1832 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Rev. Vicesimus Knox

William Clarke and Robert Shelton Mackenzie, in The Georgian Era: Memoirs of the most eminent Persons who have flourished in Great Britain (1832-34) 3:569.



VICESIMUS KNOX, the son of a clergyman, was born on the 8th of December, 1752, and received his education at Merchant Tailors' School, and King's College, Oxford, of which he became a fellow. After having entered the church, he succeeded his father as head master of the grammar-school at Tunbridge, and held that situation till 1811, when he retired in favour of his son. He had, in the meantime, been presented to the chapelry of Shipbourne, in Kent; and, at the same period, held his own livings of the rectory of Rumwell and Ramsden Crays, in Essex. Dr. Knox was considered a very eminent preacher, but it is in his capacity of author that he is chiefly known. Many of his works have been translated into the different European languages, and have received great praise from Dr. Johnson, and other eminent literary characters. The principal of them are, Essays, Moral and Literary, three volumes, octavo; Liberal Education, two volumes, octavo; Winter Evenings, three volumes, octavo; Christian Philosophy; and a pamphlet on the National Importance of Classical Education. The well-known works, Elegant Extracts, and Elegant Epistles, are his selections. He is also said to have published, anonymously, several political tracts at the commencement of the French revolution; and, besides other sermons, he printed his famous one, delivered at Brighton, upon The Unlawfulness of Offensive War. He died, highly respected, at Tunbridge, on the 6th of September, 1821, leaving two sons. His literary reputation is deservedly great; he was not only well skilled in his own language, but wrote Latin, both in prose and verse, with the most classical purity.