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BAYNES, PAUL (d. 1617), puritan divine, of whose parentage or early life little is known, was born in London, and was educated in Christ's College, Cambridge, where he was chosen a fellow. In his youth and during his academic course he must have lived loosely, for his father made provision in his will that a certain legacy was to be paid him by good Mr. Wilson, of Birchin Lane, London, only if he should ‘forsake his evil ways and become steady.’ Shortly after his father's death this change took place, and the executor saw his way to fulfil the parental request as to an annuity (of ‘forty pounds’). He carried abundant force and energy of character into his altered life. On the death of William Perkins, Baynes was unanimously chosen to succeed him in the lecture at St. Andrew's, Cambridge. Samuel Clark testifies to his impressiveness and success in that great pulpit. Among those who gratefully ascribed their ‘conversion’ (under God) to him, was Dr. Richard Sibbes—who afterwards paid loving tribute to his memory. He was too powerful a puritan to escape attack. Dr. Harsnet, chancellor to Archbishop Bancroft, on a visitation of the university silenced him, and put down his lecture, for refusing (absolute) subscription. Unhappily the archbishop, when appealed to, heard the story from his chancellor only, and Baynes was thus perforce made a nonconformist. He preached here and there as opportunity was given, and fell into extreme poverty. A little volume of ‘Letters’ remains to prove how wise and comforting he was to multitudes who resorted to him for guidance. The bishops held such visits to his own house to constitute it a ‘conventicle.’ On this ground he was summoned before the council by Harsnet, but no verdict was pronounced against him in consequence of the profound impression which his speech made on the council. In his old age, he was the honoured guest of puritan gentlemen all over England. He died at Cambridge in 1617. Fuller, Sibbes, and Clark unite in estimating him as a man of great learning. His writings were all published posthumously. They are: 1. ‘A Commentary on the first chapter of the Ephesians, handling the Controversy of Predestination,’ Lond. 1618. 2. ‘Devotions unto a Godly Life,’ Lond. 1618. 3. ‘Soliloquies provoking to true Repentance,’ 1618 and 1620. 4. ‘A Caveat for Cold Christians, in a Sermon,’ Lond. 1618. 5. ‘Holy Helper in God's Building,’ 1618. 6. ‘Discourse on the Lord's Prayer,’ 1619. 7. ‘Christian Letters,’ Lond. 1619. 8. ‘The Diocesans Tryall, wherein all the Sinnewes of Dr. Downham's Defence are brought into Three Heads and orderly dissolved,’ 1621, 1644. 9. ‘Help to True Happiness,’ 3rd ed. 1635. 10. ‘A Commentarie on the first and second chapters of Saint Paul to the Colossians,’ 1634. 11. ‘Briefe Directions unto a Godly Life,’ 1637. 12. ‘Letters of Consolation,’ 1637. Baynes's magnum opus was: 13. his ‘Commentary’ on St. Paul's Epistle to the Ephesians (1643)—a still prized folio. Many sermons by Baynes were also published separately.

[Fuller's History of Cambridge, p. 92; Clark's Lives, pp. 23, 24; Watt's Bibl. Brit.; Brook's Lives of the Puritans, ii. 261–4; Cole MSS. Brit. Mus.]

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