Has become a sudden and unexpected hero of mine. I’m writing a paper about his hermeneutics this semester and, to be honest, I chose him because he’s early on in the semester and he wrote in English. Lest there should be any confusion, this is not J. B. Lightfoot, 19th century Bishop of Durham, but John Lightfoot, 17th century clergyman and member of the Westminster Assembly.
Today I went to get his books (a slightly alarming 12 volumes) from the library shelves and was amazed and delighted to find that one of them (‘The Harmony of the Four Evangelists, among themselves, and with the Old Testament: Part the Second; from the Baptism of our Saviour to the first Passover after’ – snappy, isn’t it?) is dedicated to me.
MY DEAR MOTHER
MY DEARLY-HONOURED AND BELOVED NATIVE COUNTRY
COUNTY OF STAFFORD
He continues, addressing specifically the MP’s who represented Staffordshire at that time:
Staffordshire hath ever her share in all my choicest thoughts; and those thoughts cannot but centre in those Gentlemen, in whom her choice hath so much centred. She is my mother, the mother of my birth, and the mother of my nearest interests; and you are her children, the children of her choice, and the children of her greatest trust: and as I cannot but highly affect her, to whom I have so much relation, – so I cannot but highly prize you, to whom she hath showed so much esteem and honour. She is to me, in mine own affections, as the England of England: and you are to her, by her own choice, as the Staffordshire of Staffordshire: and I can never forget her whom I so much affect, and can never enough honour you, whom she so much affecteth.
For a quick biographical sketch of Lightfoot, see the Wikipedia article here.
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