- Ruth Smith
(b London, July 5, 1704; d Bristol, Dec 21, 1774). English priest, religious and historical writer and librettist. He graduated BA (1727) and MA from Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge, and had a successful church career, including posts as reader of the Temple Church, prebendary of Salisbury Cathedral and vicar of Bedminster, near Bristol, which he merited with several vindications of orthodox Christianity against contemporary free-thinking and a massive two-volume encyclopedia of comparative religion, An Historical Dictionary of all Religions (London, 1742). His literary work included an edition of John Dryden's miscellaneous verse, contributions to the Biographia Britannica (London, 1747–66) and a free adaptation of Sophocles' Trachiniae (with additions from Ovid's Metamorphoses IX) to suit contemporary taste for the libretto of Handel's Hercules (1745). Broughton was a lover of Handel's music, and subscribed to his Atalanta.W. Dean: Handel's Dramatic Oratorios and Masques...