John Holt Rice, the Preacher

William Maxwell (1784-1857), president of Hampden-Sydney College, had this to say about John Holt Rice (1777-1831):

"He had judgment, strong and discriminating, to seize his subject by the right handle, and set it before you in its proper point of view. He had knowledge, ample and various, to inform, and learning, beyond that of almost any one of his contemporaries, to enlighten you; and, what was of great importance, he was the master of it, and not its slave. He was, therefore, always instructive without being ever pedantic, and gave you the light of the lamp without its smell. At the same time, he was always strictly and purely evangelical, and, of course, remarkably practical. His style of preaching, indeed, naturally partook of the character of his personal religion, to which we have already adverted. Accordingly, he could not, or would not separate Faith and Duty for a moment from each other, in his public ministrations, any more than in his private conduct" (An Oration Commemorative of the late John Holt Rice, D. D.)