`History of England' from the accession of George III, was undertaken in 1834, at the request of A. J. Valpy. It was written, in the first instance, with great rapidity, to meet the requirements of a cheap monthly issue; but Hughes gladly availed himself of a subsequent opportunity of publishing it with considerable corrections, and with a large portion actually rewritten. A third edition was issued in 1846 in seven octavo volumes. Other projects were entertained, such as an English edition of Strabo in conjunction with Dr. John Lee and Mr. Akerman, and a compilation of commentaries on the Bible; but he did not live to execute them. In May 1846 he was presented to the perpetual curacy of Edgware, Middlesex, by Dr. Lee. Hughes died on 11 Aug. 1847, having married April 1823 Ann Maria, daughter of the Rev. John Forster of Great Yarmouth, who survived until 5 April 1890.
Besides the works mentioned above, Hughes was also author of: 1. 'A Defence of the Apostle St. Paul against the accusation of Gamaliel Smith, Esq. [i.e. Jeremy Bentham], in a recent publication entitled "Not Paul but Jesus." Part I.,' 8vo, 1824. Part ii., published the same year, was entitled `On the Miracles of St. Paul.' 2. 'A Letter to Godfrey Higgins on the subject of his "Horæ Sabbaticæ,"' 8vo, 1826. 3. 'The Doctrine of St. Paul regarding the Divine Nature of Jesus Christ considered; more particularly in answer to a pamphlet by Benjamin Mardon, intitled "The Apostle Paul an Unitarian,"' 8vo, 1827. 4. 'An Examination of St. Paul's Doctrine respecting the Divinity of Christ, in which are noticed some of Mr. Belsham's arguments in his translation and exposition of St. Paul's Epistles,' 8vo, 1828. 5. 'An Essay on the Political System of Europe … with a memoir and portrait,' 8vo, 1855; it had been also prefixed to the third edition of his 'History,' 1846. 6. 'Remarks on "An Essay on the Eternity of the World, by a Sceptic,"' the second edition of which was published in vol. xxvi. of `The Pamphleteer,' 8vo, 1813, &c. His literary and artistic collections were sold by Sotheby in January and February 1848.
[Memoir referred to; Gent. Mag. 1848, pt. i 310-11.]
HUGHES, WILLIAM (d. 1600), bishop of St. Asaph, was the son of Hugh ap Kynric of Carnarvonshire, and Gwenllian, daughter of John Vychan ab John ab Gruffydd ab Owen Pygott. On his father's side he is said to have been descended from one of the fifteen tribes of Gwynedd (Rowlands, Cambrian Bibliography, p. 46). According to Wood he was at first educated at Oxford, ‘afterwards retiring to Christ's College, Cambridge.’ Strype refers to him as ‘sometime of Oxford.’ His connection with Oxford has, however, been doubted, and it is certain that he matriculated sizar of Queens' College, Cambridge, in November 1554; took his B.A. degree in 1556–7, became fellow of Christ's 1557, M.A. 1560, B.D. 1565, and that in the last-named year he was appointed Lady Margaret preacher. About 1560 he became chaplain to Thomas Howard, fourth duke of Norfolk [q.v.] Attending his patron to Oxford in 1568, he was on 19 April incorporated B.D. of that university ‘as he stood at Cambridge,’ and in 1570, through the influence of the duke, he was allowed to proceed D.D.
In 1567 Hughes preached at Leicester, and gave offence by his exposition of the article ‘De Descensu Christi ad Inferos.’ A complaint was made to the university. On 7 July 1567 a decree of the senate was issued referring the matter to a committee, Hughes to be bound by its decision without appeal. In the same month another complaint was sent through the Earl of Leicester of Hughes's 'insincere and unsound doctrines of religion.' At the earl's suggestion the matter was left to him, Sir William Cecil, then chancellor of the university, and Archbishop Parker. Parker advised that he should be restrained from preaching; but the only visible result was an order of the chancellor ‘that no manner of person there should in any sermon, open disputation, or reading move any question or doubt upon the article “De Descensu Christi ad Inferos.”’
From 1567 to his death Hughes was rector of Llysvaen in his native county. He was also rector of Dennington, Suffolk, but resigned the benefice before 10 Dec. 1573. On 30 Jan. 1565 Bishop Richard Davies [q. v.] of St. David's wrote to Cecil with reference to a vacancy in the see of Llandaff: ‘I have heard that one Mr. Hughes sueth for Llandaff, a man to me unknown, but by divers I have heard of him that he is utterly unlearned in divinity, and not able to render reason of his faith.’ In December 1573 Hughes was made bishop of St. Asaph.
In the administration of his diocese Hughes was not successful. Guilty of great abuses himself, he failed to correct the faults of his clergy. His maladministration at last became the subject of a special inquiry. The report, ‘endorsed by the Lord Treasurer's own hand,’ dated 24 Feb. 1587, described the bishop as holding in commendam (besides the archdeaconry and the rectory of Llysvaen, which he held by virtue of a faculty obtained in 1573)