William Cleaver

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William Cleaver (1742–1815) was an English churchman and academic, Principal of Brasenose College, Oxford, and bishop of three sees.

Life[edit]

He was the eldest son of the Rev. W. Cleaver, master of a private school at Twyford in Buckinghamshire, and brother of Archbishop Euseby Cleaver. He was at Magdalen College, Oxford, and after taking his B.A. degree, 1761, was a fellow of Brasenose College; he became M.A. on 2 May 1764.

In 1768 was a candidate for the Bodleian librarianship. The votes between him and his competitor John Price were equal, and the latter was appointed on account of being a few months the senior. Cleaver became tutor to George Nugent-Temple-Grenville. He was successively made vicar of Northop in Flintshire, prebendary of Westminster (1784), Principal of Brasenose College (1785), bishop of Chester (1787), bishop of Bangor (1800), and bishop of St Asaph (1806). He retained the headship of Brasenose until 1809, and almost constantly lived there.

At Bangor in 1802, he cautioned an old servant who let apartments against a stray lodger who the bishop thought might be no better than a swindler. This suspicious personage was Thomas De Quincey, who mentioned the incident in his English Opium-eater. Cleaver died 15 May 1815 in Bruton Street, London. He was interested in the higher education of women.

Works[edit]

Aming his writings were De Rhythmo Graecorum, 1775, and Directions to the Clergy of the Diocese of Chester on the Choice of Books, 1789. He also edited the edition of Homer printed at Oxford by the Grenville family.

References[edit]

Academic offices
Preceded by
Thomas Barker
Principal of Brasenose College, Oxford
1785–1809
Succeeded by
Frodsham Hodson
Church of England titles
Preceded by
Beilby Porteus
Bishop of Chester
1787–1800
Succeeded by
Henry Majendie
Preceded by
John Warren
Bishop of Bangor
1800–1806
Succeeded by
John Randolph
Preceded by
Samuel Horsley
Bishop of St Asaph
1806–1815
Succeeded by
John Luxmore