Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Strickland, Roger

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STRICKLAND, Sir ROGER (1640–1717), admiral, born in 1640, was second son of Walter Strickland of Nateby Hall, Garstang, Lancashire (a cadet of the Stricklands of Sizergh, Westmoreland), by Anne, daughter of Roger Croft of East Appleton and Catterick, Yorkshire. His elder brother, Robert, was attached to the household of James, duke of York, and was afterwards vice-chamberlain to Queen Mary Beatrice. In 1661 Roger was appointed to be lieutenant of the Sapphire; in the following year he served in the Crown, in 1663 in the Providence, and in 1665 was appointed to the command of the Hamburg Merchant, from which he was moved into the Rainbow. Early in 1666 he was appointed to the Santa Maria, of 48 guns, which ship he commanded in the four days' fight (1–4 June), and again on 25 July 1666. In 1668 he was in command of the Success and in 1671 of the Kent (Cal. State Papers, Dom. 1671). On 16 Jan. 1672 he was commissioned to the Antelope, and was transferred on 29 Feb. following to the Plymouth, a 58-gun vessel (ib. 1671–2), in which he took part in the battle of Solebay on 28 May 1672 as one of the blue squadron, and recovered the Henry, which had been captured by the Dutch; and again in the three actions of 1673, his services in which were rewarded with the honour of knighthood, and he was also appointed, 1 Oct. 1672, captain in the marine regiment, and in the following year in Lord Widdrington's regiment (Dalton, English Army List). In 1674 he was appointed to the Dragon, in which he continued in the Mediterranean for three years under the command of Sir John Narbrough [q. v.]; and on his return in 1677 was again sent out in the Mary as rear-admiral and third in command with Narbrough, and later with Admiral Arthur Herbert (afterwards Earl of Torrington) [q. v.] On 1 April 1678 he was in company with Herbert in the Rupert when they captured a large Algerine cruiser of 40 guns after an obstinate fight. He returned to England in the Bristol, and seems to have been then employed for some months as a captain cruising in the Channel, after which he resided principally at Thornton Bridge, near Aldborough in Yorkshire, a property which he had acquired from his cousin, Sir Thomas Strickland of Sizergh; he was elected M.P. for Aldborough in March 1684–5. He had inherited in 1681 an estate near Catterick, under the will of his aunt Mary, widow of Richard Brathwaite [q. v.]

In August 1681 the Duke of York was seeking to find employment for him (Hist. MSS. Comm. 11th Rep. v. App. p. 66), and on 12 Dec. 1681 he was appointed deputy governor of Southsea Castle (Cal. State Papers, Dom. 1689–90); but it was not till after the duke's accession as James II that Strickland was again appointed captain of the Bristol. In August 1686 he was sent in command of a small squadron off Algiers; in July 1687 as vice-admiral of a fleet under the Duke of Grafton to convoy the queen of Portugal to Lisbon; and on his return home was appointed on 30 Oct. rear-admiral of England and admiral of the blue squadron. In the summer of 1688 he was appointed to command the fleet in the Narrow Seas, but in September, the seamen of the flagship having broken out into violent mutiny in consequence of his ill-judged attempt to have mass publicly said on board, he was superseded by Lord Dartmouth [see Legge, George, Lord Dartmouth]. Strickland remained as vice-admiral till after the revolution, when (13 Dec. 1688) he, with other Roman catholic officers, resigned his commission and went to France, where he received James on his landing. In the following year he accompanied James to Ireland, though he seems to have held no command. In the English parliament his name was at first included in a projected bill of attainder, and, though it was struck out on the ground of want of evidence, he was none the less afterwards officially described as attainted and outlawed, and his estates were confiscated ‘for high treason committed on 1 May 1689’ (Report of Attorney-General, Cal. Treasury Papers, 1708–14). He passed the rest of his life at St. Germain, and in 1710 was mentioned by Nathaniel Hooke [q. v.] as likely to be useful to the Jacobites, being a man that knew the Channel (Correspondence of Colonel Hooke, Roxburghe Club, ii. 556). He had, however, no part in the insurrection of 1715, died unmarried on 8 Aug. 1717, and was buried at St. Germain.

[Information from W. G. Strickland, esq.; Charnock's Biogr. Nav. i. 179; Hist. MSS. Comm. 5th Rep. App., 7th Rep. App., 10th Rep. App. i., 11th Rep. App. v., 15th Rep. App. i.; Lediard's Nav. Hist.; Burchett's Transactions at Sea; other authorities cited in text.]

J. K. L.