Jerome, Stephen (c.1588–c.1650), protestant minister and writer, was educated at St John's College, Cambridge (BA 1604, MA 1607), and ordained in 1609. After serving in parishes in London and Yorkshire he moved (c.1619) to the parish of St Nicholas in Newcastle, where he served as a lecturer under the puritan preacher Robert Jenison. Discovered in a state of undress with one of his female parishioners when her husband returned unexpectedly, and suspected of ‘fouler matters with his own maid-servants’ (Tanner MS 73, f. 136r, Bodl.), Jerome fled to Ireland, where he attached himself to Richard Boyle (qv), earl of Cork, as tutor to his son and as chaplain, and was rewarded with a benefice in Tallow, Co. Waterford. Here he wrote Irelands jubilee (1624), rejoicing in the collapse of King James's efforts to marry his son to the catholic Spanish infanta, and urging his fellow protestants to live up to their ‘civilising’ mission in Ireland by serving as beacons of virtue amid the ‘popish darkness’, ‘as Israelites amongst the Egyptians’ (p. 41). The book gives a revealing portrait of the religious and cultural attitudes of an early seventeenth-century Munster English settler, confirming Jerome as a moderate puritan (theologically, at least).
In 1625 he returned to England to serve as minister in Nantwich, Cheshire, but after narrowly escaping thoroughly believable charges of rape he had to flee to Ireland again. Here he reestablished his clerical career, preaching before members of the government in Christ Church cathedral (1631) and becoming minister of St Brigid's, Dublin. By 1641 he was serving at Athy, Co. Kildare, and was caught up in the rising, being captured by the Irish before fleeing eventually to Dublin, where he served as a preacher. After a sermon in Christ Church (13 November 1642) in which he attacked King Charles's catholic wife as ‘Jezebel's daughter’ and clearly indicated his sympathy for the parliamentary cause, Jerome was arrested and imprisoned. He is last heard of back in England, at Greenwich (1650), where he wrote A minister's mite, on training one's memory. He also published a number of other sermons and books of popular piety.