Francis Grose  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

Francis Grose (1730/1731-12 June 1791), born at Greenford in Middlesex, antiquary, draughtsman, and lexicographer, of Swiss extraction (his father Francis Grose was a wealthy Swiss jeweller), was Richmond Herald from 1755 to 1763. He published Antiquities of England and Wales (1773–87), which was well received, and thereafter, in 1789, set out on an antiquarian tour through Scotland, the fruit of which was Antiquity of Scotland (1789–91). He afterwards undertook a similar expedition to Ireland, but died suddenly in Dublin after an apoplectical stroke. In addition to the works above mentioned, he wrote A Classical Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue (1785), A Provincial Glossary (1787) and Treatise on Ancient Armour and Weapons. He was an accomplished draughtsman, and illustrated his own works.

Additionally, it is noted that he is the author of Advice to the Officers of the British Army: With the addition of some Hints to the Drummer and Private Solidier, which was published in 1783 as a mocking look backwards on the conduct of the war against the American Colonies. Every instance of corruption, disregard and vice are suggested for every rank of the army. Tongue in cheek, but obviously rooted in truth, it is a great companion to Vulgar Tongue.

Two parodies by Thomas Bridges, A Travestie of Homer and The Battle of the Genii, were once attributed to Francis Grose.

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