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by a friend of Mr. Walker's, in a pamphlet entitled “Mr. John Mackenzie's narrative a false libel,” ibid. same year.
WALKER (GEORGE), an able mathematician, was born about 1735 at Newcastle upon Tyne, and descended from a family of considerable antiquity. He received the rudi. ments of bis education at the grammar-school of Newcastle under the care of the rev. Dr. Moises, a clergyman of the church of England. At the age of ten he was removed from Newcastle to Durham, that he might be under the immediate direction of his uncle, a dissenting minister; and having decided in favour of the ministry among the dissenters, he was in 1749 sent to one of their academies at Ken. dal. In 1751 he studied mathematics at Edinburgh under the tuition of Dr. Matthew Stewart, and made a very great progress in that science. In 1752 he studied theology for two years at Glasgow. Returning home, he began to preach, and in 1757 was ordained minister of a congregation of disseriters at Durham. While here he was a frequent contributor to the “ Ladies' Diary,” in which, as we have recently had occasion to notice, most of the mathematicians of the last and present age, tried their skill; and here also he finished his valuable work on the sphere, which was not, however, published until 1775, when it appeared under the title of the “ Doctrine of the Sphere,” in 4to. In the end of 1761, or the beginning of 1762, he accepted of an invitation to become pastor at Great Yarmouth, where he carried on his mathematical pursuits, and having contributed some valuable papers to the Royal Society, he was in 1771 elected a fellow of that learned body. In the same year be accepted an invitation from a congregation at Birmingham, but was induced to recede from this engagement, and accept the office of mathematical tutor to the dissenting academy at Warrington, from which he again removed in 1774 to Nottingham, being chosen one of the ministers of a congregation in that town. Here he entered with great zeal into all the political disputes of the times, and always against the measures of government. After a residence of twenty-four years at Nottingham, Mr. Walker went to Manchester, where he undertook the office of the ological tutor in the dissenting academy of that town, to which the duties of mathematical and classical tutor being
1 Harris's edition of Ware.-Noblo's Continuation of Granger.Birch's Life of Tillotson. Ath. Ox, vol. II.--Sauollet's Hist. of England.
likewise added, he was soon obliged to resign the whole, in consideration of his age and infirmities. He continued after this to reside for nearly two years in the neighbourhood of Manchester, and was for some time president of the Literary and Philosophical Society of that town, a society which has published several volumes of valuable memoirs, some contributed by Mr. Walker. He then removed to the village of Wavertree near Liverpool, and, in the spring of 1807, died in London, at the age of seventythree. He was a man of very considerable talents, which appeared to most advantage in the departments of philosophy and the belles lettres, as may be seen in his “ Essays on Various Subjects,” published in 1809, 2 vols. 8vo, to which a copious life is prefixed. Some volumes of his “ Sermons" have also been published, which probably were suited to the congregations over which he presided, but contain but a very small portion of doctrinal matter, and that chiefly of what is called the liberal and rational kind.'
WALKER (John), author of some valuable and popular works on the English language, was born March 18, 1732, at Colney-hatch, a hamlet in the parish of Friero - Barnet. Of his parents little is known, and it does oot appear that he was enabled to receive a liberal education. He was intended for some trade, but had a reluctance to every effort of that kind, and went when young upon the stage, on which he had some, although no brilliant success. He continued, however, to accept various theatrical engagements until 1768, when he finally quitted the stage; and in January 1767 joined Mr. James Usher (see Usher) in forming a school at Kensington Gravel-pits, but their partnership lasted only about two years, after which Mr. Walker began to give those instructions on elocution, which formed the principal employment of his future life, and procured him a very just fame. About the same time he instituted his inquiries into the structure of language, and the rationale of grammar, and particularly directed his attention to the orthoepy of the English language, in which he endeavoured, by tracing it to its principles, to form a consistent and analogical theory. The unwearied attention he bestowed upon the subject, enabled him to accomplish this end, and to demonstrate the errors, inconsistencies, and affectations which had crept into pronunciation, and
I Life as above.
which had been propagated, rather than corrected, by many of those who had hitherto professed to teach it. He therefore resolved to make the public participators in the result of his researches; and in 1772 he published, by way of prospectus, a quarto pamphlet entitled, “A general idea of a Pronouncing Dictionary of the English language,” a work which, though an imperfect attempt had been made by Dr. Kenrick, in his “Rhetorical Dictionary, might yet be considered as a desideratum. But as he found it inipossible to proceed on this without farther encouragement than was then offered, he compiled an English Dictionary on a smaller scale, and on a plan tot hitherto attempted, in which the words should be arranged according to their terminations; a mode of arrangement which, though not calculated for general use, possesses many peculiar advantages. This he published in 1775, under the title of “A Dictionary of the English language, answering at once the purposes of rhyming, spelling, and pronouncing;" it has since been republished under the shorter title of “A Rhyming Dictionary."
In the mean time he visited Scotland and Ireland, for the purpose of reading lectures on elocution, and every where met with great respect and success, particularly at Oxford, where the heads of houses invited him to give private lectures in that university.' In 1781 he produced his “ Elements of Elocution," a work which has the merit of being the first practical treatise that had yet been composed on the art of speaking, in which its principles are at once unfolded, simplified, and methodized into a system. In 1783 he published a pampblet, called “Hints for improvement in the Art of Reading," consisting of a number of observatious that had suggested themselves to him in the course of teaching, tlırown together, as the title imports, rather in a detached than a systematical form. The most useful parts of this pamphlet be afterwards introduced into his * Rhetorical Grammar," which he published in 1785, and which was followed by bis “ English Classics abridged;" " The melody of speaking delipeated," and his “ Acade. mic Speaker," all soon introduced into our principal seminaries, and too well known to require any farther notice. here. In 1791 he published his “ Critical Pronouncing Dictionary and Expositor of the English language,” the reputation of which was soon fixed, as the statute book of English orthoepy. A work of great utility afterwards came
from his pen, under the title of a “Key to the classical
a pronunciation of Greek, Latin, and Scripture proper names.” To this is prefixed his portrait, a very striking likeness. Hiş last publications were, the “ Teacher's assistant,” and the “ Outlines of English grammar," wbich was published in May 1805. After this, as age advanced, he became very debilitated; and in July 1807 was attacked by a severe illness, which proved fatal Aug. 1, in the seventy-sixth year of his
age. Mr. Walker's private character was amiable and unexceptionable, and his philological knowledge had introduced him to intimacy with many of the most eminent literary characters of his time. He had been educated a presbyterian, but by some means argued himself into the Roman catholic persuasion, and was a strict observer of all its formal rites. In the particular department to which he devoted his life, he was perhaps more profoundly skilled than any man of his time, avd bis acquisitions in general literawre were very considerable. Throughout his whole cou)duct in life, be evinced the most disinterested integrity. In conversation, with a tolerable portion of anecdote, the gleanings of a long acquaintance with literary men, bis bent was rather to enter upon the discussion of important topics; and as he grew older, had outlived bis early contemporaries, and knew that he was talking to the young, his manner became a little dictatorial, but inixed with such a kindly propensity to impart information, that it was impossible not to respect him.'
WALKER (OBADIAH), a learned divine, first of the church of England, and then of the Romish church, was born at Worsbrough, near Barnsley, in the west riding of Yorkshire, not in 1615, as is said in the Biograpbia Britannica, but probably in the following year, as he was baptised Sept. 17, 1616. He was educated at University college, Oxford, under the tuition of Abraham Woodhead, who proved afterwards a great champion for the popish cause. Having taken bis degree of bachelor of arts in July 1635, he was in August following chosen fellow of his college. In April 1638, he proceeded master of arts, entered into holy orders, and became a noted tutor. During the rebellion, he was one of the standing extraordinary delegates of the university for public business, and one of
Athenæum, vol. III.-Cent. Mag. vol. LXXVII.
the preachers before the court of Charles I. at Oxford. According to Smith, be preached once, probably in his turn, and was requested by his majesty to preach a second time, on which account the convocation granted bim bis grace for bachelor of divinity, whenever he should think fit to take that degree; but in May 1648 he was ejected from his fellowship by the parliamentary visitors, and then went to the continent, residing principally at Rome, where he is said to have “improved himself in all kinds of polite literature.” He seems also to have confirmed the secret liking he had to the Roman catholic religion, although as yet he thought proper to conceal the circumstances. After the restoration be was reinstated in his fellowship, but went again to Rome as travelling tutor to some young gentlemen. After his return he might have been elected master of his college, on the death of his namesake, but no reJation, Dr. Thomas Walker, in 1665. This he declined for the present, but accepted it in 1676, after the death of Dr. Richard Clayton, who had succeeded Dr. Thomas Walker.
While these repeated offers of the mastership show in what estimation he was held by the college on account of his learning, it seems rather singular that the change in his principles should be either not known, or disregarded, for at this time, we are told, he was assistant to bis tutor Abraham Woodhead, who kept a popish seminary at Hoxton. It was not long, however, before his conduct attracted the notice of parliament, partly on account of his assisting in this popish seminary at Hoxton, and partly on account of the “Life of Alfred," then published, by which he evidently appeared to be popishly affected. We do not find that any proceedings followed this notice of his conduct, and when king James II. came to the throne, and measures were openly taking for the establishment of popery, Walker thought it no longer necessary to conceal his sentiments, but went to London in July 1685, in order to be consulted, and employed in such changes as it was hoped might be brought about in the university. On bis return to college, he absented himself from the chapel, and in the beginning of March following, openly declared himself a Roman catholic, which exposed him to every kind of insuli, popery being at this time, as Magdalen college soon shewed, the utter aversion of the university. Disregarding this, he had mass privately in his lodgiugs, until he could