Richard Pococke

Richard Pococke

Infobox Writer
name = Richard Pococke

imagesize = 174px
caption = Richard Pococke in Oriental Costume, 1738
— by Jean-Étienne Liotard.
pseudonym =
birthname =
birthdate = birth date|1704|11|19|df=y
birthplace = Southampton, England.
deathdate = death date and age|1765|9|25|1704|11|19|df=y
deathplace = Charleville Castle, near Tullamore, Ireland.
occupation =
nationality = English
ethnicity = English
citizenship = United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland
period =
genre = Travel writer and diarist.
subject =
movement =
notableworks =
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partner =
children =
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Richard Pococke (19 November 1704 - 25 September 1765)"Notes and Queries", p. 129.] was an English prelate and anthropologist. He was Protestant Bishop of Ossory (1756-65) and Meath (1765), both dioceses of the Church of Ireland. However, he is best known for his travel writings and diaries.


Pococke was born in Southampton and educated at Corpus Christi College, Cambridge, receiving a Bachelor of Law degree. His father was Rev. Richard Pococke and his mother was Elizabeth Milles, [Milles (or Mills).] the daughter of Rev. Isaac Milles. His parents were married on 26 April 1698. Pococke's uncle, Thomas Milles, was a Professor of Greek. He was also distantly related to Edward Pococke, the English Orientalist and biblical scholar."Nichols", p. 157.]

His family connections meant he advanced rapidly in the church, becoming vicar-general of the diocese of Waterford and Lismore. He seems to have spent far more time travelling than attending to his duties as a churchman and spent 1733-36 undertaking a series of tours in Europe. From 1737-42 he visited the Near East, visiting Egypt, Jerusalem, Palestine and Greece. These travels were later published in his 'Description of the East' of 1743 and 1745, works which were praised by Edmund Gibbon.

During the years 1747-60, Pococke made a number of tours around various parts of Ireland. The longest of these tours occurred in 1752, when he travelled to just over half of Ireland's counties. He kept a record of this tour, but did not publish it. It ended up in the library of Trinity College, Dublin. Eventually, in 1891, an edited edition of Pococke's 1752 tour was published by George Thomas Stokes.

He was made bishop successively of Ossory, Elphin and of Meath in 1765. He spent many of his later years in travel throughout Britain and Ireland, publishing accounts of many of his journeys.

He died of apoplexy during a visitation at Charleville Castle, near Tullamore, County Offaly, [Then officially called King's County by the British Administration in Ireland.] Ireland, in 1765. On his death, many of his manuscripts were given to the British Library. [ODNB]

He was buried at Ardbraccan, County Meath, Ireland.


* "A Description of the East and Some other Countries", Vol.I: Observations on Egypt, W. Boyer, London, 1743.
* "A Description of the East and Some other Countries", Vol.II, W. Boyer, London, 1745 — divided into two parts::: Part 1, Observations on Palæstina or the Holy Land, Syria, Mesopotamia, Cyprus, and Candia.:: Part 2, Observations on the islands of the Archipelago, Asia Minor, Thrace, Greece, and some other parts of Europe.




* [,M1 Notes and Queries.] London, 1859.
*Nichols, John. " [ Literary Anecdotes of the Eighteenth Century. 6 vols.] " Vol. 2. London, 1812.
*St. John, James Augustus. [,M1 "The Lives of Celebrated Travellers." 3 vols.] Vol. 2. New York: Harper & Brothers, Publishers, 1859.
*Stokes, George Thomas (ed.). "Pococke's Tour in Ireland in 1752." Dublin: Hodges Figgis & Co., 1891.

External link

* " [ A General Collection of the Best and Most Interesting Voyages and Travels in All Parts of the World: Many of which are Now First Translated Into English] ", 1811. The full text of Popocke´s "Description of the East" start at p.406.

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