Samuel Waldegrave

The Life And Ministry Of Samuel Waldegrave

Dictionary Of National Biography (1885-1900):

Samuel Waldegrave (1817–1869), bishop of Carlisle, second son of William, eighth earl Waldegrave, by his wife Elizabeth, daughter of Samuel Whitbread [q. v.], was born at Cardington, Bedfordshire, on 13 Sept. 1817. He was educated at Cheam at a school kept by Charles Mayo (1792–1846) [q. v.], who taught his pupils on the Pestalozzian system. From here he went to Balliol College, Oxford, matriculating on 10 April 1835. His college tutor was Tait, afterwards archbishop of Canterbury, who remained his friend throughout his life. He graduated B.A. in 1839 with a first class in classics and mathematics, and M.A. in 1842. On 22 Nov. 1860 he received the degree of D.D. by diploma. In 1839 he was elected to a fellowship at All Souls’ College, which he retained till his marriage in 1845, and was also appointed librarian. He served the office of public examiner in the school of mathematics from Michaelmas term 1842 to Easter term 1844. Waldegrave was ordained deacon in 1842, and was licensed to the curacy of St. Ebbe’s, Oxford, having for his fellow curates Charles Thomas Baring [q. v.] and Edward Arthur Litton. While at St. Ebbe’s he took a leading part in the building of the district church of Holy Trinity in that parish. In 1844 he accepted the college living of Barford St. Martin, near Salisbury. In 1845 he was appointed select preacher at Oxford, and in 1854 was chosen Bampton lecturer. His selection of a subject was indicative of the narrow limits of his theological sympathies, and under the heading of ‘New Testament Millenarianism’ he elaborately refuted the views of those expositors who maintained the millennium theory. The ‘Bampton Lectures’ were published in 1855, and a second edition was issued in 1866.

When Robert Bickersteth [q. v.] was appointed bishop of Ripon in 1857, Palmerston presented Waldegrave to the residentiary canonry at Salisbury vacated by his preferment. Although differing widely from the bishop, Walter Kerr Hamilton [q. v.], Waldegrave’s relations with him were friendly, and he was elected proctor for the chapter in convocation. He generally took, in the debates of this body, the side of ‘the liberal minority’ (Illustrated London News, 17 Nov. 1860). When Henry Montagu Villiers [q. v.] was translated to Durham, Palmerston nominated Waldegrave for the vacant bishopric of Carlisle, and he was consecrated in York minster on 11 Nov. 1860. He was a zealous bishop, and made his presence felt in all parts of his diocese. His rule was on strictly ‘evangelical’ lines, and the clergy who differed from him in opinions or practices were resolutely discountenanced. He greatly assisted church work in the poorer parishes of his diocese by founding in 1862 the Carlisle Diocesan Church Extension Society. Waldegrave was not a frequent speaker in the House of Lords, but he supported Lord Shaftesbury in his efforts to legislate against extreme ritualism, and opposed vigorously all attempts to relax the law of Sunday observance. One of his most elaborate speeches was in opposition to a clause in the offices and oaths bill permitting judicial and corporate officials to wear their insignia of office in places of worship of any denomination (Hansard, clxxxviii. 1376). Although a whig in politics, he was strongly against Mr. Gladstone’s proposals for the disestablishment of the Irish church. When the archbishopric of York became vacant in 1862, it is stated on good authority that Lord Palmerston was disposed to translate Waldegrave, but the offer was not made (Lord Houghton, Memoirs; General Grey, Memoirs). Waldegrave’s long and fatal illness first made itself felt in 1868, and at the beginning of 1869 he was compelled to give up active work. After much acute suffering, he died at Rose Castle on 1 Oct. 1869. His old friend Archbishop Tait visited him on the day of his death and said the commendatory prayer at his bedside. He was buried within the precincts of Carlisle Cathedral, where in the south aisle, is a recumbent effigy to his memory. In 1845 he married Jane Ann, daughter of Francis Pym of the Hasells, Bedfordshire. By her he had a son Samuel Edmund, and a daughter Elizabeth Janet, who was married to Richard Reginald Fawkes, vicar of Spondon, Derbyshire. Besides his ‘Bampton Lectures,’ Waldegrave published numerous sermons and charges, the most important of these being: ‘The Way of Peace,’ university sermons, 1848, 4th ed. 1866; ‘Words of Eternal Life,’ eighteen sermons, 1864; ‘Christ the True Altar, and other Sermons,’ with introduction by Rev. J. C. Ryle, 1870.

Samuel Waldegrave (1817-1869) was an Anglican preacher. In 1842, he was appointed to the curacy of St. Ebbe’s, Oxford. In 1846, he became Rector of Barford St. Martin, near Salisbury. In 1857, he was appointed Canon of Salisbury, and then Bishop of the See of Carlisle. In our judgment, he nurtured high views of sovereign grace. Although his printed sermons speak of making an “offer” to sinners, yet they seem to be always qualified and only given to those who have been made sensible of their need under the regenerating power of God.