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Gilbert
Gilbert
323

come connected with the established church in Ireland, and to have settled in Belfast as a friend of Arthur Chichester, first earl of Donegal, who in his will made him a bequest. In 1666 Gilbert became prebendary of Ballymore in the church of Armagh (Cotton, Fasti, iii. 51). Under the designation of ‘minister of Belfast’ Gilbert in 1683 published in London a translation of Pierre Jurieu's reply to Bossuet, under the title ‘A Preservative against the Change of Religion; or a just and true idea of the Roman catholic religion opposed to the flattering portraictures made thereof, and particularly to that of my lord of Condom; translated out of the French original.’ Gilbert prefixed a dedication, dated 3 July 1682, to the sovereign, burgesses, and inhabitants of Belfast. Gilbert's publications indicate proficiency in Hebrew, Arabic, Latin, Greek, Italian, French, and Spanish.

[Records of Government in Ireland, 1650–60; Brit. Mus. Lansdowne MS. 1228; Fuller and Holms's View of Sufferings of Quakers, 1731; Reid's Hist. of Presbyterian Church in Ireland, 1853; Benn's Hist. of Belfast, 1877.]

J. T. G.

GILBERT, CLAUDIUS, the younger (1670–1743), ecclesiastic, only son and heir of Claudius Gilbert the elder [q. v.], minister at Limerick and Belfast, was born in the latter town in 1670. He received his early education in Belfast, entered Trinity College, Dublin, on 23 March 1685, became a fellow of that institution in 1693, and received the degrees of doctor of laws and doctor of divinity in 1706. Gilbert was for some time professor of divinity in his college, of which he was appointed vice-provost in 1716. He obtained the rectorship of Ardstraw in the county of Tyrone in 1735, and died in October 1743. He bequeathed considerable sums to various charities, and gave about thirteen thousand volumes of printed books to Trinity College. A catalogue of his books, compiled by himself, is in the possession of that institution, but it does not contain any matter of special literary interest. Gilbert's donation is commemorated by an inscription over his collection in the library of the college, and a bust of him in white marble, executed in 1758, is preserved there.

[Archives of Trinity College, Dublin; Boulter's Monument, London, 1745; Dublin Journal, 1758.]

J. T. G.

GILBERT (formerly GIDDY), DAVIES (1767–1839), president of the Royal Society, was born in the parish of St. Erth, Cornwall, on 6 March 1767. His father, the Rev. Edward Giddy, sometime curate of St. Erth, died 6 March 1814 having married in 1765 Catherine, daughter and heiress of John Davies of Tredrea, St. Erth; she died in 1803. Davies Giddy, the only child, was educated at the Penzance grammar school and at a boarding-school at Bristol. He matriculated from Pembroke College, Oxford, as a gentleman-commoner, 12 April 1785, and was created M.A. in 1789 and D.C.L. in 1832. His tastes were literary, and at an early age he cultivated the company of men of letters. He joined the Linnean Society, and was one of the promoters of the Geological Society of Cornwall, founded in 1814. He was president of the latter society, and never omitted to pay an annual visit to Cornwall to preside at its anniversary meetings. While at Oxford he contracted an intimacy with Thomas Beddoes, M.D. [q. v.], who in 1793 dedicated to him his ‘Observations on the Nature of Demonstrative Evidence.’ During 1792–3 Giddy served the office of high sheriff for his native county. One of the most noted events in his life is the part he performed in encouraging the early talents of Sir Humphry Davy [q. v.] Among others whom he helped to advance in life were the Rev. Malachi Hitchins [q. v.] and the Rev. John Hellins [q. v.] He made calculations to assist Richard Trevithick and the two Hornblowers in their endeavours to improve the steam-engine, and calculated for Thomas Telford the length of the chains required for the Menai Bridge. On 26 May 1804 he was elected to parliament for the borough of Helston in Cornwall, and at the next election, 1 Nov. 1806, was returned for Bodmin, which town he represented until 3 Dec. 1832. He was one of the most assiduous members who ever sat in the House of Commons, and perhaps unequalled for his service on committees. He helped to pass the act repealing the duty on salt, with a view to assisting the pilchard fishery of Cornwall. He devoted to public business nearly the whole of his time, and was remarkable for the short period which he spent in sleep. He took a prominent part in parliamentary investigations connected with the arts and sciences. On 18 April 1808 he married Mary Ann, only daughter and heiress of Thomas Gilbert of Eastbourne. By this marriage he acquired very extensive estates in the neighbourhood of that town, which, added to the landed property in Cornwall he afterwards inherited from his father, placed him in very affluent circumstances. On the levels of Pevensey, a portion of his Sussex estates, he planned and accomplished extensive improvements. He took the name and arms of Gilbert in lieu of those of Giddy, pursuant to royal sign-manual 10 Dec. 1817, and the family names of his children were also