Milner, John (2), Dd
Milner, John (2), D.D.
more properly named MILLER, an eminent Romish theologian and antiquary, was born in London, October 14, 1752. He was educated at the schools of Sedgley Park and Edgbaston, and then went to study theology at Douai. Having taken orders, he was in 1779 attached to Winchester Chapel. Although a zealous Roman Catholic, he refused to join in the efforts made by his Church in England in 1788 and in 1791 to obtain from Parliament the repeal of the ancient laws against Roman Catholics. In after- times he was engaged in numerous controversies, both with Protestant theologians and with members of the Roman Catholic committee, who accused him of too great vivacity in his discussions. He declared against the right of the king of vetoing the appointment of bishops, and, together with the Irish Roman Catholic clergy, obstinately refused to yield the point to the solicitations of his own party. In 1814 he even took a journey to Rome, to consult with the pope on this point. The esteem in which he was held in the midst of these difficulties is evinced by the appointment he received in 1803 as apostolic vicar of the midland district, under the title of bishop of Castabala in partibus. Dr. Milner settled at Wolverhampton, where he died, April 19, 1826. He was quite distinguished as an archaeologist, belonged to the Antiquarian Society, and contributed many learned papers to the Archceologia. He wrote The History, Civil and Ecclesiastical, and Survey of the Antiquities of Winchester (1798, 2 volumes, 4to; 2d ed., corrected and enlarged, 1809, 2 volumes, 4to): — The End of Religious Controversy, addressed to Dr. Burgess, Bishop of St. David's, in answer to his Protestant Catechism (1818; 2d ed., revised, 1819, 8vo; transl. into French under the title Excellence de la Religion Catholique, Paris, 1823, 2 volumes, 8vo): — A Vindication of the End of Religious Controversy from the Exceptions of Bishop Burgess and the Rev. R. Grier (Lond. 1822, 8vo): — Letters to a Prebendary, being an Answer to Reflections on Popery by the Rev. John Sturges, LL.D. (Winchester, 1800, 4to): — A short Description of the Hospital of St. Cross, near Winchester (21st ed. Winchester; no date): — An Historical and Critical Inquiry into the Existence and Character of St. George, Patron of England (1795, 8vo): — A Treatise on the Ecclesiastical History of England during the Middle Ages (1811, royal 8vo): — Letter to the Author of a Book called A candid and impartial Sketch of the Government of Pope Clement XIV (Lond. 1785, 8vo): — Divine Right of the Episcopacy (1791, 8vo): — The Case of Conscience solved, or the Catholic Claims proved to be compatible with the Coronation Oath (1802, 8vo): — Inquiry into certain Opinions concerning the Catholic Inhabitants and the Antiquities of Ireland (1808, 8vo). Of all the advocates of the papal Church, no one has displayed more learning and acuteness than Milner, though not unmixed with partisan gall and misrepresentation. See Lond. Qu. Rev. 1810 (May), 1811 (October); Rose, New Biog. Dict. s.v.; Darling, Cyclop. Bibliog. 2:2771; Hoefer, Nouv.
Biog. Generale, 35:554; Allibone, Dict. of Brit. and Amer. Authors, s.v.; Dr. Husenbeth, Life of Dr. Milner (Dublin, 1862, 8vo).