Burial of E.N.P. Moor

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St Mary’s Church, Church Lane, Portbury, BS20 7TR

E.N.P. Moor was buried at St Mary’s Church, Portbury, in 1895. T.E. Brown, former college master, and a friend to Symonds and Moor alike, marked the event from his home on the Isle of Man. His reflections on Moor’s funeral recalled Symonds’ death only two years earlier.

“The direct outcome of all your Clifton trouble is to me something of a new life, and gives me great comfort. It is the beginning of a new current streaming Clifton-wards.

To peep in upon you now would be a subtle delight: I see it all through veils of melting vapour, that melt and melt and make me inexpressibly happy. Very likely it is best to leave it so, not to take any action, but simply submit to an influence that is wholly sweet. It may even be a euthanasia: be it so: upon this I would not be unwilling to die. Yet the bog-bean blossoms, and the cuckoo calls. Isn’t it odd that I get an instantaneous picture, an impressionist picture of the funeral? Corresponding about business I see just a sentence. The funeral had passed by the house ; it was on its way to Portbury.1 That helped me a good deal-, on its way to Portbury.’ Exactly so, and where else? I am glad to think he lies at Portbury.

Symonds’ life is with me. Brown has done his work well: the book is even fascinating. But I have one serious complaint, and I have laid it before the author. Symonds I always thought of as eminently a literary man. What I had looked forward to in the Biography was the picture of literary joys or solaces. Well, Brown shows him abundantly as working away in feverish haste to get a lot done, not as exulting in the literary energies and appreciations (don’t they call them?); but the man, the essential man, according to Brown, is the agonizing searcher after the absolute. I think I just recognize him in that phrase, one of his ‘many moods,’ but to make that the key-note of Symonds is surely a total mistake.”
T.E.Brown to S.T. Irwin, March 17, 1895.2

“Moor’s death has drawn me to the old place with a strange power. I had been getting very indifferent to it; but this is a summons which calls to me trumpet-tongued, and I obey it. Love flows again, and I long to be there. He lies at Portbury, and the rain beats down upon his grave this gloomy evening, and I would fain stand there bareheaded.”
T.E. Brown to A.M. Worthington ,April 20, 1895.3

Moor’s funeral service, reported in detail in the Western Daily Press, paid tribute to his beauty as a young man at Oxford.

Western Daily Press, 11 Mar 1895

On Saturday afternoon the funeral of the late Mr E.N.P. Moor, who had for more than 20 years been an assistant master and since 1892 a house master, at Clifton College, took place at Portbury. The deceased gentleman, whose interests were devoted almost entirely to the welfare of the College, where he was greatly beloved and respected, was attacked with influenza soon after the commencement of the present term, and pneumonia developing, his condition hadbeen critical for some weeks, death taking place on March 6th.
An impressive service was held in the College Chapel at 2.30 on Saturday afternoon. The coffin was borne on a hand-bier from the residence of the deceased, No.34 College Road, tot he College Chapel by the following, some being masters of thecollega nd others members of the Sixth Forms:- Messrs W.W. Vaughan, C.C.Q. Meister, W. Fairbanks, R.V. Vernon, H.B.Jupp, C.C. Morley, W.O. Moberly, W.R.L. Alt, C.W.A Tait, W.N. Pilkington, D. Rintoul, A.F. Wedgwood, G.H. Wollaston, and F. Borwick. Immediately following the bier were the chief mourners – Mrs E. N. Moor, Mr J. Powell, the Rev. Maurice Moor, Miss Moor, Miss Lucy Moor, Mrs Maitland, Mr Peter Moor, Mr Maitland Moor, Mr and Mrs J.E. Pearson, Mr Edgar Powell, and Mr George Powell. On arriving at the entrance to the chapel the coffin was met by the officiating clergy, the Rev. M.G.Glazebrook (head-master), Rev. B. Hartnell, and the Rev. H.J.Wiseman (senior master) who conducted this the first portion of the burial services. There were also present the following college masters:- Messrs H.P. Luckman, H.S. Hall, E. Pallissier, S.T. Irwin, W.W. Asquith, E.H.C Smith, W.H. Laxton, A.T. Martin, W.A. Shexstone, T.D. Davies, H.R. Harker, C.H. Spence, H.C. Tillard, G.H. Clark, E.J. Barff, C. H. Russel, A.W. Targett, H.G. Barlow, M.A. North, O. Stepmann, R.J. Morich, H. M. Buller, J. L. Burbey, H.C. Playne, H. Clissold, J.H. Fowler, Revs. A.E Hillard, J. Polack, and P.W.H Kettlewell. Among the Old Cliftonians attending were the Rev. A. S. Rawleigh, Messrs R. Moore, E.H. Blackwood-Price, J.R. Huggins, J. Cornes, H.E. Cookson, E. Cartwright, A.W.Paul, W.S.Paul, A.C.S. Paul, A.W. Pritchard, J. Paul Bush, A.D. Greene, G.C. Bradford, G.S. Sinnott, F.E. King (head master of the Manchester Grammar School). Mr T.W.Dunn (former master, now head-master of Bath College), the Revs. P.A. Phelps and C.P. Wilson (former masters), Dr. Fyffe, and Mr H.P. Lawes, Col. H.O.B. Savile and Mr H.C. Barstow, of the College Council, were present, and Professor Rowley and Mr H. Napier Abbott (member of the council) joined the company later. The collegians and employees also accompanied seats in the chapel. The wreaths, which were very numerous and beautiful, were arranged as many as possible on the coffin, and the remainder on the chancel steps. These included offerings from Misses Lucy, Susan, and Sophia Moor, servants of the household, matrons and boys of the house, Miss Moor (aunt), Mr Moberly’s house, Mr Wiseman’s house, Mr Tait’s house, Mr Fairbanks’ house, North Town, Mr Spence and South Town, the Headmaster and Mrs Glazebrook, Mr Moor’s form, Mr and Mrs Martin, Mr J.L. Burbey and house, Mr Leonard Ashby, Mrs and Miss Colin Mackenzie, Mr and Mrs Clement Ord. wreath of violets from Cambridge, Mr W.W. Asquith, Rev. and Mrs A. Ste John Gray. Geo. and Tom Monteath, few Oxford men late of his VI. form, Cambridge Moorites and Brownites, Col. and Mrs Alt. Mrs C.C.Bradford, Mr and Mrs Shenstone, Miss Janet Fox, Colonel and Mrs Royd and Mr Ralph Fenton, Herbert and Rachel Fox, Mr and Mr Rathbone, Mr and Mrs James Pearson, Dr. Fyffe and four sons, Mr H.B. Jupp, Mr and Mrs Bernhard Heymann, Mr F. Berwick, Mr and Mrs Laxton, Mr C.W.A. Tait, Mr and Mrs Moberly, Mr and Mrs H.S. Hall, Rev H.J. Wiseman and Mrs Wiseman, Miss Irwin, George, Constance, and Katherine Wollaston, S. Sayer and Son, United Houes, Mr and Mrs Napier Miles, Mr W.W. Vaughan, Mr. E.R. Shearman and O.C.s at Sandhurst, Mr and Mr Block, Sixth Form, School House, C.H. St. Leger Russell and Mr Russel, pupils from Oxford, Mr and Mrs R.J.Morich, Gilbert, Fanny, and Charlotte Maitland, Messrs Babbage and Terret, and Clifton tradesmen. The lesson, read by the Head-Master, was taken from the 1st Cor. xv. 20-58, after which the hymn “When All Thy Mercies, O My God’ was sung, and the Dead March in “Saul” was played by Mr W. F. Trimnell (organist) as the procession was leaving the chapel. The coffin, which was then placed on an open funeral car, being completely hidden by the flora offerings, consisted of an elm shell and English oak casing, with brass fittings and a tapering brass plate bearing the inscription “Edward Norman Peter Moor, born January 10th 1851. Died March 6th, 1895.” The hearse proceeded by road to Portbury, followed only by the immediate relatives and mourners in carriages, amongst those sending carriages being Mrs Geo. Wills and Dr. Fyffe. The college master and collegians, some 200 in number, were conveyed by special train to leave Clifton Down at 3.30 to reach Portbury at 4.12. Mr A.H. Hogg, assistant superintendent, represented the Great Western Railway company, and accompanied the train to and fro. Excellent time was kept by the funeral procession by the road and the train, both arriving at the church at 4.30, the time appointed. The collegians formed a double line from the wicket gate to the church door, through which the coffin was borne ,followed by the mourners, the college masters each carrying a floral tribute. They ere met at the church gate by the Rev. H.J. Wiseman, the Rev H.C.Watson, and the Rev. E.C. Tyler (Vicar of Portbury), who took part in the remaining portion of the burial service, the hymn “O God our help in ages past,” being sung at the graveside. The interment took place in a new grave at the south west side of the churchyard. Mr C.P. Billing of King’s Road and White Ladies Road was the undertaker.

At Yesterday afternoon’s service at the College, the Rev. the Head-master preached an eloquent and impressive sermon from the text, “Thanks be to God which gives us  the victory though our Lord Jesus Christ.” In the course of his reference to Mr Moor, MR GLAZEBROOK said: “With one exception he was the first Cliftonian I even met: It was in the autumn of the year 1872, when I was a freshman at Balliol, and he, near the end of his third year, was one of the acknowledged leaders and ornaments of that great college. I well remember the October morning when I  first went to breakfast with him in the large room, whose dark panelled walls threw his beautiful face into fine relief. You, who have known him only as a man in middle age, though you must have felt the charm of his looks and features, can hardly conceive how brilliant he was in his boyish beauty. But we who knew him then have never ceased as it were to look through the sober form of his mature age, and see the alight, graceful figure, the pale keen face, the long rich, black hair, which had often to be tossed back from the bright eyes by an unconscious movement of the head. I think the reason of it is that, whereas beauty is too often allied with a character that is anything but beautiful – with a nature mean, or selfish, or coarse – we felt that the face of Norman Moor, when most beautiful, was the truest image of his soul. Perhaps what struck us most in him even in those days was the pure simplicity which marked him to the last. While it made ostentation and self-seeking impossibel, it was allied with that delicate, almost feminine, sympathy which has cast its spell upon us all. Full of life, and with a keen sene sof the joy of living, he was kept far removed from selfishness or indulgence by a purity almost austere, and a loyalty deep and chivalrous. When you think that with these graces of person and character were united a keen intellect, a brilliant wit, and a fine taste, you will not wonder that he was a centre of attraction in a college which boasted many members destined to attaint eminence.  . . .

Whatsoever our lives are, whether we are in a school, or in the army, or in any professsion, or commerce, we cannot have too much of that spirit of loyal service to a cause which marked him to the end. The very morning on the day on which he was taken ill, I had a long talk with him about some plans which might have made a considerable demand upon him. Then, as always, he was full of bright sympathy and ready to help: and the last words he said to me were – “You now that if you think it for the good of the school, you may count on me.” … The value of a man’s life, to himself or to the world, is measured not by its length but by its quality; not by what he has done, but by what he is. If we are right in believing that, our friend was in his prime, then he had attained all that was of eternal value to him. Added years , though they would have given space for more good deeds, might not have brought any great growth of nature. But whoshall estimate the growth which, during those same years, it may be his to enjoy in the life beyond?

  1. Brown’s poem “Portbury” was published posthumously. []
  2. T.E. Brown, Letters of Thomas Edward Brown: Author of ‘Fo’c’sle Yarns’, ed. by S.T. Irwin, 3rd edn (London: Constable & Co., 1900), p. 95-96. []
  3. Brown, p.99 []
  4. ‘Funeral of the Late Mr ENP Moor’, Western Daily Press, 11 Mar 1895, p.5 []