Synge, Edward

, a pious and learned archbishop of Tuam in Ireland, was the second son of Edward, bishop of Cork, &c. and was born April the 6th, 1659, at Inishonaner, of which parish his father was then vicar. He was educated at the grammar school at Cork, and thence admitted a commoner at Christchurch, Oxford, where he tooTt the degree of B. A. but on his father’s death returned to Ireland, and finished his studies in the university of Drabiin. His first preferment was two small parishes in the di-ocese of Meath, both together of about the yearly value of 100l. These he exchanged for the vicarage of Christchurch in the city of Cork, of the same value, but one of the most painful and laborious cures in Ireland. This he served for above twenty years, mostly without any assistant; preached twice every Sunday, catechised, and discharged all the other duties of his function. Some ecclesiastical preferments, tenable with his great cure, were given him at different times by the bishops of Cork and Cloyne, which at last increased his income to near 400l. per annum. In this situation an offer was made him by government;,' in 1699, of the deanery of Derry; but, although this uras a dignity, and double in value to all that he had, yet he; declined it from a motive of filial piety. He would not; separate himself from an aged mother, who either could not, | or was unwilling, to be removed. Remaining therefore at Cork, he was chosen proctor for the chapter, in the convocation called in 1703. Soon after, the duke of Ormond, then lord-lieutenant of Ireland, gave him the crown’s title to the deanery of St. Patrick’s, in Dublin. But the chapter disputed this title, and claimed a right of election in themselves; and to assert this right, they chose Dr. John Sterne, then chancellor of the cathedral, their dean. The title of the crown being thus thought defective, and, after a full discussion of the point, found to be so,Dr. King, archbishop of Dublin, proposed an accommodation, which took place, and in consequence Dr. Sterne continued dean, and the archbishop gave the chancellorship to Mr. Synge.

This brought Mr. Synge to Dublin, though without any addition of income, or relaxation from labour, for the chancellor of St. Patrick’s, as such, has the care of the parish of St. Werburgh, one of the most populous in Dublin. This great cure Mr. Synge served for eight years, preaching almost constantly to a crowded audience. During this period he took his degree of D. D. and a new convocation being summoned in 1713, he was chosen proctor for the chapter of St. Patrick’s. On Dr. Sterne’s promotion to the see of Dromore, the archbishop of Dublin appointed Dr. Synge his vicar-general, in which office he continued until he was made bishop of Raphoe, in 17 14. His distinguished zeal for the revolution, and the Hanover succession, which had effectually obstructed his preferment in the latter years of queen Anne’s reign, now as effectually promoted it, for, in 1716, he was made archbishop of Tuam, over which see he presided about twentyfive years. He died at Tuam, July 24, 1741, aged eightytwo, and was buried in the church-yard of his own cathedral.

It is remarkable of this prelate, that he was the son of one; bishop the nephew of another, namely, George Synge, bislnop of Cloyne and the father of two bishops, Edward, bishop of Elphin, and Nicholas, bishop of Killaloe. This learned divine, in the course of his ministry, composed and published several excellent treatises for the promotion of piety and virtue; they are written in a sensible, easy, and rational manner; and have been so well received by the public, as to go through many editions. His works form altogether 4 vols. 12mo, but consist of small tracts, whi ch are all printed separately for Rivingtons and others. It has been said of archbishop Synge, that his life was as | exemplary as his writings were instructive and that, “what he wrote he believed and what he believed he practised.1


Harris’s edition of Ware.~Biog. Brit.