Henry Harper (bishop)

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Harper's memorial in ChristChurch Cathedral

Henry John Chitty Harper (9 January 1804 – 28 December 1893) was an Anglican bishop in the second half of the 19th century.[1]


Harper was born on 9 January 1804,[2] educated at The Queen's College, Oxford and ordained in 1832.[3] He was Chaplain of Eton College until 1850 then Vicar of St Mary’s, Stratfield Mortimer. In 1856 he was elevated to the Episcopate as Bishop of Christchurch and in 1867 became Primate of New Zealand, relinquishing both posts in 1890.[4] He died on 28 December 1893[5] and is buried at Barbadoes Street Cemetery.[6]

His eldest daughter, Emily Weddell Harper married the politician John Acland. Two of his other daughters married Charles Blakiston, son of Sir Matthew Blakiston, 1st Baronet and Charles George Tripp. A son, Leonard Harper, became a member of parliament, and Arthur Paul Harper was his grandson.[7] Another son, Charles John Harper, owned various large farms[8][9] and unsuccessfully stood for election to the House of Representatives in the Ashburton electorate in 1899.[10]


  1. ^ Project Canterbury
  2. ^ thePeerage.com
  3. ^ Brown, Colin. "Harper, Henry John Chitty 1804?–1893". Dictionary of New Zealand Biography. Ministry for Culture and Heritage. Retrieved 10 April 2011. 
  4. ^ "The Clergy List, Clerical Guide and Ecclesiastical Directory" London, Hamilton & Co 1889
  5. ^ The Times, Friday, Dec 29, 1893; pg. 8; Issue 34147; col C Obituary Rt Rev. Henry John Chitty Harper
  6. ^ Greenaway, Richard L. N. (June 2007). "Barbadoes Street Cemetery Tour" (PDF). Christchurch City Council. pp. 36f. Retrieved 22 August 2014. 
  7. ^ Langton, Graham. "Arthur Paul Harper". Dictionary of New Zealand Biography. Ministry for Culture and Heritage. Retrieved December 2011. 
  8. ^ Swarbrick, Nancy (9 July 2013). "The sitting room at Malvern Hills, 1858". Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand. Retrieved 6 February 2014. 
  9. ^ "Clayton Homestead". Register of Historic Places. Heritage New Zealand. Retrieved 6 February 2014. 
  10. ^ "The General Election, 1899". Wellington: Appendix to the Journals of the House of Representatives. 19 June 1900. p. 2. Retrieved 1 November 2012. 
Religious titles
New title
Inaugural appointment
Bishop of Christchurch
Succeeded by
Churchill Julius
Preceded by
George Selwyn
Primate of New Zealand
Succeeded by
Octavius Hadfield