Charles Churchill

(February 1732 - 4 November 1764)
Charles Churchill (1732-1764)

© National Portrait Gallery, London

Charles Churchill (1732-1764)

Works in ECPA

Source editions

  • The apology: Addressed to the critical reviewers. By C. Churchill. London: printed for the author, sold by W. Flexney, 1761. [4],20p. ; 4⁰. (ESTC T22214; OTA K030916.000)
  • Night: An epistle to Robert Lloyd. By the author. London: printed for the author; and sold by W. Flexney, 1761. [2],17,[1]p. ; 4⁰. (ESTC T43087; OTA K041831.000)
  • The Rosciad: By C. Churchill. The second edition, revised and corrected, with additions. London: printed for the author, and sold by W. Flexney, 1761. [4],34p. ; 4⁰. (ESTC T74903; OTA K062945.000)
  • The ghost: By the author. London: printed for the author, and sold by William Flexney, 1762. [4],56p. ; 4⁰. (ESTC T226; OTA K019945.000)
  • The conference: A poem. By C. Churchill. London: printed for G. Kearsly; J. Coote; W. Flexney; C. Henderson; J. Gardiner; and J. Almon, 1763. [4],19,[1]p. ; 4⁰. (ESTC T1702; OTA K020954.000)
  • The author: A poem. By C. Churchill. London: printed for W. Flexney; G. Kearsly; J. Coote; C. Henderson; J. Gardiner; and J. Almon, 1763. [4],19,[1]p. ; 4⁰. (ESTC T1713; OTA K020965.000)
  • The prophecy of famine. A Scots pastoral: By C. Churchill. Inscribed to John Wilkes, Esq;. London: printed for the author, and sold by G. Kearsly, 1763. [4],28p. ; 4⁰. (ESTC T42786; OTA K041717.000)
  • Gotham. A poem. Book I. By C. Churchill. London: printed for the author, and sold by W. Flexney; G. Kearsley; C. Henderson; J. Coote; J. Gardiner; and J. Almon, 1764. [4],24p. ; 4⁰. (ESTC T1706; OTA K020958.000)
  • Gotham. A poem. Book III. By [ ]. London: printed for the author, and sold by J. Almon; J. Coote; W. Flexney; C. Henderson; J. Gardiner; and C. Moran, 1764. [4],31,[1]p. ; 4⁰. (ESTC T1710; OTA K020962.000)
  • Gotham. A poem. Book II. By C. Churchill. London: printed for the author; and sold by G. Kearsly; W. Flexney; C. Henderson; J. Coote; J. Gardiner; and J. Almon, 1764. [4],32p. ; 4⁰. (ESTC T1711; OTA K020963.000)
  • Independence: A poem. Addressed to the minority. By [ ]. London: printed for the author; and sold by J. Almon; J. Coote; W. Flexney; C. Henderson; J. Gardiner; and C. Moran, 1764. [4],28p. ; 4⁰. (ESTC T37135; OTA K038285.000)
  • The journey: A fragment. By C. Churchill. London: printed for John Churchill. (Executor to the late C. Churchill,) and sold by W. Flexney, 1765. [4],8p. ; 4⁰. (ESTC T29224; OTA K033670.000)

Biographical note

Charles Churchill was born in Westminster in February 1732, the son of a clergyman. He was educated at Westminster School (1741-48) and was subsequently admitted to St. John's College, Cambridge, but married clandestinely before he took up residence. He was ordained in 1754, but after a series of minor appointments he abandoned his clerical career and turned to writing for a living. Churchill published all of his poetry between 1761 and his early death three years later. In 1761, he had considerable popular success with his poem The Rosciad and his Apology, satires on contemporary actors. In 1763, Churchill became acquainted with the radical, journalist and politician John Wilkes, and became editor of Wilkes' journal The North Briton to which he contributed several pieces. Churchill continued to publish mostly satirical poems, and in 1763 he published his collected works. In 1764 he travelled to France to meet Wilkes who had been expelled from parliament and outlawed for a satiric attack on John Montagu, 4th Earl of Sandwich and had fled to France. However, Churchill died of a fever at Boulonge soon afterwards. Churchill was the most admired and feared satirist of his generation and was imitated and admired by later poets, such as Chatterton, Cowper, and Lord Byron.

Bibliography

ODNB 5397; NCBEL 593-5; DMI 1406

Manuscripts

  • Smith, Margaret M. Index of English Literary Manuscripts. Vol. III, 1700-1800 . London: Mansell, 1986-1997. Pt. 1 Addison-Fielding. 223-226. Print. 4 volumes.

Editions

  • Grant, Douglas, ed. The Poetical Works of Charles Churchill. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1956. Print.
  • Rounce, Adam, ed. Charles Churchill: Selected Poetry. Nottingham: Trent Editions, 2003. Print.

Reference

  • Baines, Paul, Julian Ferraro, Pat Rogers, eds. The Wiley-Blackwell Encyclopedia of Eighteenth-Century Writers and Writing, 1660-1789. Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell, 2011. 63-64. Print.
  • Radcliffe, David H., ed. Rev. Charles Churchill (1731-1764). Spenser and the Tradition: ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830. Center for Applied Technologies in the Humanities, Virginia Tech, 2006. Web. 14 Oct. 2011. http://spenserians.cath.vt.edu/AuthorRecord.php?recordid=33135.

Criticism

  • Bertelsen, Lance. The Nonsense Club: Literature and Popular Culture, 1749-1764. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1986. Print.
  • Carretta, Vincent. The Snarling Muse: Verbal and Visual Political Satire from Pope to Churchill. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1983. Print.
  • Carnochan, W. B. Satire, Sublimity, and Sentiment: Theory and Practice in Post-Augustan Satire. PMLA 85 (1970): 260-7. Print.
  • Fisher, Alan S. The Stretching of Augustan Satire: Charles Churchill's 'Dedication to Warburton'. Journal of English and Germanic Philology 72 (1973): 360-77. Print.
  • Golden, Morris. Sterility and Eminence in the Poetry of Charles Churchill. Journal of English and Germanic Philology 66 (1967): 333-46. Print.
  • Hammond, Brean S. and Martin Malone. Pope and Churchill. Nicholson, Colin, ed., Alexander Pope: Essays for the Tercentenary. Aberdeen: Aberdeen UP, 1988. 22-38. Print.
  • Lockwood, Thomas. Post-Augustan Satire: Charles Churchill and Satirical Poetry 1750-1800. Seattle: University of Washington Press, 1979. Print.
  • Smith, Raymond J. Charles Churchill. Boston: Twayne Publishers, 1977. Print.