Open main menu

Page:Dictionary of National Biography volume 46.djvu/338

There was a problem when proofreading this page.


PRICE, JOHN (d. 1736), architect, is described as of Richmond, Surrey, and ‘armiger.’ In 1714 he rebuilt the church of St. Mary at Walls at Colchester in Essex. He worked a great deal for the Duke of Chandos, and was employed from 1712 to 1720 in building the duke's great house at Canons, near Edgware in Middlesex, from the designs of James Gibbs [q. v.] In 1720 he built a town mansion for the duke in Marylebone Fields. Price was employed in 1733 to rebuild the church of St. George the Martyr in Southwark, which was completed in 1736. He died in November of that year. In 1726 he published ‘Some Considerations for building a Bridge over the Thames from Fulham to Putney, with a Drawing,’ and also a supplementary letter to the same; and in 1735 ‘Some Considerations … offered to the House of Commons for building a Stone Bridge over the River Thames from Westminster to Lambeth,’ &c.

[Dict. of Architecture; Manning and Bray's Hist. of Surrey, iii. 637, 696; Wheatley's London Past and Present, ii. 102.]

L. C.

PRICE, JOHN (1773–1801), topographer, was born at Leominster, Herefordshire, in 1773. He gave lessons there in French, Latin, Italian, and Spanish. Subsequently he became a bookseller at Hereford, but finally settled at Worcester. He occasionally made pedestrian tours on the continent. In 1795 he published ‘An Historical and Topographical Account of Leominster and its Vicinity,’ illustrated by seven prints. This was followed in 1796 by ‘An Historical Account of the City of Hereford, with some Remarks on the River Wye, and the natural and artificial beauties contiguous to its banks from Brobery to Wilton,’ with eight maps and prints. This ‘very respectable performance’ was founded on collections given to the writer by John Lodge, author of ‘Introductory Sketches towards a Topographical History of Herefordshire,’ 1793. In 1797 Price published ‘The Ludlow Guide, comprising an Historical Account of the Castle and Town, with a Survey of the various Seats, Views, &c., in that Neighbourhood.’ A plate of the castle forms the frontispiece. A fourth edition, enlarged, appeared in 1801. In 1799 appeared a similar ‘Worcester Guide,’ from which, says Chambers, much of the matter of subsequent histories of the place was borrowed without acknowledgment. Price was also author of ‘The Seaman's Return, or the Unexpected Marriage,’ an operatic farce, partly from the German, in three acts, published in 1795 and acted at Worcester, Shrewsbury, Ludlow, and Wolverhampton. His last publication was ‘The Englishman's Manual; containing a General View of the Constitution, Laws, Government, &c., of England, designed as an Introduction to the Knowledge of those Important Studies,’ 1797, 12mo. Price died at Worcester on 5 April 1801.

[Chambers's Biogr. Illustrations of Worcestershire, p. 575; Gent. Mag. 1801, i. 577; Allen's Bibliotheca Herefordiensis, Introd. and pp. 16, 38; Baker's Biogr. Dramatica, i. 583, ii. 250; Price's Works; Brit. Mus. Cat.; Lit. Mem. of Living Authors, 1798; Biog. Dict. of Living Authors, 1816, the compiler of which was under the impression that Price was still alive.]

G. Le G. N.

PRICE, JOHN (1734–1813), Bodley's librarian, son of the Rev. Robert Price of Llandegla, Denbighshire, was born in 1734 at Tuer, near Llangollen, Brecknockshire. He was educated there and at Jesus College, Oxford, matriculating on 26 March 1754, and graduating B.A. in 1757, M.A. in 1760, and B.D. in 1768. In 1757 he was appointed janitor of the Bodleian Library; from 1761 to 1763 he was sub-librarian, and in 1765 was made acting librarian by Humphrey Owen [q. v.], principal of Jesus College and Bodley's librarian, whose salary he received. On Owen's death in 1768 Price was chosen to succeed him as Bodley's librarian after a severe contest with William Cleaver [q. v.], (afterwards bishop of St. Asaph). From 1766 to 1773 he was curate of Northleigh, Oxfordshire, where he distinguished himself by appropriating the manuscript book of benefactions, which was sold with his library in June 1814. In 1775 he became curate of Wilcote in the same county; in 1782 he was presented to the living of Wollaston and Alvington, Gloucestershire, and in 1798 to that of Llangattock, Brecknockshire, by Henry Somerset, fifth duke of Beaufort, whom Price frequently visited at Badminton.

In 1787 Thomas Beddoes (1760–1808) [q. v.], reader in chemistry in the university, issued a printed ‘Memorial concerning the State of the Bodleian Library, and the Conduct of the Principal Librarian’ (4to, Brit. Mus.). In it he charged Price with incivility, frequent absence from the library, ignorance of foreign publications, and carelessness with regard to books in his charge. In consequence the curators resolved to hold terminal meetings for the purchase of books, inspection of catalogues, &c. On the other hand, Price's conduct as librarian was eulogised by many visitors to the library, both foreign and English. In 1797 he was elected F.S.A., and about the same time migrated to Trinity