Richard Bentley

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A bust of Bentley now stands in the library of Trinity College, Cambridge

Richard Bentley (January 27, 1662July 14, 1742) was an English theologian, classical scholar and critic.


  • It is a maxim with me that no man was ever written out of reputation but by himself.
    • Monk's Life of Bentley, p. 90.
  • “Whatever is, is not,” is the maxim of the anarchist, as often as anything comes across him in the shape of a law which he happens not to like.
    • Declaration of Rights. Compare: "Whatever is, is in its causes just", John Dryden, Œdipus, Act iii. Sc. 1.
  • The fortuitous or casual concourse of atoms.
    • Sermons, vii. Works, Vol. iii. p. 147 (1692). Compare: "That fortuitous concourse of atoms", "Review of Sir Robert Peel's Address", Quarterly Review, vol. liii. p. 270 (1835); "In this article a party was described as a fortuitous concourse of atoms,—a phrase supposed to have been used for the first time many years afterwards by Lord John Russell", Croker Papers, vol. ii. p. 54.

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