Fisher, Edward

, supposed by Wood to be the son of sir Edward Fisher, of Mickleton in Gloucestershire, knr. was probably born in that county, and educated at Oxford, where he became a gentleman commoner of Brasen-nose college in August 1627, took one degree in arts, and soon after left college, being called home, as Wood thinks, by his relations, who were then in decayed circumstances. At home, however, he improved that learning which he had acquired at the university so much, that he became a noted person among the learned for his extensive acquaintance with ecclesiastical history, and the writings of the Fathers, and for his skill in the Greek and Hebrew languages. Sharing in the misfortunes of his family, and being involved in debt, he retired to Caermarthen in Wales, where he taught school, but afterwards was obliged to go to Ireland, where he died, but at what time is not mentioned. He published, 1. “An Appeal to thy Conscience,Oxford, 1644, 4to. 2. “A Christian caveat to the Old and New Sabbatarians, or, a Vindication of our old Gospel Festival,” &c. London, 1650, 4to. This tract, of which there were four editions, was answered by one Giles Collier, and by Dr. Collings. 3. “An Answer to Sixteen Queries, touching the rise and observation of Christmas, propounded by Mr. John Hemming of Uttoxeter, in Staffordshire;” printed with the “Christian Caveat,” in 1655. But the most noted of his writings was entitled “The Marrow of Modern Divinity,1646, 8vo. This treatise is memorable for having occasioned a controversy of much warmth, in the church of Scotland, about eighty years after its publication. In 1720 it was reprinted in Scotland by the rev. James Hogg, and excited the | attention of the general assembly, or supreme ecclesiastical court of Scotland, by which many passages in it were condemned, and the clergy were ordered to warn their people against reading it; but it was on the other hand defended by Boston, and the Erskines, who soon after seceded from the church (see Erskine), upon account of what they considered as her departure from her primitive doctrines. Fisher’s sentiments are highly Calvinistical. 1


Ath, Ox. vol. II.