Page:Dictionary of National Biography volume 40.djvu/44

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
There was a problem when proofreading this page.


Spain. After the execution of Charles he supported the proposal of Montrose at the Hague for a descent on Scotland. Subsequently he proceeded with Montrose to Hamburg, where he was left to superintend negotiations there while Montrose proceeded to Denmark and Sweden. After Montrose ventured on his quixotic expedition to Scotland, Napier applied for leave to join him there, which was granted by Charles; but before he could avail himself of this permission Montrose's scheme had met with irretrievable disaster, and Montrose himself had been taken prisoner.

Napier was one of those who on 18 May 1650 were, by decree of the estates, excluded from entering Scotland ‘from beyond seas’ until they gave satisfaction to the church and state’ (Balfour, Annals, iv. 14), and he was also one of those who on 4 June were debarred from having access to his majesty's person (ib. p. 42). He was also specially excepted from Cromwell's Act of Grace in 1654. In June 1656 the yearly value of his estate was stated at 600l., and the charges on it amounted to 9,786l. 18s. 4d. (Cal. State Papers, Dom. Ser. 1655–6, p. 362). Lady Napier was allowed out of the forfeited estates an annuity of 100l., and in July 1658 a further sum of 50l. In 1658 Napier was at Brussels, whence on 21 April he wrote a letter to Secretary Nicholas, in which he expressed the purpose of going to Flushing, and there staying until he heard from his friends, and especially whether the Duke of York would have any employment for him (ib . 1657–8, p. 376). He died in Holland, not in the beginning of 1660 as usually stated, but in or before September 1658 (Letter of the third Lord Napier to the king, 16–26 Sept. 1658, ib. 1658–9, p. 141). By Lady Elizabeth Erskine, eldest daughter of John, eighth earl of Mar—who after the Restoration, in consideration of her husband's loyalty, obtained an allowance of 500l. per annum—he had two sons—Archibald, third lord Napier (who being unmarried resigned his peerage on 26 Nov. 1676, and obtained a new patent of the same with the former precedency, granting the title to himself and, failing heirs male of his body, to the heirs of his sisters); and John, killed in a sea-fight against the Dutch in 1672—and three daughters: Jean, married to Sir Thomas Nicolson of Carnock, Fifeshire, whose son on the death of the third Lord Napier in 1683 became fourth Lord Napier; Margaret, who married John Brisbane, esq., and after his death became Baroness Napier on the death of her nephew in 1686; and Mary, died unmarried.

[Bishop Guthrie's Memoirs; Gordon's Britanes Distemper (Spalding Club); Sir James Balfour's Annals; Cal. State Papers, Dom. Ser., time of the Commonwealth; Mark Napier's Memoirs of John Napier of Merchiston and Life of Montrose; Douglas's Scottish Peerage (Wood), ii. 295.]

T. F. H.

NAPIER, Sir CHARLES (1786–1860), admiral, born on 6 March 1786, was the eldest son of the Hon. Charles Napier (1731–1807) of Merchiston Hall, Stirlingshire, captain in the navy, by Christian, daughter of Gabriel Hamilton of West Burn; grandson of Francis Scott Napier, fifth lord Napier; first-cousin of the half-blood of General Sir Charles James Napier [q. v.], of Henry Edward Napier [q. v.], and of General Sir William Francis Patrick Napier [q. v.] He entered the navy in 1799 on board the Martin sloop, then on the coast of Scotland; in 1800 he was moved into the Renown, carrying the flag of Sir John Borlase Warren [q. v.] in the Channel, and afterwards in the Mediterranean, where, in November 1802, he was moved into the Greyhound, and served for a few months under Captain (afterwards Sir) William Hoste [q. v.] He then served in the Egyptienne in a voyage to St. Helena in charge of convoy, and in 1804–5 in the Mediator and Renommée off Boulogne. On 30 Nov. 1805 he was promoted to be lieutenant of the Courageux, one of the little squadron with Warren when he captured the Marengo and Belle Poule on 13 March 1806. He afterwards went out to the West Indies in the St. George, and from her was appointed acting-commander of the Pultusk brig, a promotion which the admiralty confirmed to 30 Nov. 1807. In December 1807 he was present at the reduction of the Danish islands, St. Thomas and Santa Cruz. In August 1808 he was moved into the 18-gun brig Recruit, and in her, on 6 Sept., fought a spirited but indecisive action with the French sloop Diligente. Napier had his thigh broken, but refused to leave the deck till the engagement ended by the fall of the Recruit's mainmast. In February 1809 he distinguished himself at the reduction of Martinique; and still more in the capture, on 17 April, of the Hautpoult of 74 guns, which was brought to action by the Pompée, mainly by the gallant manner in which the little Recruit embarrassed her flight during the three days of the chase (Troude, Batailles navales de la France, iv. 32; cf. art. Fahie, Sir William Charles). The commander-in-chief, Sir Alexander Forester Inglis Cochrane [q. v.], was so well pleased with Napier's conduct that he commissioned the Hautpoult as an English ship under the name of Abercromby, with Napier