Hill, Robert (d.1623) (DNB00)

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HILL, ROBERT (d. 1623), divine, a native of Ashbourne, Derbyshire, was, as he says, 'descended from mean but honest parentage' (will in P.C.C. 87, Swan). He was educated at Christ's College, Cambridge, and graduated B.A. in 1584, M.A. in 1586 (University Register). In 1588-9 he was admitted fellow of St. John's College, Cambridge, and from about 1591 to 1602 was perpetual curate of St. Andrew, Norwich (Blomefield, Norfolk, 8vo ed., iv. 301}. Hill took an active part in the disputed election to the mastership of St. John's in 1595 (T. Baker, Hist. of St. John's, ed. Mayor, pt. ii. p. 607). By October 1601 he was chaplain to Lord-chief-justice Popham. Having commenced B.D. in 1595, he was incorporated at Oxford on 10 July 1605 (Wood, Fasti Oxon. ed. Bliss, i. 304). In 1602 he became lecturer of St. Martin-in-the-Fields (Address to parishioners in Pathway to Prayer, ed. 1613), and on 15 Sept. 1607 rector of St. Margaret Moyses, Friday Street (Newcourt, Repertorium, i. 404). In 1609 he proceeded D. D. On 24 February 1613 he was preferred by Lord-chancellor Ellesmere to the well-endowed rectory of St. Bartholomew Exchange (ib. i. 292) when he resigned his other cure. Here he was a 'principall meanes to builde the parsonage house.' Hill died in August 1623, and was buried by his desire near his first wife in the chancel of St. Bartholemew. He was a member of the Vintners' Company, and left them 10l. to buy a piece of plate. He married, first, between 1613 and 1615, Margaret, daughter of John (?) Witts of Ghent, and widow of Prebendary Adrian de Saravia, who died in childbed on 29 June 1615, aged 39. Her death was mourned by Joshua Sylvester. Hill's second wife, Susan, apparently the sister of Thomas Westfeild, afterwards bishop of Bristol, survived him.

Hill was author of: 1. 'Life everlasting; or the trve knowledge of the One Jehovah, Three Elohim, and Iesvs Immanvel: collected ovt of the best modern Divines, and compiled into one volume,' 4to, Cambridge 1601. 2 'Christs Prayer expounded, a Christian directed, and a Communicant prepared … To which is added a Preface of Prayer, a pithie Prayer for Christian Families,' &., 8vo, London 1606. Hill afterwards issued a greatly enlarged edition, under the title of 'The Pathway to Prayer and Pietie. Containing (1) An Exposition of the Lords Prayer …; (2) A Preparation to the Lords Supper, with Ma. Zanchius Confession concerning that Sacrament; (3) A Direction to a Christian Life; (4) An Instruction to die well,' 2 pts, 8vo, London 1613. To the sixth edition (5 pts, 8vo, London 1615-16) is appended J. Sylvester's 'Elegie' upon the death of Mrs. Hill. The eighth edition (1629) contains 'The Protestation of J. White written to the end the Papists might understand he departed out of this world of the same opinion.' From the plan of this eloquently written manual Jeremy Taylor may have derived that of his 'Holy Living and Dying.' Hill translated from the Latin of William Bucanus 'Institvtions of Christian Religion,' 4to, London, 1606, and edited W. Perkins's 'Godly Exposition upon the three first chapters of the Revelation,' fol., London, 1607. In the fourth part of the 'Workes' of R. Greenham, fol., London, 1612, is 'An Exposition of the 119 Psalme found unperfect and perfected by R. Hill.' He also collected the posthumour sermons and lectures of Samuel Hieron [q. v.], and published them in folio in 1620 as the second volume of Hieron's works. Hill has Latin verses before Foulke Robartes's 'The Revenue of the Gospel in Tythes,' 1613. His portrait has been engraved.

[Cole's Athenae Cantabr. (Addit.. MS. 5871, f. 25); Hunter’s Chorus Vatum, i. 415 (Addit. MS. 24467), v. 455-9 (Addit. MS. 24491); Wood's Fasti Oxon. (Bliss), i. 280; Granger's Biog. Hist. of England (6th edit) i. 363-4.]

G. G.