Wolverhampton BTW

Thomas Faulkner

Faulkner, Thomas, 1777—1855

by Benjamin Colbert

Thomas Faulkner was born in Fulham, son of Mr Faulkner and Elizabeth Charlotte Faulkner (c.1743-1802). He spent most of his life in west London where he set up as a bookseller, stationer, and book-binder at his shop on 1 Paradise Row, Chelsea.

His personal interests were in the study of languages, antiquities, and topography. In 1797, he began contributing essays and reviews to the Gentleman’s Magazine, and continued doing so throughout his life. He also contributed to the first series of Henry Colburn’s New Monthly Magazine. His first book was Historical Account of Gibraltar (1804) and his most popular subsequent works concerned the topography of the western parts of Middlesex, including An Historical and Topographical Description of Chelsea and Its Environs (1810) and An Historical and Topographical Account of Fulham (1813). He also translated and edited many other works.

His obituary in the Gentleman’s Magazine attributes to him the editorship of Narrative of a Ten Years’ Residence at Tripoli ‘from Miss Dornbush’s papers’, possibly the sister-in-law to Richard Tully that he mentions in his preface to the second edition (correcting an error in the first edition in which he said the author was the ‘sister’ of Tully). This obituary notice carries great weight given the long relationship Faulkner had formed with the editors of that periodical. It is likely that Henry Colburn, too, recognized in Faulkner the right person to edit the Narrative, given Faulkner’s early association with the New Monthly Magazine whose first number was in 1814.

Thomas Faulkner continued his research and writing into the 1840s, his last book being The History and Antiquities of Brentwood, Chiswick, and Ealing (1845). He died on 20 May 1855 at the age of 79.


‘Mr. Thomas Faulkner’ [Obituary]. Gentleman’s Mag. 44 (Aug. 1855): 215-16. Print.


Title Published
Narrative of a Ten Years' Residence at Tripoli in Africa 1816 Editor

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