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JENKS, BENJAMIN (1646–1724), divine, eldest son of John Jenks, vicar of Eaton-under-Haywood, Shropshire, was baptised there on 29 May 1646. His family had long been resident at Wolverton, and he was related to Dr. John Williams, bishop of Chichester, to whom he dedicated his book of ‘Prayers.’ After taking holy orders, he officiated for some time as curate of Harley, in his native county. Francis, viscount Newport, afterwards earl of Bradford, the patron of the living, liked his sermons, and afterwards presented him to the rectory both of Harley and of the neighbouring parish of Kenley, besides making him his chaplain. He died at Harley on 10 May 1724, and was buried in the chancel of that church, where there is a monument to his memory. He married (1) Miss Baugh, by whom he had a son and a daughter; and (2) the widow of a clergyman, whose maiden name was Hunt, by whom he had no issue. His works are: 1. ‘Prayers and Offices of Devotion for Families, and for particular Persons upon most Occasions,’ London, 1697, 8vo; 2 vols., London, 1706; 8th edit., London, 1729, 12mo; 20th edit., London, 1780; 25th edit., Albany, U.S., 1801; 26th edit., altered and improved by the Rev. Charles Simeon, London, 1808, 8vo; 30th edit., London, 1832; another edit., London, 1860, 8vo. The 13th edition of Simeon's improved version appeared at London, 1866, 8vo. 2. ‘Submission to the Righteousness of God, or the necessity of trusting to a better Righteousness than our own, Opened and Defended in a … Discourse upon Rom. x. 3,’ London, 1700, 8vo; 5th edit., London, 1764; another edit., Glasgow, 1775. 3. ‘Meditations, with Short Prayers annexed, in Ten Decads, upon Various Subjects,’ London, 1701, 12mo. 4. ‘A Second Century of Meditations, with Short Prayers annexed, on Various Subjects. To which is added a Postscript by way of Meditation on the spoils and ruins made by the … Tempest, Nov. 27, 1703,’ London, 1704, 12mo. 5. ‘Contemplation full of Admiration. Serious Thoughts of the Wonderful God,’ London, 1705, 12mo. 6. ‘The Glorious Victory of Chastity in Joseph's Hard Conflict, and his Happy Escape,’ London, 1707, 24mo. 7. ‘Ouranography, or Heaven opened. The substance of Cardinal Bellarmine's … Eternal Felicity of the Saints … made English,’ London, 1710, 12mo. 8. ‘The Poor Man's Ready Companion. A lesser Prayer Book for Families … with a new Preface upon the Creed, Lord's Prayer, and Ten Commandments,’ London, 1713, 8vo. 9. ‘The Liberty of Prayer asserted, and guarded from Licentiousness,’ 3rd edit., London, 1716, 8vo. 10. ‘Meditations upon Various and Important Subjects, and Short Prayers annexed. With a Preface by the Rev. Mr. Hervey,’ 2 vols., London, 1756, 8vo; reprinted in 1757 and 1793.

[Orton and Stenhouse's Letters to the Rev. Thomas Stedman, i. 16; Gent. Mag. December 1852, pp. 605–7; Lowndes's Bibl. Man. (Bohn), p. 1196.]

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