All Provosts since 1692, save two, have been born in Ireland or of Irish parents living abroad. George Hall is one of the exceptions. Born in Northumberland, he came to Ireland at the age of sixteen, and the following year entered Trinity College. He was elected Fellow in 1777, but resigned on a College living in 1800. He was Provost from 1806 to 1811 and in his last year of office he obtained from the Government astatute which imposed on the Fellows a strict rule of celibacy. This rule was designed to ensure that Fellows would reside in the College and devote themselves wholeheartedly to their studies and teaching duties. 2 Although the rule had been nominally in force, it had been widely evaded over the past half-century with 16 of the 25 Fellows married by 1811. All Fellows elected from 1812 were strictly bound to celibacy on pain of forfeiting their fellowship. In November 1811 Hall was appointed Bishop of Dromore, but died a few days after his consecration.
By William Cuming
Oil all canvas