the town. He obtained a license, 22 Sept. 1512, to found the Wolverhampton grammar school, and applied the Rushocke estate to its maintenance. The school remained under the control of the Merchant Taylors' Company until 1766. Since 1876 120l. a year has been voted by the company towards its support. In 1867 the Rushocke estate was worth 1,212l. a year. When the church of St. Andrew Underclift was rebuilt in 1520, Jenyns, according to Stow, ‘caused (at his charges) to be builded the whole north side of the great middle ile, both of the body and quire, as appeareth by his arms over every pillar graven, and also the north ile, which he roofed with timber and cieled: also the whole south side of the church was glazed, and the pews in the south chapel made of his costs.’
Jenyns died in 1524, and was buried in the church of the Grey Friars; a solemn obit was kept at his funeral. He left by will large estates to the Merchant Taylors' Company
[Clode's Early History of the Merchant Taylors' Company; Clode's Memorials of the Merchant Taylors' Company; Holinshed's Chronicle, ed. Hooker, iii. 802; Stow's Survey (ed. 1720), bk. ii. p. 66; Carlisle's Endowed Grammar Schools.]
JEPHSON, ROBERT (1736–1803), dramatist and poet, born in Ireland in 1736, was educated at Dublin at the same school as Malone, and entered the army. He became captain of an infantry regiment on the Irish establishment, and on its reduction retired on half-pay, and fixed his residence in England. There, about 1763, he contracted an intimacy with William Gerard Hamilton [q. v.], with whom he resided as a guest for the greater part of five years, and associated with Johnson, Burke, Charles Townshend, Garrick, Goldsmith, Reynolds, Burney, and others of eminence in literature and art. From a letter written by Jephson in September 1763 it would appear that he had been befriended in a substantial manner by Garrick, but the latter, writing in 1765, implies that Jephson's conduct towards him was less satisfactory than he had expected. Jephson married, in 1767, a daughter of Sir Edward Barry [q. v.], an eminent physician, and soon afterwards obtained the post of master of the horse to Viscount Townshend, lord-lieutenant of Ireland. He thereupon settled in Dublin.
Jephson acquired high reputation by his convivial disposition and his felicity in ludicrous compositions. In the pages of a Dublin newspaper styled ‘The Mercury’ he defended with much wit and humour the administrative acts of Lord Townshend as viceroy. Some of these contributions were reprinted under the title of ‘The Bachelor, or Speculations of Jeoffry Wagstaffe.’ In 1771 appeared Jephson's satiric ‘epistle,’ purporting to have been written by Gorges Edmond Howard [q. v.], a dull legal compiler and unsuccessful dramatist, to George Faulkner (1699–1775) [q. v.], a Dublin publisher, noted for his pompous and pedantic verbosity. A permanent pension of 300l. per annum on the Irish establishment (subsequently doubled) was granted to Jephson, and he retained his office of master of the horse under twelve successive viceroys. In 1778, through an arrangement made by Lord Townshend, Jephson obtained a seat in the parliament of Ireland, as representative for Old Leighlin.
Jephson's tragedy, ‘Braganza,’ was produced with great success at Drury Lane in February 1775. The prologue was written by Arthur Murphy, and the epilogue, composed by Horace Walpole, was spoken by Mrs. Yates, who performed the leading part of Louisa, duchess of Braganza. The play was subsequently published by Jephson, with a dedication to Viscountess Nuneham, dated from Dublin Castle. Walpole publicly expressed his admiration for ‘Braganza,’ and addressed to Jephson three published letters concerning it, under the title of ‘Thoughts on Tragedy.’ On 19 Jan. 1777 Jephson acted Macbeth in the theatre in Phœnix Park. A play by him entitled ‘Vitellia’ was declined by Garrick in the same year, notwithstanding Walpole's commendation of it. It was apparently based on Metastasio's ‘Clemency of Titus,’ and under the new title of ‘Conspiracy’ was produced at Drury Lane Theatre, with Kemble in the chief part, on 15 Nov. 1796; it was published in the same year (cf. GENEST, vii. 286). The ‘Law of Lombardy,’ a tragedy by Jephson, was performed at Drury Lane in February 1779, and an edition of it, published in the same year by the author, was dedicated to the king. A tragedy by Jephson entitled ‘The Count of Narbonne,’ founded on Walpole's ‘Castle of Otranto,’ was produced at Covent Garden in November 1781, and met with much success, owing to the efforts of the actor Henderson. The epilogue was written by Edmond Malone, who was loud in his praises of the piece. The tragedy was published by Jephson, with a dedication to Horace Walpole. When the piece was performed at Dublin in the winter of 1781–2, John Philip Kemble [q. v.] made a great success in the character of Raymond, and Jephson became friendly with the actor. A farce by Jephson, entitled ‘The Hotel, or the Servant with Two Masters,’ was performed at the Theatre Royal, Smock Alley, Dublin, in 1784, when the part of Donna Clara was acted by