Huddesford, George (DNB00)

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HUDDESFORD, GEORGE (1749–1809), satirical poet, was baptised at St. Mary Magdalen, Oxford, on 7 Dec. 1749, being the youngest son of George Huddesford, D.D., president of Trinity College, Oxford. William Huddesford [q.v.] was an elder brother. He was elected scholar of Winchester College in 1764, and matriculated at Trinity College, Oxford, on 15 Jan. 1768. He soon migrated to New College. On 8 May 1769 he was elected one of its scholars and became a fellow on 8 May 1771. He graduated B.A. in 1779 and M.A. in 1780. He vacated his fellowship by marriage in August 1772, and a note against his name in a list of the members of the college adds: 'Amatricem Londini juvenili amore correptus præpropere duxit.' In early life Huddesford dabbled in painting, and was a pupil of Sir Joshua Reynolds. By 1775 he had exhibited three pictures at the Academy exhibition, and in the Bodleian Picture Gallery is a painting by him in 1777 of the Earl of Lichfield, chancellor of the university. Reynolds painted in 1778–9 a portrait, now at the National Gallery, of Huddesford and J. C. Bampfylde [q. v.], when the former was twenty-eight. An engraving appeared in the ‘English Illustrated Magazine,’ viii. 72. The price of the picture was 105l. Reynolds also painted a likeness of Mrs. Huddesford, and its half-payment is entered in the artist's books as 17l. 7s. With many and influential connections in the church Huddesford took holy orders. He was presented by the lord chancellor to the vicarage of Loxley in Warwickshire on 21 Oct. 1803, and was incumbent of Sir George Wheler's Chapel, Spital Square, London. He died in London at the end of 1809.

Huddesford's first production was: 1. ‘Warley, a Satire’ (anon.), part i., October 1778; part ii., November 1778, which ridiculed the military reviews at Warley in Essex. As it was dedicated to Reynolds, it soon came under the notice of his friends, and Fanny Burney was much distressed at the mention of her name as ‘dear little Burney’ (Diaries, i. 177–9; Early Diary, ii. 269–70). He edited, and was the principal contributor to: 2. ‘Salmagundi: a Miscellaneous Combination of Original Poetry’ (anon.), 1791; new edition, 1793; which was dedicated to Richard Wyatt of Milton Place, Surrey, and mainly consisted of odes and elegies with some humorous verses. After this he attacked France and its leading men in: 3. ‘Topsy Turvy; with Anecdotes and Observations illustrative of the Present Government of France’ (anon.), 1793; two editions. 4. ‘Bubble and Squeak: a Gallimaufry of British Beef with the Chopp'd Cabbage of Gallic Philosophy and Radical Reform’ (anon.), 1799. 5. ‘Crambe Repetita, a Second Course of Bubble and Squeak’ (anon.), 1799. 6. ‘Les Champignons du Diable, or Imperial Mushrooms,’ 1805. A collected edition of his works, including ‘Salmagundi,’ ‘Topsy Turvy,’ ‘Bubble and Squeak,’ and ‘Crambe Repetita,’ appeared in two volumes in 1801 with a dedication to Lord Loughborough, ‘in gratitude for favours spontaneously conferred.’ In this issue the contributions of other writers to ‘Salmagundi’ were marked by asterisks. Huddesford subsequently published two satires on the Middlesex election in 1802 and the Duke of Northumberland's neutrality, viz.: 8. ‘The Scum Uppermost when the Middlesex Porridge-pot Boils Over: an Heroic Election Ballad,’ 1802; two editions. 9. ‘Wood and Stone, or a Dialogue between a Wooden Duke [of Northumberland] and Stone Lion [over his house at Charing Cross, London],’ n.p. or d.[1802]. In 1804 he edited a volume of poems written by boys who were his contemporaries at Winchester, which he called the ‘Wiccamical Chaplet.’ He is also credited with the authorship of ‘Bonaparte: an Heroic Ballad.’

[Foster's Alumni Oxon.; Gent. Mag. 1809, pt. ii. p. 1238; Notes and Queries, 6th ser. xi. 198; Kirby's Winchester Scholars, p. 259; Wood's Oxford City, ed. Peshall, p. 228; Cook's National Gallery, p. 423; Taylor's Sir J. Reynolds, ii. 126, 224, 228.]

W. P. C.