Hudson, Dr. John

, a learned English critic, was born at Widehope, near Cockermouth, in Cumberland, 1662; and, after having been educated in grammar and classical learning by Jerome Hechstetter, who lived in that neighbourhood, was entered in 1676 of Queen’s-college, Oxford. Soon after he had taken the degree of M. A. in 1684, he removed to University-college, of which he was unanimously chosen fellow in March 1686, and became a most considerable and esteemed tutor. In April 1701, on the resignation of Dr. Thomas Hyde, he was elected principal keeper of the Bodleian library; and in June following, accumulated the degrees of B. and D. D. With this librarian’s place, which he held till his death, he kept his fellowship till June 1711, when, according to the statutes of the college, he would have been obliged to resign it; but he had just before disqualified himself for holding it any longer, by marrying Margaret, daughter of sir Robert Harrison, knight, an alderman of Oxford, and a mercer. In 1712, he was appointed principal of St. Maryby the chancellor of the university, through the | interest of Dr. Radcliffe; and it is said, that to Hudson’s interest with^this physician, the university of Oxford is obliged for the very ample benefactions she afterwards received from him. Hudson’s studious and sedentary way of life, and extreme abstemiousness, brought him at length into a bad habit of body, which turning to a dropsy, kept him about a year in a very languishing condition. He died Nov. 27, 1719, leaving a widow, and one daughter.

His publications were, 1. “Introductio ad Chronographiam; sive ars chronologica in Epitomen redacta,1691, 8vo. Extracted from Beveridge’s treatise on that subject, for the use of his pupils. 2. “Velieius Paterculus, cum variis lectionibus, & notis, &- indice,1693, 8vo. A second edition, with the notes enlarged, in 1711. 3. “Thucydides,1696, folio. A neat and beautiful edition, but somewhat eclipsed in its credit by that of Duker and Wasse. 4. “Geographies Veteris Scriptores Graeci Minores cum Dissertationibus & Armotationibus Henrici Dodwelli,” 8vo. The first published in 1698, the second in 1703, and the third and fourth in 1712. 5. “Dionysii Halicarnassensis opera omnia,1704, 2 vols. folio. A beautiful and valuable edition, enriched with the various readings of an ancient copy in the Vatican library, and of several manuscripts in France. The learned editor has subjoined to his own notes several of Sylburgius, Portus, Stephens, Casaubon, and Vaiesius. 6. “Dionysius Longinus,1710, 4to, and 1718, 8vo. A very beautiful edition, and the notes, like all the rest of Hudson’s, very short. 7. “Moeris Atticista, de vocibus Atticis & Hellenicis. Gregorius Martinus de Grsecarum literarum pronunciatione,1712, 8vo. 8. “Fabulse Æsopicae,Greek and Latin, 1718, 8vo. i). “Flavii Josephi Opera,” he had just finished, but did not live to publish. He had proceeded as far as the third index, when, finding himself unable to go quite through, he recommended the work to his intimate friend Mr. Antony Hall, who published it in 1720, in 2 vols. folio. It is a correct and beautiful edition, and deserving of the ample commendation bestowed upon, it by Fabricius, Harwood, Harles, and Oberthur. The care of Mr. Hall extended not only to the works of his deceased friend, but to his family, for he married his widow, whom he also left a widow.

Dr. Hudson intended, if he had lived, to publish a catalogue of the Bodleian library, which he had caused to | be fairly transcribed in 6 vols. folio. He was an able assistant to several editors in Oxford, particularly to Dr. Gregory in his “Euclid,” and to the industrious Mr. Hearne in his “Livy,” &c. He corresponded with many learned men in foreign countries; with Muratori, Salvini, and Bianchini, in Italy; with Boivin, Kuster, and Lequien, in France; with Olearius, Menckenius, Christopher Woifius, and, whom he chiefly esteemed, John Albert Fabricius, in Germany; Eric Benzel, in Sweden; Frederic Rostgard, in Denmark; with Pezron, Reland, Le Clerc, in Holland, &c. He used to complain of the vast expence of foreign letters; for he was far from being rich, never having been possessed of any ecclesiastical preferment; of which he used also to make frequent and not unjust complaints. He met, sometimes, however, with generous patronage. When employed on his edition of Josephus, the earl of Caernarvon (afterwards duke of Chandos) hearing of his merit and the expensive nature of his undertaking, sent him a present of two hundred guineas, which Dr. Hudson handsomely acknowledges in the dedication to the earl’s son, lord Wilton, of his edition of Esop’s Fables. On his decease, several sets of his Josephus were disposed of by his widow, at twelve shillings per set, a work which now ranks in the very first class of Variorum editions in folio. Dr. Hudson had been long conversant with Josephus, had revised sir Roger L’Estrange’s translation, and added some critical notes. He also digested and finished Dr. Willis’s two discourses prefixed to that work. Hearne was a kind of pupil to Dr. Hudson, and directed by him in his critical studies. 1


Biog. Brit. Hall’s preface to the Josephus. —Ath. Ox. vol. II. Story of his daughter’s marriage, Gait. Mag. vol. IV. p. 553.