Hyde, William (DNB00)

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HYDE, WILLIAM (1597–1651), whose real name was Bayart or Beyard, Roman catholic divine, probably a Netherlander by descent, was born in London on 27 March 1597, and entered Leyden University on 18 June 1610 (Peacock, Index to Leyden Students, p. 9). He is probably identical with the 'William Beyard, a Belgian,' who received permission to read in the Bodleian Library on 1 July 1611. He matriculated from Christ Church, Oxford, in October 1614, and graduated B.A. in December of the same year. According to a certificate of Heinsius, secretary of the university of Leyden, dated 23 Nov. 1614, he had recently studied logic there for a semester. The Oxford authorities allowed him (13 Dec. 1614) to include the semester in his Oxford terms. He proceeded M.A. in 1617.

In 1622 Bayart, who is henceforth known as Hyde, was admitted into the church of Rome, and entered the English College at Douay on 6 Jan. 1623. With Douay he was intimately associated until his death. He studied philosophy there under Harrington, proceeded in divinity, and was ordained priest in 1625. Succeeding his master Harrington, he remained four more years in the college as professor of philosophy. Wishing for more active service, he returned to England, where he remained for some years, holding the chaplaincy to John Preston of Furness Abbey in 1631, and the same appointment in the household of Lord Monteagle in 1632. In 1633 he went back to Douay, and lectured on divinity; some of his letters written about this time are preserved among the manuscripts of the Bishop of Southwark (Hist. MSS. Comm. 3rd Rep. App. p. 234). Driven from Douay by the plague about 1636, he became chaplain to the Blount family of Soddington in Worcestershire, where he remained for three years, holding during part of that time the Roman catholic office of archdeacon of Worcester and Salop. He afterwards entered the family of Humphrey Weld, who during Hyde's chaplaincy in 1641 purchased Lulworth Castle, Dorsetshire. In 1641 George Muscott or Muskett, a prisoner in England, was appointed president of the college at Douay; but as he was not at liberty, Hyde agreed to fill his place, and arrived in Douay on 12 Oct. 1641. Meanwhile Muscott was unexpectedly liberated and banished. He accordingly assumed the presidentship, and Hyde acted as vice-president, with a papal pension, until Muskett's death in 1645. He succeeded as president on 21 July 1646, and was created a D.D. in the year following.

As president Hyde was energetic and successful. He cleared the college of a heavy load of debt, increased its library (see Cat. des MSS. des Bibl. Publ. vi. 100, 263, 292), and obtained a settlement of the controversy about the degrees of missioners in accordance with the wishes of the great body of the clergy. The Bishop of Arras made him censor librorum in 1648. He became canon of St. Amalus, and was appointed both regius professor of history and public orator in the university of Douay in 1649. In March 1650–1 Charles II paid the college a visit, and Hyde presented him with an address. Hyde died on 22 Dec. 1651, and was buried in Our Lady's chapel in the church of St. James at Douay. By his will he left the English College more than nine thousand florins. Two manuscripts of Hyde's remain: 1. 'A Resolution of Certain Cases.' 2. 'Abridgment of the Annals of Baronius.' Dod relates that he was well reputed as a casuist. Hyde is to be distinguished from the William Hyde who was one of the procuratores nati at Oxford on the resignation of the proctors in 1628 (Wood, Fasti Oxon. ed. Bliss, i.430).

[Gillow's Biog. Dict. of the Engl. Cath. iii. 527; Dodd's Church Hist. iii. 299; Reg. of the Univ. of Oxf. (Oxf. Hist. Soc.), vol. ii. pt. i. 271, 377, pt. ii. 334, pt. iii. 333; Knox's Douay Diaries.]

W. A. J. A.