Whitby, On the New Testament, 1706
A Paraphrase and Commentary on the New Testament. In Two volumes. The First, containing The Four Gospels, and the Acts of the Holy Apostles. The Second, All the Epistles, with a Discourse of the Millenium. To which is added, A Chronology of the New Testament. A Map, and Alphabetical Table of all the Places mentioned in the Gospels, Acts, or the Epistles. With Tables to each, of the Matters contained, and of the Words and Phrases explained throughout the whole Work. Vol I and II. By Daniel Whitby, D.D. And Chantor of the Church of Sarum. The Second Edition. London: Printed by J. Barber, for Awnsham and John Churchill, at the Black Swan in Pater-Noster-Row, 1706. Two folio volumes in full Cambridge (paneled) brown speckled leather with raised bands and title plates on spines. Some evidence of conservation along front joints, but otherwise all boards are securely attached. Scattered mild scuffs, smudges, and chips to leather, including at heads and tails of spines. Red speckled page edges. Two of four hinges cracking internally. One rear pastedown free of board (now effectively a fly leaf), another lifting. Original end papers with tattered edges. Title page of vol I tattered and folded. Heavily thumbed and wormed at tail and fore-edge margin of volume I for first 30 leaves or so (with one dedicatory leaf detached). Then after that well-spared, clean, and bright, until last few leaves of index and blank which have some additional worming and tattered edges. A few additional rare marginal smudges. Vol II comparatively unused relative to vol I, with only notable defect being some toning of first and last several leaves. Otherwise, clean, bright, and unmarked throughout. Fold out of three maps on one leave is present and only slightly toned. Bindings tight throughout. Overall, a good to very good copy set, with most defects being concentrated in the prelims of vol I. Synthesized from the Dictionary of National Biography: Daniel Whitby (1638 – 1726) was a polemical divine and commentator. He matriculated to Trinity College, Oxford, in 1653, where he obtained his B.A. and M.A. He wrote against Roman Catholic doctrine. He obtained his D.D. in September of 1672. His earlier writings were considerably popular but that popularity waned when he published The Protestant Reconciler, “pleading for concessions to nonconformists, with a view to their comprehension.” He later issued a second part “urging dissenters to conformity.” His magnum opus, which has retained a certain reputation to the present century, is a ‘Paraphrase and Commentary on the New Testament,’ begun in 1688 and published in 1703.... Doddridge though it, with all deductions, ‘preferable to any other.’ In his commentary he opposes Tillotson’s view of hell torments. Faith he defined as mere assent to Gospel facts as true.” He also wrote against the Calvinism of John Edwards (1637 – 1716). He is usually classified as Arminian, but eventually went beyond that by denying the imputation of original sin, and, though he had previously upheld the divinity of Christ throughout his New Testament Commentary, the works of Samuel Clarke ( 1675 – 1729) apparently shook him and he has been, posthumously, considered a unitarian in his later life. Any collector of English theology in the 17th and 18th centuries (particularly including Tillotson and/or Clarke) will find the set by Whitby well-suited to their collection, and still useful for study.