« Bruys, Pierre de. Bryant, Jacob Bryce, George »

Bryant, Jacob

BRYANT, JACOB: English antiquarian; b. at Plymouth 1715; d. at Cypenham, in Farnham Royal (4 m. n. of Windsor), Nov. 14, 1804. He studied at King's College, Cambridge (B.A., 1740; M.A., 1744), and became fellow; was tutor and in 1756 became secretary to the Duke of Marlborough, and enjoyed the patronage of the family during his life and had free access to their famous library at Blenheim. He was a learned man, but his fondness for paradox and other eccentricities render his writings of slight permanent value. He published works upon a variety of subjects, classical literature and antiquities, the gipsy language, the Marlborough collection of gems, etc. Those which have religious interest are Observations and Enquiries Relating to Various Parts of Ancient History (Cambridge, 1767), in which he defends the reading Euroclydon in Acts xxvii. 14, and maintains that Melita was not Malta; A New System or an Analysis of Ancient Mythology (3 vols., London, 1774–76; 3d edition with account of the author, 6 vols., 1807), an attempt to substantiate the Bible by a study of the traditional remains of all nations; Vindiciæ Flavianæ: a Vindication of the Testimony of Josephus concerning Jesus Christ (1777); A Treatise on the Authenticity of the Scriptures (1791); Observations on a Controverted Passage in Justin Martyr; also upon the Worship of Angels (1793); Observations upon the Plagues Inflicted upon the Egyptians, with maps (1794); The Sentiments of Philo Judæus concerning the Logos (1797); Observations upon Some Passages in Scripture (relating to Balaam, Joshua, Samson, and Jonah, 1803).

Bibliography: Literary Anecdotes of the Eighteenth Century (9 vols., London, 1812–15) and Illustrations of the Literary 288History of the Eighteenth Century (8 vols., ib.1817–58), both by John Nichols, contain very numerous references to Bryant. Consult also DNB, vii. 155–157.

« Bruys, Pierre de. Bryant, Jacob Bryce, George »
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