Page:EB1911 - Volume 25.djvu/299

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SMYTH, SIR W. W.—SNAIL

about 1570, and was educated at Christ's College, Cambridge, where he proceeded M.A. in 1593. He was probably vicar of Hutton Cranswicke in the E. Riding of Yorkshire from 1593 to 1600, when he was elected lecturer or preacher of the city of Lincoln, an office of which he was deprived in October 1602 for having " approved himself a factious man by personal preaching and that truly against divers men of good place." Two volumes of his Lincoln sermons, The Bright Morning Star (1603), an exposition of Psalm xxii., and A Pattern of True Prayer (1605), were dedicated to Lord Sheffield, who had acted as arbiter between the preacher and the corporation. While preparing these books he became connected with the Separatist movement in Scrooby and Gainsborough, joined the Gainsborough church, and became its pastor.[1] With Thomas Helwys, John Murton (or Morton) and others, he migrated to Amsterdam at the end of 1607 to escape religious persecution, and in that city practised as a physician, and became the leader of " the second English church " (see Congregationalism). About this time he wrote his Principles and Inferences concerning the Visible Church in support of Robert Browne's theory of ecclesiastical polity, which was followed by Parallels, Censures and Observations, a reply to the Christian Advertisements of Richard Bernard (1568-1641), vicar of Worksop, a puritan who remained in the Anglican church. In 1608, too, appeared The Differences of the Churches of the Separation, in which he justified his non-communion with Johnson's church on the curious ground that it was no part of primitive and apostolic order to use a translation of scripture during worship, or at any rate to have it open before one while preaching (Christ having " closed the book " at Nazareth before His sermon). Under Mennonite influence he went farther, and by March 1609 when he published The Character of the Beast, he had become a Baptist (see Baptists, sect. II.), contending against infant baptism because (1) it has neither precept nor example in the New Testament, (2) Christ com- manded to make disciples by teaching them and then to baptize them. He and his company were then faced by the dilemma that their own infant baptism did not count, and Smyth solved the problem by first baptizing himself (hence the name Se-Baptist), probably by affusion, and then administering the rite to Helwys and the others. Afterwards with 41 others he decided that instead of baptizing himself he should have been baptized by the Mennonites, in spite of their heretical view of the Person of Christ, and applied for admission to their fellowship. They were some- what suspicious of a man who had never held one position for long, and demanded a statement of doctrines, which he gave them in twenty articles written in Latin, and in The Last Book of John Smyth, called the Retractation of his Errors, together with a con- fession of faith in 100 Propositions. A friendly Mennonite al- lowed Smyth's church to meet in his bakery, but Smyth himself died of consumption in August 1612, more than two years before the remaining members of his band, by then reduced to 31, were admitted (January 161 5) into the Mennonite communion. Helwys and Morton returned to England, and established the first English Baptist churches.

Smyth was, like the other Cambridge men of his day, especially the Separatists, the bondservant of logic, and wherever he saw " the beckoning hand of a properly constructed syllogism " he was ready to follow. Yet none of those who, in his generation, took the great step had, according to Bishop Creighton, " a finer mind or a more beautiful soul. None of them succeeded in expressing with so much reasonableness and consistency their aspirations after a spiritual system of religious belief and practice. None of them founded their opinions on so large and liberal a basis." In his last declaration he expressed his sorrow for the censures he had passed on Anglicans and Brownists alike, and wrote " All penitent and faithful Christians are brethren in the communion of the outward church, by what name soever they are known; and we salute them all with a holy kiss, being heartily grieved that we should be rent with so many sorts and schisms; and that only for matters of no moment."

See J. H. Shakespeare, Baptist and Congregational Pioneers (London, 1906); H. M. Dexter, The England and Holland of the Pilgrims (London and Boston, 1906).


SMYTH, SIR WARINGTON WILKINSON (1817-1890), British geologist, was born at Naples on the 26th of August 1817, his father, Admiral W. H. Smyth (1788-1865), being at the time engaged in the Admiralty Survey of the Mediterranean. He was educated at Westminster and Bedford schoels, and after- wards at Trinity College, Cambridge, where he graduated B.A. in 1839. Having gained a travelling scholarship he spent more than four years in Europe, Asia Minor, Syria and Egypt, paying great attention to mineralogy and mining, examining coalfields, metalliferous mines and salt-works, and making acquaintance with many distinguished geologists and mineralogists. On his return to England in 1844 he was appointed mining geologist on the Geological Survey, and in 1851 lecturer at the School of Mines, a post which he held until 1881 when he relinquished the chair of mineralogy but continued as professor of mining. In later years he became chief mineral inspector to the Office of Woods and Forests, and also to the Duchy of Cornwall. He was elected F.R.S. in 1858. He became president of the Geological Society of London in 1866-1868, and in 1879 he was chairman of a Royal Commission appointed to inquire into accidents in mines, the work in connexion with which continued until 1886. He contributed sundry papers to the Memoirs of the Geological Survey, the Quarterly Journal of the Geological Society and the Transactions of the Royal Geological Society of Cornwall. He was author also of A Year with the Turks (1854), and of A Treatise on Coal and Coal-mining (1867). He was knighted in 1887. He died in London on the 19th of June 1890, and was buried at St Erth, not far from his country home at Marazion in Cornwall.

A portrait and some reminiscences of W. W. Smyth will be found in the Memoir of Sir A. C. Ramsay (1895), by Sir A. Geikie.


SMYTH (or Smith), WILLIAM (c. 1460-1514), bishop of Lincoln, was a Lancashire man by birth, and probably passed some of his early days at Knowsley under the roof of Margaret, countess of Richmond and Derby, the mother of Henry VII. He appears to have been a member of Lincoln College, Oxford, and in 1485, just after the battle of Bosworth, he was made keeper of the hanaper of the chancery. Two of Edward IV's daughters were entrusted to his keeping; he was a member of the royal council and he obtained the livings of Combe Martin, Devon, of Great Grimsby and of Cheshunt, Hertfordshire. In 1491 he was made dean of St Stephen's, Westminster, and two years later bishop of Coventry and Lichfield. The bishop was a member of Prince Arthur's council in the marches of Wales, and in 1501, five years after he had been translated to the bishopric of Lincoln, he became lord president of Wales. About 1507 he and Sir Richard Sutton (d. 1524) set to work to found a new college in Oxford. They rebuilt Brasenose Hall, added other existing halls to it, and having obtained a charter in 1512, called it The King's haule and college of Brasennose. Smyth, who was one of the executors of Henry VII.'s will, retired from public life just after this King's death, owing probably to some differences between Bishop Richard Fox and himself; he was, however, president of Wales until his death at Buckden in Huntingdonshire on the 2nd of January 1514. Although an able and scholarly man, Smyth had little sympathy with the new learning. He bestowed rich livings upon his relatives, one of whom, Matthew Smyth, was the first principal of Brasenose College. In addition to his liberal gifts to Brasenose College he gave money or land to Lincoln and to Oriel Colleges; he founded a school at Farn worth, Lancashire, and he refounded the hospital of St John at Lichfield. From 1500 to 1503 he was chancellor of Oxford University.


SNAIL. In England the word " snail " in popular language is associated with Gasteropods which inhabit land or fresh water, and which possess large conspicuous spiral shells; terrestrial Gasteropods, in which the shell is rudimentary and concealed, are distinguished as " slugs." In Scotland the word " slug " is absent from the vernacular vocabulary, both shell-bearing and shell-less inland molluscs being known as snails. Marine Gasteropods are occasionally termed " sea-snails," and the compounds " pond-snails," " river-snails," " water-snails " are in common use. The commonest land-snails are those species which

  1. He was never vicar of Gainsborough, and must not be confused with the John Smyth who was imprisoned in the Marshalsea in 1592.