Munden, Richard (DNB00)

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MUNDEN, Sir RICHARD (1640–1680), captain in the navy, was the elder son of Sir Richard Munden (1602-1672) of Chelsea; the younger son was Rear-admiral Sir John Munden [q. v.] The father is described by Le Neve (Pedigrees of the Knights, p. 476) as ‘ferryman at Chelsea,’ which may mean the owner or lessee of the ferry, if, as seems probable, other well-to-do Mundens were akin to him. One John Munden was captain of a ship in the employ of the East India Company about 1620 (Cal. State Papers, East Indies), and towards the end of the century a William Munden was consul or agent at Alicante (Addit. MS. 18986, f. 399). Richard first appears as commander of the Swallow ketch in 1666, and afterwards of the Portsmouth in 1667. In 1672 he was captain of the Princess of 52 guns; and in 1673, in the Assistance, was commodore of a small squadron sent as convoy to the East India fleet. Touching at St. Helena for water, he found the island in the possession of the Dutch. After a spirited attack by sea and land he captured it on 4 May [see Keigwin, Richard], and three Dutch East Indiamen, richly laden, who anchored in the bay, were seized. With his squadron and prizes and the homeward-bound ships in convoy, Munden arrived in England in August, and on 6 Dec. was knighted by the king, ‘in consideration of his eminent service.’ In April 1677, in command of the St. David, he convoyed the trade to the Mediterranean, was for some time at Zante, afterwards at Scanderoon, and for fourteen months at Smyrna (Addit. MS. 18986, f. 433). He arrived at Plymouth with the homeward trade on 12 May 1680. On 15 June he wrote to the admiralty explaining that he had not sent home the muster-books from the Mediterranean, the postage being extremely heavy, and by no means safe (ib.) Ten days later, 25 June 1680, he died. He was buried in the church at Bromley, Middlesex, where the inscription on his monument still tells that ‘having been (what upon public duty, and what upon merchants' accounts) successfully engaged in fourteen sea-fights … he died in the prime of his youth and strength, in the 40th year of his age.’ Munden married Susan Gore, by whom he had five daughters and one son, Richard, born posthumously. Shortly after his death arms were granted to the widow, her children, and her husband's brother, Sir John Munden, viz. Per pale, gules and sable, on a cross engrailed argent five lozenges azure; on a chief or, three eagle's legs erased of the second; on a canton ermine, an anchor or. Crest: on a naval crown or, a leopard's head sable, bezantée (Burke, General Armoury). The same arms, differing in colour, are given for Munden simply.

[Charnock's Biog. Nav. i. 243; Brooke's Hist. of St. Helena, pp. 57-63; a Relation of the retaking of the Island of St. Helena and three Dutch East India Ships, published by authority, 1673, fol., 816, m.; information from the vicar, the Rev. G. A. M. How.]

J. K. L.