Lieutenant Sir Charles Harbord and Clement Cottrell (HMS Royal James 1672)

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Reference WMO/275419


Westminster Abbey

Deans Yard





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Status: On original site
Type: Non freestanding
Location: Internal
Setting: Inside a building - public/private
Description: Board/Plaque/ Tablet
  • Stone Marble
Lettering: Raised
  • 17th Century Wars
About the memorial: Relief showing 'Royal James' being attacked by a fireship and the Dutch squadron under Van Tromp in the 3rd Dutch War of 1672-4. (RCHM) 'Black and white marble wall monument consisting of a high base with trophies and a bas-relief of a sea fight and above two large inscribed panels each with a cartouche of arms and having a common cornice and broken vaulted pediment.'
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'To preserve and unite the memory of two faithfull friends who lost their lives at sea together May XXVIII MDCLXXII' 'Sr. Charles Harbord Knt. third son of Sr Charles Harbord Knt. his Majesties, Surveyor General and first Lieutenant of the Royal James under the most Noble and Illustrious Captain Edward Earle of Sandwich, Vice-Admirall of England, which after a terrible fight maintained to admiration against a squadron of the Holland fleet for above six houres, neere the Suffolk coast, having put off two fireships, at last being utterly dissabled and few of her men remaining unhurt was by a third unfortunately set on fire but he (though he swam well) neglected to save himselfe as some did and out of perfect love to that worthy lord (whom for many yeares he had constantly accompanyed in all his honourable imployments, and in all the engagements of the former warr) dyed with him at the age of XXXII, much bewailed of his father whom he never offended, and much beloved of all for his knowne Piety, Vertue, loyalty, fortitude and fidelity.' 'Clement Cottrell Esqr. eldest son of Sir Charles Cottrell Knight, Master of the Ceremonies, and his assistant to have succeeded in that office, for which he was very fit, having a tall handsome person, a graceful winning behaviour, and great natural parts, much improved by study and by converse in most Courts of Europe, where firm to the Church of England, he learned not their vices but customs and languages understanding seven and speaking four of them as of his own though but XXII years of old; yet not content to serve his King and Country at home only, his excess of courage, incited by a deep sense of honour, could not be kept from going Volunteer with the Earl of Sandwich with whom he had been in Spain when his Excellency was there [as] AMR EXTRY [Ambassador Extraordinary], and with whom (after having returned unwounded into his ship, from being the first man that had boarded a Dutch one of LX gun and pulled down the ensign of it with his own hand) he also perished universally lamented'

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