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Geddes to Doctor Lowth, the late Bishop of London, with a letter desiring "his lordship would mark, with a black theta, whatever passage might appear objectionable." The learned Bishop returned it with a note, expressing "that he had read it with some care and attention, and with the fullest approbation; that he found no room for black thetas; and that he doubted not it would give general satisfaction."
In the following year, Doctor Geddes addressed to the learned Bishop, "A Letter containing Queries, Doubts, and Difficulties, relative to a vernacular Version of the Holy Scriptures." It is an Appendix to the Prospectus.
These publications produced him several communications in consequence of them he published, in 1790, his "General Answers to the Queries, Counsels, and Criticisms, that had been communicated to him since the Publication of his Proposals for printing a New Translation of the Bible."
In 1792, the first volume of his Translation appeared under the title of "The Holy Bible, or the Books accounted sacred by Jews and Christians: otherwise called the Books of the Old and New Covenants: faithfully translated from corrected Texts of the Originals. With Various Readings,
Explanatory Notes, and Critical Remarks." It contains a complete translation of the Pentateuch : he dedicated it to his noble patron.
In answer to the objections made to it, the Doctor published in the following year his "Address to the Public, on the Publication of his New Translation of the Bible."
In 1797, the Doctor published the second volume of his Translation; it comprises the Book of Judges, the Books of Samuel, the Books of Kings, the Books of Chronicles, the Book of Ruth, and the Prayer of Manasseh. It is dedicated to the Duchess of Gloucester. The two volumes comprise the whole series of Jewish History, from the Creation to the Babylonish Captivity.
To each volume a preface is prefixed; and each is accompanied throughout with various readings and short explanatory notes at the bottom of the page. A fuller explanation or illustration of different passages of the text was to form his Critical Remarks.
His Critical Remarks on the Pentateuch, under the title "Critical Remarks on the Hebrew Scriptures, corresponding with a New Translation of the Bible," were published in 1800.
In 1801, he lost his friend and patron Lord
Petre. His lordship's exalted and amiable character will not soon be forgotten.-Adored by his family, the centre of a numerous and honourable band of friends, connected with some of the most illustrious personages in the kingdom, all of whom revered and loved him; the warm and steady friend of civil and religious liberty; the soul of the successful attempts in 1778 and 1791, for the relief of his Roman Catholic brethren; but, in his expanded benevolence, knowing no difference of Catholic, Protestant, Jew, or Infidel, his lordship seemed to exist only for purposes of charity and munificence: his death (though his conscientious adherence to his religious principles kept him from the public situations to which his birth, his possessions, and his character, entitled him,) was generally be wailed as a public loss. Doctor Geddes bewailed it in a pathetic and elegant Latin Elegy.
The connexion between Lord Petre and Doctor Geddes was equally honourable to each: there were never between them any of those coolnesses or intermissions of regard which often affect the sincerest friendships; still less was there on his lordship's side, any thing of that superciliousness, or, on the doctor's, any thing of that subserviency which so often disgrace patronage. His lordship
was uniformly respectful and kind to his literary friend, anxiously promoted the great work which occasioned their connexion, and warmly interested himself in its success. By his will he be queathed to the Doctor, for his life, an annuity of 100%.
With the hereditary munificence of his family, the present lord, very soon after his father's decease, signified to the Doctor, in the most polite and friendly manner, his intention to continue his father's patronage of the work, and to allow the Doctor an annuity of 100%, in addition to that which his father had bequeathed him.
Doctor Geddes did not long survive his noble patron. Lord Petre died July 2nd, 1801; the Doctor, after a very severe illness, died on the 26th of the following February. He was buried by his own desire in the church-yard at Padding, ton. His funeral was numerously and honourably attended: few persons could boast of more warm or more respectable friends. No person ever called in question his learning, his literary industry, his friendly and beneficent disposition, or guileless heart.
Lord Petre extended his kindness to the Doctor's memory. Immediately after his decease,
his lordship desired us to examine the Doctor's papers. We did it as far as our avocations allowed; but, to our great surprise, we did not find a single manuscript line which related to his biblical pursuits. We signified this to his lordship, and recommended a further search might be made by. some person who could bestow more time upon it this was done, but was equally unsuccessful.. From the Doctor's own declarations, and other circumstances, there is every reason to suppose he had made great progress in his work: it seems therefore probable, that in the view of his approaching dissolution, of which he had long been sensible, he had committed all his manuscripts to the flames.
Lord Petre closed his attentions to his friend's memory by causing a monumental stone to be erected with the following inscription:
REVEREND ALEXANDER GEDDES, LL. D.
"Christian is my name, and catholic my surname.' "I grant that you are a christian as well as I,