ASHE, SIMEON (d. 1662), a nonconformist divine, was educated at Emmanuel College, Cambridge. He began his ministration in Staffordshire, but was soon ejected from his living on account of his refusal to read the ‘Book of Sports’ and to conform to other ceremonies. On his dismissal Sir John Burgoyne befriended him and allowed him the use of an ‘exempt’ church at Wroxhall; and he was afterwards under the protection of Lord Brook.
When the civil war broke out, he became chaplain to the Earl of Manchester; and in 1644 joined with William Goode, another chaplain of the Earl of Manchester, in writing a pamphlet entitled ‘A particular Relation of the most Remarkable Occurrences from the United Forces in the North’ This was followed by another pamphlet, for which Ashe alone was responsible, entitled ‘A True Relation of the most Chiefe Occurrences at and since the late Battell at Newbery.’ The writer’s object in both cases was to vindicate the conduct of his patron. In Vicars’s ‘Parliamentary Chronicle’ there is a letter of his, describing the proceedings of the Earl of Manchester in reducing several garrisons after the battle of Marston Moor. At the close of the war he received the living of St. Austin, and was also one of the Cornhill lecturers. Although he had joined the side of the parliament, Ashe was strongly opposed to the extreme party of the Cromwellians; and when the time was ripe for the restoration he was among the divines who went to Breda to meet Charles II.
He died a few days before the passing of the Act of Conformity, and was buried on 24 Aug. 1662. Had he lived to see the passing of the act, he would have vacated his living. Ashe was a man of some property, and while he held the living of St. Austin, his house was always open to his clerical brethren. Walker charges him with exercising severity against the conforming clergy.
Ashe was the author of several sermons, among which may be mentioned: 1. ‘A Sermon on Ps. ix. 9,’ preached before the House of Commons on 30 March 1642. 2. ‘A Sermon before the House of Lords,’ 26 Feb. 1644. 3. ‘A Funeral Sermon on the Death of the Countess of Manchester,’ 12 Oct. 1658, &c. He also edited some treatises of John Ball, the puritan divine, J. Brinsley, Ralph Robinson, and others. [Calamy’s Nonconformist’s Memorial, ed. 1802, i. 94-96; Neal’s Hist. of the Puritans, ed. 1822, iv. 344 ; Reliquiæ Baxterianæ ed. Sylvester, pt. ii. 430.]