Page:Dictionary of National Biography volume 51.djvu/409
[Authorities cited; Cudworth's Life and Correspondence of Abraham Sharp, 1889; Notes and Queries, 8th ser. xii. 344.]
brought the most acceptable news of your kind offer to lay down the stars and draw the lines and divisions of all the maps of the constellations of the zodiac. When the world shall know that these were done by the hands of Mr. Sharp, it will make Mr. Flamsteed's works more valuable as well as more useful.’ Others of Flamsteed's letters to Sharp are full of his complaints of Newton's double dealing. Sharp died near Bradford, Yorkshire, on 18 July 1742, aged 91 (Gent. Mag. 1742, p. 387).
SHARP, Sir CUTHBERT (1781–1849), antiquary, son of Cuthbert Sharp, shipowner, and of Susannah, sister of Brass Crosby [q. v.], lord mayor of London, was born at Sunderland in 1781, and received his education at Greenwich under Dr. Burney. There he formed a lasting friendship with Lord Lake and with Sir Edward Blakeney [q. v.] When he was eighteen years of age he served in Ireland during the rebellion as an officer in the fencible cavalry. When his regiment was disbanded, Sharp proceeded to Edinburgh, and in 1803 visited Paris, where he was surprised by the resumption of hostilities (at the conclusion of the peace of Amiens), and detained, with other English visitors, as a prisoner of war. But by the influence of Regnier, the minister of justice, whose friendship he had acquired, he was released on parole, and after a few years was allowed to pass into England.
Sharp settled at Hartlepool and devoted himself to the study of local antiquities. In 1816 he acted as mayor, and was knighted on the occasion of a visit of the prince regent. In the same year appeared his first book, ‘The History of Hartlepool’ (2nd ed. 1851), by which his reputation as an antiquary was established. Sharp came to know Surtees, the historian of Durham, and rendered him valuable assistance in compiling local genealogies. His contributions to Surtees's ‘History of Durham’ were distinguished by the initials C. S. surmounted by a rose.
In 1823 Sharp was appointed collector of customs at Sunderland, but continued his study of local antiquities. In 1840 appeared his ‘Memorials of the Rebellion of 1569,’ based on the Bowes MSS. In 1845 he was promoted to the post of collector of customs at Newcastle-on-Tyne, where he resided until his death on 17 Aug. 1849.
His other works include: 1. ‘A Brief Summary of a Manuscript formerly belonging to Lord William Howard,’ 1819, 8vo. 2. ‘Excerpta Memorabilia e Registris Parochialibus Com. Pal. Dunelm.’ 8vo, in three parts, 1819, 1825, 1841; published in one volume in 1841. 3. ‘A List of the Knights and Burgesses who have represented the County and City of Durham in Parliament,’ Durham 1826, 4to; 2nd ed. Sunderland, 1833. 4. ‘Poems,’ Sunderland, 1828, 12mo. 5. ‘The Life of Ambrose Barnes, sometime Alderman of Newcastle,’ 1828, 8vo. 6. ‘The Worme of Lambton,’ a legend, 1830, 4to. He also compiled a ‘Catalogue’ of his manuscripts, 1829, 8vo.[Gent. Mag. 1816 i. 534, 1841 ii. 61, 1849 ii. 428–30; Athenæum, 1849, p. 913.]
SHARP, GRANVILLE (1735–1813), philanthropist, pamphleteer, and scholar, born at Durham on 10 Nov. 1735 (old style), was ninth and youngest son of Thomas Sharp (1693–1758) [q. v.] and grandson of John Sharp [q. v.], archbishop of York. He was educated at Durham grammar school, but his father, though archdeacon of Northumberland, was possessed of small means and a large family, and in May 1750 Granville was apprenticed to one Halsey, a quaker linendraper of Tower Hill, London. He served successively under a quaker, a presbyterian, an Irish Roman catholic, and an atheist. During his scanty leisure he taught himself Greek and Hebrew, and in August 1757 he became a freeman of the city of London as a member of the Fishmongers' Company. In June 1758 he obtained a post in the ordnance department, and in 1764 was appointed a clerk in ordinary, being removed to the minuting branch. In the following year he published ‘Remarks’ on Benjamin Kennicott's ‘Catalogue of the Sacred Vessels restored by Cyrus,’ &c., defending ‘the present text of the old Testament’ against the charge of corruption in the matter of proper names and numbers; a second edition of Sharp's work was published in 1775. This was followed in 1767 by a ‘Short Treatise on the English Tongue’ (two editions), and in 1768 by ‘Remarks on several very important Prophecies, in five parts’ (2nd ed. 1775). In 1767 his uncle, Granville Wheler, offered him the living of Great Leek, Nottinghamshire, but Sharp refused to take orders.
Meanwhile he had become involved in the struggle for the liberation of slaves in England. In 1765 he befriended a negro, Jonathan Strong, whom he found in a destitute condition in the streets, where he had been abandoned by his master, one David Lisle. Two years later Lisle threw Strong into prison as a runaway slave, but Sharp procured his release and prosecuted Lisle for assault and battery. An action