several attacks on the universities, and especially to ‘Academiarum Examen,’ 1654, by John Webster (1610–1682) [q. v.], referred to Hobbes's disparaging criticisms in the ‘Leviathan,’ and retorted that, so far from the universities being what they had been in Hobbes's youth, he would find his geometrical pieces, when they appeared, better understood than he should like. This was said in reference to the boasts Hobbes freely made that he had squared the circle and performed other geometric feats. In his ‘De Corpore,’ which appeared in the following year, Hobbes renewed the strife by giving his solutions to the world. It was arranged that Wallis, the Savilian professor of geometry, should criticise the mathematical part of the book, while Ward occupied himself with the philosophical and physical sections. Ward performed his share of the task in his treatise ‘In Thomæ Hobbii Philosophiam Exercitatio Epistolica,’ Oxford, 1656, 8vo, addressed to John Wilkins, the warden of Wadham. In it he also exposed the philosopher's faulty mathematical reasoning, leaving the subject to be further pursued by Wallis (cf. Hobbes, English Works, ed. Molesworth, 1839–45, iv. 435, v. 454, vii. passim).
On 31 May 1654 Ward proceeded D.D. at Oxford, Wallis taking his degree at the same time. When they came to be presented a dispute for precedency arose, which was at first determined in favour of Ward, but Wallis eventually carried the day by going out grand compounder. In 1657, on the resignation of Michael Roberts, Ward was elected principal of Jesus College, Oxford, through the influence of Francis Mansell [q. v.], who had been ejected from the office by the parliamentary visitors. Cromwell, however, put in Francis Howell [q. v.], with a promise of compensation to Ward, which he failed to make good. On 18 March 1658–9 Ward was incorporated D.D. at Cambridge, and on 14 Sept. 1659 he was chosen president of Trinity College, Oxford. He possessed none of the statutory qualifications for the office, however, and in August 1660 was compelled to resign it to the former president, Hannibal Potter. After this final disappointment he resigned his professorship, retired to London, and was compensated by Charles II with the vicarage of St. Lawrence Jewry, to which he was admitted on 19 Jan. 1660–1, and with the rectory of Uplowman in Devonshire. In 1662 he was rector of St. Breock in Cornwall. Already, in 1656, he had been appointed precentor of Exeter by Ralph Brownrig [q. v.], the exiled bishop, to whom he had acted as chaplain during his residence at Sunning in Berkshire. In spite of ridicule, he had punctually paid the bishop's secretary the fees, and at the Restoration he reaped the reward of his forethought, receiving the confirmation of his appointment by patent on 25 July 1660. On 10 Sept. he was made a prebendary, and on 26 Dec. 1661 was elected dean. On 20 July 1662 he was consecrated bishop in succession to John Gauden [q. v.], translated to Worcester. While dean he expelled the presbyterians and independents from the cathedral which they had shared with the episcopalians, demolished certain shops and stalls which had been profanely erected under its roof, and restored and beautified the edifice out of the church revenues at an expense of 25,000l. During his tenure of the see he repaired the episcopal palace, augmented the value of the poorer benefices, increased the revenues of the prebends, and procured the union of the deanery of Burien with the bishopric. On 5 Sept. 1667 he was translated to the see of Salisbury in succession to Alexander Hyde [q. v.], and on 25 Nov. 1671 was made chancellor of the order of the Garter. He was the first protestant bishop to hold this office, procuring its restoration to the see of Salisbury after it had been in lay hands since 1539. Ward's first care after his advancement to Salisbury was to beautify his cathedral and palace. In 1669 Christopher Wren on his invitation made a survey of ‘our lady church at Salisbury,’ of which a manuscript copy is in possession of the Royal Society (Britton, Memoir of Aubrey, 1845, p. 97). About 1672 Ward gave a large sum towards making the river navigable from Salisbury to the sea. He was long a friend of the Duke of Albemarle, attended his last moments in January 1669–70, and preached his funeral sermon, which was published with the title ‘The Christian's Victory over Death’ (London, 1670, 8vo). In 1672, on the death of John Cosin, he declined the bishopric of Durham, not liking the conditions attached to the offer.
Although Ward was in favour of rendering the English church more comprehensive by modifying the professions required from conformists, he was distinguished for his activity against dissenters. He gave strenuous support to the conventicle and five-miles acts, and afterwards, stimulated, it is suggested, by letters from court, he so harried the nonconformists that in 1669 they unsuccessfully petitioned the privy council against him, pleading that by his persecutions he was ruining the cloth trade at Salisbury. He entirely suppressed conventicles in the town, and acted with such severity that when James began his policy of tolera-