- John Spurr
Thomas Barlow (1608/99–1691)
Barlow, Thomas (1608/9–1691), bishop of Lincoln, was born at Long-Gill, Orton, Westmorland, the son of Richard Barlow (d. 1637). He was educated under William Pickering at Appleby grammar school. He matriculated as a servitor from the Queen's College, Oxford, on 1 July 1625 aged sixteen, and later became a taberdar. He graduated BA on 24 July 1630, proceeded MA on 27 June 1633, and was elected a fellow of Queen's the same year.
Barlow's college and the university remained the centre of his life for the next forty years or more. He established enduring friendships and connections and laid the foundations of an encyclopaedic knowledge of the philosophical and theological learning then current in Oxford. In 1635 he was appointed the university reader in metaphysics and in this capacity delivered lectures, later published as Exercitationes aliquot de metaphysicae de Deo (1637, but appended to a 1638 publication). Barlow's reputation was as a teacher of philosophy, logic, and casuistry; his pupils included John Owen. Some sense of Barlow's intellectual formation and of his likely legacy to his pupils can be gained from the many annotated reading lists which he prepared. The best-known of these dates from the 1650s and, although his suggestions are more exhaustive than some, it offers a typical range of seventeenth-century reading—including ethical compendia, works by the schoolmen, and works of natural philosophy by authors such as Gassendi, Descartes, and Bacon. Barlow also prepared a guide to mastering the rudiments of the civil or canon law in so far as it was needed by a minister.
Barlow leaned not only towards the scholastics, but also towards a high Calvinist theology which was increasingly unfashionable in 1630s Oxford. This did not however prevent him—on his own evidence—from being invited to Lord Falkland's house at Great Tew and from advising both Falkland and William Chillingworth on their antipapal writings at the end of the 1630s. Indeed, to judge from the presentation volumes that Barlow received from authors throughout his long life, he was able to maintain friendships with a diverse range of people. As he later wrote when refuting a piece by his old acquaintance Thomas Hobbes, 'It is the positions of that Authour which I severely (may be) but truely confute; not his person … soe say I, of Mr Hobs and truth; I love Both, but truth better. Nor is this any breach of friendship' (Correspondence of Thomas Hobbes, 2.787).
Civil war and interregnum
Barlow's life during the civil war is not well documented, but he seems to have been in royalist Oxford pursuing his academic and clerical duties. After the defeat of the king parliament sent a visitation to the university to purge it of unsuitable elements. In May 1648 he told the visitors that he was not yet satisfied 'how I can without violence to my conscience submitt to this Visitation' (Burrows, 74, 89) and his name consequently appeared in a list of those expelled from the university. Yet he remained undisturbed. Barlow's retention of his fellowship was perhaps less surprising than some later maintained. Although he may have benefited from the protection of friends like John Owen and John Selden, the explanation of his conformity is more likely to be found in the influence of Gerard Langbaine, provost of Queen's, who practised, along with John Wilkins of Wadham, 'a skilful and often unobtrusive policy of minimal tactical concession' to the demands of the intruded authorities. Queen's was a college with a pronounced royalist reputation and character: it had an unusually high number of fellows who survived the purge of 1648; and it was a college 'resorted to by all that were cavaliers or of the King's party'—little wonder then that so many later tories were bred there during the interregnum (Worden in Hist. U. Oxf. 4: 17th-cent. Oxf., 760–61, 767). A rather poor attempt at satire, Pegasus, or, The flying horse from Oxford, bringing the proceedings of the visitors and other Bedlamites (1648), is often attributed to Barlow.
Barlow's residual loyalty to both king and Church of England is attested by his subscription to a secret collection raised in 1654 by Francis Mansell and Leoline Jenkins for the distressed bishops in exile. Barlow corresponded with two of the church's leading lights, Henry Hammond and Robert Sanderson, about the most effective way of defending the Church of England. In June 1655 he wrote to Hammond about his interpretation of scripture in the debate on the distinction between presbyteros and episcopos and expressed a concern that Hammond had conceded too much to the presbyterians. His letters to Sanderson in 1656 and 1657 expressed his concern at the innovative teachings of Jeremy Taylor on original sin. In reply Sanderson urged him to write about original sin and to answer 'all the objections of the old Pelagians, or late Socinians' but to do so without naming Taylor or dividing the episcopalian party (Works of Robert Sanderson, 6.381). Obviously there may have been some coolness between those like Hammond and Taylor who had been ejected and Barlow who had complied with the new authorities, but this was complicated by their theological differences since Barlow remained a staunch Calvinist and an outspoken opponent of Arminianism (indeed he later explicitly blamed Hammond for the spread of that dangerous doctrine). Meanwhile the Calvinist puritans around Barlow in interregnum Oxford admired his theology: Louis du Moulin believed that Barlow 'did keep this university of Oxon from being poyson'd with Pelagianism, Socinianism, popery etc' during the 1640s and 1650s (Wood, Ath. Oxon., 3.1058). But this did not mean that they regarded him as one of their number.
As ever in the university the claims of scholarship could be balanced against those of political affiliation. In 1652 Barlow was appointed as the keeper of the Bodleian Library. In this post he opposed 'both on statute and on principle the lax habit of lending books, which had been the cause of serious losses' to the library (DNB). Barlow and the library formed an impressive academic resource. He prepared a paper for the debate on the readmission of the Jews 'at the request of a person of quality'. He gave Anthony Wood an 'assisting hand' and showed him 'fatherly favours' (Life and Times of Anthony Wood, xxiii, lix); he helped Thomas Fuller with information about the university for his Church History; he patronized the outstanding young Hebraist Thomas Smith; and he was on hand to welcome scholars, even Catholic ones like Sancta Clara, who visited the library. It was during Barlow's tenure of office that the library received one of its most notable accessions: in 1659 the library of John Selden (d. 1654)—8000 printed volumes and a rich collection of manuscripts—arrived at the Bodleian.
From 1656 Barlow was assisted by the pushy young Henry Stubbe who exploited his superior's reputation in his successful attempt to establish a correspondence with Hobbes. It was through Stubbe that Hobbes sent Barlow a copy of De corpore, and Barlow's letter of thanks dated 23 December 1656 has survived. In this letter Barlow records that he has read Hobbes's works as they appeared. Despite Hobbes's suspicion of the universities Barlow expressed the hope that they might be 'seminaries of all good letters, in which the youth of this nation may (upon just principles) be taught religion and piety towards God, and obedience and duty to their governors' (Correspondence of Thomas Hobbes, 2.420–21).
On 23 July 1657 Barlow gained the degree of BD. On Gerard Langbaine's death in 1658 the fellows of the Queen's College moved swiftly to thwart any external interference and elected Barlow as his successor. Obadiah Walker congratulated Barlow with the comment that they have 'their father [eldest fellow] to their Provost, under whose experienced government they may assure themselves of all happiness that they are capable of. 'Tis no wonder that everyone without reluctancy cheerfully concurred in that election' (Correspondence of Thomas Hobbes, 2.786).
At the Restoration, Barlow, as a respected intellectual and an undisputed supporter of both monarchy and the Church of England, could have anticipated influence on the settlement of religion. Moreover his perspective as a convinced Calvinist and as someone who had found a modus vivendi with the religious pluralism of the interregnum was possibly more in tune with the presbyterian sentiments which seemed likely to prevail in 1660. At the request of his friend Robert Boyle, Barlow wrote a manuscript 'Case of a toleration in matters of religion', which he described as 'adversaria (tumultuously put together)' (Barlow, Several Cases of Conscience, 1692, 93). In this tract he discussed whether a state could tolerate false religions and scrupulously refrained from any simple conclusion. He held that no state could tolerate a religion which was destructive of the state or of true religion and that the authorities could compel those of other religions to hear arguments and sermons for the truth. But in the end belief had to be voluntary. Others, like Edward Stillingfleet, were not only composing but even publishing speculative discussions about religious toleration in the uncertain months surrounding the Restoration. Interesting although Barlow's arguments were, they were soon left behind by events and were published only after his death.
Barlow had work to do in Oxford at the Restoration. He served as a commissioner for restoring members of the university ejected in 1648. He is reported to have helped John Owen and interceded for him when harassed for preaching in his own house. After the expulsion of Henry Wilkinson from the Lady Margaret professorship of divinity Barlow was appointed in his place and relinquished his position at the Bodleian. On 1 September 1660 he took the degree of DD by royal mandate as part of a group honoured, comments Wood, 'as loyalists, yet none of them suffered for their loyalty in the times of rebellion and usurpation' (Wood, Ath. Oxon.: Fasti, 2.238). On 25 September he was formally elected as Lady Margaret professor and collated to the prebendal stall at Worcester which was annexed to the chair. In 1661 he was nominated to succeed Barton Holyday as archdeacon of Oxford, but a dispute with Thomas Lamplugh over the appointment delayed Barlow's instalment until 13 June 1664.
As the national religious settlement took shape Barlow's views were sought. In the summer of 1661 he was asked to contribute his suggestions for revision of the Book of Common Prayer. His final report asserted 'the whole booke to be the best liturgy in the world, especially the communion service, it beeinge allmost impossible that any office penn'd by men (not divinely inspired) should breathe more piety, or contain more truth and decency' (Queen's College, Oxford, MS 279). However this did not mean that it was beyond improvement in areas such as the offices of baptism, confirmation, commination, and burial. Barlow's Calvinism logically created a difficulty for him over the baptism service. He had already expressed his unease over infant baptism to the baptist theologian John Tombes. In this report he once again asserted that baptism was not necessary to salvation and that the liturgy's claim that the baptized infant was really regenerated but then might eternally perish was nonsense.
The religious policies of the early 1660s seem to have caused Barlow no dismay. Neither his experience of the interregnum nor his Calvinist theology seem to have disposed him to generosity towards the nonconformists. In the winter of 1667–8 two initiatives were launched apparently from elements within the court to improve the position of the dissenters. One plan was for a 'comprehension' or widening of the terms of communion of the Church of England so that the moderate ministers excluded in 1662 might once again exercise their ministry within the national church. The other plan was for an 'indulgence', or toleration, of those, principally the Independents, who did not aspire to rejoin the established church. Neither of these schemes actually led to any bill being offered to parliament. A long-standing canard has associated Thomas Barlow with these negotiations. As he did with many other public events, Barlow collected the publications surrounding these schemes. He bound seventeen pamphlets connected with the proposals together and annotated them with what information he had been able to gather from his various sources in London. The resulting volume in the Bodleian (B.14.15.Linc) is the best source for the negotiations of 1667–8, but it implies nothing at all about Barlow's approval of these schemes, never mind any involvement on his part. At several points the annotations are clearly transcriptions of others' reports and Barlow sums up the whole volume as concerning the presbyterian endeavours in court and parliament which having received countenance from the king led to a 'boldness an[d] insolence both of Papists, Presbyterians and fanatiques'. Fortunately (from his perspective) parliament stepped in and obtained a proclamation from the king for enforcing the laws against conventicles. As Barlow wrote in a private letter of 8 January 1669:
the Presbyterians and all non-Conformists desire and indeavour the dissolution of this, and the Call of another Parliament, hopinge to chuse such members as may give a Toleration (if not a greater incouragement or establishment) of their sect and way, and also (to ease the people of Taxes) give the kinge the Church Lands to raise money out of the churches ruines; and soe robb God, and invert the pious donations of their Ancestors.
He continues, 'I hope you and I shall not live to see that day'. He was confident that the present parliament would never be so sacrilegious, and if another parliament were to attempt it, 'I am persuaded his sacred Majesty (on whose head may the Crowne florish) will never consent' (Bodl. Oxf., MS Eng. lett. C. 328, fol. 509).
University duties absorbed Barlow's time and energies. Yet he saw his primary role as the defence and maintenance of the protestant religion within the university and beyond: so he is to be heard arguing at the university act in 1661 that Socianian teachings were destructive of church and state and that the Church of Rome was idolatrous. He was suspicious of the new science, fearing especially that its atomism would pave the way for atheism: 'I am troubled to see the scepticism (to say no worse) which now securely reigns in our miserable nation' (Genuine Remains, 155). His correspondence reveals a stream of requests from parish ministers and others for advice on 'cases of conscience' or moral problems. And of course as a teacher he was required to inculcate true religion and obedience among the students of the university and of his college in particular. In 1670 he assured Sir John Lowther that his grandson would be instructed in religion as well as literature and that he himself would:
at convenient times (privately) read over the grounds of divinity to him, that soe he may have a better understandinge and comprehension of the reason of that religion, which alone is, or can be a just foundation of true comfort here, and of our hopes of a better life hereafter.Hist. U. Oxf. 4: 17th-cent. Oxf., 312
Barlow won back errant members of the Church of England like William Wycherley who temporarily converted to Rome while travelling abroad, and welcomed new adherents, such as Anthony Horneck, the German student who found a niche as a chaplain at Queen's before taking up a ministry in the English church. Yet it was undeniable that the theological tide had turned at the Restoration and Barlow increasingly found himself at odds with the new theological orthodoxies.
Barlow was distressed by any suggestion of a softening in the Church of England's implacable line against Roman Catholicism: he reacted badly to any hint of a concession to Catholic views on Lent or images or the real presence; above all he bitterly resented any questioning of the propositions that the pope was Antichrist and the Roman church was idolatrous. These two dogmas were, he claimed, to be found in the Church of England's homilies and (before its revision in 1662) in the liturgy for 5 November where 'Papists are call'd a Babylonish and Anti-Christian sect. And the Pope is call'd AntiChrist by all our old Divines, and the Question, An Papa sit Antichristus? Was ever held affirmative in both the Universities, till about the year 1628 or 1630'. Movement away from this position had been harmful: 'What benefit has accrued to our Religion or Church since we have been more kind to Rome I know not: but what damage both have sustained, all (who have eyes and will use them) may easily see' (MS marginalia, p. 306 of Peter Heylyn, Cyprianus Anglicus, 1668, Bodl. Oxf., N N 118 Th).
The other great shibboleth of the Church of England for Barlow was orthodox reformed theology. When Anglican authors presumptuously criticized the tenets of Calvinism, Barlow could barely contain his rage: in the margins of one attack on the Synod of Dort, he wrote, 'did not the Church of England, and all her obedient sons till 1626 or 1628 (both the universities) approve the doctrine of that synod?' (MS marginalia, p. 7 of John Goodman, A Serious and Compassionate Inquiry, 1674, Bodl. Oxf., 8° A 43 Linc). George Bull's Harmonia apostolica (1670), an attempt to reconcile St Paul on faith with St James on works, provoked a series of Latin lectures in the university from Professor Barlow between 1673 and 1676 in which he intermittently attacked Bull while comprehensively asserting an unmitigated belief in salvation by faith alone. Barlow also encouraged Thomas Tully of St Edmund Hall to reply to Bull in print and he is believed to have used his office as pro-vice-chancellor to question a fellow of All Souls for preaching Arminianism.
Bishop of Lincoln
In the summer of 1675 Barlow gained the bishopric of Lincoln thanks to the lobbying of the two secretaries of state, Sir Joseph Williamson and Henry Coventry, both part of the network of Queen's men, and in the face of overt hostility from the ageing Archbishop Gilbert Sheldon. On 27 June Barlow was consecrated by Bishop George Morley of Winchester in the chapel at Ely House, Holborn, the palace of Bishop Peter Gunning of Ely, and 'after it, succeeded a magnificent feast, where were the Duke of Ormonde, Earl of Lauderdale, the Lord Treasurer, Lord Keeper etc' (Evelyn, 4.66–7). Although Sheldon and some other churchmen looked askance at Bishop Barlow, many contemporaries, such as John Evelyn, seem to have regarded this as a suitable climax to a career devoted to learning. Shortly after his consecration the new bishop wrote to Dean Honywood of Lincoln that he had 'seene and love the place, and like it as the fittest place of my abode … but for some reasons', he had to reside at the bishop's palace at Buckden, Huntingdonshire, 'till I can make better accommodation at Lincoln for my abode there' (Lincoln chapter muniments; quoted in DNB). In fact Barlow was slow to leave Oxford: he performed ordinations in the Queen's College chapel in 1677 and retained his archdeaconry of Oxford in commendam until 1677; Wood noted that in July 1678 Barlow had still not visited either Lincoln or Buckden. This omission eventually became a matter of public concern.
Barlow's episcopal responsibilities did not distract him from his constant concern to maintain orthodoxy. He was consulted by the earl of Anglesey about Hobbes's history of heresy and retorted with the fierce rebuttal of the tract and with professions of friendship for its author (1676). In the autumn of 1678 Bishop Barlow, like several other bishops, was prepared to vote with the country lords in pursuit of the truth about the Popish Plot and the nefarious activities of the Lord Treasurer, the earl of Danby. He was an enthusiastic proponent of the Test Act (1678) and was outraged by Bishop Gunning's denial in the House of Lords that the Church of Rome was idolatrous. In Popery or, The Principles and Position of the Church of Rome Very Dangerous to All (1678) and Brutum fulmen (1680), Barlow produced vitriolic attacks on the papacy and its pretensions, especially its claims to be able to depose princes, and thorough demonstrations that 'the pope is the great Antichrist, the man of sin, and the son of perdition'. In 1682 he answered the inquiry 'whether the Turk or pope be the greater antichrist' by affirming the latter, and in 1684 he once again proved that the pope was Antichrist in a letter to the earl of Anglesey. In 1683 he became embroiled in a dispute between the parishioners of Moulton in Lincolnshire and their minister Mr Tallents. The parishioners had whitewashed over the scripture sentences on the church walls and set up various images including pictures of St Paul above the royal arms, St Peter above the decalogue, and a dove symbolizing the Holy Ghost. Clearly finding this ‘popish’, Barlow sided with the incumbent and denounced both the new images and the erasure of the scripture texts as unlawful, but eventually lost the case in the court of arches in January 1685.
After 1681 the years of so-called tory reaction saw the weight of persecution shift from papists to protestant dissenters. Barlow was adamant that 'the execution of our laws (ecclesiastical and civil) against nonconformists' was not persecution (MS marginalia on title-page of Samuel Bolde, A Sermon Against Persecution, 1682, Bodl. Oxf., C 8 20 Linc). He had no compunction in instructing his diocesan clergy to publish the order of the Bedfordshire quarter sessions in 1684 that the laws against nonconformists be enforced to the letter. Perhaps coincidentally, in May 1684 Barlow wrote at length to Archbishop William Sancroft to defend himself against the calumny that he favoured presbyterians or dissenters (Bodl. Oxf., MS Tanner 32, fol. 54).
The bishop and the politics of 1685 to 1691
Barlow joined with the Church of England in welcoming the accession of James II, preferring to trust the king's promises for the security of the protestant church than contemplate any breach of loyalty. He was, after all, a convinced believer in the supremacy of the king in ecclesiastical affairs. Barlow himself was under a cloud because of his continuing failure to visit his diocese. In 1686 Archbishop Sancroft ordered a metropolitical visitation of the diocese of Lincoln by Bishop Thomas White of Peterborough. White was to concentrate on such matters as the state of the churches and to hold confirmations. Barlow dutifully accepted the primate's decision, but defensively claimed that his accusers were motivated by dislike of his adherence to the doctrine and religion of the Church of England. In response to the chiding of the marquess of Halifax, Barlow offered an elaborate apology, citing the example of his predecessors, his own age and infirmities, and the convenient location of Buckden, but he also promised that as soon as God gave him the ability he would visit Lincoln. A very similar letter to Sancroft dated 27 October 1686 also heaped abuse on Archdeacon Cawley of Lincoln, who had published an attack on his absentee bishop (Bodl. Oxf., MS Tanner 30, fol. 131).
Ageing, defensive, and out of sympathy with the tenor of his times, Barlow must have found the reign of James II difficult. He sought to balance his duty of obedience to his sovereign with the defence of the protestant Church of England. He did not believe that others in the Church of England were as devoted to its protestant heritage. He later claimed that Sancroft and his circle would not license his discussion of popish idolatry in his tract Reasons why a Protestant should not Turn Papist: 'a fifth reason concerning the gross idolatry of the Church of Rome in the adoration of the cross and eucharist' did not appear because 'my lord of Cant[erbury] and his chaplaine Dr Batterly refus'd to licence anno 1687, when the reste was licenc'd' (Queen's College, MS 215). His own loyalty was tested by the 1687 declaration of indulgence. He was one of the four bishops who did thank the king for the declaration's safeguards for the Church of England, and he got 600 of his clergy to sign an address of thanks. A letter defending his stance was later published in his Genuine Remains. Barlow sent James's second declaration to his clergy, but a circumspect letter to one of his clergy dated 29 May 1688 reveals the casuistical method at work. The same authority that requires the bishop to disseminate copies of the declaration requires the clergy to read them, explains Barlow: 'but whether you should, or should not read them, is a question of that difficulty, in the circumstance we now are, that you can't expect that I should so hastily answer it'. He observes that the London clergy had generally refused, yet he would not seek to persuade or dissuade:
but leave it to your prudence and conscience, whether you will or will not read it; only this I shall advise, that, after serious consideration, you find that you cannot read it, but reluctante vel dubitante conscientia, in that case, to read it will be your sin, and you to blame for doing it.Stoughton, 4. 147
Any seventeenth-century clergyman would recognize the careful casuistry of this letter, its respect for the inviolable individual conscience, and its assertion that any doubt renders an action unconscionable.
So avowed an anti-papist as Barlow was easily able to accommodate himself to the providential removal of James II by his protestant nephew William. He voted for the notion that James had abdicated and the throne was vacant; he took the oaths of allegiance to William and Mary; and he was happy to replace those of his clergy who lost their livings for their refusal to take the new oaths. The Toleration Act was a much less welcome consequence of the revolution for Barlow. It was 'against the expresse law of God, of nature, and all' to grant freedom to those who had 'ruin'd church and state, and murder'd their kinge' (Hist. U. Oxf. 4: 17th-cent. Oxf., 884).
Barlow died unmarried at Buckden on 8 October 1691. At the last 'he did commend his soul unto God and his body to the earth to be decently interred and without pompe, having his coffin covered with a black cloth instead of a pall' (Bodl. Oxf., MS Eng. C 3190). He was buried as he requested in the same grave as a predecessor, Bishop William Barlow (d. 1613), in the chancel of the parish church.
Thomas Barlow's reputation as a timeserver is unfortunate and undeserved. He has been the victim of Anthony Wood's hostility, but also of his own longevity, reluctance to publish, and refusal to move with the theological times. Although hindsight can isolate certain aberrations, Barlow's principles were remarkably consistent across a very long lifetime: he was a believer in the authority of the monarch, a staunch anti-papist, and a full-blown Calvinist. His royalism was evident in the 1640s and did not subsequently waver despite the strains imposed by the rule of James II. Barlow steadfastly refused to change his mind about the Church of Rome even as all about him seemed to: he was convinced that the Church of Rome was formally idolatrous and therefore fundamentally in error. He clung, too, to his conviction that the pope was Antichrist as, he claimed, the majority of English divines had maintained from the Reformation to the end of James I's reign. Calvinism was the sheet anchor of his Christianity. He never ceased to teach the fundamental truths of justification by faith alone, absolute double decree predestination, the irresistibility of grace, and the perseverance of the saints. He repeatedly claimed that he stood fast by the Church of England while others deviated or innovated; but he also traced all the ills of the church to that one moment in the late 1620s when William Laud and his acolytes, including the young Gilbert Sheldon, betrayed the fundamentals of the Calvinist orthodoxy of the English church. In many ways he was fighting the battles of the 1620s and 1630s all his life. Not only did Barlow believe that he was a standing reproach to those who shifted with the times, but other sober serious individuals also seem to have been convinced of his integrity. Robert Boyle trusted him and consulted him in cases of conscience; Edward Harley and the earl of Anglesey valued his advice; and Bishop George Morley remained a friend.
Thomas Barlow's significance is manifold. He was an archetypal Calvinist clergyman of the Jacobean kind who survived long after his values and theology had ceased to be fashionable within the Church of England. One value that he did transmit to a later generation was antipopery. But Barlow's career and life also represent the interaction of university, church, and politics which was such a feature of seventeenth-century England. His was an academic cast of mind, hungry for books and controversy, caring of his pupils and surprisingly cordial in person towards those whose beliefs he detested. He was at the heart of an Oxford-centred network which was deeply influential in the administration and politics of Restoration England. A survivor, rather than a ‘trimmer’, who demonstrates the complexity of intellectual affiliations in seventeenth-century England, Barlow left a legacy which also includes the library he left to the Bodleian, the copious annotations in many of those books, and his manuscripts at the Queen's College. His friend and admirer, the earl of Anglesey, should have the last word:
I never think of this bishop nor of his incomparable knowledge both in theology and church history and in the ecclesiastical law without applying to him in my thoughts the character that Cicero gave Crassus: non unus e multis, sed unus inter omnes prope singularis[‘not one among many but virtually unique’].Memoirs of … Anglesey, 20
- Bodl. Oxf., MSS Tanner; MS Eng. lett. C. 328; MS Eng. C. 3190
- Queen's College, Oxford, Barlow MSS
- BL, Harley MSS 3784–3785, 6942, 7377
- The genuine remains of Dr Thomas Barlow (1693)
- The works of Robert Sanderson, ed. W. Jacobson, 6 vols. (1854)
- The correspondence of Thomas Hobbes, ed. N. Malcolm, 2 vols. (1994)
- Memoirs of the right honourable Arthur, earl of Anglesey, ed. P. Pett (1693)
- M. Burrows, ed., The register of the visitors of the University of Oxford, from ad 1647 to ad 1658, CS, new ser., 29 (1881)
- N. Pocock, ed., ‘Illustrations of the state of the church during the great rebellion’, The Theologian and Ecclesiastic, 6–15 (1848–54)
- J. Stoughton, The history of religion in Ireland, revised edn, 6 vols. (1881)
- R. S. Bosher, The making of the Restoration settlement: the influence of the Laudians, 1649–1662, rev. edn (1957)
- R. Nelson, The life of Dr George Bull (1713)
- M. Goldie, ‘Danby, the bishops, and the whigs’, The politics of religion in Restoration England, ed. T. Harris, P. Seaward, and M. Goldie (1990), 75–106
- I. M. Green, The re-establishment of the Church of England, 1660–1663 (1978)
- J. R. Jacob, Henry Stubbe, radical protestantism and the early Enlightenment (1983)
- J. W. Packer, The transformation of Anglicanism, 1643–1660, with special reference to Henry Hammond (1969)
- P. Seaward, The Cavalier Parliament and the reconstruction of the old regime, 1661–1667 (1989)
- N. Sykes, From Sheldon to Secker: aspects of English church history, 1660–1768 (1959)
- J. Spurr, The Restoration Church of England, 1646–1689 (1991)
- M. Goldie, ‘Sir Peter Pett, sceptical toryism and the science of toleration in the 1680s’, Persecution and toleration, ed. W. J. Sheils, SCH, 21 (1984), 247–74
- Calendar of the correspondence of Richard Baxter, ed. N. H. Keeble and G. F. Nuttall, 2 vols. (1991)
- The life and times of Anthony Wood, ed. A. Clark, 5 vols., OHS, 19, 21, 26, 30, 40 (1891–1900)
- Wood, Ath. Oxon., new edn, 4.333–41
- Wood, Ath. Oxon.: Fasti, new edn
- W. Kennett, A register and chronicle ecclesiastical and civil (1728)
- Bodl. Oxf., corresp. and MSS
- Inner Temple, London, letters
- Queen's College, Oxford, notes
- Bodl. Oxf., corresp. with Sancroft, etc.
- oils, 1672–1675, Bodl. Oxf. [see illus.]
- D. Loggan, line engraving, BM, NPG
- R. White, line engraving (after Henne), BM, NPG; repro. in T. Barlow, Several miscellaneous and weighty cases of conscience (1692)
- oils, Queen's College, Oxford