Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Hinton, John Howard

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HINTON, JOHN HOWARD (1791–1873), baptist minister, was born at Oxford on 24 March 1791, and baptised John Howard in commemoration of the philanthropist, who was a friend of his mother. His father, James Hinton, was born at Buckingham on 3 Sept. 1761, became a congregational minister at Oxford in 1787, established a school there in 1790, received an M.A. degree from Nassau Hall, America, in 1802, and died at Reading in 1823. He married on 23 April 1790 Ann, daughter of Isaac Taylor the engraver. The son was educated in his father's school, and was for some time with a surgeon at Oxford, with a view to entering the medical profession. The institution of the Baptist Missionary Society and intercourse with John Sutcliffe and Andrew Fuller led him to change his mind, and proceeding to Bristol College on 8 Oct. 1811 he studied there for two years. In 1813 he entered the university of Edinburgh, where he graduated M.A. 4 April 1816, and was called to the church at Haverfordwest, where he preached his first sermon on 19 May. Here he remained till 1820, when he removed to Hosier Street Chapel, Reading. He took the lead there in erecting a much larger chapel in the King's Road. In 1837 he succeeded to the charge of Devonshire Square Chapel, Bishopsgate Street, London, where he remained till 1863. At an early period he interested himself in the slave trade question, and became connected with the voluntary Church Society and the Liberation Society, and afterwards with the active work of the Missionary Society. The Baptist Union also, of which he was for many years the secretary, owed its preservation in times of comparative feebleness to his verance. As a writer he advocated the voluntary principle in religious matters. He was also known as the author of ‘A History of the United States of America’ and a ‘System of Theology.’ In the former, which includes topography as well as history, he was assisted by many writers, both European and American. On his retirement from Devonshire Square Chapel in 1863 he preached for a short time near London, and then by request went to Reading to serve a new church, but in 1868 he removed to Bristol, and resided there for the remainder of his life. He employed himself in the collection and publication of his theological works, which were printed in seven volumes crown octavo (1864). In February 1872, as one of the representatives of the Baptist Union, he attended the thanksgiving for the recovery of the Prince of Wales at St. Paul's Cathedral. He died at 1 Redland Terrace, Clifton, Bristol, on 17 Dec. 1873, and was buried in Arno's Vale cemetery. His son, James Hinton, is noticed separately.

He was the author of: 1. ‘A Biographical Portraiture of James Hinton, Pastor of Congregational Church in Oxford,’ 1824. 2. ‘A Vindication of Christian Missions in India,’ 1826. 3. ‘Theology, or an Attempt towards a Consistent View of the whole Counsel of God,’ 1827; 2nd ed. 1843. 4. ‘On Completeness of Ministerial Qualification,’ 1829. 5. ‘Elements of Natural History, or an Introduction to Systematic Zoology,’ 1830. 6. ‘The History and Topography of the United States, ed. by J. H. Hinton and others,’ 2 vols. 1830–2, 1834, and 1850; 1869, 1 vol. 7. ‘The Work of the Holy Spirit in Conversion considered,’ 1830; 3rd ed. 1841. 8. ‘The Harmony of Religious Truth and Human Reason asserted,’ 1832. 9. ‘Memoir of John Howard Hinton,’ 1835; 3rd ed. 1837. 10. ‘Christian Sympathy,’ 1835. 11. ‘A Treatise on Man's Responsibility,’ 1840; 2nd ed. 1842. 12. ‘A Review of the Bishop of London's Three Sermons on the Church,’ 1842. 13. ‘The Epistle to the Hebrews freely rendered,’ 1843. 14. ‘A Plea for the Liberty of Education,’ 1843. 15. ‘Why not? or Seven Objections to the Educational Clauses of the Factories Regulation Bill,’ 1843. 16. ‘Memoir of William Knibb, Missionary in Jamaica,’ 1847. 17. ‘Who will Live for Ever? an Examination of Luke xx. 36, with Notes,’ 1848. 18. ‘Athanasia, or Four Books on Immortality,’ 1849. 19. ‘Letters written during a Tour in Holland and North Germany,’ 1851. 20. ‘The Test of Experience, or the Voluntary Principle in the United States,’ 1851. 21. ‘The Case of the Manchester Educationalists,’ 1852–4, 2 pts. 22. ‘Secular Tracts,’ 1853, 5 Nos. 23. ‘On Acquaintance with God. Twelve Lectures,’ 1856. 24. ‘On God's Government of Man. Ten Lectures,’ 1856. 25. ‘On Redemption. Eleven Lectures,’ 1859. 26. ‘Individual Effort and the Active Christian,’ 1859. 27. ‘Notes of a Tour in Sweden. By E. Steane and J. H. Hinton,’ 1859. 28. ‘The Principles and Practices of Baptist Churches. By F. Wayland, ed. J. H. Hinton,’ 1861. 29. ‘Moderate Calvinism re-examined,’ 1861. 30. ‘Strictures on some Passages in J. H. Godwin's Congregational Lecture,’ 1862. 31. ‘The Happiness of the Pious Dead. A Sermon on the Death of Mrs. M. Steane,’ 1862. 32. ‘An Exposition of the Epistle to the Romans,’ 1863. 33. ‘The Theological Works of J. H. Hinton,’ 1864. 34. ‘Anti-Ritualistic Tracts,’ 1866–7, 5 Nos. He also published many other lectures, sermons, and small works.

[Times, 22 Dec. 1873, p. 4; Illustrated Lond. News, 10 Jan. 1874, pp. 35–6, with portrait; Baptist Handbook, 1875, pp. 277–80.]

G. C. B.