James Jelf, knt., of Gloucester, and brother of William Edward Jelf [q. v.] He was educated at Eton, where he began a lifelong friendship with Pusey, and in December 1816 matriculated from Christ Church, Oxford, where he graduated B.A. (with a second class in classics) in 1820, and M.A. in 1823, B.D. 1831, D.D. 1839. In 1820 he was elected fellow of Oriel, took holy orders in 1821, and became one of the tutors in 1823. He was master of the schools in 1824, and classical examiner in 1825. After being for a short time private tutor to Sir George Nugent, he was in 1826 appointed preceptor to Prince George of Cumberland, afterwards king of Hanover. This office he filled for thirteen years, residing much at Berlin before his pupil's father became king of Hanover (1837). In 1830 he was appointed canon of Christ Church. Jelf never took a prominent part in the Oxford movement, but was so much respected for his impartiality that both Newman and his friend Pusey addressed to him their respective letters on the interpretation of the Thirty-nine Articles, advocated in No. 90 of the ‘Tracts for the Times,’ 1841. In the following year (1842) he preached a sermon before the university, which was published with the title ‘Via Media; or the Church of England our providential path between Romanism and Dissent.’ In 1847 he was appointed one of the six doctors to examine and report on Dr. Pusey's sermon, with the result that Pusey was suspended from preaching for two years. In 1844 Jelf preached the Bampton lectures at Oxford, his subject being ‘An Inquiry into the means of Grace, their mutual connection and combined use, with especial reference to the Church of England.’ In the same year he succeeded Bishop Lonsdale as principal of King's College, London. There he remained for twenty-four years, discharging his duties with courtesy and efficiency, and founding the theological department. When F. D. Maurice [q. v.], the professor of theology, published his ‘Theological Essays’ in 1853, Jelf condemned his views, and the council deprived Maurice of his professorship. Jelf was for many years proctor in convocation for the chapter of Christ Church, and also sub-almoner to the queen. After resigning in 1868 the principalship of King's College, he lived in the house attached to his canonry at Oxford, where he died on 19 Sept. 1871. He married in 1830 Emmy, countess Schlippenbach, lady-in-waiting to the Duchess of Cumberland; he had seven children, including George Edward Jelf, canon of Rochester, Sir Arthur Richard Jelf, Q.C., and Colonel R. H. Jelf, R.E. Besides his Bampton lectures Jelf published a volume of ‘Sermons Doctrinal and Practical,’ 8vo, London, 1835; and ‘Suggestions respecting the Neglect of the Hebrew Language as a qualification for Holy Orders,’ 8vo, London, 1832. He also edited Bishop Jewel's ‘Works,’ 8vo, Oxford, 1848, 8 vols., and left behind him a series of ‘Lectures on the Thirty-nine Articles,’ which were edited after his death, 1873, by his son-in-law, the Rev. J. R. King.
[Annual Register, 1871; Guardian, 20 Sept. 1871; Foster's Alumni Oxon.; Oxford Ten-Year Book; Colonel Maurice's Life of F. D. Maurice, i. 363 sq., ii. 78 sq.; Mozley's Reminiscences; information furnished by the family.]
JELF, WILLIAM EDWARD (1811–1875), divine and classical scholar, born 3 April 1811, was fifth son of Sir James Jelf, knt., of Gloucester, and brother of Richard William Jelf [q. v.] He was educated at Eton; matriculated from Christ Church, Oxford, in July 1829; was elected a student in the same year; gained a first class in classics at the Easter examination, 1833, with an unusually brilliant list of competitors; graduated B.A. in 1833, M.A. in 1836, and B.D. in 1844, and was ordained in 1834. From 1836 to 1849 he was tutor of Christ Church, and for a time was senior censor. He was master of the schools, 1839; classical examiner, 1840, 1841, 1855, and 1856; proctor of the university, 1843; select preacher, 1855; and classical moderator, 1862, 1863. Although he discharged his duties conscientiously, faults of temper and manner rendered him as proctor and senior censor unpopular with undergraduates. In 1857 he delivered the Bampton lectures on ‘The Christian Faith comprehensive and definite,’ and he was one of the Whitehall preachers from 1846 to 1848. He left Oxford in 1849 to become vicar of Carleton, near Skipton, in Yorkshire (a college living). Here he remained till 1854, when he moved to Caerdeon, near Barmouth, in North Wales. He held no church preferment there, but officiated in a church built on his own property, which was eventually consecrated and endowed as a district church in 1875. He devoted much of his time to controversial attacks on ritualism, confession, and the mariolatry of the Roman church. The last few months of his life he passed at Hastings, where he died 18 Oct. 1875. He married in 1849 Maria, youngest daughter of the Rev. John H. Petit, who still survives him, and had six children.
Jelf's most important literary work was his Greek grammar, first published in 1842–1845, 2 vols. 8vo, Oxford, with the title, ‘A