health: "Here's to all the fools, your patients, brother Case;" "I thank you, good brother," replied Case; "let me have all the fools, and you are heartily welcome to the rest of the practice."'
[Granger's Biog. History, iv. 327; Tatler, edited by John Nichols and others (1786); Case's Works.]
CASE, THOMAS (1598–1682), divine, son of George Case, vicar of Boxley, Kent, was born in that county in 1598. His first education was received at Canterbury, and he next entered Merchant Taylors' School in 1615, where the registrar set down his name only (Registers i. 84). In 1616 he obtained a studentship at Christ Church, Oxford, partly in recognition of his industry and proficiency, and partly by the favour of Archbishop Tobie Matthew, who had been of that foundation. Case's connection with Christ Church is re- corded upon the title-pages of many of his books. His degree in arts was taken on 15 June 1620, and his master's degree on 26 June 1623. He is said to have remained a year or two longer at the university, preaching after ordination 'for some time in those parts, and afterwards in Kent, at or near the place of his nativity.' His career was most intimately associated with that of Richard Heyrick (of the family of the poet Herrick), who was his associate at Oxford. When Heyrick obtained from Charles I his first preferment at North Repps, Norfolk, Case became his curate. Soon after Case obtained the pastoral charge of Erpingham in the same neighbourhood, remaining there eight or ten years. The latter part of his stay at this parish was marked by the severity of bishop Wren towards him, and proceedings in the high commission court are said to have been still pending against him when that court was abolished. Meanwhile Heyrick, who some years before had received from the king a grant of the reversion of the wardenship of the collegiate church of Manchester, came into possession of that dignity in 1635, and thither Case accompanied or followed him. By the influence of the Booth family, of the adjoining town of Salford, Case frequently preached with much acceptance at their newly erected chapel in that place, and he also preached in the other Manchester chapelries, whither he was followed by numbers of admirers. On 8 Aug. 1637 he was married at Stockport, Cheshire, to Anne, daughter of Oswald Mosley of Ancoats, Manchester, the widow of Robert Booth of Salford (brother of Humphrey Booth, the founder of the chapel). By this union he became brother-in-law to the Rev. John Angier [q. v.] His popularity brought him into trouble, and he experienced, in a less degree, the same trials in the diocese of Chester as in that of Norwich. Li 1638 articles were exhibited against him in Bishop Bridgeman's court for uttering opinions against the discipline of the church and far other irregularities, notwithstanding that he had signed the articles and was still 'a beneficed man within the diocese of Norwich.' One of the charges was that he had given the sacrament to those who did not kneel; and his reply was that the congregations were so vast that there was no room to kneel. Falling in with the spirit of the Manchester burghers he supported the parliamentary party by his money and zeal (November 1642). His marriage introduced him to persons of influence. Jacomb disturbs a little the chronological sequence when he says that in a short while after coming to Manchester Case was presented to a place in the neighbouring county—i.e. Stockport—where he may have been acting first as curate. He became actual rector of that rich benefice on 31 July 1645, when the committee of plundered ministers presented him, with the usual injunction to preach diligently. The presentation was confirmed by votes of the houses. The appointment of a man who at that time was an active minister in London was not a wise one. Nine months afterwards he resigned and a new rector was appointed, Case having 'another place with cure of souls.' These dates and circumstances seem to lend point to Wood's insinuation that Case was anxious to get preferment and wealth, which he wanted before he went up to London. In the meanwhile, before the end of 1641, the 'urgency of some persons of quality' in Lancashire—probably Sir William Brereton, a Cheshire baronet, and his associates—induced Case to accompany them to the capital. There his style of preaching amidst a multitude of preachers attracted notice, and he soon acquired fame. The first of his published discourses, two in number, were delivered at Westminster 'before sundry of the House of Commons,' and issued by authority in 1641. A very severe and bitter spirit characterised them. The city churches were readily opened to him. First he was lecturer and then rector (in place of Mr. Jones, sequestrated) of St. Mary Magdalen, Milk Street, where, following a custom already established in Manchester, he began that seven o'clock 'morning exercise' long afterwards kept up 'to the benefit of multitudes.' Sir John Bramston refers in a characteristic passage (Autob, p. 92) to his appointment there. His sermons 'at Milk