Thomas William Allies

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Thomas William Allies (12 February 1813 – 17 June 1903) was an English historical writer specializing in religious subjects. He was one of the Anglican churchmen who joined the Roman Catholic Church in the early period of the Oxford Movement.

Oxford Movement movement of High Church members of the Church of England which eventually developed into Anglo-Catholicism

The Oxford Movement was a movement of High Church members of the Church of England which eventually developed into Anglo-Catholicism. The movement, whose original devotees were mostly associated with the University of Oxford, argued for the reinstatement of some older Christian traditions of faith and their inclusion into Anglican liturgy and theology. They thought of Anglicanism as one of three branches of the One, Holy, catholic, and Apostolic Church.



Allies was born at Midsomer Norton in Somerset and briefly educated at Bristol Grammar School [1] and then at Eton College, where he was the first winner of the Newcastle Scholarship in 1829, and at Wadham College, Oxford, of which he became a fellow in 1833.

Midsomer Norton town in Somerset, England

Midsomer Norton is a town near the Mendip Hills in Bath & North East Somerset, England, 10 miles (16 km) south-west of Bath, 10 miles (16 km) north-east of Wells, 10 miles (16 km) north-west of Frome, and 16 miles (26 km) south-east of Bristol. It has a population of 10,997. Along with Radstock and Westfield it used to be part of the conurbation and large civil parish of Norton Radstock, but is now a town council in its own right. It is also part of the unitary authority of Bath and North East Somerset.

Somerset County of England

Somerset is a county in South West England which borders Gloucestershire and Bristol to the north, Wiltshire to the east, Dorset to the south-east and Devon to the south-west. It is bounded to the north and west by the Severn Estuary and the Bristol Channel, its coastline facing southeastern Wales. Its traditional border with Gloucestershire is the River Avon. Somerset's county town is Taunton.

Bristol Grammar School English co-educational independent day school located in Tyndalls Park, Bristol

Bristol Grammar School (BGS) is a 4–18 mixed, independent day school in Bristol, England that was founded in 1532 by Royal Charter for the teaching of 'good manners and literature', endowed by wealthy Bristol merchants Robert and Nicholas Thorne to educate the sons of the city's merchants and tradesmen. The school flourished in the early 20th century under headmaster Sir Cyril Norwood (1906–1916), embodying "the ideals and experiences of a leading public school". Norwood went on to serve as the master at Marlborough College and Harrow.

In the later 1830s Allies became a Tractarian supporter, influenced by William Dodsworth. [2] In 1840 Bishop Blomfield of London appointed him his examining chaplain and presented him to the rectory of Launton, Oxfordshire, which he resigned in 1850 on becoming a Roman Catholic. [3] Allies was appointed secretary to the Catholic Poor School Committee in 1853, a position which he occupied till 1890. Allies raised £50,000 to assist Catholic schools with meeting the needs of education acts. [4]

William Dodsworth English Tractarian and Roman Catholic convert

William Dodsworth (1798–1861) was an English cleric of the Church of England, a Tractarian who became a Roman Catholic lay writer.

Launton village and civil parish in Cherwell district, Oxfordshire, England

Launton is a village and civil parish on the eastern outskirts of Bicester, Oxfordshire, England. The 2011 Census recorded the parish's population as 1,204.

Allies was a strong influence on his family and after 1883 his daughter Mary was left at home. Inspired by her father she devoted her time to writing about the lives of Catholic saints. [5] He died in London in 1903 and he was buried by his wife who died the year before. [4]

Mary Helen Agnes Allies was a Catholic historian, writer and translator.


His major work was The Formation of Christendom (London, 8 vols., 1865-1895). His other writings included St. Peter, His Name and His Office, as Set Forth in Holy Scripture.  (1852); The See of St. Peter.  (1850); Per Crucem ad Lucem (2 vols., 1879). They went through many editions and were translated into several languages.

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  1. Wikisource-logo.svg Herbermann, Charles, ed. (1913). "Thomas William Allies". Catholic Encyclopedia . New York: Robert Appleton Company.
  2. Murphy, G. Martin. "Allies, Thomas William". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/30393.(Subscription or UK public library membership required.)
  3. William James Gordon-Gorman. Converts to Rome : a biographical list of the more notable converts to the Catholic Church in the United Kingdom. pp. 4+.
  4. 1 2 W. B. Owen, "Allies, Thomas William (1813–1903)", rev. G. Martin Murphy, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004 accessed 11 December 2015
  5. Rosemary Mitchell, ‘Allies, Mary Helen Agnes (1852–1927)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004 accessed 10 Dec 2015

Wikisource-logo.svg  This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain : Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Allies, Thomas William". Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press.