DANIEL WHITBY, the learned Commentator on the Scriptures, was born in the Rectory house in Rushden, his father, the Rev. Thomas Whitby M.A., being the Rector of the parish, to which living he was presented by Sir Lewis Pemberton, Knight, the patron in full right, on 5th Feb. 1630. The following extract from the Parish Register will confirm the statement, that this village was the birth-place of his afterwards-celebrated son:
"1637, The fourth day of January, Daniel the son of Thomas Whitbie Minister was baptized in the year above written." Daniel Whitby was admitted to Trinity College, Oxford, where he was scholar in 1655, B.A. in 1657, M.A. in 1660, and Fellow in 1664. In early life Mr. Whitby was engaged in strong controversial warfare with the Roman Catholics, was chaplain to Seth Ward, D.D., Bishop of Salisbury, who collated him to two successive stalls in that Cathedral; was Precentor there; in 1672, took both his degrees in Divinity, and was rector of St. Edmunds, in Salisbury. A book published by Dr. Whitby, in 1682, which excited general censure, raised violent opposition, and the strongest animadversions, was at length condemned, and in 1683, burnt by the Marshall of the University in the school's quadrangle. The Doctor signed a retraction of the work, and died in 1726, aged 88 years. Dr. Whitby wrote a number of controversial books.
The Parsonage is situated in the upper, or southern part of the village, on rather an elevated site, and is inhabited by the Rev. G. E. Downe. It is a snug thatched building: and being genteely fitted up within, is rendered a commodious residence. The western portion, which is lower than the principal building, is a comparatively modern addition. A degree of considerable interest will be attached to this.