Thomas Taylor (historian)

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Thomas Taylor (26 February 1858 – 5 July 1938) was an English priest, historian and scholar of Celtic culture.


Life and career

Taylor was born in Thurvaston, Derbyshire, England. He attended King Edward VI School, Macclesfield becoming head boy in 1874. He matriculated at St Catharine's College, Cambridge in 1877, and graduated in the Mathematics Tripos in 1881, receiving his MA in 1886. [1] Taylor took Holy Orders on going down from Cambridge, being ordained Deacon at Rochester in 1881 and was made Priest there in 1883.

Thurvaston village in United Kingdom

Thurvaston is a small village in South Derbyshire. In 1970 the population was put at 200. This represents a general fall since 1871 when the population was just below 400. As at the census 2011 the population is now listed in the civil parish of Osleston and Thurvaston.

Derbyshire ceremonial county in East Midlands, England

Derbyshire is a county in the East Midlands of England. A substantial portion of the Peak District National Park lies within Derbyshire, containing the southern extremity of the Pennine range of hills which extend into the north of the county. The county contains part of the National Forest, and borders on Greater Manchester to the northwest, West Yorkshire to the north, South Yorkshire to the northeast, Nottinghamshire to the east, Leicestershire to the southeast, Staffordshire to the west and southwest and Cheshire also to the west. Kinder Scout, at 636 metres (2,087 ft), is the highest point in the county, whilst Trent Meadows, where the River Trent leaves Derbyshire, is its lowest point at 27 metres (89 ft). The River Derwent is the county's longest river at 66 miles (106 km), and runs roughly north to south through the county. In 2003 the Ordnance Survey placed Church Flatts Farm at Coton in the Elms as the furthest point from the sea in Great Britain.

England Country in north-west Europe, part of the United Kingdom

England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Wales to the west and Scotland to the north. The Irish Sea lies west of England and the Celtic Sea to the southwest. England is separated from continental Europe by the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south. The country covers five-eighths of the island of Great Britain, which lies in the North Atlantic, and includes over 100 smaller islands, such as the Isles of Scilly and the Isle of Wight.

After a few years (1883 – c. 1896) in Queensland, Australia, he settled with his wife and family in Cornwall. He served as Vicar first at All Saints' Church, Falmouth, from 1890 and then at Redruth from 1892. In 1897 he accepted the rural living of St Breward.

Australia Country in Oceania

Australia, officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a sovereign country comprising the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous smaller islands. It is the largest country in Oceania and the world's sixth-largest country by total area. The neighbouring countries are Papua New Guinea, Indonesia, and East Timor to the north; the Solomon Islands and Vanuatu to the north-east; and New Zealand to the south-east. The population of 26 million is highly urbanised and heavily concentrated on the eastern seaboard. Australia's capital is Canberra, and its largest city is Sydney. The country's other major metropolitan areas are Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, and Adelaide.

Cornwall County of England

Cornwall is a ceremonial county in South West England, bordered to the north and west by the Celtic Sea, to the south by the English Channel, and to the east by Devon, the River Tamar forming the border between them. Cornwall is the westernmost part of the South West Peninsula of the island of Great Britain. The southwesternmost point is Land's End and the southernmost Lizard Point. Cornwall has a population of 563,600 and an area of 3,563 km2 (1,376 sq mi). The county has been administered since 2009 by the unitary authority, Cornwall Council. The ceremonial county of Cornwall also includes the Isles of Scilly, which are administered separately. The administrative centre of Cornwall is Truro, its only city.

All Saints Church, Falmouth Church

All Saints' Church, Falmouth is a parish church in the Church of England Diocese of Truro located in Falmouth, Cornwall, United Kingdom.

Taylor was an honorary Canon of Truro Cathedral from 1917 to 1938. In 1919 he went to serve at Gunwalloe. He was elected Proctor and held this office from 1919 to 1935. He also served as Rural Dean of Penwith from 1924 to 1927. He became known as "the poor man’s lawyer" as a result of his freely given assistance in matters of compensation for injuries sustained in tin mining.

Canon (priest) Ecclesiastical position

A canon is a member of certain bodies subject to an ecclesiastical rule.

Truro Cathedral Church in Cornwall, United Kingdom

The Cathedral of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Truro is a Church of England cathedral in the city of Truro, Cornwall. It was built between 1880 and 1910 to a Gothic Revival design by John Loughborough Pearson on the site of the parish church of St Mary. It is one of only three cathedrals in the United Kingdom with three spires.

Gunwalloe civil parish and village in England

Gunwalloe is a coastal civil parish and a village in Cornwall, England, United Kingdom. It is situated on the Lizard Peninsula three miles (4.8 km) south of Helston and partly contains The Loe, the largest natural freshwater lake in Cornwall. The parish population including Berepper at the 2011 census was 219.

Canon Taylor was made a bard at the inaugural Gorseth Kernow held at Boscawen-Un, St Buryan on 21 September 1928. He took the bardic name ‘'Gwas Ust'’ (‘Servant of St. Just’).

Bard professional poet in medieval Gaelic and British culture

In medieval Gaelic and British culture, a bard was a professional story teller, verse-maker, music composer, oral historian and genealogist, employed by a patron, to commemorate one or more of the patron's ancestors and to praise the patron's own activities.

Boscawen-Un stone circle

Boscawen-Ûn is a Bronze Age stone circle close to St Buryan in Cornwall, UK. It consists of 19 upright stones in an ellipse with another, leaning, middle stone just south of the centre. There is a west-facing gap in the circle, which may have formed an entrance. The elliptical circle has diameters 24.9 and 21.9 metres. It is located at grid reference SW412274.

St Buryan parish in Cornwall

St Buryan is a civil parish and village in Cornwall, England, United Kingdom.

When he died in 1938, he was Vicar of St. Just. He listed his recreations as pedigree making and fly fishing.

Scholarly work

During his time at St Breward he found the parish registers to be complete from 1599 to 1812: his work editing the registers brought him into contact with W. P. Phillimore, a publisher of books relating to Ecclesiastical Law, who in 1905 appointed him editor of the Parish Marriage Registers throughout the diocese: by 1916 he had published twenty-five volumes. It is for this work, much used by genealogists and family historians, that he is probably most widely known.

A parish is a territorial entity in many Christian denominations, constituting a division within a diocese. A parish is under the pastoral care and clerical jurisdiction of a parish priest, who might be assisted by one or more curates, and who operates from a parish church. Historically, a parish often covered the same geographical area as a manor. Its association with the parish church remains paramount.

He contributed to the Encyclopædia Britannica and the Victoria County History of Cornwall, of which he was local editor. His standard works Celtic Christianity and Life of St Samson of Dol are still sources of reference.


See also

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  1. "Taylor, Thomas (TLR877T)". A Cambridge Alumni Database. University of Cambridge.