Lt William Dobbs RN (HMS Drake 1778)


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Reference WMO/275773

Address:

Christ Church Cathedral

Market Square

Lisburn

Bt27 4XD

Northern Ireland

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Status: On original site
Type: Non freestanding
Location: Internal
Setting: Inside a building - public/private
Description: Board/Plaque/ Tablet
Materials:
  • Stone Marble
Lettering: Incised
Conflicts:
  • American Revolution (1776-1783)
About the memorial: A pyramid with a sarcophagus on lion's paw feet in relief. The front of the sarcophagus is carved with a naval action, above it - a figure of Fame with a trumpet holds and oval relief portrait of the lieutenant. The inscription panel is placed beneath the sarcophagus. Dublin Evening Post 'The memorial erected by the inhabitants of the town of Lisburn, to the memory of William Dobbs, Esq., was lately opened. It stands on the south side of the altar in the Cathedral Church - in the top is a bas relief of the brave officer - in the middle a representation of this sea engagement in the Lough of Belfast in which he lost his life. The monument was designed by Mr Smyth, a very able artist of this kingdom., the inscription was composed by Councelor Dunn,’ William Dobbs was the son of the rector of Lisburn Cathedral, Rev Richard Dobbs. He was killed in a naval battle against the privateer Ranger, commanded by Captain John Paul Jones (regarded as father of the US navy), in Carrickfergus bay. Dobbs was not a member of the crew of Drake - his own ship was at Portsmouth - he was visiting his family at Castle Dobbs, having recently married. He volunteered his services to fight on the sloop, HMS Drake.
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This marble is sacred to the memory / Of Lieutenant William Dobbs, / A Naval Officer who terminated his career of virtue / By an illustrious display of valour / On board one of His Majesty’s sloops of war / Where endeavouring to snatch victory from Fortune / In opposition to superior force / He fell a self-devoted victim to his country. / His body rests in that element, / On which Great Britain has long rode triumphant. / By the exertions of men like him. / His afflicted Townsmen. By strewing laurels on this empty monument / Derive honour to themselves They can add nothing to his fame. / He was born at Lisburn on the 22nd day of September, 1746, and died / Of his wounds on board the Drake the 26th April 1778.

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