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medical collections are to he found several of his performances, which prove that he had something new and useful to offer upon every subject to which he applied his attention. But those writings which do him most credit are two long dissertations on “ Nervous Fevers,” in the “ Medical Essays and Observations” published by a society at Edinburgh ; and a “ Treatise on the use of Sea-voyages in medicine,” which first made its appearance in 1756, and was reprinted in 1771. In the former, his recommendation of wine in nervous fevers, and in the latter, of sea-voyages in cases of consumption, has been generally attended to in modern practice, and with great advantage.
GILDAS, the oldest British historian, surnamed THE Wise, was, according to Leland, born in Wales, in the year 511, but according to others, in 493. Where he was educated is uncertain ; but from his writings be appears to have been a monk. Some writers say that he went over to Ireland; others, that he visited France and Italy ; bue they agree that after his return to England, he became a celebrated and assiduous preacher of Christianity. Leland says that he retired to one of the small islands in the Bristol Channel called the Hulms; but that, being disturbed by pirates, he removed thence to the monastery of Glastonbury, where he died. But all this is supposed to belong to another of the name, called Gildas Albanius. Du Pin says he founded a monastery at Venetia in Britain. The place and time of bis death are as uncertain as other particulars of his history which may be found in our authorities. He is the only British author of the sixth century whose works are printed; and they are therefore vaJuable on account of their antiquity, and as containing the only information of the times in which he wrote. The only book, however, attributed to bim with certainty, is his “ Epistola de excidio Britanniæ, et castigatio ordinis ecclesiastici," Lond. 1525, 8vo, Basil, 1541, 8vo, Lond. 1567, 12mo, Paris, 1576, Basil, 1568, 12mo, and by Gale, In his “ Rerum Anglic. Scriptores veteres," fol. 1684–7. There is also an English translation, Lond. 1652, 12mo. In this he laments over the miseries and almost total ruin of his countrymen, and severely reproves the corruption and profligacy of the age. The first part contains a vague account of events from the Roman invasion to his own
1 Encyelop. Brit. 3d edir
times. There were two other Gildas's of the sixth century, whom some make distinct persons, and others consider as one and the same.'
GILDON (CHARLES), a dramatic and miscellaneous writer, was born at Gillingham, near Shaftesbury, in Dorsetshire, in 1665. His parents and family were Roman catholics, and consequently endeavoured to instill the same principles into our author, but without success. His father was a member of the society of Gray's-inn, and had suffered considerably in the royal cause. Mr. Gildon received the first rudiments of his education at Gillingham ; but when twelve years
his parents sent him over to Doway, and entered him in the English college of secular priests there, with a view of bringing him up likewise to the priesthood; but, during a progress of five years' study he only found his inclinations more strongly confirmed for á quite different course of life.
At nineteen years of age he returned to England, and when he was of age, and by the entrance into his paternal fortune, which was not inconsiderable, rendered in every respect capable of enjoying the gaieties and pleasures of this polite town, he came up to London. Here he soon spent the best part of what he had, and crowned his imprudences by marrying a young lady without any fortune, at about the age of twenty-three, adding to his other incumbrances that of a growing family, without any way of improving his reduced finances. During the reign of James 11. he studied the religious controversies of that period, which ended in his becoming an infidel. In 1693 be ushered into the world “ The Oracles of Reason," written by Charles Blount, esq. after that author's unhappy end, with a pompous eulogium and a defence of self-inurder. He was afterwards, however, as Dr. Leland informs us, “ convinced of his error; of which he gave a remarkable proof, in a good book which he published in 1705, entitled * The Deist's Manual; or, a rational enquiry into the Christian Religion ;' the greatest part of which is taken up in vindicating the doctrines of the existence and attribứtes of God, his providence and government of the world, the immortality of the soul, and a future state.”
Having greatly injured his fortune by thoughtlessness
| Tanner, Leland,Ware's Ireland.--Vicolson's English flist. Library.. Cave, vol. I.-Dupin. ---Gent. Mag. vol. LXXXIlI. part. I. p. 219.
and dissipation, he was now obliged to consider on some method for retrieving it; or, indeed, rather for the means of subsistence; and he himself candidly owns, in his essays, that necessity was his first motive for venturing to be an author ; nor was it till he had arrived at his two-and-thirtieth year, that he made any attempt in the dramatic way.
He died Jan. 12, 1723-4. His literary character is given in Boyer's Political State, vol. XXVII. p. 102, as “a person of great literature, but a mean genius ; who, having attempted several kinds of writing, never gained much reputation in any. Among other treatises he wrote the
English Art of Poetry,' which he had practised himself very unsuccessfully in his dramatic performances. He also wrote an English grammar; but what he seemed to build his chief hopes of fame upon was his Critical Commentary on the duke of Buckingham's · Essay on Poetry,” which last piece was perused and highly approved by his grace."
Much of this is certainly true. His plays, enumerated in the “ Biog. Dramatica," procured him little reputation. He had some talent, however, for criticism, and Pope was weak enough to believe that Addison employed Gildon to write against him. Pope introduced him into the Dunciad for another reason, his “New Rehearsal, or, Bays the Younger; containing an examen of Mr. Rowe's plays, and a word or two on Mr. Pope's ' Rape of the Lock,'” 1714. Gildon wrote the “ Life of Betterton," published in 1710.'
GILES, or GILLES (OF VITERBO), a learned general of the Augustines, and cardinal, was so called from the place of his birth. He was well skilled in languages, and much consulted by the learned of his age on that account. He opened the Lateran council under Julius II. 1512, and conducted several affairs of importance for Leo X. He died November 12, 1532, at Rome. This cardinal left “ Commentaries” on some of the “ Psalms;"'.“ Remarks on the First Three Chapters of Genesis ;" “ Dialogues, Epistles, and Odes," in praise of Pontanus, &c. which may be found in Martenne's “ Amplissima Collectio," and contained many useful notices respecting the state of learning and events of his time.”
GILES, JOHN. See ÆGIDIUS.
GILL (ALEXANDER), head master of St. Paul's school, was born in Lincolnshire, Feb. 27, 1564, and admitted
| Biog. Dram.-Cibber's Lives, vol. III.-Leland's Deistical Writers. Bowles's edition of Pope ; see Index.
scholar of Corpus college, Oxford, in Sept. 1583. He took his master's degree in 1590, when he left college, and is supposed to have taught school at Norwich, as he was in that city in 1597, and there wrote bis “ Treatise concerning the Trinity,” 8vo, to which Wood gives the date of 1601. In 1608 he became chief master of St. Paul's school, in which his method of education is said to have been eminently successful. He was not more esteemed as a man of learning, and an excellent Latin scholar, than as a divine and critic. He died at his house in St. Paul's church-yard, Nov. 17, 1635, and was buried in the antichapel belonging to Mercers' hall. His other works are, 1. “ Logonomia Anglica," 1721, 4to; and 2. “ Sacred Philosophy of Holy Scripture ; or a Commentary on the Creed," fol. 1635. '
GILL (ALEXANDER), son and successor to his father, the subject of the preceding article, was born in London, in 1597, and entered of Trinity college, Oxford, in 1612, on an exhibition from the Mercers' company. When he had taken his master's degree, he became usher under his father in St. Paul's school, and under Thomas Farnaby, in his private school, but succeeded his father in 1635, and next year took the degree of D. D. He held the school only five years, being dismissed, as Knight thinks, for excessive severity. An allowance, however, was made to him of 25l. yearly, with which he set up a private school in Aldersgate-street, where he died in 1642, and was buried in the church of St. Botolph, Aldersgate. Wood speaks of his “ unsettled and inconstant temper," and of his “many changes, rambles, and some imprisonments," but upon wbat account he does not inform us.
Some light, however, is thrown upon the circumstance of imprisonments at least, in a late publication of Aubrey's Lives. In his account of Chillingworth he says, “ Dr. Gill, filius doctoris Gill, schoolmaster of Paules school, and Chillingworth, held weekely intelligence one with another for some years, wherein they used to nibble at state-matters. Dr. Gill, in one of his letters, calls king James and his sonne, the old foole and the young one, which letier Chillingworth communicated to W. Laud, A. B. Cant. The poore young Dr. Gill was seised, and a terrible storme pointed towards him, which by the eloquent intercession and ad
1 Ath. Ox. vol. I.--Knight's Life of Colet,
vocation of Edward earle of Dorset, together with tlie teares of the poore old doctor, his father, and supplication on his knees to his majestie, was blowne over.” Most of his Latin poetry, in which he excelled, is published in a voluine entitled “ Poetici Conatus,” 1632, 12mo, but he has other pieces extant both in Latin and English, some of which are enumerated by Wood, who had seen others in manuscript. When usher of St. Paul's school, he had the honour of having Milton under him, who was his favourite scholar. Three of Milton's familiar Latin letters to him are extant, replete with the strongest testimonies of esteem and friendship. Milton also pays him high compliments on the excellence of his Latin poetry. He gave to the library of Trinity college the old folio edition of Spenser's “Faerie Queene," Drayton's “ Polyolbion," by Selden; and Bourdelotius's “ Lucian,” all having poetical mottos from the classics in his own hand-writing, which shew his taste and track of reading; and in the "Lucian” are the arms of the Gills elegantly tricked with a pen, and coloured by him. He had two brothers, George and Nathaniel, who were both of the same college.'
GILL (John), D. D. an eminent dissenting divine, and the most able and learned baptist writer of the last century, was born at Kettering in Northamptonshire, Nov, 23, 1697, of parents in humble life. His father was a deacon of the baptist meeting at Kettering; and having, from various causes, some of which appear rather imaginary, a strong impression on his mind that this son would become a preacher, and an eminent character, exerted his utmost to give him a suitable education. His first attempts were crowned with such success as to confirm his father's hopes. Being sent to the grammar school, he soon exceeded his equals in age, and even his seniors.
At his eleventh year, he had not only gone through the common school books, but had read the principal Latin classics, and made considerable proficiency in the Greek language. Such was at the same time his avidity of knowledge, that he constantly frequented a bookseller's shop (which was open only on market-days), where his acquirements became noticed by some of the neighbouring clergy; and be repaired so regularly to this repository of books, that it became a sort of
I Ath. Ox. vol. II.-Knight's Colet.-Warton's Milton, p. 430.-Letters by Eminent Persons, 1813, 3 vols. 8vo.