Mead, Matthew

, a nonconformist divine of the seventeenth century, was descended from a reputable family in Buckinghamshire, where he was born in 1629. Of his early life no account has been preserved, and the first notice we have of him, is as possessing the living of Great Brickhiil in his native county. In Jan. 1658 he was appointed by Oliver Cromwell, to the cure of the new chapel at Shadwell, from which he was ejected for non-conformity in 1662. In 1663 he resided in Worcester-house, at Stepney, where he brought up a family of thirteen children, one of whom was the illustrious subject of our next article, and alone sufficient to give celebrity to the name of Mead. When a temporary liberty was granted to the dissenters, Mr. Mead returned from Holland, where he had resided some time; and in 1674 the spacious meetinghouse at Stepney was erected for him, the four large pillars of which were presented to him by the States of Holland, as was frequently related by one of his successors. In 1683, he was accused of being concerned in the Ryehouse plot, for which lord Russel and others were executed; but after an examination before the privy council, in the presence of Charles II. he vindicated his innocence in a manner so satisfactory, that his majesty himself ordered him to be discharged. He died at Stepney, Oct. 16, 1699, aged seventy. He published some sermons and pious tracts, the most popular of which are his, I. “Almost Christian.” 2. “The good of early obedience.” 3. “The Young Man’s Remembrancer,” &c. 2


Calamy.—Funeral Sermon for, by Howe.