Wilberforce, Henry William

views updated


Journalist and historian; b. Clapham, England, Sept. 22, 1807; d. Stroud, Gloucestershire, April 23, 1873. Henry, the youngest son of the famous William wilber-force, attended Oriel College, Oxford, where he became president of the Oxford Union and a favorite pupil of J.H. newman, under whose influence he forsook the idea of a career in the law and took Holy Orders. He had livings in Kent, where he finally succeeded his elder brother, Bp. Robert Isaac Wilberforce, as the rector of East Farleigh, near Maidstone. Henry and his wife were received into the Church at Brussels, the same year as Henry manning. Mrs. Wilberforce was a daughter of Rev. J. Sargent, another of whose daughters married Bishop Wilberforce, Henry's brother, and a third who, though she died young, had been Dr. Manning's wife when he was an Anglican archdeacon. After his conversion, Wilberforce turned to Catholic journalism, becoming proprietor of a weekly, the Catholic Standard, which he renamed the Weekly Register. He became also secretary of the Catholic Defence Association, which had been founded in Dublin, and he published a number of works, e.g., Reasons for Submitting to the Catholic Church, and Proselytism in Ireland, the correspondence between himself and an Irish Church minister. He later wrote Essay on Some Events Preparatory to the English Reformation for a volume edited by Manning, and The Church and the Empires, a textbook of Church history published the year after his death, with a memoir by Newman. He was buried in the new Dominican foundation of Woodchester in Gloucestershire near his home.

[d. woodruff]

About this article

Wilberforce, Henry William

Updated About encyclopedia.com content Print Article