Wix, Samuel (DNB00)


WIX, SAMUEL (1771–1861), divine, born in London on 9 Feb. 1771, was the second son of Edward Wix of St. Peter's, Cornhill. He was educated at the Charterhouse under Samuel Berdmore [q. v.], and at Christ's College, Cambridge, where he was admitted pensioner on 8 Nov. 1791, and elected scholar on 6 Dec. 1792. He graduated B.A. in 1796 and M.A. in 1799. He was apparently admitted at the Inner Temple (16 Aug. 1783), but was ordained deacon in 1798 and priest in 1800. After holding curacies in Chelsea, Ealing, Eynsford, Kent, and Faulkbourne, Essex, successively, he was presented in 1802 to the living of Inworth, Essex. Six years later he was elected hospitaller and vicar of St. Bartholomew's the Less in London. He was also for a time president of Sion College. An adherent of the old high-church party, he cared more for devotion than polemics, yet he involved himself in controversy. His first publication was ‘Scriptural Illustrations of the Thirty-nine Articles, with a practical Commentary on each … affectionately intended to promote Religious Peace and Unity,’ 1808, 8vo. It was followed in 1818 by a more ambitious eirenicon, published originally in the ‘Eclectic Review,’ entitled ‘Reflections concerning the Expediency of a Council of the Church of England and the Church of Rome being holden, with a view to accommodate Religious Differences.’ This produced, among other answers, an angry reply from Thomas Burgess (1756–1837) [q. v.], bishop of St. David's. Wix wrote two temperate rejoinders. His ‘Reflections’ attracted the attention of Jerome, comte de Salis, who became Wix's lifelong friend, and caused his book to be translated at his own expense into several foreign languages. But Wix was opposed to granting Romanists political rights, and in 1822 issued a pamphlet in support of his views.

Wix, who wrote many similar pamphlets, was a man of singular simplicity of character and of vigorous intellect. He was a fellow of the Royal Society and the Society of Antiquaries. He died at the vicarage, St. Bartholomew's, London, on 4 Sept. 1861. A tablet to his memory was erected in the church by order of the governors of St. Bartholomew's Hospital. By his wife, a Miss Walford of the Essex family, he had several children. The eldest son, Edward Wix (1802–1866), a graduate of Trinity College, Oxford, was sometime archdeacon of Newfoundland, and afterwards vicar of St. Michael's, Swanmore, near Ryde, where he died on 24 Nov. 1866, being succeeded in the parish by his son, Richard Hooker Edward Wix (1832–1884). He was a frequent contributor to the ‘Gentleman's Magazine,’ and the author of ‘Six Months of a Newfoundland Missionary's Journal,’ 1836, 8vo, and of ‘A Retrospect of the Operations of the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in North America,’ 2nd edit. 1833, 8vo.

[Admission entry at Christ's Coll. per the Master; Gent. Mag. 1861 ii. 453, 1862 i. 94–6, 1866 ii. 849; Foster's Alumni Oxon. 1715–1886; Allibone's Dict. of English Lit.; Brit. Mus. Cat.]

G. Le G. N.