Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Parsons, James (1762-1847)

945474Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900, Volume 43 — Parsons, James (1762-1847)1895Gordon Goodwin

PARSONS, JAMES (1762–1847), divine, born in 1762, was son of the Rev. James Parsons of Cirencester, Gloucestershire. He entered Trinity College, Oxford, but subsequently migrated to Wadham College, from which he matriculated on 16 Dec. 1777 (Foster, Alumni Oxon. 1715–1886, iii. 1075). He graduated B.A. in 1781, and M.A. in 1786. In 1800 the corporation of Gloucester presented him to the perpetual curacy of Newnham with Little Dean, Gloucestershire. He proceeded B.D. in 1815 from St. Alban Hall, Oxford, of which he was for some years vice-principal. He died on 6 April 1847. His eldest daughter, Sophia, married, on 28 May 1823, Alexander Nicoll [q. v.] His library was sold in June 1847.

Parsons was a good classical and oriental scholar. Shortly after 1805 he returned to Oxford, at the invitation of the delegates of the Clarendon Press, to undertake the continuation of the ‘Oxford Septuagint,’ which had been interrupted by the death of its projector, Robert Holmes (1748–1805) [q. v.] He completed it in 1827. He published a learned volume of ‘Sermons, partly Critical and Explanatory,’ 8vo, London, 1835, with valuable notes, and edited the ‘Sermons’ of his son-in-law, Alexander Nicoll, regius professor of Hebrew at Oxford, 8vo, Oxford, 1830, with a memoir of his life.

[Gent. Mag. 1847 pt. ii. p. 103; Clergy List for 1847; Cat. of Library of Lond. Institution, iv. 333; Nicoll's Sermons, ed. Parsons, introduction; Parsons's Sermons, Preface.]

G. G.