1830Thomas Edward Brown1897

May 5, 1830, Douglas, Isle of Man.

October 29, 1897, Clifton College Bristol, while addressing students there on the theme of The Ideal Clifton.

Sixth of ten children, Brown was the son of Robert Brown, incumbent of St. Matthew’s Church. His mother was a Thomson, of Scottish extraction, though born on the Isle of Man. When he was two years old, his father became Vicar of Kirk Braddan, near Douglas. At age 15, he was enrolled at King William’s College. In October 1849, he was admitted as a servitor at Christ Church, Oxford; he took a Double First in 1853. In April 1854, he was elected a Fellow of Oriel. He was ordained a deacon, but never took kindly to the life of an Oxford Fellow, and after a few terms of private tuition he returned to the Isle of Man as Vice-Principal of King William’s College. In 1857, he married his cousin, Miss Stowell, in the little church of Kirk Maughold. In 1863, he left King William’s College to become head master of the Crypt School at Gloucester. In 1864, Dr. Percival (later Bishop of Hereford) recruited him for the staff at Clifton College, Bristol, where Percival had just become head master. In 1892, his health failing, Brown retired from Clifton and returned to the Isle of Man, though he occasionally visited Clifton.

Despite his long academic career, history probably remembers Brown best for his poetry.

  1. Three Kings from Out the Orient