Samuel Derrick - the king of Bath

Personal data
Portrait media
Samuel Derrick - engraving by W. Hibbart (1769)
Samuel Derrick
Born 1724
in Dublin

Died March 28, 1769

Originally an apprentice to a linen-maker he became an actor and playwright, before being appointed Master of Ceremonies at Bath and Tunbridge Wells in 1763 succeeding Beau Nash who had died in 1761. In this position, he also became known as "The King of Bath". Derrick much preferred Bath to Tunbridge Wells, "deploring Tunbridge Well's lack of enterprise".1

According to some sources, Derrick was the actual author behind the infamous but bestselling publication Harris's List of Covent Garden Ladies.2

Life with Boswell

Boswell met Derrick during his first stay in London in 1760, and Derrick showed him the shabbier aspects of London "in all its variety of departments, both literary and sportive",1 before he was "saved" by Lord Eglinton and introduced to the higher social circles. When Boswell and Derrick met again, accidentally, on March 27, 1763, Boswell was not at all interested in renewing their friendship, referring (in his journal) to Derrick as "a little blackguard pimping dog".

  • 1According to the preface to [LJ]

A few books written or compiled by Derrick are available via [Abebooks].