Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Moore, John (1730-1805)

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MOORE, JOHN (1730–1805), archbishop of Canterbury, son of Thomas Moore, was baptised in St. Michael's Church, Gloucester, on 13 Jan. 1729-30. His father is described as ' Mr.' in the parish register, and as 'gent.' in Gloucester municipal records in 1761, when John's name was entered on the freeman's roll. It is hence unlikely that the father was (as has been alleged) a butcher of the town, although he may have been a grazier of the neighbourhood. John was educated at the free grammar school of St. Mary de Crypt, Gloucester, and at Pembroke College, Oxford, where he entered with a Townsend close scholarship on 25 March 1744-5, graduated B.A. on 11 Oct. 1748, and proceeded M.A. on 28 June 1751. Having taken holy orders, he was for some years tutor to Lords Charles and Robert Spencer, younger sons of the second Duke of Marlborough. On 21 Sept. 1761 he was preferred to the fifth prebendal stall in the church of Durham, and in April 1763 to a canonry at Christ Church, Oxford. On 1 July following he took the degrees of B.D. and D.D. On 19 Sept. 1771 he was made dean of Canterbury, and on 10 Feb. 1775 bishop of Bangor. On the death of Archbishop Cornwallis he was translated to the see of Canterbury, 26 April 1783, on the joint recommendation of Bishops Lowth and Hurd, both of whom had declined the primacy. Though not a great ecclesiastic, Moore was an amiable and worthy prelate, a competent administrator, and a promoter of the Sunday-school movement and of missionary enterprise. He appears to have dispensed his patronage with somewhat more than due regard to the interests of his own family. He died at Lambeth Palace on 18 Jan. 1805, and was buried in Lambeth Church. Portraits of him (one by Romney) are at Lambeth and at the Deanery, Canterbury. Moore married twice, viz. first, a daughter of Robert Wright, chief justice of South Carolina; secondly, on 23 Jan. 1770, Catherine, daughter of Sir Robert Eden, bart., of West Auckland. He left issue.

[Foster's 'Alumni Oxon. 1715-1886; Public Characters of 1798-9, London, 1801, p. 276; Gent. Mag. 1763 p. 258, 1770 p. 46, 1805 pt. i. p. 94; Ann. Reg. 1805, Chron. pp. 80-2; Nichols's Lit. Anecd. iii. 219, v. 630, viii. 94-6; Illustr. Lit. viii. 380; Dr. Parr's Works, ed. Johnstone, vii. 380; Life and Letters of Sir Gilbert Eliot, first Earl of Minto, i. 130; Wraxall's Hist, and Posth. Mem. ed. Wheatley, iii. 23-5; Colchester Corresp. i. 483; Auckland Corresp. i. 434; Hurd's Autobiography; Hasted's Kent, iv. 663, 760; Le Neve's Fasti Eccl. Angl.; Hutchinson's Durham, iii. 338-9; Lodge's Genealogy of the

Peerage and Baronetage, 1859, p. 868; Burke's Peerage, 'Eden;' Church Times, 26 June, 3 and 17 July 1891; Abbey's English Church and its Bishops; Gloucestershire Notes and Queries, iv. 128, &c.; information kindly supplied by Canon Scott Robertson.]

J. M. R.