Open main menu

Page:Dictionary of National Biography volume 53.djvu/470

This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.

volume of ‘Miscellaneous Poems.’ After leaving Wigton for a short sojourn in Carlisle, he took up his residence in Manchester, where he remained more or less till his death, but he frequently revisited his native county and spent much time among the peasantry, amusing them by performances on the fiddle, and gathering that intimate knowledge of their customs and dialect which enabled him in his poems and essays to give a graphic picture of his friends. He also went further afield selling his works, and about 1809 he visited Oxford. He died at Workington in 1823. He was father of seven children.

In Charles, duke of Norfolk, and many of the Cumberland gentry, as well as among members of both universities, he found patrons by whom he was encouraged to publish his ‘Minstrel of the North,’ London, 1810, 8vo (another edit. 1816). His other works were: ‘Miscellaneous Poems’ (Carlisle, 1804, 12mo; 2nd ed. Workington, 1805, 12mo); a further series of ‘Miscellaneous Poems’ (Wigton, 1807, 8vo; another ed., Wigton, 1808, 12mo); and ‘The Cumberland Minstrel: being a poetical miscellany of legendary, Gothic, and romantic tales … together with several essays in the Northern dialect, also a number of original pieces’ (3 vols. Manchester, 1821, 8vo). Gilpin's ‘Cumberland Poetry’ contains a small engraved portrait of Stagg by Robert Anderson from a painting by R. B. Faulkner.

[Popular Poetry of Cumberland and the Lake Country, by Sidney Gilpin; Brit. Mus. Cat.; Cat. of Manchester Free Ref. Library.]

A. N.

STAGGINS, NICHOLAS (1650?–1700), musician, born about 1650, was son of Isaac Staggins, who from 1661 to his death in 1684 was one of the musicians of the royal household. The names of father and son stand in the list of Charles II's ‘Private Musick,’ or violinists, of 1674 (Rimbault's Notes on North's Memoires, p. 99). In February 1674–1675 Nicholas was appointed master of ‘his majesty's musick’ in the room of Louis Grabu, with a yearly fee of 200l. He attended James II's coronation, and served during that reign. His appointment was confirmed by William III in 1693 (Treasury Papers, 17 Aug.).

In 1682 he was admitted Mus. Doc. of Cambridge—it was said through interest and without due tests. To meet such allegations, a grace was passed on 2 July 1684 constituting Staggins professor of music at the university (Cooper, Annals, iii. 601). A statement was also published to the effect that Staggins, having been desirous to perform his exercise for the degree of doctor of music upon the first public opportunity, had acquitted himself ‘so much to the satisfaction of the whole university this commencement that by a solemn vote they had constituted and appointed him public professor of music there’ (London Gazette, No. 1945). There was at that time no endowment for this professorship at Cambridge, and the appointment must have been purely honorary. Staggins was a steward of the St. Cecilia Music Festival, 1684 and 1685. A concert of Staggins's vocal and instrumental music was announced in the ‘London Gazette’ of 10 May 1697 to take place on the 13th at York Buildings. His house and property were situated at Chelsea, but he was at Windsor when, on 13 June 1700, he was found dead in his bed (Luttrell, Relation). He was survived by his mother, two brothers, and a sister.

Staggins's compositions were very slight. They include: 1. Duologue from Dryden's ‘Conquest of Granada,’ pt. ii., ‘How unhappy a lover am I.’ 2. Songs, ‘Whilst Alexis’ and ‘How pleasant is mutual love,’ published in Playford's ‘Choice Ayres,’ 1673. 3. A jig, in Playford's ‘Dancing Master,’ 1679. He wrote music, which was not published, for odes on William III's birthdays, 1693 and 1694, by Nahum Tate. There are six songs by Staggins in the British Museum Additional MS. 19759.

[Hawkins's Hist. of Music, p. 739; Calendar of State Papers, 1661–2 p. 176, 1668–9 p. 446; Treasury Papers, 17 Aug. 1693; Husk's St. Cecilia's Day, pp. 14, 15, 18; Sandford's Coronation of James II; Chamberlayne's England, 1682–1702; Gentleman's Journal, 1693, 1694, p. 269; Registers of Wills, P. C. C., Noel 106; Dyer 55; Administration grant, December 1684; Luttrell's Brief Relation, iv. 656.]

L. M. M.

STAINER, RICHARD (d. 1662), admiral. [See Stayner.]

STAINES, Sir THOMAS (1776–1830), captain in the navy, was born near Margate in 1776, and entered the navy in December 1789 on board the Solebay, in which he served on the West India station till May 1792. In December he joined the Speedy brig commanded by Captain Charles Cunningham [q. v.], with whom he went out to the Mediterranean, and whom he followed to the Impérieuse and Lowestoft. When Cunningham was sent home with despatches, Staines was moved into the Victory, the flagship of Lord Hood, and, continuing in her, was present in the engagement of 13 July 1795, and under the flag of Sir John Jervis, in 1796, till on 3 July he was promoted to be lieutenant of the