Reverend Edwin Emmanuel Bradford|
(1860 - 1944) U.K.
Born in Torquay, Devon, Bradford was educated at Castle College School in Torquay and at Exeter College, Oxford University. He entered Exeter College in 1881 and graduated BA in 1884 with third-class honours in Theology, proceeding to MA in 1901, BD in 1904 and DD in 1912.
After ordination in the Church of England in 1884 he served curacies at High Ongar and Walthamstow in essex. from where he went to St Petersburg as assistant chaplain to the English Church in 1887-1889 and then to Paris where he was assistant curate of St gerge's Chuech in 1890-1899.
Back in England after two more curacies, at Upwell and Eton, in 1909 he was appointed to a parish of his own. He remained as vicar of Nordelph, a small village in Norfolk, until his death. Bradford's career in the Church of England was undistinguished. As an author, however, he achieved a modest reputation. He was one of an informal group pf English "Uranian" poets who wrote on theme of boy-love.
This merry minister pursued Willie, Eric, Dick, Guy, Frank and Jock, as well as an occasional Aubrey, Silvester, or "A shy little fellow called Merrivale White." He prefers a swarthy rustic to a statuesque Adonis: "Talk about the Greeks' impeccability of form: Give to me a Belton boy whose flesh and blood are warm."
Of course these are still boys, not men. But we should take care not to apply the modern term "paedophile" to him, since is it apparent that all of his chums were post-pubescent and most of them were around sixteen years old.
Bradford wrote twelve books of poetry of bouncy cheerful verse, all openly on lads' love, with titles such as To boys unknown, Joe and Jim, The Kiss, When First I Fell in Love with You, Passing the Love of Women, The Romance of Youth, Boyhood, The New Chivalry, and Matthew Rawdon, a complete novel in verse!
His narrative poems are ironic, such as the one that describes the deepening love between Clinton Fane and Alan Dave, which ends in their swearing blood-brotherhood in a marriage ritual similar to that between Gerald and Birkin in D.H. Lawrence's Women In Love; or a tender conversation between Bradford and a boy blinded by smallpox; or Bradford and a boy named Chris walking past old men on benches who snicker in recognition of their obvious love-relationship.
If you want to read two of Edwin Bradford's poems, please go at his page in our book Famous Homoerotic Poems.