Page:Dictionary of National Biography volume 49.djvu/396

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Rufus
Rugg
390

cal Essay on his Writings and Genius;’ in an appendix were printed letters from Pope to Aaron Hill. Though tame and lifeless, the book was read with avidity as affording for the first time a quantity of authentic information about the best-known name of a literary epoch; four editions appeared within the year (one at Dublin), and the work was translated into French (it was also prefixed to Pope's ‘Works,’ Paris, 1799). The verdict of a reviewer (possibly Johnson) in the ‘Gentleman's Magazine,’ that ‘Mr. Ruffhead says of fine passages that they are fine, and of feeble passages that they are feeble; but recommending poetical beauty is like remarking the splendour of sunshine—to those who can see it is unnecessary; to those who are blind, absurd,’ was subsequently abridged by Johnson into ‘Ruffhead knew nothing of Pope and nothing of poetry.’ Elwin dismisses him as ‘an uncritical transcriber.’

Ruffhead was himself a reviewer for the ‘Gentleman's Magazine,’ and he had in hand simultaneously with his ‘Life of Pope’ an edition of Giles Jacob's ‘New Law Dictionary’ (published after his death in 1772), and the superintendence of a new edition of Ephraim Chambers's ‘Encyclopædia.’ His close application to this literary work, in addition to his legal duties, undermined his health, and a cold taken in a heated court resulted in his premature death on 25 Oct. 1769. A few days before his death, in recognition of his political services, he had received an offer of a secretaryship in the treasury. He left one son, Thomas, who died a curate of Prittlewell in Essex in 1798. The publishers recovered from him a sum advanced to his father on account of ‘Chambers's Encyclopædia,’ the supervision of which was transferred in 1773 to John Calder [q. v.]

[Gent. Mag. 1799, ii. 283, 388; Noorthouck's Classical Dictionary; Spence's Anecdotes, 1856, passim; Chalmers's Biogr. Dict.; Disraeli's Miscellanies of Literature, p. 165; Nichols's Lit. Anecdotes, iv. 97, v. 633, and Illustrations, iv. 801; Walpole's Correspondence, ed. Cunningham, i. 92; Boswell's Johnson, ed. Hill, ii. 166; Pope's Works, ed. Elwin and Courthope, passim; Marvin's Legal Bibliogr.; Brit. Mus. Cat.]

T. S.

RUFUS (d. 1128), bishop of London. [See Belmeis or Beaumeis.]

RUFUS, GEOFFREY (d. 1140), bishop of Durham and chancellor, was a clerk in the service of Henry I, who about the beginning of 1124 made him chancellor. In the great roll of 1131 Geoffrey is mentioned as owing 3,000l. 13s. 4d. ‘pro sigillo;’ this has been supposed to be part of a fine paid for the grant of his office, but more probably it represents some payments of money received by him in the ordinary course as chancellor (Foss, i. 82–5). On 6 Aug. 1133 Geoffrey was consecrated bishop of Durham by Archbishop Thurstan at York. Contrary to the usual custom, he retained the chancellorship, and, as ‘Galfridus Cancellarius Episcopus Dunelmensis,’ witnessed the charter creating Alberic de Ver chamberlain, certainly after 1 Oct. 1133 (Madox, Hist. Exchequer, i. 56). It is not unlikely that Geoffrey retained the chancellorship till the death of Henry I. Like others of the court officials, he adhered to Stephen, and in 1138, when Norham Castle was captured by King David of Scotland, refused to repurchase it at the price of his allegiance. As bishop of Durham he was at first severe to his monks, but afterwards indulgent, and at his death left the furniture of his chapel to the church (cf. Durham Wills and Inventories, i. 2, Surtees Soc.) He is supposed to have been the first prelate who exercised the regal privilege of the mint. He built Allerton Castle, and gave it to his nephew, who married a granddaughter of the Earl of Albemarle. He died on 6 May 1140, and was buried in the chapter-house at Durham, the building of which was completed in his episcopacy. Geoffrey had a daughter, who married Robert de Amundeville (John of Hexham, ap. Sym. Dunelm. ii. 316). William Cumin, who after Geoffrey's death endeavoured to usurp the bishopric, had been one of his clerks. Geoffrey was also the patron of Lawrence (d. 1154) [q. v.], prior of Durham. It is not known to what circumstance Geoffrey owed his surname of Rufus.

[Sym. Dunelm. i. 141–3, 161, ii. 309, 316 (Rolls Ser.); Chron. de Mailros, pp. 69, 72 (Bannatyne Club); Surtees's Hist. of Durham, vol. i. pp. xx–xxi; Foss's Judges of England, i. 134–6.]

C. L. K.

RUFUS, RICHARD (fl. 1250), Franciscan teacher. [See Richard of Cornwall. ]

RUGG or REPPES, WILLIAM (d. 1550), bishop of Norwich, was descended from an old Shropshire family, who were large landholders in that county as far back as the thirteenth century. He was the son of William Rugg of North Reppes in Norfolk, and appears to have been educated in the priory of Norwich, and to have been sent as one of the scholars of that house to pursue his studies at Cambridge, where he entered