Joseph Hall (bishop)

Joseph Hall
Bishop of Norwich, England
A line drawing of Hall with a hood and long beard
Joseph Hall, detail of an engraving by John Payne, 1628
DioceseDiocese of Norwich
Term ended1656
PredecessorRichard Montagu
SuccessorSede vacante
Personal details
Born1 July 1574
Prestop Park, Leicestershire, Kingdom of England
Died8 September 1656(1656-09-08) (aged 82)
Heigham, Norfolk, England
BuriedNorwich Cathedral
SpouseElizabeth Bambridge
Previous postBishop of Exeter (1627–1641)
Alma materEmmanuel College, Cambridge

Joseph Hall (1 July 1574 – 8 September 1656) was an English bishop, satirist and moralist. His contemporaries knew him as a devotional writer, and a high-profile controversialist of the early 1640s. In church politics, he tended in fact to a middle way.

Thomas Fuller wrote:

He was commonly called our English Seneca, for the purenesse, plainnesse, and fulnesse of his style. Not unhappy at Controversies, more happy at Comments, very good in his Characters, better in his Sermons, best of all in his Meditations.[1]

His relationship to the stoicism of the classical age, exemplified by Seneca the Younger, is still debated, with the importance of neo-stoicism and the influence of Justus Lipsius to his work being contested, in contrast to Christian morality.[2]

Early life

Hall was born at Bristow Park, Ashby-de-la-Zouch, 1 July 1574. His father, John Hall, was employed under Henry Hastings, 3rd Earl of Huntingdon, president of the north, and was his deputy at Ashby. His mother was Winifred Bambridge, a strict puritan,(Perry 1890, p. 75)[a] whom her son compared to St Monica.[3]

The first part of his education was received at Ashby Grammar School. When he was of the age of fifteen Mr. Pelset, lecturer at Leicester, a divine of puritan views, offered to take him "under indentures" and educate him for the ministry. Just before this arrangement was completed, it came to the knowledge of Nathaniel Gilby, son of Anthony Gilby and a fellow of Emmanuel College, Cambridge, who was a friend of the family. Gilby induced Hall's father to send his son to Emmanuel College in 1589. The expense of his education at the university was partly borne by his uncle, Edmund Sleigh. He was elected scholar and afterwards fellow of Emmanuel College (1595), graduating B.A. in 1592 and M.A. in 1596 (B.D. 1603 and D.D. 1612).(Perry 1890, p. 75) Fuller, nearly a contemporary, says that Hall "passed all his degrees with great applause".(Perry 1890, p. 75) He obtained a high reputation in the university for scholarship, and read the public rhetoric lecture in the schools for two years with much credit.[4]

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Cymraeg: Joseph Hall
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italiano: Joseph Hall
русский: Холл, Джозеф