Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Lockey, Thomas
LOCKEY, THOMAS, D.D. (1602–1679), librarian of the Bodleian and canon of Christ Church, Oxford, was born in 1602, and obtained a king's scholarship at Westminster School. He contributed to the Oxford Collection of Verses on the Death of Queen Anne in 1619; was elected to Christ Church, matriculating 16 March 1621; and graduated B.A. 18 May 1622, M.A. 20 June 1625, B.D. 12 June 1634, D.D. 29 Nov. 1660. Lockey was vicar of East Garston, Berkshire, until 1633, and he or a namesake held the prebendal stall of Thorney in Chichester Cathedral till 1660. But he resided at Oxford, where he was noted as a college tutor and a preacher, until, in January 1651, a sermon preached by him before the university offended the parliamentary visitors, and led to his deprivation and suspension. He thereupon left Oxford, but returned to residence at the Restoration. On 21 July 1660 he was made prebendary of Beminster Prima, and on 17 Aug. of Alton Pancras, both in Salisbury Cathedral. On 28 Sept. 1660 he was elected librarian of the Bodleian Library. Lockey won the good opinion of visitors by his courtesy, but, according to Wood, was not a very efficient librarian (cf. Wood, Life and Times, ed. Clark, i. 335). Hearne says that he designed the catalogue of Selden's books (Collections, ed. Doble, ii. 40). In a letter dated 25 July, probably 1664, he wrote to Archbishop Sheldon of this ‘accession of about 30,000 authors, that I have by myne owne paynes disposed of in a catalogue, afterwards to be inserted in the general.’ Fifty masters of arts were employed on this catalogue, which was not completed for twelve years. On 8 Sept. 1665 he received Clarendon, the chancellor of Oxford, and Clarendon's guest, the Earl of Manchester, chancellor of Cambridge University, on their visit to the library, and delivered a Latin speech. This was his last function as librarian; he resigned the post on 29 Nov. When abroad in 1663, Lockey had been nominated to the fourth stall of Christ Church Cathedral, but was not installed till 12 July 1665; he exchanged it for the fifth stall on 6 July 1678 (Le Neve); he had given 100l. towards the rebuilding of Wolsey's quadrangle in 1660. Lockey died 29 June 1679, aged 78, and was buried in the north aisle of Christ Church Cathedral. His epitaph says that, ‘though he had been twice to Rome, his own country ever delighted him and his own faith.’ A portrait, showing thin, sharp, but very intellectual features, is in the Bodleian Library. Lockey frequently travelled abroad, and collected pictures, coins, and medals, as well as books, most of which, with his choice library, except those books, to the value of 16l. 15s., purchased on his death by the Bodleian, came into the hands of Dr. Killigrew, canon of Westminster. Hearne describes him as a curious, nice man, and ‘reckon'd the best in the university for classical learning’ (Collections, ed. Doble, ii. 40).
[Lansd. MSS. v. 987, p. 12; Walker's Sufferings of the Clergy, ii. 14; Willis's Cathedrals, iii. 456–8; Le Neve, ii. 524, 525, 656, 657; Wood's Athenæ (Bliss), iv. 523; Kennett's Register, pp. 329, 345; Oxf. Univ. Reg. (Oxf. Hist. Soc.), vol. ii. pt. ii. p. 386; Welch's Alumni Westmonasterienses, p. 87; Forshall's Westminster School, Past and Present, p. 160; information kindly furnished by F. Madan, esq.; Annals of the Bodleian Library, ed. Macray, 1890, pp. 127, 129, 130, 131, 132.]