Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Turnor, Edmund

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TURNOR, EDMUND (1755?–1829), antiquary, born in 1755 or 1756, was the eldest son of Edmund Turnor (d. 1805) of Stoke-Rochford and Panton in Lincolnshire, by his wife Mary, only daughter of John Disney of Lincoln. He was descended from Sir Edmund Turnor, brother of Sir Christopher Turnor [q. v.] He was educated at Trinity College, Cambridge, as a fellow commoner, graduating B.A. in 1777 and M.A. in 1781. On leaving the university he took a tour through France, Switzerland, and Italy. He early acquired a taste for antiquities, and in 1778 was elected a fellow of the Society of Antiquaries. In the following year he printed ‘Chronological Tables of the High Sheriffs of the County of Lincoln and of the Knights of the Shire, Citizens, and Burgesses, within the same’ (London, 4to), and soon after he furnished several contributions towards the account of Lincolnshire in Gough's ‘Magna Britannia.’ On 15 June 1786 Turnor was elected a fellow of the Royal Society, and on 24 Dec. 1802 he was returned to parliament for Midhurst in Sussex, and retained his seat till the dissolution of 1806. He died at Stoke Park, near Grantham, on 19 March 1829, and was buried in the family vault at Stoke Rochford. He was twice married: first, to Elizabeth, eldest daughter of Philip Broke of Nacton in Suffolk. She died on 21 June 1801, leaving one daughter, Elizabeth Edmunda, who married Frederick Manning. Turnor married, secondly, Dorothea, third daughter of Lieutenant-colonel Tucker, by whom he had seven surviving children: five sons—Christopher, Cecil, Algernon, Henry Martin, and Philip Broke—and two daughters, Charlotte and Harriet.

Besides the works mentioned Turnor was the author of:

  1. ‘London's Gratitude; or an Account of such pieces of Sculpture and Painting as have been placed in Guildhall at the expense of the City of London. To which is added a list of persons to whom the Freedom of the City has been presented since 1758,’ London, 1783, 8vo.
  2. ‘Description of an Ancient Castle at Rouen in Normandy,’ London, 1785, 4to; also printed in ‘Archæologia,’ vii. 232-5.
  3. ‘A Description of the Diet of King Charles when Duke of York,’ London, 1803, 4to.
  4. ‘Collections for the History of the Town and Soke of Grantham, containing Authentic Memoirs of Sir Isaac Newton, from Lord Portsmouth's Manuscripts,’ London, 1806, 4to.
  5. ‘Remarks on the Military History of Bristol,’ Bristol, 1823, 4to; also printed in the ‘Archæologia,’ xiv. 119-31.

He edited from Clarendon ‘Characters of Eminent Men in the Reigns of Charles I and II,’ London, 1793, 4to. He contributed ‘Extracts from the Household Book of Thomas Cony of Bassingthorpe, co. Lincoln,’ to Archæologia, xi. 22-33, and ‘A Narrative of the Earthquake felt in Lincolnshire on 25 Feb. 1792’ to the ‘Philosophical Transactions,’ lxxxii. 283–8, and wrote for the ‘Biographia Britannica’ the memoir of Sir Richard Fanshawe.

[Gent. Mag. 1829, i. 566; Nichols's Lit. Illustr. vi. 592–602.]

E. I. C.