Memorial: M4297

Column erected in honour of Admiral of the Fleet, George Anson, d. 1747 in Stowe, Buckinghamshire.


Stowe Landscape Gardens, Stowe, Buckinghamshire, England


'DIGNUM LAUDE', 'Sororis suae filio / THOMAE GRENVILLAE / Qui / Navis Praefectus Regiae, / Ducente Classem Britannicam / GEORGIO ANSON / Dum contra Gallos fortissimo pugnaret / Dilaceratae Navis ingente fragmine / Femore graviter percusso / Perire, dixit moribundus, omnino satius esse, / Quam / inertiae Reum in judicio sisti; / Columnam hanc Rostratam / Laudans & maerans posuit / COBHAM, / Insigne Virtutis, eheu! rarissimae / Exemplum habes; / Ex quo discas / Quid Virum Praefectura militari ornatum / Deceat / M.DCC.' [Translation] 'To his sister's son / THOMAS GRENVILLE / who, being a Captain of a Ship in the Royal Navy / (when George Anson commanded the British Fleet) / whilst he fough gallantly against the French, / and had a severe Stroke on his Thigh, / with a large Splinter of the shatter'd Vessel / declar'd it in his last Moments, infinitely better to perish, / than to be brought to Judgement for Cowardice: / This is alas, a rare Influence / of true English Bravery / from which let all British Officers / Learn their Duty / 1747'.


Description: Rostral column with figure of Heroic Poetry by John van Nost on top (originally Neptune flourishing a splinter of a ship).
Type: Column
Position: The Elysian fields
Materials: Stone, lead
Vessel: HMS Nottingham


Battle of Cape Finisterre

Event Date


Event Category

1739-1748 War of the Austrian Succession


Grenville, Thomas
Date of Death: 3/5/1747
Cause of Death: War casualty
Rank / Occupation: Captain RN
Organisation: Royal Navy


Notes: Thomas Grenville buried at Wotton, Buckinghamshire. The column was erected by his uncle, Richard Temple, Viscount Cobham. The epitaph written by George Lyttelton (1709-1773). Column moved from its original position to the north of the Temple of Concord and Victory in 1756. Statue replaced in 1763.
Bibliography: Joan Coutu 'Stowe: a Whig training ground', 'New Arcadian Journal' 43/44 (1997). Translation from Benton Seely 'A Description of the Gardens of Lord Viscount Cobham at Stowe in Buckinghamshire' (Northampton, 1749). George Clarke, Jonathan Marsden, Richard Wheeler, Michael Bevington, Tim Knox 'Stowe Landscape Gardens' (National Trust, 1997)
Photographer: Barbara Tomlinson