Townsend, Joseph

Submitted by edpope on Mon, 11/03/2013 - 17:19

Townsend at Losh's (Bath) 13.3.1798 (in Godwin's 1796 list)
Joseph Townsend DNB 1739-1816. Friend of Jeremy Bentham. Joseph Farington in his diary (p1497 & p 1499) in 1801 met Rev Mr Townsend author of A Tour In Spain at Mr Warner's Bath (see Warner, Richard). (Other Townsends in DNB, George T independent minister Ramsgate father of George T DNB 1788-1857, John T DNB 1757-1826 independent minister at Bermondsey from 1784, Henry Hare T (1765? - 1827) son of James T DNB 1737-1787 and father of Chauncy Hare T DNB 1798-1868 but Joseph T seems much more likely)

Work notes
Thomas Townsend jeweller High St Bath 1784

Dear Ed

13 Mar 1798  Godwin breakfast at Losh's, w. Townsend

I can confirm that Townsend is almost certainly Rev. Joseph Townsend of Bath and Pewsey, Wilts.  I have seen Losh's Diary for that date, and while it only speaks of a Mr. Townshend, the discussion it describes was on a topic of interest to Townsend (Spanish politics and religion), and indeed highlights one of Townsend's favourite ideas, that the Spanish bishops were virtuous even if the Spanish clergy were not.  Townsend had visited Spain in 1786 and 1787 and had published a three-volume "A Journey through Spain in 1786 and 1787" in 1791.  Townsend (brother of James Townsend, MP and Mayor Of London in the early 1770s) was a moderate radical.


Richard VandeWetering DPhil

University of Western Ontario