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Edward King

c.1735-1807. Archaeologist and writer on science and religion. Born in Norwich and educated at Cambridge and Lincoln's Inn, King (who had private means) practiced law, occasionally writing and studying for most of his life. His interests were many, but the study of sacred Scripture as related to secular knowledge predominated. His writings are characterized by Christian devotion, a pellucid style, and heavy documentation, but also, not infrequently, by lack of a balanced judgment. His extreme originality shocked his contemporaries, arousing strong opposition, but many of his ideas, suitably modernized, would be more acceptable today. In a brilliant book (1796) he argued on biblical and observational grounds for the reality of meteorites at a time when this view was commonly ridiculed. His discussions and speculations on the use of “heaven” and “heavens” in the NT, the meaning of Genesis 1-3, and the possibility of a multipopulated universe, etc., are of abiding interest.