Type of entity
Authorized form of name
Atterbury, Francis, 1663-1732
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Dates of existence
ATTERBURY, FRANCIS, brother of Lewis Atterbury (qv); b. 6 Mar 1662/3; adm.; KS 1674; elected head to Christ Church, Oxford 1680, matr. 17 Dec 1680, aged 17, Westminster Student 18 Dec 1680-94 (void, perhaps on marriage), Tutor 1687-90; BA 1684; MA 1687; BD and DD 5 May 1701; replied to Obadiah Walker’s attack upon the Reformation 1687; assisted his pupil Hon. Charles Boyle in his defence of the genuineness of the Epistles of Phalaris against Bentley; ordained; Lecturer, St. Bride’s, London 1701; Chaplain in Ordinary to William III and Queen Mary, subsequently to Queen Anne; warmly opposed Erastianism and protested against the suppression of Convocation; Archdeacon of Totnes 11 Jun 1701-13; Prebendary of Exeter 6 May 1704; Dean of Carlisle 2 Oct 1704; Prolocutor of Lower House of Convocation 1710; Dean of Christ Church, Oxford, 28 Sep 1711-3; installed Dean of Westminster 16 Jun 1713 and consecrated Bishop of Rochester 15 Jul 1713; although he took part officially in the coronation of George I, he refused to sign the declaration of confidence in the government after the rebellion of 1715, and subsequently was in direct communication with the Jacobites; arrested and imprisoned in the Tower 24 Aug 1722, for his alleged connection with an attempt to restore the Stuarts; a bill of pains and penalties was passed through the House of Commons, and carried in the House of Lords by 83 votes to 43; deprived of all his ecclesiastical preferments 1 Jun 1723, and banished from the kingdom; visited in the Tower by some of the senior King’s Scholars before his departure; resided first at Brussels and afterwards in France as general adviser to the Old Pretender; a man of marked attainments, but cursed with an imperious and aggressive temper, and possessed of “a rare talent for fomenting discord”; his old friend George Smalridge (qv), who succeeded him both at Carlisle and at Christ Church, used to say that “Atterbury comes first and sets everything on fire, and I follow with a bucket of water”; regarded as one of the leading preachers of his day, and in Addison’s opinion was “one of the greatest geniuses of his age”; much to the annoyance of Old Westminsters, Atterbury removed the Election in 1718 from the School to the Jerusalem Chamber, and put down the Election Dinner (HMC Portland MSS, v, 561, vii, 275); owing to his insistence the new Dormitory was built on its present site, the first stone being laid 24 Apr 1722; Busby Trustee from 27 Feb 1705/6; m. c. 1695 Catherine Osborne; d. in exile in Paris 22 Feb 1731/2 and buried privately in the south aisle of the nave of Westminster Abbey 12 May 1732. DNB.
Functions, occupations and activities
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Authority record identifier
Rules and/or conventions used
International Standard Archival Authority Record for Corporate Bodies, Persons and Families - ISAAR(CPF) 2nd edition
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Dates of creation, revision and deletion
Prepared for import into AtoM by Westminster School Archive staff, 2019-2020
Users should note that the information recorded here that is not to be found in the first two volumes of the Record of Old Westminsters and its first Supplement has been assembled from various published and manuscript sources by Hugh Edmund Pagan MA FSA, and all new resulting text is his copyright, © 2014.
The Record of Old Westminsters: A biographical list of all those who are known to have been educated at Westminster School from the earliest times to 1927, Volumes 1 & 2, compiled by G. F. Russell Barker and Alan H. Stenning, London, 1928.