magdalene College, Cambridge, and proceeded M.A. in 1649. He was a successful tutor, was senior proctor 1658, and in 1660 kept the act for B.D. But as he declined to conform in 1662 the authorities 'cut his name out of their books in kindness to him,' or he must have been ejected. He retired to London, and preached a while at Allhallows Barking. He travelled abroad in 1663, and entered Leyden University as a student 29 March 1654. From Leyden he removed in 1667 (elected 19 June) to the pastorate of the Scottish church at Middleburg, Zeeland. From 1668 a stipend was paid to him by the Provincial States. He wrote (30 Nov. 1672) a political pamphlet, which he had difficulty in getting printed. In April 1673 it appeared in Dutch at Amsterdam, and in English, with the title, 'The Interest of these United Provinces, being a Defence of the Zeelanders Choice,' &c., Middleburg, 1673, 4to. He advocates the English alliance, and vindicated Charles II from suspicion of popery. The printing cost him 100l. On 19 Aug. 1673 he was ordered by resolution of the states to quit Zeeland, with permission to return at the close of the war. Repairing to London he waited on Charles, who rewarded him for his pamphlet with a sinecure of 60l a year; the offer of a bishopric did not move him from his nonconformity. On 13 Jan. 1678 he became minister of the English presbyterian chuch on the Haringsvliet, Rotterdam, and held this office till his death. Calamy met him at Rotterdam in 1678. Hill was an indefatigable student and book-collector, retaining to the last his habit of reading, though his memory was nearly gone. He died on 5 Nov. 1707.

His chief work was the augmentation of Schrevelius's Greek-Latin Lexicon, which he edited 1663, 8vo, adding eight thousand words. The Latin-Greek portion was edited by J. Hutchinson. He wrote also on the 'Antiquities of Temples,' 1696, 4to, and 'Artificial Churches,' 1698, 4to, a sermon on 'Moderation' in the Cripplegate morning exercise, 1677, 4to; and a funeral sermon for Mary Reeve, 1685, 4to.

Another Joseph Hill (1667-1739), unconnected with the foregoing, but sometimes confused with him, was born 11. Oct. 1667 at Salisbury, ordained with Calamy 22 June 1694, was minister at the English presbyterian church in Rotterdam 1699-1716, and at Haberdashers' Hall, London, from 1718 till his death on 21 Jan. 1729.

[Calamy's Account, 1713, p. 81; Calamy's Own Life, i. 140, 348. ii. 522; Wilson's Dissenting Churches, 1810, iii 110 sq.; Steven's Scottish Church at Rotterdam, 1833, pp. 319, 325; Leyden Students (Index Soc.); Hunter's Life of Oliver Heywood, 1849, p. 22.]

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