Books · Special Days

Move over Billy Graham, today is Herbert Hensley Henson’s 150th!

We have a birthday to celebrate! Today, November 8th, marks Herbert Hensley Henson’s 150th birthday!  To celebrate, we are offering you the chance to review a brand new biography of the eighty-sixth Bishop of Durham and discover his importance in the history of the church and British public life. To have your review copy request considered, simply email us at the address at the end of the following press release.


9780718893026_cover Henson.indd
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Herbert Hensley Henson

A Biography

By John S. Peart-Binns

ISBN: 9780718893026

Due for release: 28/11/2013

“Where matters of real principle are involved and whenever the current of opinion is flowing strongly in one direction it is imperative that people of learning and ability should be found to be swimming against it. That service Henson rendered to his generation.”                          John S. Peart-Binns

In this new study, Peart-Binns asserts that Herbert Hensley Henson, eighty-sixth Bishop of Durham, was one of the most distinctive and distinguished bishops of the Church of England of the 20th century. Over the course of his life, Henson became increasingly independent of all organised opinion and it was the self-projection which made him the most feared, as well as the most admired, controversialist in the Church. Henson enriched his fancy from the persons he met, the scenes he witnessed, the enterprises in which he engaged, the convictions he made his own, the prejudices he acquired, the victories he celebrated and the defeats he suffered.

Henson was renowned as a preacher in the pulpit and speaker on the platform and queues often formed of people eager to hear him preach at Westminster Abbey. The Chamber in the House of Lords filled when this Lord Spiritual spoke or intervened in debates and he was one of the few pulpit orators whose sermons transferred to print without any looseness of texture or diffusion of language.

Nevertheless, Henson was not blind to his foibles and failings. In his journal he continually questioned whether the decisions he made and the directions he took were right, worthy or wise. Retrospect of an Unimportant Life provides hints and guesses as to his inner life but only unpublished journal entries and some of his letters reveal him to have considered himself an un-absolved penitent. Here may be encountered the mysterious influence of a hidden life of prayer, of self-examination and self-abasement.

This new biography provides a more humanly conflicted view of Herbert Hensley Henson than has ever been seen before.

About the Author: John S. Peart-Binns was born and brought up in Bradford and now lives with his wife Annis in Hebden Bridge in the South Pennines. He has written twenty biographies of Anglican bishops. His research has brought him a large collection of material relating to over 400 bishops (past and present) of the Church of England and of the other churches of the Anglican Communion, which now forms The Peart-Binns Episcopal Biography Archive at the University of Bradford.

About the publisher: James Clarke and Co Ltd is a long-established British academic publisher specialising in historical and theological books and also in reference material. It has been associated with the Lutterworth Press since 1984.


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2 thoughts on “Move over Billy Graham, today is Herbert Hensley Henson’s 150th!

  1. There is a significant error on page 17 where it states that the offspring of Herbert’s father were childless as I am descended from Herbert’s brother Walter T Henson.

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