Admiral Sir Robert Stopford (1768-1847)

A three-quarter length portrait to right wearing admiral’s undress uniform, with the ribbon and star of the GCB and the ribbon of the San Domingo Medal. His right hand is on his hip and his left rests on a parapet. Stopford had a long service at sea. He saw early service in Vice-Admiral George Darby’s flagship at the relief of Gibraltar in 1781. He was present at the battle of the Saints in 1782 and spent the next nine years in home waters in the frigates ‘Lowestoft’, ‘Aquilon’ and ‘Phaeton’. He had considerable success in the ‘Phaeton’ in the Biscay and played a key part in the retreat from the French force of Admiral William Cornwallis on 16 and 17 June 1795. He also captured many privateers and small vessels of war. When commanding the ‘Spencer’ in 1806 he played a principal part in Sir John Duckworth’s victory off San Domingo where he was wounded and for which he was awarded a gold medal. He became a flag officer in 1808 and in 1811 while on the Cape Station he heard Admiral Drury the Commander-in-Chief East Indies had died. He therefore left his station to take command of the expedition against Java, where, in co-operation with the army, he gained a complete success. Stopford was Commander-in-Chief at Portsmouth from 1827 to 1830 and commanded the Mediterranean fleet from 1837-40. In 1840, when commander-in-chief in the Mediterranean he bombarded Acre, thus stopping the ambitions of the Pasha of Egypt, who was in rebellion against the Ottomans. An Admiral of the Red, he became Governor of Greenwich Hospital from 1841 until his death. Say’s portrait of Stopford was exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1842 (no.218), although it is not clear whether this is the prime version or a replica. In 1848 it was presented to the Greenwich Hospital Collection in Stopford's memory by 61 officers who had served under him.

Object Details

ID: BHC3041
Collection: Fine art
Type: Painting
Display location: Not on display
Creator: Say, Frederick Richard
Date made: Mid 19th century; 1840s
People: Stopford, Robert; Greenwich Hospital
Credit: National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, London, Greenwich Hospital Collection
Measurements: Painting: 1270 mm x 1016 mm; Frame: 1460 mm x 1221 mm x 103 mm;

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