John Knowles



Knowles continued to live in London until his death. A Unitarian pamphleteer, writing in 1698, reports that he was a well-known figure in religious circles during the years following his release from the Gatehouse and that when he died he bequeathed 'some Books of value to the Library at Glocester ; and a Third of all he had, for the Relief of Men persecuted for Religion, and other Charities'.4 Probably our heretic was the John Knowles interred in the churchyard of St. Peter's, Cornhill, on 23 November 1677.5 His will, dated 1 May 1676, was proved on 10 October 1679. It enumerates his charitable bequests : out of a sum of over £480 in legacies £186 was devoted to charity. .. among the beneficiaries .. were Christopher Crellius the elder' (£10) and 'his exiled friends and countrymen that are in want' (£90). His books Knowles left to two nephews and a London friend, excepting the folio volumes of the Bibliotheca Fratrum Polonorum and the Critici Sacri which he gave 'to bee of common use to any in the publiqe Library at Glocester'.6   (Etc.)

      4 The Grounds and Occasions of the Controversy . . ., p. 16.
      5 Register of . . . Saint Peeters upon Cornhill, Part II, p. 93 (Harleian Soc. Publ., 1879).
      6This may refer to a collection of books kept for public use within the Cathedral.

(page 285)


...     When he made his will (in May 1676) Knowles was lodging 'at the house of Master Edward Mort'. He left all his manuscripts to his old friend Henry Hedworth, appointing him one of his two executors. 'Master Thomas Firmin Girdler of London and Master Edward Bleebe Merchant' were to be his 'overseers', each of them to receive for their trouble 'twenty shillings to buy them Rings'.1 These and other provisions of his will, already noted, prove his loyal attachment to Socinian circles to the end.

      1 P. C. C. Wills, 1679, fol. 132.

(pages 286-7)

Oxford 1951.



Author Knowles, John, fl. 1646-1668. Title A modest plea for private mens preaching. Or An answer to a booke intituled, Private men no pulpit-men; composed by Master Giles Workman ...
Publisher London, 1648.
Description 36 p. 19 cm. Language English

Author Knowles, John, fl. 1646-1668. Title An answer to Mr. Ferguson's book intituled, Justification onely upon a satisfaction [microform] : wherein he is friendly reprov'd, fully silenc'd, and clearly instructed : whereunto is added, a compendium or brief discourse concerning the ends & intents of Christ's death and passion, consider'd as a ransom / by John Knowls ... Publisher [London] : Printed for J.J. and sold by P.P. and W.C., [1668?]
Description 224 p. Language English

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Last updated 12 Dec 03

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