Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Taylor, Jefferys

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TAYLOR, JEFFERYS (1792–1853), writer for children, youngest son of Isaac Taylor (1759–1829) [q. v.], by his wife, Ann Martin, was born at Lavenham in Suffolk on 30 Oct. 1792. He was educated under his father as an engraver, and apprenticed at Lavenham. He possessed considerable inventive faculty, and made a ruling machine for engravers, the sale of which afforded him considerable profit. But he is chiefly remarkable for his writings for children, which are very varied in character, sometimes distinguished by much humour and fancy, but sometimes tending to extravagance. In later life he lived at Pilgrim's Hatch, near Brentwood in Essex. He died at Broadstairs on 8 Oct. 1853.

On 20 June 1826 he married Sophia Mabbs of Mount Nessing, Essex, by whom he had a son Edward, who died young.

Taylor was the author of:

  1. ‘Harry's Holiday,’ London, 1818, 12mo; 3rd edit. 1822.
  2. ‘Æsop in Rhyme,’ London, 1820, 12mo; 4th edit. 1824.
  3. ‘Ralph Richards the Miser,’ London, 1821, 12mo.
  4. ‘Tales and Dialogues in Prose and Verse,’ London, 1822, 12mo.
  5. ‘The Little Historians,’ London, 1824, 12mo.
  6. ‘Parlour Commentaries on the Constitution and Laws of England,’ London, 1825, 12mo.
  7. ‘Old English Sayings newly expounded,’ London, 1827, 12mo.
  8. ‘The Barn and the Steeple,’ London, 1828.
  9. ‘The Forest,’ London, 1831, 16mo; 3rd edit. 1835.
  10. ‘A Month in London,’ London, 1832, 12mo.
  11. ‘A New Description of the Earth,’ London 1832, 12mo.
  12. ‘The Farm,’ London, 1832, 16mo; 2nd edit. 1834.
  13. ‘The Young Islanders,’ London, 1842, 8vo.
  14. ‘Cottage Traditions,’ London, 1842, 8vo.
  15. ‘Incidents of the Apostolic Age in Britain,’ London, 1844, 8vo.
  16. ‘A Glance at the Globe,’ London, 1848, 8vo.
  17. ‘The Family Bible newly opened,’ London, 1853, 8vo.

[Information kindly supplied by Mr. Henry Taylor; Canon Taylor's Taylors of Ongar; Mrs. Gilbert's Autobiography, 1878, pp. 32, 47, 261, 341, 420; Gent. Mag. 1853, ii. 424; Brit. Mus. Addit. MS. 19168, f. 197.]

E. I. C.