Ward, Thomas

, whom we mentioned under the article Edward Ward, as being the real author of the Hudibrastic poem called “England’s Reformation,” was, according to Dodd, a learned schoolmaster, who becoming a Roman catholic, in the reign of James II. published several books concerning religion. Dodd says that in these tc he was so successful, that, though a layman, he was able to give diversion to some of the ablest divines of the church of England. He some time rode in the king’s guards; and it was no small confusion to his adversaries, when they understood who it was they engaged with; imagining all the while, they were attacking some learned doctor of the Roman communion.“After the revolution he retired into Flanders, where he died soon after. He left two children, a daughter who became a nun, and a son whom Dodd speaks of as” now (about 1742) a worthy catholic clergyman."

The “books concerning religion” which Dodd ascribes to him, are, 1. “Monomachia; or, a duel between Dr. Tenison, pastor of St. Martin’s, London, and a catholic soldier.” 2. “Speculum Ecclesiasticum.” 3. “The Tree of Life,” taken from a large copper cut. 4. “Errata’s of the Protestant Bible,1688, 4to. 5. “The controversy of | ordination truly stated,” Lond. 1719, 8vo, which occasioned several treatises on both sides upon that subject; especially that of Le Courayer. 6. “A confutation of Dr. Burnet’s Exposition of the Thirty-nine articles,” a ms. in the English college at Doway. 7. " England’s Reformation, in several cantos, in the Hudibrastic style, 7 ' 4to, printed at Hamburgh, but reprinted at London in 1716, 8vo, and afterwards in 2 vols. 12 mo. This is a malicious and scurrilous history of the changes in religion, from Henry VIHth’s being divorced from Catherine of Arragon, to Oates’s plot in the reign of Charles II.; and is accompanied with many extracts from acts of parliament, state papers, and public records of all sorts. The imitation of Hudibras is tolerably successful, and there is a considerable share of humour, wit, and liveliness, but not enough to atone for the many misrepresentations of fact, and the malignant tendency of the whole. 1


Dodd’s Ch. Hist. vol. III. —Gent. Mag. vol. LIV.