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Andrew Kingsmill

Andrew Kingsmill, LL. B.—This excellent person was born at Sidmanton in Hampshire, in the year 1538, educated in Corpus Christi college, Oxford, and elected fellow of All Souls college in the same university, in 1558. He studied the civil law, in the knowledge of which he made considerable proficiency. But while he was thus employed, he did not forget to seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness. He discovered the warmest desires for a knowledge of the mysteries of the gospel, and for the attainment of which, he paid the closest application. He would receive nothing for truth, till he found the testimony of scripture for its support, By a constant and close attention to the word of God, its sacred pages became familiar to him; and, indeed, he so addicted himself to search and recite the holy scriptures, that he could readily repeat by heart, and in the Greek language, the whole of the epistles to the Romans and Galatians, the first epistle of John, and many other parts of the sacred volume.

Mr. Kingsmill did not so much esteem the preferment and profit, to which he might easily have attained by the profession of the law, as the comfortable assurance and blessed hope of eternal life, and to be useful in preaching the gospel to his fellow creatures. He therefore, relinquished the law, entered the sacred function, and became an admired preacher in the university of Oxford. For some time after the accession of Queen Elizabeth, there were only three preachers in this university, Dr. Humphrey, Dr. Sampson, and Mr. Kingsmill, all puritans. But upon the rigorous imposition of conformity, Dr. Sampson being already deprived of his deanery, Mr. Kingsmill withdrew from the storm. He was averse to all severity in the imposition of habits and ceremonies; and being fixed in his nonconformity, he wrote a long letter to Archbishop Parker, against urging a conformity to the papists in habits, ceremonies, and other things equally superstitious.

Upon Mr. Kingsmill's departure from the kingdom, he resolved to take up his abode among the best reformed churches, both for doctrine and discipline, that he could meet with in a foreign land. During the first three years, he settled at Geneva, where he was highly esteemed by persons eminent for learning and piety. Afterwards, he removed to Lausanne, where he died in the month of September, 1569, aged thirty-one years. Though he was a zealous puritan, and an avowed nonconformist, seeing he was a man of such greath worth, and universally beloved, Wood found himself obliged to give him an excellent character. Accordingly, he says he was too good for this world, and left behind him a most excellent pattern of piety, devotion, and every other amiable virtue.