Freind, William (1715-1766) (DNB00)

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FREIND, WILLIAM (1715–1766), dean of Canterbury, baptised in Westminster Abbey, 10 March 1714–15, was the son of Robert Freind (1667?–1754) [q. v.], head-master of Westminster School, by Jane, daughter of Samuel de L'Angle, prebendary of Westminster (Chester, Registers of Westminster Abbey, p. 80). Admitted on the foundation at Westminster in 1727, he was elected to a studentship at Christ Church, Oxford, in 1731, and matriculated 22 June of that year (B.A. 30 April 1735, M.A. 8 June 1738). A Latin ode from his pen on the death of Queen Caroline was printed in the Oxford collection of verses on that event in 1738. On 4 April 1739 he received institution to the valuable rectory of Witney, Oxfordshire, on the resignation of his father, whom he also succeeded as prebendary of Westminster, 17 Oct. 1744. In the last-named year he became one of the royal chaplains in ordinary. In 1747 he was appointed rector of Islip, Oxfordshire, and held that living along with Witney. He accumulated his degrees in divinity, 6 July 1748 (Oxford Graduates, 1851, p. 245). In 1755 he published 'A Sermon [on 1 Pet. ii. 16] preached before the House of Commons ... 30 Jan. 1755, being the day of the Martyrdom of King Charles I.' He resigned his prebend of Westminster on being promoted to a canonry of Christ Church in succession to David Gregory, 15 May 1756: and it is said to have been his unconditional surrender of this preferment which obtained for him the deanery of Canterbury, in which he was installed 14 June 1760. In the following year he was elected prolocutor of the lower house of convocation, in which capacity he delivered an elegant 'Concio ad Clerum' [on Galat. v. 1], published the same year. He died at Canterbury, 26 Nov. 1766 (Gent. Mag. xxxvi. 399), but was buried at Witney, and a short inscription to his memory placed upon the monument of his father and mother in that church. By his biographers Freind is described as a model of integrity, modesty, and benevolence. He is also said to have had a fine taste in music. He died extremely well off, having inherited the greater part of the fortune of his uncle, John Freind, M.D. (1675-1728) [q. v.] In April 1739 he married Grace, second daughter of William Robinson of Rokeby Park, Yorkshire, who died 28 Dec. 1776, and was also buried at Witney (Foster, Baronetage, 1882, p. 538). He left issue three sons, Robert, William Maximilian, and John, and a daughter, Elizabeth, married to Duncan Campbell, a captain in the marines. The youngest son, John Freind, or, as he afterwards became, Sir John Robinson, succeeded to the estates of his maternal uncle, Richard Robinson, baron Rokeby, archbishop of Armagh. Freind's valuable collection of books, pictures, and prints were sold by auction in 1767. He gave a bust of his father by Rysbrach to Christ Church Library. His own portrait has been engraved by Worlidge.

[Nichols's Lit. Anecd. v. 89, 104-5; Welch's Alumni Westmon. (1852), pp. 296, 302-3; Foster's Alumni Oxon. (1715-1886), p. 495; Atterbury's Correspondence, ii. 401; Wotton's Baronetage (Kimber and Johnson), iii. 96-7; Wood's Colleges and Halls (Gutch), p. 461; Evans's Cat. of Engraved Portraits, i. 130, ii. 161.]

G. G.