Besley joined the Fann Street Foundry in 1838. The Fann Street Foundry was also home of typographer William Thorowgood, creator of Grotesque.
When Besley created Clarendon he had it patented, as England just passed a bill allowing that. The typeface became so popular, though, that the copyright was soon broken by people creating knock-offs. Still known as the first Registered typeface.