Henry Sacheverell Bibliography

The Character of a Low Churchman 1701
“From the beginning (1702) of Anne’s reign (Sacheverell) obtained great notoriety as a high church scourge of Whigs, Dissenters, and Latitudinarians, and was known as the author of a violent pamphlet entitled The Character of a Low Churchman in which he denounced any political or doctrinal concessions to Nonconformists. In December 1705 he preached before the University of Oxford a sermon on the perils among false brethren, in which he attacked Whigs, Dissenters, and moderate Tories. This sermon passed without public notice, but he reproduced the substance at St. Paul’s before the lord mayor on Nov. 5, 1709, assailing the Whig ministers as “wily Volpones,” using the nickname of the earl of Godolphin, lord treasurer. Godolphin, who had long been smarting under clearicl attacks, demanded satisfaction; the extremer members of the Whig junto wanted to end Tory sniping from the pulpit before the election due in 1710, and Sacheverell was impeached. The result was calamitous for the government. There was a deluge of pamphlets. The London mob rioted wildly in sympathy with Sacheverell. Dissenting meeting-houses were wrecked and troops were called out. The trail was a public spectacle. The preacher was condemned by only 69 votes to 52, and was sentenced merely to three years suspension from preaching. This was as good as a Tory victory. Sacheverell’s journeys to and fro were like royal progresses, and the enthusiasm encouraged Anne to dismiss Godolphin and the Whigs before the next election.

Sacheverell was despised even by those who took advantage of his notoriety, but when his sentence expired, he was presented (1713) by the queen to the valuable living of St. Andrew’s, Holbern. In 1716 he married a rich widow. He quarreled on various occasions with his parishioners. He died at Highgate on June 5, 1724, and was buried in St. Andrew’s. In 1747 the sexton of that church was imprisoned for stealing his lead coffin.” (Encyclopædia Britannica)