Page:Dictionary of National Biography volume 34.djvu/400

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Maberley
Maberly
394

entered Trinity College, Cambridge, 23 April 1802, aged 21 (Trin. Coll. Reg.) He graduated B.A. in 1806 and M.A. in 1809, and was ordained to the curacy of Bourn, near Caxton, Cambridgeshire. He early began to display the eccentricity for which he afterwards became notorious. At Chesterton, near Cambridge, he erected, for undefined objects and at great expense, a large dwelling, of which all the rooms were on one floor. In politics he was at this time a whig, but his anti-popish zeal was so fanatical that he resisted the movement for catholic emancipation with the utmost determination. About 1812 he travelled all over England in a van distributing tons of protestant tracts. His pamphlet in 1818 upon the drowning of an undergraduate named Lawrence Dundas of Trinity College, Cambridge, though absurd in its tone, called attention to the lax supervision of undergraduates in lodgings in the town of Cambridge, and led to the introduction of a system of licenses, 27 March 1818. In 1826 he took an active part in the opposition to Lord John Russell's re-election for the county of Huntingdon. In 1829, when the sheriff of Cambridgeshire declined in answer to a requisition to call a meeting to oppose the Catholic Relief Bill, Maberly issued a manifesto, dated 2 April (Cooper, Annals of Cambridge, iv. 560), declaring that he would on 11 April, on the occasion of the execution of a criminal then under sentence of death, address the crowd and move a resolution in favour of a petition for the impeachment of Wellington and Peel. Under pressure from the county magistracy he abandoned his intention on 9 April, but he subsequently appeared at the bar of the House of Lords to impeach the Duke of Wellington, and was summarily ejected. On the introduction of the new poor laws he strenuously opposed them. On 11 June 1836 he assembled a large meeting of labourers, principally from outlying villages, on Parker's Piece in Cambridge, and harangued them on the Poor Law Amendment Act. His proceedings caused the magistrates and the home secretary much anxiety about the public peace. Though in 1829 the House of Lords had spared him any punishment, on the ground that he was a lunatic, he now, in 1835, received from the Bishop of Ely the rectory of Finborough in Suffolk as a reward for his staunch support of the tory party. He remained in the seclusion of his living until he died at Stowmarket, 24 Jan. 1860, leaving a family much impoverished by his rash and miscellaneous benevolence.

[Gent. Mag. new ser. viii. 511, 512; Cooper's Annals of Cambridge]

J. A. H.


MABERLY, WILLIAM LEADER (1798–1885), secretary of the general post-office, was born on 7 May 1798. His father, John Maberly of Shirley House, Surrey. who was M.P. for Rye in 1816 and for Abingdon in 1831, married Mary Rose, daughter of William Leader. The son entered the army as a lieutenant in the 7th foot, 23 March 1815; was a lieutenant in the 9th lancers, 3 July 1817 to 14 May 1818;a captain on half-pay, 14 May 1818 to 10 Nov. 1825; major 72nd highlanders, 10 Nov. 1826 to 30 Dec. 1826; lieutenant-colonel 96th foot. 30 Dec. 1826 to 13 Sept. 1827 ; and lieutenant-colonel 76th foot, 13 Sept. 1827 till 9 March 1832, when he was placed on half-pay. He ultimately retired from the army 1 July 1881 . He was member of parliament for Westbury 1819-1820, for Northampton 1820-30, for Shaftesbury 1831-2, and for Chatham 1832-4. He served as surveyor-general of the ordnance from 12 Jan. 1831 to December 1832, was clerk of the ordnance 1833-4, and was a commissioner of customs from 28 June 1831 to September 1836, He was appointed one of the joint secretaries of the general post-office 29 Sept, 1836. Maberly declined to encourage any schemes of postal reform and vigorously opposed Rowland Hill's penny postage proposals. On the nomination of Rowland Hill to the office of secretary to the postmaster-general in November 1848, Maberly was retained as permanent secretary to the post-office at a high salary and with full command of the staff. Maberly had no intention of facilitating Hill's progressive policy, and personally disliked him, usually speaking of him as 'that man from Birmingham.' For more than seven years Maberly continued in authority, and improvement of every kind was delayed and some millions of public money were wasted. In April 1854 Maberly was transferred to the board of audit, when those who had served under him in the post-office presented him with a piece of plate (Illustrated London News, 5 Aug. 1854, p. 113). He was noted for writing a most illegible hand. He retired from the board of audit in 1806 on a pension of 1,200l, and on 1 April 1867 received an additional pension from the post-office of 533l 6s. 8d. He died at 23 Gloucester Place, Portman Square, London, on 6 Feb. 1883.

Maberly's wife, whom he married 11 Nov. 1830, was Catherine Charlotte Maberly (1805-1875), novelist, bom in 1805, elder daughter of the Hon. Francis Aldborough Prittie of Corville, co. Tipperary, and sister of Henry, lord Dunalley. She died on 7 Feb. 1875. Her published works were: l. 'Emily, or the Countess of Rosendale,' 1840. 2. 'The