Thomas Warton the elder

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Thomas Warton, the elder (c. 1688 – 10 September 1745), was an English clergyman and schoolmaster, known as the second professor of poetry at Oxford, a position he owed to Jacobite sympathies.

Jacobitism political ideology

Jacobitism is the name of the political movement in Great Britain and Ireland that aims to restore the House of Stuart to the thrones of England, Scotland, and Ireland. The movement is named after Jacobus, the Latin form of James.



He was born about 1688, son of Antony Warton (1650–1715), vicar of Godalming. He matriculated at Hart Hall, Oxford, on 3 April 1706, but soon migrated to Magdalen College, where he held a demyship from 1706 to 1717, and a fellowship from 1717 to 1724. He graduated B.A. on 17 February 1710, M.A. in 1712, and B.D. in 1725. [1]

Godalming town in the Borough of Waverley in Surrey, England

Godalming is a historic market town, civil parish and administrative centre of the Borough of Waverley in Surrey, England, 4 miles SSW of Guildford. The town traverses the banks of the River Wey in the Greensand Ridge – a hilly, heavily wooded part of the outer London commuter belt and Green Belt. In 1881, it became the first place in the world to have a public electricity supply and electric street lighting.

Magdalen College, Oxford constituent college of the University of Oxford in England

Magdalen College is a constituent college of the University of Oxford. It was founded in 1458 by William of Waynflete. Today, it is one of the wealthiest colleges, with a financial endowment of £273.2 million as of 2018, and one of the strongest academically, setting the record for the highest Norrington Score in 2010 and topping the table twice since then.

A demyship is a form of scholarship at Magdalen College, Oxford. It is derived from demi-socii or half-fellows.

In 1717-18 Warton circulated both in manuscript and in print a satire in verse on George I, which he entitled The Turnip Hoer, and wrote lines for the 'Old Pretender' James III's picture. No copy of either composition is now known. His Jacobite sympathies made him popular in the university, and he was elected professor of poetry, in succession to Joseph Trapp, on 17 July 1718. He was re-elected, in spite of the opposition of the Constitution Club, for a second term of five years in 1723. He retired from the professorship in 1728. He possessed small literary qualifications for the office, and his election provoked the sarcasm of Nicholas Amhurst, who satirized Warton across three numbers of his Terrae Filius; 'Squeaking Tom of Maudlin' is the sobriquet Amhurst conferred on him. [1]

James Francis Edward Stuart British prince

James Francis Edward Stuart, nicknamed The Old Pretender, was the son of King James II and VII of England, Scotland and Ireland, and his second wife, Mary of Modena. He was Prince of Wales from July 1688 until, just months after his birth, his Catholic father was deposed and exiled in the Glorious Revolution of 1688. James II's Protestant elder daughter, Mary II, and her husband, William III, became co-monarchs and the Bill of Rights 1689 and Act of Settlement 1701 excluded Catholics from the English then, subsequently, British throne.

Joseph Trapp English poet

Joseph Trapp (1679–1747) was an English clergyman, academic, poet and pamphleteer. His production as a younger man of occasional verse and dramas led to his appointment as the first Oxford Professor of Poetry in 1708. Later his High Church opinions established him in preferment and position. As a poet, he was not well thought of by contemporaries, with Jonathan Swift refusing a dinner in an unavailing attempt to avoid revising one of Trapp’s poems, and Abel Evans making an epigram on his blank verse translation of the Aeneid with a reminder of the commandment against murder.

Nicholas Amhurst was an English poet and political writer.

After 1723 Warton ceased to reside regularly in Oxford. In that year he became vicar of Basingstoke, Hampshire, and master of the grammar school there. Among his pupils was the naturalist Gilbert White He remained at Basingstoke till his death, but with the living he held successively the vicarages of Framfield, Sussex (1726), of Woking, Surrey, from 1727, and of Cobham, Surrey. He died at Basingstoke on 10 September 1745, and was buried in the church there. [1]

Basingstoke town in Hampshire, England

Basingstoke is the largest town in the modern county of Hampshire. It is situated in south central England, and lies across a valley at the source of the River Loddon. It is located 30 miles (48 km) northeast of Southampton, 48 miles (77 km) southwest of London, and 19 miles (31 km) northeast of the county town and former capital Winchester. According to the 2016 population estimate the town had a population of 113,776. It is part of the borough of Basingstoke and Deane and part of the parliamentary constituency of Basingstoke. Basingstoke is often nicknamed "Doughnut City" or "Roundabout City" because of the number of large roundabouts.

Hampshire County of England

Hampshire is a county on the southern coast of England. The county town is the city of Winchester. Its two largest cities, Southampton and Portsmouth, are administered separately as unitary authorities; the rest of the county is governed by Hampshire County Council.

Gilbert White British priest and naturalist

Gilbert White FRS was a "parson-naturalist", a pioneering English naturalist, ecologist and ornithologist. He is best known for his Natural History and Antiquities of Selborne.


He married Elizabeth, second daughter of Joseph Richardson, rector of Dunsfold, Surrey, and left two sons, Joseph Warton and the better-known Thomas Warton, and a daughter Jane. [1]

Dunsfold village in the United Kingdom

Dunsfold is a village in the borough of Waverley, Surrey, England, 8.7 miles south of Guildford. It lies in the Weald and reaches in the north the southern escarpment of the Greensand Ridge. It includes the Wey and Arun Canal, and just under half of Dunsfold Aerodrome, which is shared with Alfold.

Joseph Warton 18th-century English literary critic

Joseph Warton was an English academic and literary critic.

Thomas Warton 18th-century English literary historian, critic, and poet

Thomas Warton was an English literary historian, critic, and poet. From 1785 to 1790 he was the Poet Laureate of England. He is sometimes called Thomas Warton the younger to distinguish him from his father Thomas Warton the elder. His most famous poem remains The Pleasures of Melancholy, a representative work of the Graveyard poets.


Warton was a writer of occasional verse, but published none collectively in his lifetime. After his death his son Joseph issued, by subscription, Poems on several Occasions by the Rev. Thomas Warton, London, 1748. Some 'runic' odes are included, and are said to have drawn the attention of the poet Thomas Gray to those topics. [1] The chronology of his work has been discussed. [2]

Thomas Gray English poet and historian

Thomas Gray was an English poet, letter-writer, classical scholar, and professor at Pembroke College, Cambridge. He is widely known for his Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard, published in 1751.


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