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SCOFFIN, WILLIAM (1655?–1732), nonconformist minister, born about 1655, was a self-taught man and a good mathematician. He was probably a schoolmaster, who obtained orders. John Rastrick [q. v.] appointed him curate of Brothertoft, a chapelry in the parish of Kirton, Lincolnshire. This curacy he resigned in August 1686, thus preceding Rastrick in nonconformity. Soon after the passing of the Toleration Act (1689) he became the minister of a nonconformist congregation at Sleaford, Lincolnshire, where for over forty years he preached with acceptance, and, though very poor, was noted for his charities. He died in November 1732, aged 77, and was buried on 12 Nov. He was married. He published:

  1. 'Two Funeral Sermons on … Katherine Disney,' &c,, 1692, 12mo (preached at Kirkstead and Swinderby on 18 and 20 May 1690).
  2. 'A Help to True Spelling and Reading; with … Principles of Religion in Easy Metre; a Scriptural Catechism' (Palmer).
  3. 'A Help to the Singing Psalm-tunes … with Directions for making an Instrument with one String … and a Collection of Tunes in 2 Parts' (ib.)

[Rastrick's Account of his Nonconformity, 1705; Calamy's Account, 1713, p. 401; Palmer's Nonconformist's Memorial, 1802, ii. 438 sq.; Dickenson's Nonconformist Register, ed. Turner, 1881, p. 312.]

A. G.