History of Literature

English literature


Richard Graves

Richard Graves (4 May 1715 – 23 November 1804) was an English minister, poet, and novelist.

Born at Mickleton Manor, Mickleton, Gloucestershire, to Richard Graves, gentleman, and his wife, Elizabeth, Graves was a student at Abingdon School and Pembroke College, Oxford. He was a Fellow of All Souls College, Oxford, until January 1749, when the college revoked his fellowship because of his marriage to Lucy Bartholomew, a farmer's daughter from Aldworth. (At the time, All Souls College automatically withdrew funding from any fellow who married.) He also served as rector of Claverton, near Bath, and was an enthusiastic collector of poems, a translator, essayist and correspondent. His best-known work is the picaresque novel, The Spiritual Quixote (1773). The Spiritual Quixote was a satire of John Wesley, George Whitefield, and Methodism in general, which he saw as a threat to his Anglican congregation.

He served as chaplain to Mary Townshend, Countess Chatham and as private tutor to Prince Hoare and Thomas Malthus. He was a close friend of William Shenstone, Anthony Whistler, lowborn Ralph Allen, and William Warburton.

He and Lucy had five children, including a son of the same name who was vicar of Great Malvern.



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