Sadler, John

, an English writer, descended of an ancient family in Shropshire, was born in 1615, and admitted pensioner of Emanuel college, in Cambridge, Nov. I 3, 1630, where he became eminent for his knowledge in the Hebrew and Oriental languages. After having taken his degrees at the usual periods, that of M. A. in 1638, in x which year he was chosen fellow of his college, he removed to Lincoln’s-Inn; where he made a considerable progress in the study of the law, and was admitted one of the masters in ordinary in the court of chancery, June 1, 1644, and was likewise one of the two masters of requests. In 1649, he was chosen town-clerk of London, and published in the same year in 4to, a work with this title, “Rights of the Kingdom: or, Customs of our Ancestors, touching the duty, power, election, or succession, of our kings and parliaments, our true liberty, due allegiance, three estates, their legislative power, original, judicial, and executive, | the militia; freely discussed through the British, Saxon, Norman, laws and histories.” It was reprinted in 1682, and has always been valued by lawyers and others. He was greatly esteemed by Oliver Cromwell; who, by a letter from Cork, of Dec. 1, 1649, offered him the place of chief justice of Munster in Ireland, with a salary of 1000l. per annum; but this he excused himself from accepting. In August 1650, he was made master of Magdalen college, in Cambridge, upon the removal of Dr. Rainbow, who again succeeded Sadler after the restoration. In 1653, he was chosen member of parliament for Cambridge. In 1655, by warrant of Cromwell, pursuant to an ordinance for better regulating and limiting the jurisdiction of the high court of chancery, he was continued a master in chancery, when their number was reduced to six only. It was by his interest, that the Jews obtained the privilege of building a synagogue in ‘London. In 1658, he was, chosen member of parliament for Yarmouth; and in December of the year following, appointed first commissioner, under the great seal, with Taylor, Whitelock, and others, for the probate of wills. In 1660, he published in 4-to, his “Olbia The New Island lately discovered. With its religion, rites of worship, laws, customs, government, characters, and language with education of their children in their sciences, arts, and manufactures with other things remarkable by a Christian pilgrim driven by tempest from Civita Vecchia, or some other parts about ftome, through the straights into the Atlantic ocean. The first part.” Of this work, which appears to be a kind of fiction, Dr. John Worthiugton, in a letter to Mr. Samuel Hartlib, dated April i, 1661, says, “Is the second part of Olbu like to come out shortly? Jt is said to treat of the religion, worship, laws, customs, manner of education, &c. of that place. The design promiseth much variety.

Soon after the restoration, he lost all his employments, by virtue of an act of parliament 13 Caroli II, “for the well-governing and regulating of corporations:” his conscience not permitting him to take or subscribe the oath and declaration there required, in which it was declared, that “it was not lawful, upon any pretence whatever, to take arms against the king;” an obedience so absolute, that he thought it not due to any earthly power, though he had never engaged, or in any manner acied, against the late king. In the fire of London, 1666, his house in | Salisbury-court, which he built at the expense of 5000l. and several other of his houses in London were destroyed; and, soon after, his mansion-house in Shropshire had the same fate. He was also now deprived of Vauxhall on the river Thames, and other estates which he had purchase,!, being crown lands, and of a considerable estate in the Fens in Bedford Level, without any recompence. These misfortunes and several others coming upon him, he retired to his manor and seat of Warmwell in Dorsetshire, which he had obtained with his wife; where he lived in a private manner, and died in April 1674, aged fifty-nine, Thomas Sadler, esq. deputy to lord Walpole, clerk of the pells, who contributed the above account to the editors of the General Dictionary, and Daniel Sadler, chief clerk in the Old Annuity office, were his grandsons. Walker says he was informed that Mr. Sadler was a very insignificant man, and Calamy tells us that a clergyman of the church of England gave him this character, “We accounted him, not only a general scholar, and an accomplished gentleman, but also a person of great piety; though it must be owned he was not always right in his head.1


Gen. Dict. —Calamy. Hatchings Dorsetshire. Walker’s Sufferings, art. Rainbow. Cole’s ms Atheiue in Brit. Mus.-^Birch’s Mss. in Ayscough’i Catalogue.