Unaddressed fragment of a letter written by Beilby Porteus, Bishop of London, which possibly refers to the parliamentary debates on the slave trade in 1788. An extract reads 'There will undoubtedly in so very complex a business in which so many interests are involved, be a great diversity of opinion on this [illegible] other Points. But they are now submitted to the wisdom of Parliament, and most of them will I hope this Evening be settled to your entire satisfaction'.
Porteus, Bishop Beilby
- This material is held at
- ReferenceGB 96 MS 820
- Dates of Creationn.d.
- Name of Creator
- Language of MaterialEnglish
- Physical DescriptionSingle sheet
Scope and Content
Administrative / Biographical History
Beilby Porteus was born in York in 1731; his parents were Virginian colonists who had moved back to England. He graduated from Cambridge University in 1752 and tutored until 1757 when he was ordained. In 1759 he won the Seatonian Prize for his poem 'Death: a poetical essay'. By 1762 Porteus had been appointed domestic chaplain to Thomas Secker, Archbishop of Canterbury; in 1769 he became Chaplain to King George III, and was created Bishop of Chester in 1776. When Porteus was appointed Bishop of London in 1787, the British overseas colonies came under his jurisdiction. He had already shown a keen interest in the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts, and now organised missions to India and the West Indies. He also took part in House of Lords debates which opposed the slave trade, and was foremost amongst those trying to pass Sir William Dolben's Slave Carrying Bill in 1788. Porteus also published volumes of sermons and tracts on political and spiritual topics. He died in 1808.
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Found with MS804.
Other Finding Aids
Collection level description.
Physical Characteristics and/or Technical Requirements
4" x 2½"
Compiled by Sarah Aitchison as part of the RSLP AIM25 Project.
Further material relating to Porteus may be found at Lambeth Palace Library, London; Bedfordshire and Luton Archives and Record Service; the National Library of Scotland; and the Huntington Library, California.
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