Professor Terence Copley+as new biography of Thomas Arld combines a study of his life with an examination of Arld+as influence as an educator, a theologian and a churchman. Arld was only a Victorian for five years (he died in 1842) but he has been remembered as a major figure of the age, t least because Lytton Strachey chose him as one of his objects of ridicule and pillory in Eminent Victorians (1918).He stands as a monument to the development of the 19th-century public school system whose influence spread far beyond Britain+as upper-class. Arld was the celebrated headmaster of Rugby School and Hughes+as Tom Brown+as Schooldays (1857) fixed him in the public imagination.Copley assesses both the uncritical Victorian versions of Arld+as life--including Hughes and Dean Stanley+as original Life--and the sneering assessment of his influence, perpetuated by Strachey, to provide the first rounded portrait of Arld. In conclusion Copley explores the possible legacy that this great but neglected figure has left to our age.
Terence Copley is the Professor of Education in the University of Exeter