who, ‘instead of keeping his flock within the fold, encouraged them to stray,’ ‘a stranger ravaging his flock.’ Kidder seems to have been continually in trouble with the cathedral chapter; they refused to attend his ordinations, thinking that he ordained nonconformists without having properly ascertained that they had really become churchmen. The whole tone of his charges to the clergy, and also of his autobiography, shows his false position. Kidder and his wife were both killed in their bed in the palace at Wells by the falling of a stack of chimneys through the roof in the great storm of 26 Nov. 1703.
Few men were more obnoxious to high churchmen than Kidder, but it is hardly fair to charge him, as he has been charged, with being a mere time-server. He refused many offers of preferment, including at least one bishopric, that of Peterborough; and his literary work, if nothing else, certainly pointed him out for advancement. A story is told, much to his credit, that in 1696–7 it was intimated to him that he must go up to the House of Lords and vote for the attainder of Sir John Fenwick, and upon his replying that he must wait to know the merits of the case, he was asked, ‘Don't you know whose bread you are eating?’ To which he replied, ‘I eat no man's bread but poor Dr. Ken's,’ and, to show his principles, went up and voted against the bill. The story that he made the deprived bishop an allowance from the see is apocryphal.
Kidder was a most industrious and, in many respects, valuable writer. His first work of any importance was entitled ‘Convivium Cœleste: a Plain and Familiar Discourse concerning the Lord's Supper.’ It was published in 1674, but was a reprint of what he had preached to his recalcitrant parishioners at Raine some years before. In 1684 he published the first part of his ‘Demonstration of the Messias.’ Other parts were published at different times, and the whole was not completed until 1700. In 1693 he was appointed Boyle lecturer, and he inserted the substance of the lectures he then delivered in the ‘Demonstration.’ It was intended in the first instance to promote the conversion of the Jews, and his knowledge of Hebrew and the oriental languages well qualified him for the task; but it was also directed against the arguments of the deists. In 1684 he undertook the translation of Dr. Lightfoot's works into Latin. In 1694 he published ‘A Commentary on the Five Books of Moses, with a Dissertation concerning the Author of the said Books, and a general Argument to each of them,’ 2 vols. This was part of a joint work which was to be executed by London clergymen for the use of families. It was to have embraced the whole of the Old and New Testaments, but the scheme fell through because the attention of the writers was diverted to the Roman controversy. In 1692 he published ‘A Charge to the Clergy of his Diocese at his Primary Visitation begun at Oxbridge June 2, 1692.’ In 1698 appeared his ‘Life of Anthony Horneck’ [q. v.] His last work was a posthumous one, ‘Critical Remarks upon some Difficult Passages of Scripture, in a Letter to Sir Peter King,’ 1719 and 1725. Kidder also published a vast number of sermons, tracts, and fugitive pieces. Of the sermons the first was entitled ‘The Young Man's Duty; a Discourse showing the necessity of seeking the Lord betimes,’ &c., which was published as early as 1663, and became so popular that it reached a tenth edition in 1750; ‘The Christian Sufferer Supported,’ 1680, a sermon preached at Guildhall Chapel on 16 July 1682; a funeral sermon on Mr. W. Allen, a London citizen who wrote in defence of the church of England, on 17 Aug. 1686; another on Thomas Pakeman in 1691; one ‘On the Resurrection,’ 1694; ‘Twelve Sermons preached upon several occasions,’ 1697; and ‘A Discourse concerning Sins of Infirmity and Wilful Sins,’ and another ‘Of Restitution,’ which were to be distributed among the poor of his diocese, and were sent to the press a very short time before his death. His ‘Tracts against Popery’ include ‘A Second Dialogue between a new Catholic Convert and a Protestant, shewing why he cannot believe the Doctrine of Transubstantiation’ (1686); ‘An Examination of Bellarmine's Thirteenth Note of the Church, Of the Confession of Adversaries’ (1687); ‘The Judgment of Private Discretion in Matters of Religion Defended’ (1687) (this was originally preached as a sermon at St. Paul's, Covent Garden, 1686); ‘Texts which the Papists cite for proof of their Doctrine of the Sacrifice of the Mass examined’ (1686); ‘Reflections on a French Testament printed at Bordeaux in 1686; pretended to be translated out of the Latin into French by the Divines of Louvain’ (1690). Among his tracts on other subjects were ‘Charity Directed, or the Way to give Alms to the greatest advantage, in a Letter to a Friend’ (1677); ‘A Discourse of the Sacraments,’ with some heads of examination and prayers (1684); ‘Help for Children's understanding the Church Catechism’ (undated). He also collected a number of Hebrew proverbs, which were published in an appendix to Ray's ‘Collection of Proverbs.’ Some Latin letters passed between