Select Page

Richard Heyrick (1600–1667)

Member of the Westminster Assembly

Today, many Christians are turning back to the puritans to, “walk in the old paths,” of God’s word, and to continue to proclaim old truth that glorifies Jesus Christ. There is no new theology. In our electronic age, more and more people are looking to add electronic books (ePubs, mobi and PDF formats) to their library – books from the Reformers and Puritans – in order to become a “digital puritan” themselves. Take a moment to visit Puritan Publications (click the banner below) to find the biggest selection of rare puritan works updated in modern English in both print form and in multiple electronic forms. There are new books published every month. All proceeds go to support A Puritan’s Mind.

“That by the great whore, that by Babylon here spoken of, Rome is under∣stood, the Romanists themselves do freely confess, the Rhemists do not peremptorily but faintly deny it, they distinguish indeed of Babylon in Rome, and the Church in Rome, they tell us Saint Ambrose, Tertullian, Jerome, these confesse it.”

His Works:

  1. A sermon preached at the collegiate church at Manchester on Tuesday the 23. of April 1661 (1661) by Richard Heyrick
  2. Queen Esthers resolves: or A princely pattern of heaven-born resolution, for all the lovers of God and their country (1646) by Richard Heyrick
  3. The Harmonious consent of the ministers of the province within the county palatine of Lancaster (1648) by Richard Heyrick
  4. The paper called the Agreement of the people taken into consideration, and the lawfulness of subscription to it examined, and resolved in the negative, by the ministers of Christ in the province of Lancaster (1649) by Richard Heyrick
  5. Three sermons preached at the Collegiate Church in Manchester by Richard Heyricke. (1641) by Richard Heyrick


Biography of Richard Heyrick:

Richard Heyrick (1600–1667), was a member of the Westminster Assembly, warden of Manchester Collegiate Church, born in London on 9 Sept. (or according to Robinson, Merchant Taylors’ School Register, on 25 May) 1600, was cousin to Robert Herrick the poet, and son of Sir William Hericke, alderman and goldsmith of London, who purchased Beaumanor, Leicestershire. He was educated at Merchant Taylors’ School, London, and at St. John’s College, Oxford, where he entered as a commoner in 1617. He graduated B.A. on 19 Oct. 1619, and M.A. on 26 June 1622. He is also styled B.D. By special recommendation of the king he was elected fellow of All Souls’ College on 14 Jan. 1624–5. About that time he took orders, and was instituted on 9 June 1626 to the rectory of North Repps, Norfolk. There had been many money transactions between James I and Heyrick’s father, and by way of settlement of a loan Sir William received for his son the reversion of the wardenship of Manchester Collegiate Church, which was granted by Charles I by letters patent of 14 Nov. 1626. Heyrick succeeded to the wardenship in 1635, but not without some preliminary difficulty, which Archbishop Laud claimed the credit of overcoming (Troubles and Tryals of Laud, p. 369).

In 1641 he published ‘Three Sermons preached at the Collegiate Church in Manchester,’ 8vo, in which he denounced with bitter prejudice and vindictive sarcasm Romanists and high episcopalians. He identified himself with the presbyterians, and eventually became the chief pillar of that party in Lancashire. In 1642 he drew up an address from the county of Lancaster to Charles I, containing what was in effect an offer to mediate between the king and parliament for peace and reconciliation (Ormerod, Lanc. Civil War Tracts, p. 8). On 23 April of the same year Heyrick, who had about that time taken the covenant, was appointed by parliament one of the divines for Lancashire to be consulted about church government, the other being Charles Herle , rector of Winwick; and on 9 Oct. 1643 he was one of the ministers appointed by the House of Commons to decide upon the orthodoxy and maintenance of Lancashire ministers. He was the main instrument in establishing throughout Lancashire the presbyterian system in 1646, and wrote the ‘Harmonious Consent of the Ministers within the County Palatine of Lancaster with their Reverend Brethren the Ministers of the Province of London,’ &c., 1648, 4to. Along with Richard Hollinworth (1607–1656), he acted as moderator of the Lancashire synod, and in the affairs of the Manchester classis his influence was predominant, and his care in all matters, especially in providing useful and pious ministers, was conspicuous. As a member of the assembly of divines he preached before the House of Commons on 27 May 1646. In this sermon, afterwards printed with the title of ‘Queen Esther’s Resolves; or a Princely Pattern of Heaven-born Resolution,’ he makes pathetic mention of the services of Manchester in the cause of God and the kingdom, and of the impoverished condition of the church’s ministers in that town. He was a zealous co-operator in the work of the collegiate chapter, and a sturdy defender of its rights whenever assailed. By his remonstrance he procured the restoration of the church revenues which had been taken away by parliament in 1645. On the dissolution of the collegiate body in 1650, he was allowed to retain his position as one of the town’s ministers, at a salary of 100l. In 1657–8 he took an active part in the proceedings described in a volume entitled ‘The Censures of the Church Revived,’ 4to, 1659, occasioned by the Rev. Isaac Allen, rector of Prestwich, with others, disputing the authority of the Manchester classis in matters of church discipline.

He was consistent in his loyalty to the king, strongly protesting on several occasions against the growing power and republican principles of the independents. In 1651 he was arrested for being implicated in Love’s plot for the restoration of Charles II [see Love, Christopher]. He was imprisoned in London, but through the influence, it is supposed, of George Booth, first lord Delamere [q. v.] , was pardoned and released. When Booth rose in Cheshire in 1659 Heyrick, although sympathetic, was irresolute in action, like many other ministers. He hailed the Restoration with enthusiasm in a sermon preached on 23 April 1661, and afterwards published without his authority (Hibbert-Ware, Manchester Foundations, i. 361). He complied with the Act of Uniformity by ‘reading the service book’ on 14 Sept. 1662, and maintained his position of warden until his death, having no doubt moderated his religious tenets. Before 1662 he had held, along with the Manchester wardenship, the rectory of Thornton-in-the-Moors, near Chester (Wood, Athenæ Oxon. iii. 781; Newcome, Diary, p. 118). He also held the rectory of Ashton-upon-Mersey, Cheshire, from 14 July 1640 to 1642 (Renshaw, Ashton-upon-Mersey, 1889, p. 16).

He was twice married: first, when he was at North Repps, to Helen, daughter of Thomas Corbet of Sprowston, Norfolk, by whom he had seven children; and secondly, in 1642, to Anna Maria Hall, a widow, daughter of Erasmus Breton of Hamburg. By his second wife he had six children.

He died on 6 Aug. 1667, aged 67, and was buried in the choir of the Manchester Collegiate Church, a long Latin epitaph, written by his old friend Thomas Case, being inscribed on his monument. The eulogy is extravagant; but Heyrick was a fair scholar, an eloquent preacher, and a conscientious man, if somewhat impetuous in temper. Henry Newcome, in dedicating his book, the ‘Sinner’s Hope,’ 1660, to Heyrick, speaks in high laudation of ‘his much honoured brother and faithful fellow-labourer in the congregation’ at Manchester.

[Nichols’s Leicestershire, iii. 159; Wood’s Athenæ Oxon. (Bliss), iii. 780; Wood’s Fasti, i. 386, 406; Hibbert-Ware’s Manchester Foundations; Raines’s Wardens of Manchester (Cheth. Soc.), ii. 122; Newcome’s Diary and Autobiography (Cheth. Soc.); Worthington’s Diary (Cheth. Soc.), ii. 236; Martindale’s Diary (Cheth. Soc.);
Dugdale’s Visitation of Lanc. (Cheth. Soc.), ii. 138; Palatine Note-book, i. 19, 20, 81, 104, 155, 167, ii. 183, 233; Earwaker’s Manchester Court Leet Records, iv. 283; Journals of House of Commons, iii. 270, iv. 127, v. 662, 663; bibliography in Trans. Lanc. and Cheshire Antiq. Soc. vii. 134.]


Offsite Banner Ad:

Help Support APM

Search the Site

Reformed Theology at A Puritan's Mind