Ford, James (DNB00)

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FORD, JAMES (1779–1850), antiquary, born at Canterbury on 31 Oct. 1779, was the eldest son of the Rev. James Ford, B.A., minor canon of Durham, and afterwards minor canon of Canterbury. He entered the King's School, Canterbury, in 1788, matriculated at Trinity College, Oxford, 8 July 1797, and became fellow of his college 2 June 1807. He graduated B.A. 1801. M.A. 1804, B.D. 1812, and in 1811 was junior proctor of the university. He held the perpetual curacies of St. Laurence, Ipswich, and of Hill Farrance, Somersetshire. He was subsequently presented (28 Oct. 1830) to the vicarage of Navestock in Essex, and died 31 Jan. 1850. His quaint directions (see Sidebotham, Memorials, p. 96) for a funeral of great simplicity were carried out when he was buried in Navestock churchyard. There is a monument to him in Navestock Church, and a portrait of him in the common room of Trinity College, Oxford. He married, on 19 Nov. 1830, Lætitia, youngest daughter of Edward Jermyn, bookseller, of Ipswich, but left no children. To the university of Oxford Ford bequeathed 2,000l. for the endowment of 'Ford's Professorship of English History,' and to Trinity College, Oxford, 4,000l. for the purchase of advowsons, as well as 4,000l. for the endowment of four 'Ford's Studentships,' two of which were to be confined to youths educated at the King's School, Canterbury. Ford was a collector and compiler on antiquarian subjects. His large collection for a new edition of Morant's 'History of Essex' is in the library of Trinity College, Oxford, and his manuscript collections for a history of bishops from the Revolution onwards were purchased by the British Museum. He was also a contributor to the 'Gentleman's Magazine' and to Nichols's 'Literary Illustrations,' vols. vi. and viii., and was the author of 'The Devout Communicant,' 1815, 12mo, and 'A Century of Christian Prayers,' 2nd ed. Ipswich, 1824, 8vo.

[Sidebotham's Memorials of the King's School, Canterbury (1865), pp. 95-8; Brit. Mus. Cat.; Nichols's Lit. Illustr. viii. 659, 668; Gent. Mag. 1848, new ser. xxx. 330.]

W. W.