Francis Hutcheson (songwriter)

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Francis Hutcheson (1721–1784) was an Irish songwriter, physician and lecturer in chemistry.

Early life[edit]

Francis Hutcheson was born in Dublin on 13 August 1721. His parents were the philosopher Francis Hutcheson and his wife Mary (née Wilson)[1]

His father was appointed to the Chair of Moral Philosophy in the University of Glasgow in 1729, necessitating a family move. Hutcheson studied in Glasgow University, graduating M.A. there in 1744, and M.D. in 1750.[2][3]

His father died in 1746, leaving the younger Hutcheson property in Ballyhackamore and Drumalig, Saintfield, County Down, as well as County Longford.[4][5] Francis Hutcheson the elder also left his son the task of organising his papers for publication. With the help of his father's colleague Rev William Leechman, this task was completed in 1755 with the publishing of "A System of Moral Philosophy", dedicated to Edward Synge[6][7]

Medical and Scientific Life in Dublin[edit]

Francis Hutcheson was admitted to the Royal College of Physicians in Dublin in January 1754, and appointed to the Meath Hospital. He was appointed to lecture in chemistry in Trinity College, Dublin on 12 July 1760. He received the degree of Doctor in Physic from Trinity on 22 November 1761. Not only did he lecture the undergraduates, but in a form of early public engagement ran courses for the general public.[8][9] Hutcheson resigned his post in Trinity on 3 November 1767, the day after being elected a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians.

He was appointed consulting physician to the Rotunda Hospital in 1774, a post that he retained until 1784. He was also appointed to the Board of Governors at this time. He was president of the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland in 1777 and 1780.[10]

Musical life[edit]

Francis Hutcheson was a keen amateur violinist, and is probably the "Dr Hutchinson" who was a founder member of the Musical Academy for ladies and gentlemen established in Dublin in 1757. There is also a "Dr Hutchinson" (one of four 'Gentlemen of Approved Taste') listed as a member of an organising committee for fundraising concerts in aid of the Rotunda hospital. Hutcheson is not listed as a member of the committee again until May 1774, when he became a member of the board of governors. He served on the committee until his death.[11]

Under the pseudonym "Francis Ireland", he composed glees, catches, and madrigals. It is alleged he adopted this pseudonym for fear of public knowledge of his composing adversely affecting his professional prospects.[12]

The Noblemen's and Gentlemen's Catch Club awarded prizes to three of his works: ‘As Colin one evening’ (1771), ‘Jolly Bacchus’ (1772), and ‘Where weeping yews’ (1773). Thomas Warren's series "A collection of catches, canons and glees" (London, c.1763–94) included eleven of his glees and eight catches. Hutcheson's work also appeared in other collections including Henry Mountain's "The gentleman's catch book" (Dublin, c.1790).[13][14][15]

The Grove Dictionary (1900) describes Hutcheson as producing "many vocal compositions of considerable merit" and says that his "beautiful madrigal, 'Return, return, my lovely maid,' is universally admired."[16]

Personal Life and Death[edit]

Hutcheson lived in 32 Stafford Street, Dublin. He married Miss Sarah Card. They had three daughters and one son, also called Francis. This son was later Rev Dr Francis Hutcheson, the Rector of Donaghadee.[17][18]

Francis Hutcheson died on 5 September 1784, in Dublin.

References[edit]

  • Dictionary of National Biography Unfortunately the first series entry contains a number of errors, due to confusion between this Francis Hutcheson and another, son of Samuel Hutcheson, who attended Trinity College Dublin in the 1740s. These are amended in the current edition[19][20]
  1. ^ National Dictionary of Biography, "Francis Hutcheson" by L. M. Middleton, rev. K. D. Reynolds, retrieved 9 August 2013
  2. ^ "History of the Medical Teaching in Trinity College". Retrieved 9 August 2013. , p. 138
  3. ^ National Dictionary of Biography, "Francis Hutcheson" by L. M. Middleton, rev. K. D. Reynolds, retrieved 9 August 2013 – this gives 1750 for MD instead of mistaken 1759
  4. ^ National Dictionary of Biography, "Francis Hutcheson" by L. M. Middleton, rev. K. D. Reynolds, retrieved 9 August 2013
  5. ^ "Bloomfield, Belfast". Retrieved 9 August 2013. 
  6. ^ "History of the Medical Teaching in Trinity College". Retrieved 9 August 2013. , p. 138
  7. ^ "Francis Hutcheson: his life, teaching and position in the history of philosophy". Retrieved 9 August 2013. , p. 142
  8. ^ "History of the Medical Teaching in Trinity College". Retrieved 9 August 2013. , p. 138
  9. ^ "Our Legacy: School of Medicine 1711–2011. Professor Dermot Kelleher's Speech at 2011 Alumni Awards" (PDF). Retrieved 9 August 2013. 
  10. ^ Dictionary of Irish Biography, "Ireland (Hutcheson), Francis" by Barra Boydell, retrieved 9 August 2013
  11. ^ Dictionary of Irish Biography, "Ireland (Hutcheson), Francis" by Barra Boydell, retrieved 9 August 2013
  12. ^ "The Music Dictionary.org". Retrieved 9 August 2013. 
  13. ^ Dictionary of Irish Biography, "Ireland (Hutcheson), Francis" by Barra Boydell, retrieved 9 August 2013
  14. ^ National Dictionary of Biography, "Francis Hutcheson" by L. M. Middleton, rev. K. D. Reynolds, retrieved 9 August 2013
  15. ^ "The Music Dictionary.org". Retrieved 9 August 2013. 
  16. ^ Wikisource:A Dictionary of Music and Musicians/Hutcheson, Francis
  17. ^ "History of the Medical Teaching in Trinity College". Retrieved 9 August 2013. , p. 138
  18. ^ "Bloomfield, Belfast". Retrieved 9 August 2013. 
  19. ^ "History of the Medical Teaching in Trinity College". Retrieved 9 August 2013. , p. 138
  20. ^ National Dictionary of Biography, "Francis Hutcheson" by L. M. Middleton, rev. K. D. Reynolds, retrieved 9 August 2013

External links[edit]