Horton, Thomas

, a learned and pious English divine, the son of Laurence Horton, a merchant of London, was born in that city. In July 1623 he was admitted a pensioner of Emanuel college, Cambridge, where he took the degree of B. A. in 1626, and that of master in 1630. He was also a fellow pf his college. In 1637 he took the degree of B. D. and was appointed one of the twelve university preachers. The following year he was chosen master of Queen’s-college, in that university, after the death of Mr. Herbert Palmer, and in July of the same year minister of St. Mary Colechurch, in London, a donative of the Mercers’ company, of which his father was a member.

In Oct. 1641, he was elected professor of divinity at Gresham-coliege, and in May 1647, was elected preacher to the honourable society of Gray’s-inn, of which he was also a member. In 1649 he was created D. D. and the ensuing year was chosen vice-chancellor of Cambridge. In 1651 he appears to have resigned the office of preacher of Gray’s-inn; and marrying about the same time, he procured an order from parliament that he should not be obliged by that step to vacate his professorship at Gresham college. The Gresham committee, however, referring to the founder’s will, came to a resolution that the place was | vacant, but did not at this time proceed to an election. In August 1652, Dr. Horton was incorporated D. D. in the university of Oxford, and the year following was nominated one of the triers or commissioners for the approbation of young ministers. In 1656, the Gresham committee resumed the affair of his professorship, and proceeded to a new election, but Dr. Horton obtained a fresh dispensation from Cromwell by means of secretary Thurloe, and continued in quiet possession, holding with it his headship of Queen’s college, Cambridge. On the restoration he was obliged to resign the headship to Dr. Martin, who had been ejected by the parliamentary visitors; and although he had interest enough at court to retain his professorship for a little time, he was obliged in 1661 to resign it. When the Savoy conference was appointed, he was nominated as an assistant on the side of the presbyterians, but, according to Baxter, never sat among them; and although one of the number of the divines ejected by the Bartholomew act, he conformed afterwards,- and in June 1666, was admitted to the vicarage of Great St. Helen, in Bishopsgate-street, London, which he held till his death, in March 1673.

Dr. Wallis, who had been under his tuition at Cambridge, and after his decease published a volume of his sermons, with some account of his life, says he was “a pious and learned man, an hard student, a sound divine, a good textuary, very well skilled in the oriental languages, very well accomplished for the work of the ministry, and very conscientious in the discharge of it.” Nor did the close application to his province as a divine, occasion him wholly to neglect his juvenile studies. In the Cambridge verses, entitled “Sac-'ipa,” written upon the restoration of Charles II. there is a poem composed by Dr. Horton, while master of Queen’s. He printed but three sermons himself, but left many others prepared for the press; and after his death were published, 1. “Forty-six Sermons upon the whole eighth chapter of the Epistle to the Romans,” Lond. 1674, fol. 2. “A choice and practical Exposition, upon the 4, 47, 51, and 63 Psalms,” ibid. 1675, fol. 3. “One hundred select Sermons upon several texts,” with the author’s life by Dr. Wallis, ibid. 1679, fol. He left also some sacramental, funeral, and other sermons, prepared for the press, but which have not been printed. 1


Ath. Ox. vol. It. Ward’s Lives of the Gresham Professers.