George WARING (1807–1878)
The actual grave must be in the St Giles’s section, but this broken grave marker is deposited in the wrong place

George Waring


BORN NOV: 4, 1807
DIED APRIL 8, 1878.


This base and cross have been deposited
in the wrong section of the cemetery.
It is near Row 9, Grave D71
(Dr Winkfield’s grave)
in the St Mary Magdalen section


George Waring was born at Michaelchurch, Herefordshire on 4 November 1807 and baptised at St Nicholas's Church there on 7 March. He was the second son of Henry Waring, a naval captain of Lyme Regis, Dorset and Margaret Franks of Misterton Hall, Leicestershire, who were married at St George’s, Hanover Square on 4 April 1805.

George attended Blundell’s School at Tiverton, and was matriculated as a Scholar at the University of Oxford by Wadham College on 20 January 1824 at the age of 17, but does not appear to have completed his degree at this point. In 1834 when he was aged 27 he entered Trinity College, Cambridge as a sizar, and gained his B.A. in 1837 and his M.A. in 1841.

On 27 December 1842 at the parish church in Leeds, George Waring married his first wife Eliza Hebden or Hebdin, daughter of the late Captain Hebden of Leeds.

By the time of the 1851 census his first wife was dead and George, a widower of 44, was described simply as a bondholder. He spent census night of 1851 as a visitor at the home at Barningham in Suffolk of Charlotte Mary Fison (26), the lady who was to become his second wife. She was then acting as housekeeper to her widower father Thomas Fison (60), who was a farmer of 250 acres employing 20 labourers as well as a miller employing nine men. Also at home were six of Charlotte’s 19 siblings: William (31), who was a stuff manufacturer; James (38), who was a druggist; Martha (25), Jennet (20), Mary (16) and Anne (12), plus three house servants. Her brother Lorimer Fison (born 1832) became an Australian anthropologist.

Later in 1851 at Barningham, George Waring married his second wife Charlotte Mary Fison, the daughter of Thomas Fison and Charlotte Reynolds, who was born at Barningham in Suffolk on 4 February 1825.

On 26 May 1854 when he was aged about 47, George Waring re-entered the University of Oxford at Magdalen Hall (now Hertford College), and was incorporated on 3 June 1858. At the time of the 1861 census he was aged 54 and described as an M.A. and bondholder, and was living at Park Terrace in St Giles’s parish (now part of Park Town) with his wife Charlotte (45) and their servant.

In 1865 the following book written by George Waring and Joseph Bosworth, the Rawlinsonian Professor of Anglo-Saxon at Oxford, was published:

Joseph Bosworth and George Waring, The Gothic and Anglo-Saxon Gospels in Parallel Columns with the Versions of Wycliffe and Tyndale; Arranged, with preface and notes, by the Rev, Joseph Bosworth, D.D., F.R.S., F.S.A., Professor of Anglo-Saxon, Oxford; Assisted by George Waring, Esq. M.A. of Trinity College, Cambridge, and Magdalen Hall, Oxford (London: J. R. Smith, 1865).
(A second edition was published by Reeves & Turner of London in 1874, and a third edition by them in 1888. In 1907 it was reprinted in a fourth edition by Gibbings of London as The Gospels: Gothic, Anglo-Saxon, Wycliffe and Tyndale versions arranged in parallel columns.)

George Waring (64) and his wife Charlotte Waring (45) were still living at Park Town in 1871, when Charlotte’s sister Miss Lois A. Fison (40) was also living with them.

George Waring died in 1878:

† George Waring died at 2 Park Terrace at the age of 71 on 8 April 1878 and was buried at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery. (The burial should have been recorded in the parish register of St Giles’s Church, but is missing.)

His death notice in Jackson’s Oxford Journal on 13 April 1878 read: “April 8, at Park Terrace, Oxford, in his 72nd year, George Waring M.A., second son of the late Captain Waring, R.N., of Lyme Regis, Dorsetshire.”

His obituary in Jackson’s Oxford Journal of 20 April 1878 (the first section of which had also appeared earlier in The Times) was as follows:

HERTFORD COLLEGE.— Mr. George Waring, M.A., of Hertford College, died on Monday week after a long illness. Mr. Waring’s vast learning, in which he had few equals, was acquired in spite of circumstances which would have debarred most men from the most superficial acquaintance with books. His eyesight was such that the most limited surface was only perceived by him bit by bit. He had never, he would say, seen more than an inch of space in his life. Frequenters of the Union will recall the reader whose book was held to eyes armed with the most formidable glasses, and moved from side to side, so that each word might be presented in succession. Mr. Waring’s learning has, unfortunately, died with him. Owing probably to the defect of eyesight, he has left no large work to be a monument of his erudition, breadth of understanding, and keenness of wit. He was, however, well known as a contributor from time to time to various learned periodicals. But the complete appreciation of him was reserved for the few who had the privilege of his acquaintance, and the fewer still who were his intimates. Mr. Waring, originally a Cambridge man, when already of mature age entered at Oxford, and presented himself with younger candidates for the examination in Lit. Hum. in the Easter Term of 1858, when he was placed by the examiners in the first class. He has ever since that time resided at Oxford, and led the retired life of a student whose pleasure lay in the pursuit of knowledge.

Mr. H. Krebs, Librarian of the Taylor Institution, writing to the Times, says:- “Sir, — Will you allow me to add one word to your report from Oxford with regard to the high degree of knowledge and mental culture accumulated and buried with the late Mr. Waring? I think it is but right to state that his great literary activity has not altogether passed away with him, but has left a work of considerable value for the origin and history of the English language to which his name, at least, will remain attached. I only refer here to that careful and excellent edition of the “Gothic and Anglo-Saxon Gospels in parallel columns with the versions of Wycliffe and Tyndale arranged with notes,” which work was executed in 1865 by the late Professor Joseph Bosworth and Mr. G. Waring.”

His personal estate came to under £200, and his wife Charlotte Mary Waring was his executor. On 8 June 1878 the following notice appeared in Jackson’s Oxford Journal, advertising an auction to be held by Mr F. R. Pike at the Clarendon Hotel on the 21st:

To Students, Booksellers, Collectors, and others.
The valuable COLLECTION of the late G. Waring, Esq., of Oxford and Cambridge, M.A., comprising about 2000 Volumes of rare Classical, Theological, Historical, Scientific, German, French, Hebrew, Arabic, Persian, Chaldaic, Sanscrit, Old Anglo-Saxon, and other valuable Works, Ray’s complete Collection of Proverbs, about 100 Volumes of the Tauchnitz Edition of the Classics, 300 Volumes of English Literature, and other miscellaneous Books, &c.

George Waring’s widow Charlotte

At the time of the 1881 census Charlotte Waring (56) was a visitor at the Convent of St Mary at 44 Blossom Street, Micklegate, York; and in 1891 she was boarding with the Sisters of the Order of St Joseph in Malmesbury.

She died on 27 April 1899 at Oaklands, Bury Road, Stowmarket. Her effects came to £2,293 17s. 3d.



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