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A biographical study of Thomas Arnold the younger

Axon, John Edward (1975) A biographical study of Thomas Arnold the younger. PhD thesis, University of Leeds.

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Abstract

Thomas Arnold was Dr. Arnold's second and favourite son. Born in Laleham, Middlesex, in 1823, he spent all his formative years under his father's influence except for one year he and Matthew spent at Winchester before being brought back to Rugby. Dr. Arnold died in 1842 and in that year Thomas began his undergraduate life in Tractarian Oxford as a scholar at University College. He soon developed a social conscience and suffered a collapse of faith, so that despite taking a First he rejected the chance of a Fellowship and in a mood of idealism emigrated to New Zealand in 1847. Two years as a colonial settler were enough to temper his idealism and in 1850 he gladly accepted the post of Inspector of Schools in Tasmania, offered by the Governor Sir William Denison. Within months he had married Julia Sorell, had begun to organise the re-structuring of the island's school system, and regain his Rugby faiths. By 1855 he had decided to become a Roman Catholic and this almost destroyed his marriage since his wife was, and remained, fiercely opposed to Catholicism. He was received in 1856; his marriage survived but he lost his post as Inspector of Schools. Through contact with J.H. Newman he was appointed Professor of English Literature in the Catholic University in Dublin in 1856, but after six years in the strife-torn University he joined Newman in the Oratory School in Birmingham. As friend of Newman and Sir John Acton he was at the centre of Catholic politics during the difficult mid century period; disillusionment set in and in 1865 he left the faith to return to Oxford. The next eleven years established his academic reputation as the editor of the Works of John Wyclif and numerous works for the Rolls series; it was only his return to the Catholic Church in 1876that prevented his election to the Chair of Anglo-Saxon in Oxford. It ruined his career and his marriage. He spent the last years of his life as Professor and Fellow of the declining University College in Dublin, continuing with academic work until his death in 1900.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Academic Units: The University of Leeds > Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Cultures (Leeds) > School of English (Leeds)
Identification Number/EthosID: uk.bl.ethos.778970
Depositing User: Ethos Import
Date Deposited: 19 Mar 2020 09:46
Last Modified: 19 Mar 2020 09:46
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/26130

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