William Sinclair (Archdeacon of London)

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Ven. William Macdonald Sinclair. Archdeacon of London

William Macdonald Sinclair, DD, FRGS (1850–1917), was an eminent Anglican priest and author[1] in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

Birth and education[edit]

He was born into an ecclesiastical family on 3 June 1850,[2] and educated at Repton School and Balliol College, Oxford.


Sinclair was ordained in 1876. His first post was as assistant minister at the Quebec Chapel, Marylebone after which he was resident chaplain to the Bishop of London. He was appointed vicar of St Stephen's, Westminster in 1880 and Archdeacon of London in 1889.[3] In 1892 he succeeded Walter Purton as editor of the Churchman, filling the post until 1901, when he was succeeded by Augustus Robert Buckland.[4]

His last clerical appointment was as Rector of Shermanbury (1911–1915).[5] An Honorary Chaplain to the King, he died on 4 December 1917.

He was elected to the London School Board as one of the representatives of the Westminster Division in 1885.[6]

He was appointed Acting Chaplain to the 21st Middlesex (Volunteer) Battalion on 31 January 1900.[7]

Private life[edit]

He was a keen Freemason and was appointed in 1894 to the senior position of Grand Chaplain in the United Grand Lodge of England.[8]


  1. ^ Amongst others he wrote "The Psalms in the original Rhythm", 1879; " Lessons on the Gospel of St John", 1882; "The Servant of Christ", 1891; " Simplicity in Christ", 1896; " Difficulties of our Day", 1905; and "Memorials of St Paul’s Cathedral; The Chapels Royal", 1912 > British Library web site accessed 13:08 GMT Friday 30 July 2010
  2. ^ His father was the Rev. William Sinclair, Prebendary of Chichester, 5th son of Sir John Sinclair, 1st Baronet > “Who was Who”1897-1990 London, A & C Black, 1991 ISBN 071363457X
  3. ^ The Archdeaconry Of London The Times Wednesday, 15 May 1889; pg. 9; Issue 32699; col C
  4. ^ "The First Century of The Churchman" (PDF). Retrieved 15 November 2013.
  5. ^ "The Clergy List" London Kelly’s, 1913
  6. ^ "The London School Board. Result of the Polls". The Morning Post. 4 November 1885. p. 5.
  7. ^ "No. 27159". The London Gazette. 30 January 1900. p. 605.
  8. ^ Horsley (The Rev'd Canon), JW (1906). "Notes on the Grand Chaplains of England". Ars Quatuor Coronatorum. 19. London: Quatuor Coronati Correspondence Circle Ltd. p. 194.
Church of England titles
Preceded by
Edwin Hamilton Gifford
Archdeacon of London
1889 – 1911
Succeeded by
Ernest Edward Holmes