was an English prelate
A prelate is a high-ranking member of the clergy who is an ordinary or who ranks in precedence with ordinaries. The word derives from the Latin prælatus, the past participle of præferre, which means "carry before", "be set above or over" or "prefer"; hence, a prelate is one set over others.-Related...
Anthropology is the study of humanity. It has origins in the humanities, the natural sciences, and the social sciences. The term "anthropology" is from the Greek anthrōpos , "man", understood to mean mankind or humanity, and -logia , "discourse" or "study", and was first used in 1501 by German...
. He was Protestant Bishop of Ossory (1756–65) and Meath (1765), both dioceses of the Church of Ireland
The Church of Ireland is an autonomous province of the Anglican Communion. The church operates in all parts of Ireland and is the second largest religious body on the island after the Roman Catholic Church...
. However, he is best known for his travel writings and diaries.
Pococke was born in Southampton
Southampton is the largest city in the county of Hampshire on the south coast of England, and is situated south-west of London and north-west of Portsmouth. Southampton is a major port and the closest city to the New Forest...
and educated at Corpus Christi College, Oxford
Corpus Christi College is one of the constituent colleges of the University of Oxford in the United Kingdom...
, receiving a Bachelor of Law degree. His father was Rev. Richard Pococke and his mother was Elizabeth Milles, the daughter of Rev. Isaac Milles. His parents were married on 26 April 1698. Pococke's uncle, Thomas Milles, was a Professor of Greek. He was also distantly related to Edward Pococke
Edward Pococke was an English Orientalist and biblical scholar.-Early life:He was the son of clergyman from Chieveley in Berkshire, and was educated at Lord Williams's School of Thame in Oxfordshire and at Corpus Christi College, Oxford...
, the English Orientalist and biblical scholar.
His family connections meant he advanced rapidly in the church, becoming vicar-general of the diocese of Waterford and Lismore.
Travels in Europe (1733-36) and the Near East (1737-42)
He seems to have spent far more time travelling than attending to his duties as a churchman and spent 1733-36 undertaking a series of tours in Europe. Detailed accounts of his first tours (1733–34, 1736–37) survive in a set of letters he wrote to his mother (British Library, Add. Ms. 19939). The unpublished manuscript includes probably the most detailed description of Venice's "Marriage to the Sea" ceremony as well as precious information on contemporary music, especially opera. The manuscript includes From 1737-42 he visited the Near East, visiting Egypt, Jerusalem, Palestine and Greece. These travels were later published in his Description of the East
of 1743 and 1745, works which were praised by Edmund Gibbon. Among other things, he was one of the European travellers to give an account of the origins of the medieval Arabic document, the Achtiname
of Muhammad, which claims that the Prophet Muhammad had personally confirmed a grant of protection and other privileges to the monks of Saint Catherine's Monastery, Mount Sinai
Saint Catherine's Monastery lies on the Sinai Peninsula, at the mouth of a gorge at the foot of Mount Sinai in the city of Saint Catherine in Egypt's South Sinai Governorate. The monastery is Orthodox and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site...
Irish tour (1747-60)
During the years 1747-60, Pococke made a number of tours around various parts of Ireland. The longest of these tours occurred in 1752, when he travelled to just over half of Ireland's counties. He kept a record of this tour, but did not publish it. It ended up in the library of Trinity College, Dublin
Trinity College, Dublin , formally known as the College of the Holy and Undivided Trinity of Queen Elizabeth near Dublin, was founded in 1592 by letters patent from Queen Elizabeth I as the "mother of a university", Extracts from Letters Patent of Elizabeth I, 1592: "...we...found and...
. Eventually, in 1891, an edited edition of Pococke's 1752 tour was published by George Thomas Stokes
George Thomas Stokes was an Irish ecclesiastical historian.Stokes was born on December 28, 1843 in Athlone, Ireland. He studied at Galway grammar school and at Queens College Galway. He graduated from Trinity College, Dublin with a B.A. in 1864, an M.A. in 1871, a B.D. in 1881, and a D.D...
Episcopal office and further travels
He was made bishop successively of Ossory, Elphin and of Meath in 1765. He spent many of his later years in travel throughout Britain and Ireland, publishing accounts of many of his journeys.
He died of apoplexy
Apoplexy is a medical term, which can be used to describe 'bleeding' in a stroke . Without further specification, it is rather outdated in use. Today it is used only for specific conditions, such as pituitary apoplexy and ovarian apoplexy. In common speech, it is used non-medically to mean a state...
during a visitation at Charleville Castle, near Tullamore
Tullamore is a town in County Offaly, in the midlands of Ireland. It is Offaly's county town and the centre of the district.Tullamore is an important commercial and industrial centre in the region. Major international employers in the town include 'Tyco Healthcare' and 'Boston Scientific'. In...
, County Offaly
County Offaly is a county in Ireland. It is part of the Midlands Region and is also located in the province of Leinster. It is named after the ancient Kingdom of Uí Failghe and was formerly known as King's County until the establishment of the Irish Free State in 1922. Offaly County Council is...
Ireland is an island to the northwest of continental Europe. It is the third-largest island in Europe and the twentieth-largest island on Earth...
, in 1765. On his death, many of his manuscripts were given to the British Library.
He was buried at Ardbraccan
Ardbraccan is an ancient place of Christian worship in County Meath, Ireland. It is the location of the former residence of the Roman Catholic, then, after the Reformation, the Church of Ireland Bishop of Meath. It is located approximately 30 miles from Dublin.-Origins:Ardbraccan originated as a...
, County Meath
County Meath is a county in Ireland. It is part of the Mid-East Region and is also located in the province of Leinster. It is named after the ancient Kingdom of Mide . Meath County Council is the local authority for the county...
- A Description of the East and Some other Countries, Vol. I: Observations on Egypt, W. Boyer, London, 1743.
- A Description of the East and Some other Countries, Vol. II, W. Boyer, London, 1745 — divided into two parts:
- Part 1, Observations on Palæstina or the Holy Land, Syria, Mesopotamia, Cyprus, and Candia.
- Part 2, Observations on the islands of the Archipelago, Asia Minor, Thrace, Greece, and some other parts of Europe.
- Notes and Queries. London, 1859.
- Nichols, John
John Nichols was an English printer, author and antiquary.-Early life and apprenticeship:He was born in Islington, London to Edward Nichols and Anne Wilmot. On 22 June 1766 he married Anne Cradock daughter of William Cradock...
. Literary Anecdotes of the Eighteenth Century. 6 vols. Vol. 2. London, 1812.
- St. John, James Augustus
James Augustus St. John , was a British author and traveller. He was born in Laugharne, Carmarthenshire, Wales, the son of Gelly John, shoemaker. He recorded that he received instruction from a local clergyman, eventually mastering the classics, and acquiring proficiency in French, Italian,...
. The Lives of Celebrated Travellers. 3 vols. Vol. 2. New York: Harper & Brothers, Publishers, 1859.
- Ratliff, Brandie. "The monastery of Saint Catherine at Mount Sinai and the Christian communities of the Caliphate." Sinaiticus. The bulletin of the Saint Catherine Foundation (2008).
- Stokes, George Thomas (ed.). Pococke's Tour in Ireland in 1752. Dublin: Hodges Figgis & Co., 1891.
- Chrissochoidis, Ilias. "Musical References in Richard Pococke's Early Correspondence (1734–37)". Society for Eighteenth-Century Music Newsletter 17 (September 2010–April 2011), 5.
- Google Book Search
Google Books is a service from Google that searches the full text of books that Google has scanned, converted to text using optical character recognition, and stored in its digital database. The service was formerly known as Google Print when it was introduced at the Frankfurt Book Fair in October...
, A General Collection of the Best and Most Interesting Voyages and Travels in All Parts of the World: Many of which are Now First Translated Into English, 1811. The full text of Pococke's "A Description of the East and Some other Countries, Vol. II (1745)" p. 406 - p. 770
- Google Book Search, A General Collection of the Best and Most Interesting Voyages and Travels in All Parts of the World: Many of which are Now First Translated Into English, 1814. The full text of Pococke's "A Description of the East and Some other Countries, Vol. I (1743)" p. 163 - p. 402
- Letters from Abroad: The Grand Tour Correspondence of Richard Pococke and Jeremiah Milles. Volume 1 (1733-34). Finnegan, Rachel (Ed.), Published by Pococke Press, 2011.