Griffiths, Thomas (DNB00)

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GRIFFITHS, THOMAS, D.D. (1791–1847), Roman catholic prelate, born in London 2 June 1791, was educated in the doctrines of the English church, but was converted to Catholicism by his mother, and sent in 1805 to St. Edmund's College, Old Hall Green, near Ware. In July 1814 he was ordained priest, and for the next four years he presided over the small ecclesiastical seminary in the 'Old Hall' in the rear of the college. In 1818 he removed with the students to the new college, of which he was appointed president in succession to Dr. Bew. For more than fifteen years he governed St. Edmund's with remarkable prudence. On the death of Bishop Gradwell he was appointed in July 1833 coadjutor, with the right of succession, to Bishop Bramston, vicar-apostolic of the London district, and he was consecrated on 28 Oct. at St. Edmund's College to the see of Olena in partibus. He succeeded to the London district on the death of Bishop Bramston, 11 July 1836. In 1840 Pope Gregory XVI increased the number of vicariates in England, and Griffiths was appointed by letters apostolic, dated 3 July, to the new London district. He entered into communication with the government on matters relating to the Roman catholic church in the colonies. He died at his residence in Golden Square, London, on 12 Aug. 1847, and was buried at St. Mary's, Moorfields.

Several of his Lenten pastorals and his funeral discourse on Dr. Robert Gradwell [q. v.], bishop of Lydda, have been published. There is a portrait of him, engraved by G. A. Peria, in the 'Catholic Directory' for 1848.

[Brady's Episcopal Succession, iii. 200; Catholic Directory, 1848, p. 126; Dolman's Magazine, vi. 199-207; Gent. Mag. 1847, pt. ii. 439; Gillow's Bibl. Dict. iii. 61.]

T. C.