Hunter, Christopher

, an eminent physician and antiquary of Durham, was the son of Thomas Hunter, gent, of Medomsley, in the county of Durham, where he was born in 1675: he was educated at the free-school of Houghton-le-Spring, founded by the celebrated Bernard Gilpin, and was admitted of St. John’s college, Cambridge, where he continued until he had taken his bachelor’s degree in 1698. In 1701 he received a faculty or licence from Dr. John Brookbank, spiritual chancellor at Durham, to piactice physic through the whole diocese of Durham. After some years he removed to the city of Durham; and though he published little, was always ready to assist in any literary undertaking. He is acknowledged by Mr. Horsley and Mr. Gordon to be very exact and masterly in the knowledge of antiquities. Dr. Wilkins mentions him with respect in the preface to the first volume of his “Councils,” to which he furnished some materials; and Mr. Bourne was much indebted to him in compiling his “History of Newcastle” He published a new edition of “The Ancient Rites and Monuments of the church of Durham,1733, without his name; and a curious, and now very scarce work, entitled “An Illustration of Mr. Daniel Neale’s History of the Puritans, in the article of Peter Smart, M. A. from original papers, with remarks.1736, 8vo. In April 1743, he published proposals for printing by subscription, in 2 vols. 4to. “Antiquitates Parochiales Dioc. Dunelm. hucusque ineditae,” but no further progress appears to have been made. Perhaps this might be owing to an | unfortunate accident he met with, in searching the archives of the cathedral, where he spilt a bottle of ink on the celebrated copy of Magna Charta, and was never afterwards permitted to come there. In 1757 be retired from Durham, with his family, to Unthank, an estate belonging to his wife, in Shotley parish, Northumberland, where he died July 13 of that year, and was buried in Shotley church. 1

1 Nichols’s Bowyer.