Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Cordell, Charles

CORDELL, CHARLES (1720–1791), catholic divine, son of Charles Cordell, of the diocese of London, and his wife, Hannah Darell, of the ancient family of Darell of Scotney Castle, Sussex, and Calehill, Kent, was born on 5 Oct. 1720, and educated in a school at Fernyhalgh, Lancashire, and in the English college at Douay, where he was ordained priest. He became chaplain at Arundel Castle in 1748; was subsequently stationed at Roundhay, Yorkshire, and in the Isle of Man; and on 10 June 1765 took charge of the chapel in Newgate Street, Newcastle-on-Tyne, where he continued till his death on 26 Jan. 1791 (Catholic Miscellany, vi. 387).

He published: 1. ‘The Divine Office for the Use of the Laity,’ 4 vols. 16mo [Sheffield], 1763; second edit. 2 vols. 8vo [Newcastle-on-Tyne], 1780; new edition, ‘with corrections and additions by the Rev. B. Rayment, Manchester, 1806 (Notes and Queries, 3rd ser. x. 330, 383). 2. ‘A Letter to the Author of a Book called “A Candid and Impartial Sketch of the Life and Government of Pope Clement XIV,”’ 1785. The work to which this ‘Letter’ relates was written by Father John Thorpe, an English ex-jesuit, and edited by Father Charles Plowden. It is a collection of scandalous stories about Ganganelli that were circulated at Rome by his enemies. Cordell deemed it to be his duty to defend the action of the pope in suppressing the Society of Jesus ({{sc|Gillow, Bibl. Dict. of the English Catholics, i. 565, 567).

Cordell also translated several works from the French, including ‘The Life of Pope Clement XIV’ (Ganganelli), by Caraccioli (1776); ‘Interesting Letters of Pope Clement XIV’ (2 vols. 1777); ‘The Manners of the Christians’ by Fleury (1786), and ‘The Manners of the Israelites’ by Fleury (1786).

[Authorities cited above.]

T. C.