Neale, John Mason

Neale, John Mason a noted English divine, celebrated as a hymnologist and writer of ecclesiastical history, and as a successful educator, was born in London January 24, 1818, and was educated at Cambridge University, Trinity College, class of 1840, where he took the members' prize in 1838, and the Seatonian prize for a sacred poem nine times between 1845-61. Neale entered into holy orders in 1842, and became incumbent of Crawley, in Sussex, which position he held until 1846, when he was appointed warden of the Sackville College, East Grinstead. He died at East Grinstead, Aug. 6,1866. Of High-Church proclivities, he identified himself with the various movements of the Ritualists, and in 1855 caused a sisterhood to be founded, named St. Margaret. Neale was a voluminous writer, his publications being some seventy in number. His most important work is his History of the Holy Eastern Church, volume 1 and 2 forming a general introduction (London, 1850, 8vo); volumes 3 and 4 covering the Patriarchate of Alexandria (ibid. 1847, 8vo); volume 5 treating of the Patriarchate of Antioch (ibid. 1874, 8vo). This work is highly esteemed by all students of Oriental Church history. It is a learned and laborious work, and in the parts of which it treats forms a valuable compend. Based as it is on the original sources, it is an invaluable contribution to ecclesiastical history, and it is to be regretted that Mr. Neale did not live to complete it. See Edinb. Review, 107, 322 sq. Other valuable works by Mr. Neale are, Sequentiae ex missalibus Germanicis (1852): — Mediaeval Preachers and Mediaeval Preaching (1857): — History of the so-called Jansenist Church of Holland (1858): — Commentary on the Psalms (1860): —

Essays on Liturgology and Church History (1863): — The Liturgies (in Greek) of St. Mark, St. James, St. Clement, St. Chrysostom, and St. Basil (1868). Dr. Neale figures as a hymnologist substantially, as in so many other departments of Christian labor, not so much because of his original contributions as for his antiquarian researches, especially his translations of ancient and mediaeval hymns, His most valued translation is that of the celebrated poem of Bernard of Clugny, entitled De Contemptu Mundi, portions of which are found in many of our best hymn-books in the three hymns, "Brief life is here our portion," "For thee, O dear, dear country," and "Jerusalem the golden." Among his contributions to hymnology, besides those already mentioned, are, Medieval Hymns, Sequences, etc. (1851; also a second edition): — Hymni Ecclesiae (1851): — Hymns for Children (sixth edition, 1854): — Hymns for the Sick: Hymns of the Eastern Church (1863; new edition with introduction, 1871): — Carols for Christmas-Tide (1853). Several of his hymns have become the common property of English-speaking people. Dr. Schaff has incorporated two of them in his Christ in Song, pages 125, 286. (J.H.W.)

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