Lindley Murray - Encyclopedia




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LINDLEY MURRAY (1745-1826), Anglo-American grammarian, was born at Swatara, Pennsylvania, on the 22nd of April 1745. His father, a Quaker, was a leading New York merchant. At the age of fourteen he was placed in his father's office, but he ran away to a school in Burlington, New Jersey. He was brought back to New York, but his arguments against a commercial career prevailed, and he was allowed to study law. On being called to the bar he practised successfully in New York. In 1783 he was able to retire, and in 1784 he left America for England. Settling at Holgate, near York, he devoted the rest of his life to literary pursuits. His first book was Power of Religion on the Mind (1787). In 1795 he issued his Grammar of the English Language. This was followed, among other analogous works, by English Exercises, and the English Reader. These books passed through several editions, and the Grammar was the standard textbook for fifty years throughout England and America. Lindley Murray died on the 16th of January 1826.

See the Memoir of the Life and Writings of Lindley Murray (partly autobiographical), by Elizabeth Frank (1826); Life of Murray, by W. H. Egle (New York, 1885).

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