Patrick Bronte (1777-1861) was the father of the famous Bronte; Sisters,Anne, Charlotte and Emily, three of Victorian England's greatest novelists,But he was a fascinating man in his own right and not nearly such an unsympathetic character as Elizabeth Gaskell's "Life of Charlotte Bronte" would have us believe. Born into poverty in Ireland, he won a scholarship to St John's College, Cambridge, and was ordained into the Church of England. He was perpetual curate of Haworth in Yorkshire for forty-one years, bringing up four children, founding a school and campaigning for a proper water supply. Although often portrayed as a somewhat fobidding figure, he was an opponent of capital punishment and the Poor Law Amendment Act, a supporter of limited Catholic emancipation and a writer of poetry. This is the first serious biography of Patrick Bronte for more than forty years.