Dictionary of National Biography, 1901 supplement/Butler, George (1819-1890)

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BUTLER, GEORGE (1819–1890), canon of Winchester, born at Harrow on 11 June 1819, was the eldest child of George Butler [q. v.], head-master of Harrow School, by his wife Sarah Maria, eldest daughter of John Gray of Wembley Park, Middlesex. He entered Harrow School in April 1831 under Charles Thomas Longley [q. v.], and after keeping four terms at Trinity College, Cambridge, was admitted at Oxford ad eundem, matriculating from Exeter College on 16 Oct. 1840. His father, who desired this migration, thought he had wasted his time at Cambridge, but in 1841 he won the Hertford scholarship at Oxford, and was elected a scholar of Exeter College. In 1842 he was elected Petrean fellow, and in 1843 he took a first class in classics, graduating B.A. on 4 Dec. 1845 and M.A. on 30 April 1846. Among his friends at Oxford were Lord Coleridge, James Anthony Froude, and Sir George Ferguson Bowen. In 1848 he was appointed to a tutorship at Durham University. In 1850 he returned to Oxford, where he was for several years a public examiner, and in 1852 he vacated his fellowship by marriage. In that year he introduced geographical lectures at Oxford, and afterwards gave lectures on art in the Taylor building, publishing his lectures in 1852 with the title ‘Principles of Imitative Art,’ London, 8vo. In 1854 he was ordained deacon as curate of St. Giles's, Oxford, and in 1855 priest. In 1855 he was classical examiner to the secretary of state for war, and in 1856 examiner for the East India Company's civil service. From 1856 to 1858 he was principal of Butler's Hall, a private college at Oxford, to which he gave the name, and from 1857 to 1865 he was vice-principal of Cheltenham College. In 1866 he was appointed principal of Liverpool College, where he remained until his instalment as canon of Winchester on 7 Aug. 1882. While at Liverpool he and his wife laboured actively for the abolition of the state regulation of prostitutes in connection with the army. Butler died in London on 14 March 1890, and was buried in the cemetery at Winchester. On 8 Jan. 1852 he was married at Corbridge in Northumberland to Josephine Elizabeth, fourth daughter of John Grey (1785–1868) [q. v.] She survived him, and published in 1892 'Recollections of George Butler,' Bristol, 8vo. He left several children.

Besides the work already mentioned, and several single sermons, Butler published: 1. 'Village Sermons,' Oxford, 1857, 8vo. 2. 'Sermons preached in Cheltenham College Chapel,' Cambridge, 1862, 8vo. He also edited: 1. 'Codex Virgilianus qui nuper ex bibliotheca Abbatis M. L. Canonici Bodleiame accessit, cum Wagneri textu collatus,' Oxford, 1854, 8vo. 2. 'The Public Schools Atlas of Modern Geography,' 1872, fol.; new edit. 1885, 8vo. 3. 'The Public Schools Atlas of Ancient Geography,' 1877, 8vo.

[Mrs. Butler's Recollections of George Butler; Harrow School Register, ed. Welch, 1801-9.3, p. 89; Boase's Register of Exeter College (Oxford Hist. Soc.), 1894, pp. 183, 222.]

E. I. C.