Griffin, Edward Dorr, Dd
Griffin, Edward Dorr, D.D., a Presbyterian minister, was born at East Haddam, Conn., Jan. 6, 1770, and graduated at Yale College in 1790 with distinguished honor. After teaching for a time at Derby, he studied theology under the guidance of Jonathan Edwards, and was licensed in 1792. He commenced his labors at New Salem, supplied at Farmington, and then was called to the Congregational Church at New Hartford, of which he was ordained pastor in 1795. In 1800 he visited New Jersey, and supplied in Orange for a short time, when he accepted a call from Newark, where he was installed pastor in 1801, as colleague to Dr. M. Whorter, whom he succeeded as pastor in 1807. In 1808 the received the degree of D.D. from Union College. In 1809 he was appointed to the Bartlett professorship in Andover, and in 1811 was installed in Park-street Church, Boston. In 1812-13 he delivered his celebrated Park-street lectures. On resigning his charge in Boston he returned to Newark, and was installed in the Second Presbyterian Church in 1815. He interested himself warmly in the cause of the Africans, the American Bible and United Foreign Mission Societies. In 1821 he was appointed president of Williams College, and filled that office most ably and acceptably for fifteen years, resigning it in 1836, and retiring to Newark, N. J., where he died, Nov. 8, !837. His ministry was marked by numerous revivals. Dr. Griffin was a man of large intellectual proportions. "The peculiar cast of his preaching and other religious instructions and appeals was formed, more perhaps than that of many other great minds, by his cherished habit of precise discrimination on the leading points of the prevalent theology. In his course of teaching in mental philosophy he drew the current distinctions with great accuracy and decision. His theological writings are distinguished by lucid and energetic statements of the main points belonging to the theological views of the time, and in such statements his ability was not surpassed by any man of the age. His paste for those theological distinctions, his high sense of their value, and his facility and satisfaction in using them, gave his most rhetorical pulpit discourses remarkable internal coherence and compactness, and enabled him to command the judgments of his hearers by the force of a very stringent logic. The great prominence and intense light in which he placed some leading points of religious truth constitute the striking feature of his theological discussions. This trait is conspicuous in his Park-street lectures, his work on the Atonement, and some smaller publications on particular points of Christian doctrine. On the whole, the position and influence of Dr. Griffin are widely attested by the profound and general respect for his memory, and by the evident fruits of his labors. His power of clear, penetrating, and, at the same time, of lofty and comprehensive thought — his skill and force in argument, his rhetorical genius and culture, his eloquence, his majestic person and manner, all pervaded and controlled by his enlightened religious devotion, performed efficient service for the Church, and placed him among the greater lights of his age" (J. W. Yeomans, cited by Sprague). He published The Extent of the Atonement (1819, 12mo): — Divine Efficiency (1833, 12mo): Causal Power of Regeneration, etc. (1834), and numerous Sermons Addresses, Orations, and Lectures, from 1805 to 1833. — Sprague, Annals, 4:26; Bibliotheca
Sacra, Jan. 1858; Princeton Review, 11:404; Am. Bib. Rep. iii, 623; N. A. Rev. 34:119; Cooke, Recollections of E. D. Griffin (Boston, 1866, 8vo).