Morgan, Matthew (DNB00)


MORGAN, MATTHEW (1652–1703), verse writer, was born in the parish of St. Nicholas in Bristol, of which city his father, Edward Morgan, was alderman and mayor. He entered as a commoner at St. John's College, Oxford, in 1667, under John Rainstrop, graduated B.A. 18 May 1671, M.A. 9 July 1674, and B. and D.C.L. 7 July 1685. In 1684 he was associated in a translation of Plutarch's 'Morals,' to the first volume of which he also contributed the preface. Some reflections therein upon 'Ashmole's rarities' displeased Dr. Robert Plot [q. v.], who carried his complaint to Dr. Lloyd, the vice-chancellor. Morgan was threatened with expulsion, but he disowned his work, the responsibility for which was assumed by John Gellebrand, the bookseller. He was presented in 1688 to the vicarage of Congresbury, Somerset, but forfeited it owing to his failure to read the articles within the stipulated time. He was vicar of Wear from 1693 till his death in 1703.

Besides his work on Plutarch Morgan contributed the life of Atticus to a translation of the 'Lives of Illustrious Men,' 1684, and the life of Augustus to a translation of Suetonius, 1692. He also wrote: 'An Elegy on Robert Boyle,' 1691; 'A Poem upon the Late Victory over the French Fleet at Sea,' 1692; 'A Poem to the Queen upon the King's Victory in Ireland and his Voyage to Holland,' 1692; 'Eugenia: or an Elegy upon the Death of the Honourable Madam——,' 1694.

[Wood's Fasti Oxon. ed. Bliss, ii. 327, 344, 397; Athenæ Oxon. ed. Bliss, iv. 711; Brit. Mus and Bodleian Library Catalogues; Foster's Alumni Oxon. 1500-1714.]

G. T. D.