Thomas Bourn

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For the sailor, see Thomas Bourne.

Thomas Bourn (19 April 1771 –20 August 1832) was an English schoolteacher and educational writer.

Bourn was born in Hackney, Middlesex on 19 April 1771. he was educated at a private school in Well Street. he was trained as a teacher by Rev S Palmer. In 1791 he became a geography teacher at a girl's private school run by the Quakers, and in conjunction with his father-in-law, William Butler. He married a daughter, Elizabeth Butler in 1796. They had eleven children.

He published in 1807,A Concise Gazetteer of the most Remarkable Places in the World; with references to the principal historical events and most celebrated persons connected with them; a 3rd edition was printed in 1822. A compilation of maps of 900 pages that sought to make geography a more accessibe subject to children. His map associated people, places and events. In 1829 Bourn edited Butler's Artithmetical Questions... for the Use of Young Ladies, as well as biographical compilations made by his friend, Stephen Jones. Bourn's metaphor was a practical usage of dates and figures, facts and statistics while making them appealing to young women. He concluded that "Young people require to be entertained as well as admonished."[1] he died at his home in Mare Street, Hackney on 20 August 1832.[2]


  1. ^ Concise Gazetteer, viii
  2. ^ T Cooper and Rev M C Curthoys, ODNB: Thomas Bourn [alphabetical], (Oxford 2004), vol.6, p.845
  •  This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain"Bourn, Thomas". Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co. 1885–1900. 
  • The Dartons: An Annotated Check-list of Children's Books Issued by Two London Publishing Houses 1787-1876 Hardcover – Illustrated. London: British Library Publishing Division. 1 May 2004. ISBN 0712347496.