Parsons, Bartholomew (DNB00)

PARSONS, BARTHOLOMEW (1574–1642), divine, was a native of Somerset, and of the same family as Robert Parsons (1546–1610) [q. v.], the jesuit. He entered Oriel College, Oxford, in 1590, being then aged sixteen or thereabouts, and graduated B.A. on 29 Jan. 1599–1600, M.A. on 9 July 1603, and B.D. on 28 May 1611. He took holy orders, and preached frequently ‘in the parts about Oxford, being much followed and admired for his hospitality and preaching.’ He was appointed chaplain to the bishop of Salisbury, and in 1605 rector of Manningford-Bruce, Wiltshire. In 1611 he became rector of Collingbourne-Kingston, on the presentation of the dean and chapter of Winchester, and in 1620 rector of Ludgershall, both in Wiltshire, holding the latter incumbency till his death (cf. State Papers, Dom. cccxxvii, 29 June 1636). He died in February 1641–2, and was buried under the south wall of the chancel of Ludgershall church on 27 Feb. 1641–2.

Of his sons, Bartholomew matriculated from Gloucester Hall on 7 Nov. 1634, and proceeded B.A. from Balliol on 31 Jan. 1637–8. On 11 July 1648 it was reported to the committee of both kingdoms at Derby House that he was committed prisoner to Peterhouse, Cambridge, for raising arms against the parliament. On 16 Nov. following he was discharged (State Papers, Interregnum, D xvi.) Another son, John, matriculated from Queen's College, Oxford, on 6 April 1638.

Bartholomew the elder published eight sermons between 1616 and 1637; the earliest, dedicated to William Herbert, earl of Pembroke, was entitled: ‘The Barren Trees Doome. A Sermon preached at Newberg on the 5th day of August, being the day of his majesties most happy deliverance from the bloody conspiracy of the Earle of Gowry and his brother Alexander,’ London, 1616. Another, entitled ‘Boaz and Ruth blessed, or a Sacred Contract honoured with a solemne benediction,’ Oxford, 1633, which was dedicated to ‘my much respected friends Mr. Peregrine Thistlethwaite the Yonger, esq., and Mrs. Dorothy Thistlethwaite, his wife,’ was reprinted in vol. ii. of ‘Conjugal Duty set forth in a Collection of … Wedding Sermons,’ London, 1736, 12mo. A third was ‘preached at the funerall of Sir Francis Pele, baronet, at Collingbourne-Kingston in the county of Wilts, on the 8 day of December 1635,’ Oxford, 1636. Two were published at Oxford in 1637.

[Foster's Alumni; Wood's Athenæ Oxon. ii. 25, and Fasti, i. 299, 343; Shadwell's Registrum Orielense, p. 95; Watt's Bibl. Brit. In the church of Collingbourne-Kingston there is a monument to the memory of Parsons's infant daughter, died 25 Feb. 1620. Information kindly sent by the Rev. H. F. Gibson, rector of Collingbourne-Kingston.]

W. A. S.