Holden, George (DNB00)

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HOLDEN, GEORGE (1783–1865), theological writer, only son of the Rev. George Holden, LL.D., head-master of the free grammar school at Horton-in-Ribblesdale, Yorkshire, was born at that place in 1783. He was educated at the Glasgow University, where he graduated. In 1811 he was presented to the perpetual curacy of the village of Maghull, near Liverpool. Living there in seclusion he read and wrote much. He succeeded his father as vicar of Horton in 1821, but resigned that living in 1825, preferring to devote himself to Maghull. He died suddenly at Maghull on 19 March 1865, aged 81. He was not married. His large library and more than half of his property were left for the benefit of clergy of the diocese of Ripon, who had not the means of gaining easy access to books (Howson, Funeral Sermon). The library is kept at the Palace, Ripon.

Holden's works prove him to be an accomplished hebraist and an able Christian apologist. Their titles are: 1. ‘An Attempt towards an Improved Version of the Proverbs of Solomon,’ 1819. 2. ‘The Scripture Testimonies to the Divinity of Our Lord Jesus Christ,’ 1820. 3. ‘An Attempt to Illustrate the Book of Ecclesiastes,’ 1822. 4. ‘A Dissertation on the Fall of Man,’ 1823. 5. ‘The Christian Sabbath,’ 1825. 6. ‘The Christian Expositor or Practical Guide to … the New Testament,’ 1830. 7. ‘The Christian Expositor of the Old Testament,’ 1834. 8. ‘Scriptural Vindication of Church Establishments,’ 1836. 9. ‘The Authority of Tradition in Matters of Religion,’ 1838. 10. ‘A Treatise on Justification,’ 1840. 11. ‘A Lecture on the Means requisite for the Profitable reading of the Holy Scriptures,’ 1842. 12. ‘The Anglican Catechist,’ 1855. 13. ‘An Explanation of some Scriptural Terms,’ 1856. 14. ‘An Essay on the Angels of the Church,’ 1862. 15. ‘The Ordinance of Preaching Investigated,’ 1863. For many years he compiled the ‘Liverpool Tide Tables,’ which were begun by his grandfather and continued by his father.

[Gent. Mag. 1865, pt. i. p. 657; Fishwick's Garstang (Chetham Soc.), i. 118; Cox's Literature of the Sabbath Question, ii. 330; Brit. Mus. Cat.]

C. W. S.