Jacob Bryant was baptized in Plymouth on 19 August 1717 and died at Franham Royal near Windsor on 14 November 1804. The son of a customs officer, Bryant was educated at Eton and at King's College, Cambridge (BA, 1740/41; MA, 1744), where he became a Fellow in 1739. He was a private tutor to Sir Thomas Stapleton and then to the Marlborough family. He defended the authenticity of Chatterton's poems and wrote on the ancient gems then in the possession of the Duke of Marlborough. He is best known for A New System or an Analysis of Ancient Mythology (1774–6). He was also a significant book collector, owning at least a dozen Caxtons. For many years before his death Bryant resided at Franham Royal, where he was often visited by the King and Queen, and numbered Fanny Burney among his friends.
From The Continuum Encyclopedia of British Philosophy in Oxford Reference.