John Ewer

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John Ewer (died 1774) was an English bishop of Llandaff and bishop of Bangor. He is now remembered for an attack on the American colonists, prompted by their indifference to episcopacy.


He son of Edward Ewer, born at Belchamp St Paul, Essex. He was educated at Eton College, and matriculated in 1724 at King's College, Cambridge, of which he became Fellow in 1727. He took the degrees of B.A. 1728, M.A. 1733, and D.D. 1756.[1]

On leaving college he was appointed assistant-master at Eton. He afterwards become tutor to John Manners, Marquess of Granby, accompanied him on his travels, and in 1735 was presented by the Marquess to the richly endowed rectory of Bottesford, Leicestershire. On 1 March 1738 he was appointed by patent to a canonry of Windsor, with which he subsequently held the rectory of West Ilsley, Berkshire, In 1749 he became rector of Dengie, Essex, and on 4 November 1751 was instituted prebendary of Moreton cum Whaddon in Hereford Cathedral.

He was raised to the see of Llandaff on 13 September 1761. Ewer took occasion, in a sermon preached before the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts, 20 February 1767, to reproach the American colonists because they failed to see any use for bishops or episcopally ordained ministers. He then proceeded to brand them as "infidels and barbarians" living in "dissolute wickedness, and the most brutal profligacy of manners". There were replies from Charles Chauncy of Boston, in A Letter to a Friend, dated 10 December 1767, and in a Letter to Ewer himself, by William Livingston, governor of New Jersey, in 1768.

Ewer was translated to Bangor on 20 December 1768. He died on 28 October 1774 at his seat near Worcester. He married on 14 September 1743, Elizabeth, daughter of Thomas Barnardiston of Wyverstone, Suffolk, who survived him; he left a daughter, Margaret Frances Ewer.


  1. ^ "Ewer, John (EWR723J)". A Cambridge Alumni Database. University of Cambridge. 


Church of England titles
Preceded by
Richard Newcome
Bishop of Llandaff
Succeeded by
Jonathan Shipley
Preceded by
John Egerton
Bishop of Bangor
Succeeded by
John Moore