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Samuel Musgrave (1732-1780), English classical scholar and physician, was born at Washfield, in Devonshire, on 29 September 1732. Educated at Oxford and elected to a Radcliffe travelling fellowship, he spent several years abroad. In 1766 he settled at Exeter, but not meeting professional success he moved to Plymouth. He ruined his prospects, however, by the publication of a pamphlet in the form of an address to the people of Devonshire, in which he accused certain members of the English ministry of having been bribed by the French government to conduct the peace of 1763, and declared that Chevalier d’Eon de Beaumont, French minister plenipotentiary to England, had in his possession documents that would prove the truth of his assertion. De Beaumont repudiated all knowledge of any such transaction and of Musgrave himself, and the House of Commons in 1770 decided that the charge was unsubstantiated. Thus discredited, Musgrave gained a precarious living in London by his pen until his death, in reduced circumstances, on 5 July 1780. He wrote several medical works, now forgotten; and his edition of Euripides (1778) was a considerable advance on that of Joshua Barnes

From the eleventh edition of The Encyclopedia, 1911. Public domain. Some spellings have been changed to reflect the times (and link better) and some editing has been done, for the sake of clarity.

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