Percival Stockdale was born at Branxton, Northumberland, on 26 October 1736 and died at Lesbury, Northumberland, on 14 September 1811. The only child of the local vicar, he attended the grammar schools of Alnwick and Berwick-upon-Tweed and then went up to the University of Aberdeen in 1754, but left in 1755 owing to his father's death. He then accepted a lieutenancy in the Royal Welsh fusiliers; he left the army in November 1757. He took holy orders in 1759 and went to London as curate of Duke's Place, near Aldgate. Thereafter, he was well known in London's literary clubs and taverns and made the acquaintance of Dr Johnson and his circle. At one time he was considered as a possible editor for some of the lives of the poets, but the publishers chose Johnson instead, with a happy result for literature and letters. Stockdale held other ecclesiastical posts and served as tutor of the eldest son of Lord Craven. He returned to Northumberland, to Lesbury, in 1783 and remained there for the rest of his life. In 1809 he published his own memoirs, a book suffused with a quite insufferable air of egotism and superiority.
From The Continuum Encyclopedia of British Philosophy in Oxford Reference.