Venning, Ralph

, a nonconformist divine, was born about 1620, and educated in Emmanuel college, Cambridge. He does not appear to have had any preferment in the church, except the lectureship of St. Olave’s, Southwark, from which he was ejected for nonconformity in 1662. After this he preached at a dissenting meeting at Pewterers’-hall, Lime-street, as colleague to a Mr. Bragge, who outlived him and preached his funeral sermon. As Mr. Venning was a man of no faction himself, men of different factions and sects were generally disposed to do justice to his character, which was that of a man, the object of whose labours and writings was to promote piety. He was, in his charity sermons, a powerful advocate for the poor, among whom he distributed annually some hundreds of pounds. His oratory on this topic is said to have been almost irresistible; as some have gone to church with a | resolution not to give, and have been insensibly and involuntarily melted into compassion, and bestowed their alms with uncommon liberality. He died March 10, 1673. He was the author of nine practical treatises, specified by Calamy, among which the principal are, 1. “Orthodox and Miscellaneous Paradoxes,1647, 12mo. 2. “Things worth thinking on, or helps to piety,” 12mo, often reprinted. 3. “His Remains,” with a portrait by Hollar," &c. He was also one of the compilers of the English-Greek Lexicon published in 1661, 8vo. 1

1 Cilaitiy. Granger.