Monument in Westminster Abbey commemorating Captain James Cornewall RN d. 1744
Westminster Abbey, Westminster, London, England
'INTER PRISTINAE VIRTUTIS MONVMENTA / HAC IN AEDE SACRA CONSERVETUR NOMEN / JACOBI CORNWALL / HENRICI CORNWALL DE CASTRO BRADWARDINO / IN AGRO HEREFORDIENSI ARMIGERI / E FILIIS NATV TERTII / QUI DE PERVETVSTA ET ILLUSTRI PLANTAGENISTARVM STIRPE / ANIMUM VERE PRISCUM DUCENS / RERUM NAVALIVM DUX EVASIT FACILE PERITISSIMVS / BRITONVM AEQUE LACHRYMIS ATQVE APPLAUSV MERITO DECORATVS / QVIPPE QVI PATRIAE CAUSAM / IN NAVALI ILLO...IUXTA CERTAMINE STRENUE PROPUGNANS / ...VGALIS ICTV VTROQVE PARITER TRVNCATVS CRURE / ARDOREM SVAM COMMILITONIBVS SUPREMVM MVNVS MORIENTIS LEGANS / OCCVBVIT INVICTIS / III ID FEB AD MDCCXLII AETAT SUAE XLV / CVIVS EXIMIA VIRTVM / AMPLIORE ELOGIO AD POSTERITATIS INCITATIONEM COMMENDARE NEOVIIT / QUAM HONORIS EXEMPLO PLANE SINGLARIA / QUAM UNANIMI SAFFRAGIO PUBLICIS EXPENSIS / HOC MONUMENTVM VIRI FORTISSIMI MEMORIAE / SENATUS BRITANNICVS CONSECRARI VOLVIT'.
'Amongst the monuments of ancient merit, in this sacred cathedral, let the name of James Cornewall be preserved: the third son of Henry Cornewall of Bredwardine Castle in the County of Hereford, Esq who from the very old and illustrious stock of the Plantagenets desiring a truly ancient spirit became a naval commander of the first eminence equally and deservedly honoured by the tears and applause of Britons, as a man who bravely defending the cause of his country in a sea fight off Toulon and by a chain-shot being deprived of both his legs at a blow, fell unconquered on the 27th Feb 1743 in the 45th year of his age. Bequeathing his animated example to his fellow sailors as the legacy of a dying Englishman and whose extraordinary valour could not be recommended to the emulation of posterity in a more ample eulogy than by so singular an instance of honour, since the Parliament of Great Britain, by a unanimous sufferage, resolved that a monument at the public expense should be consecrated to the memory of this most heroical person'
An Historical Description of Westminster Abbey etc
Position: Cloisters (exit to Deanary courtyard)
Artists: Sir Robert Taylor
Battle of Toulon 1744
1739-1748 War of the Austrian Succession
Date of Death: 27/2/1744
Cause of Death: War casualty
Rank / Occupation: Captain RN
Organisation: Royal Navy
Bibliography: K.A. Esdaile 'English Church Monuments' (London, 1946); 'An Historical Description of Westminster Abbey, its monuments and curiosities ... designed as a guide to strangers' (London, 1754). Donald Garstang 'Sir Robert Taylor and Camillo Ruconi: the source of Britannia on the Cornwall monument in Westminster Abbey', 'Burlington Magazine' (145, no 1029, December 2003, pp. 869-71).
Recorder: B. Tomlinson
Photographer: B. Tomlinson