Ives, Edward (DNB00)

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IVES, EDWARD (d. 1786), surgeon and traveller, served in the navy as surgeon of the Namur in the Mediterranean from 1744 to 1746, and returned to England in the Yarmouth. He was afterwards for some time employed by the commissioners for sick and wounded, and from 1753 to 1757 was surgeon of the Kent, bearing the flag of Vice-admiral Charles Watson [q. v.] as commander-in-chief in the East Indies. On the admiral's death in August 1757, his own health being somewhat impaired, he resigned his appointment, and travelled home overland from Bassorah, through Baghdad, Mosul, and Aleppo, thence by Cyprus, to Leghorn and Venice, and so home through Germany and Holland, arriving in England in March 1759. He had no further service in the navy, but continued on the half-pay list till 1777, when he was superannuated. During his later years he resided at Titchfield in Hampshire, dividing his time, apparently, between literature and farming. He died at Bath on 25 Sept. 1786 (Gent. Mag. 1786, vol. lvi. pt. ii. p. 908). In 1773 he published ‘A Voyage from England to India in the year 1754, and an Historical Narrative of the Operations of the Squadron and Army in India, under the command of Vice-admiral Watson and Colonel Clive, in the years 1755–1756–7; … also a Journey from Persia to England by an unusual Route.’ Ives's presence at many of the transactions which he describes and his personal intimacy with Watson give his historical narrative an unusual importance, and his accounts of the manners and customs of the inhabitants, and of the products of the countries he visited, are those of an enlightened and acute observer. Ives married about 1751 Ann, daughter of Richard Roy of Titchfield, by whom he had issue a daughter, Eliza, and three sons, the eldest of whom, Edward Otto, was in Bengal at the time of his father's death; the second, Robert Thomas, had just been appointed to a writership; the third, John Richard, seems to have been still a child (will in Somerset House, 29 March 1780, proved in London, 1787). Mention is also made of a sister, Gatty Ives.

[Beyond his own narrative, nothing is known of his life, except the bare mention of his appointments in the official books preserved in the Public Record Office.]

J. K. L.