Case Papers concerning Tinkler Ducket

Scope and Content

Papers in a case concerning Tinkler Ducket, fellow of Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge, tried by the Court held in the Consistory of the University of Cambridge before the Right Worshipfull Roger Long, D.D. Deputy Vice-Chancellor on an accusation of atheism, in 1738. These papers are bound in with a collection of 18th-century pamphlets of Trials (accession no. R100160.1).

Administrative / Biographical History

Tinkler Ducket, or Duckett (b. 1711), son of Henry Farmer of Spixworth, Norfolk, was schooled privately at Norwich. He entered Caius College, Cambridge on 9 October 1727, aged 16. He matriculated in 1728, receiving his BA degree in 1731-32 and his MA in 1735, and becoming a fellow of Caius in 1736-39. He was ordained Deacon (London) on 23 September 1733 and was Priest at Little Horkesley, Essex between 1734 and 1735. He was expelled from the university in 1738, accused of atheism and immorality. In 1773 he was reported to be living in Venice and Constantinople.

Roger Long (1680-1770), astronomer, was born on 2 February 1680 at Croxton Park, Norfolk. He was educated at Norwich grammar school and admitted as a sizar at Pembroke College, Cambridge, in 1697. He received his BA degree in 1701, was elected a fellow in 1703, and graduated MA in 1704. He was ordained as a deacon at Lincoln on 25 September 1716 and as a priest at Norwich on 23 December 1716. He was rector of Overton Waterville, Huntingdonshire, from 1716 to 1751, then of Bradwell-on-Sea, Essex. He had become a Doctor of Divinity in 1728, and was appointed vicar of Cherry Hinton, Cambridgeshire, in 1729. In the same year he was elected a fellow of the Royal Society.

Long was Master of Pembroke College for thirty-seven years, from 1733 until 1770, and served as Vice-Chancellor of the University of Cambridge in 1733-4. He was elected the first Lowndean professor of astronomy and geometry in 1750. Long's Astronomy, in Five Books took some time to be completed: the first volume was published in 1742, part of the second in 1764, the remainder, posthumously, in 1784, having been prepared for publication by Richard Dunthorne (who served as butler and astronomer at Pembroke under Long) and the astronomer and mathematician William Wales. Long died on 16 December 1770.

Source: Liba Taub, 'Long, Roger (1680-1770)', Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004. By permission of Oxford University Press -

Conditions Governing Access

The manuscript is available for consultation by any accredited reader.

Acquisition Information

Purchased by the John Rylands Library from the Clogher Diocesan Library in September 1953.


Description compiled by Jo Humpleby, project archivist, with reference to:

  • Oxford Dictionary of National Biography article on Roger Long;
  • John Venn and J.A. Venn, Alumni Cantabrigienses, part 1 (to 1751), volume 2 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1922), p. 71 .

Other Finding Aids

Catalogued in the Hand-List of the Collection of English Manuscripts in the John Rylands Library, 1952-1970 (English MS 1969).

Related Material

The JRUL also holds the Clogher Diocesan Library, see