Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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HOWE, Nathanael, clergyman, born in Ipswich, Massachusetts, 6 October, 1764; died in Hopkinton, Massachusetts, 15 February, 1837. He was graduated at Harvard in 1786, and, after teaching one year in Ipswich, studied theology under Dr. Nathanael Emmons (q. v.), of whose Calvinistic theology he was a zealous expounder. He was pastor of the Congregational church in Hopkinton from 1791 until his death. Dr. Howe was a characteristic divine of the old New England school, and his pithy sayings, such as "Leisure is time for doing something useful," and "A dead fish can swim with the stream. but only a living one can swim against it," have passed into proverbs. His most famous discourse, which was delivered on the one hundredth anniversary of the settlement of Hopkinton, is a valuable history of the town, and was described in the "North American Review", of 1815 as "a unique specimen, beyond all praise." It passed through several editions, and was reprinted with a memoir of Dr. Howe by Reverend Elias Mason (Boston, 1851). His other publications are "Design of John's Baptism" (Hopkinton 1819), and "A Catechism with Questions and Proverbs" (1820).
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