June 8th, 1848 (Thursday)

June 8, 2010

Three different sets of visitors. Among them Mr Burgon1 of Oriel, with a Mr Molyneux, curate to Mr Dodsworth,2 of Christ Church, Regent’s Park. So now we are known to the three highest churchmen in London, – Richard, Bennett and Dodsworth. Mr Molyneux had been Dr Elrington’s curate at Armagh, and seemed thoroughly to understand the Doctor’s character.

Have had a subject of some consequence to consider lately: – the question of admitting the sons of people in trade. The question has been raised by an application from Mr Lumley, a law-bookseller in Chancery Lane.3 Have had strong recommendations from Mr Upton Richards, and Mr Nicholl, of Stratford, – who say that Mr and Mrs Lumley have been for years excellent church people. Mrs Lumley writes that her son is designed for Holy Orders, and that she had intended sending him to Eton, but would far rather get him into St Peter’s, if we had no objection to the connection. To this I have replied that in the infancy of the College I did apprehend a danger, which at a more mature period would have no existence; and yet that I was very loath to exclude the son of Catholic parents,4 designed for the holy office, from the benefits of this place; – that, however, his only possible chance was to have furnished to us strong testimonials to his being a good and gentlemanly boy. After the matter had lain dormant for a long time, Mr Richards mentioned the case stringly when he was here, and the necessary document from the lad’s present Tutor having been obtained, – he is to be received after midsummer. Such a precedent I scarcely think can damage us. At all events we are absolute, and may reject without scruple, as we have no Committee, nor Council, nor Trustees to tie our hands behind our backs.


1: John William Burgon, antiquary. He is most celebrated for his poem ‘Petra’ which won the Newdigate Prize in 1845. See entry in the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.

2: William Dodsworth, influential Tractarian clergyman. In 1851 he converted to Roman Catholicism, following the Gorham case. This would have seriously upset Singleton, who probably regretted these statements of support. See entry in the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.

3: Edward Lumley of Chancery Lane, London, was not simply a book-seller and did not confine himself to law books. He was a publisher of ground-breaking scientific works, particularly a work on photography in 1847, and on geology and conchology in the 1840s. In the 1850s he published works on Norse mythology.

4: Anglo-Catholic rather than Roman Catholic.

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