1893 text

The admiral celebrated in Lord Dorset’s ballad, “To all you ladies now at land.”

Should foggy Opdam chance to know
Our sad and dismal story;
The Dutch would scorn so weak a foe,
And quit their fort at Goree
For what resistance can they find
From men who’ve left their hearts behind?

— B.

This text comes from a footnote on a diary entry in the 1893 edition edited by Henry B. Wheatley.

3 Annotations

Phil Gyford  •  Link

Spelled Updam or Opdam by Pepys.

Bill  •  Link

When the Dutch war began, in 1664, the earl of Sandwich went heartily into the measure, as conceiving it for the honour and interest of England; and when the duke of York took upon him the command of the fleet as high admiral, his lordship commanded the Blue squadron, and by his industry and care, abundance of the enemy's ships were taken, and the best part of their Bourdeaux fleet. In the great battle, fought on the 3d of June, 1665, wherein the Dutch lost their admiral Opdam, and had eighteen men of war taken, and fourteen deftroyed, a large share of the honour of the victory was justly given to the conduct of the earl of Sandwich; who, about noon, fell, with the Blue squadron, into the center of the enemy's fleet; and thereby began that confusion which ended, soon after, in a plain flight.
---Lives of the Admirals and Other Eminent British Seamen. John Campbell, 1750.

It was the Battle of Lowenstoft, http://www.pepysdiary.com/encyclopedia/8643/

O whither, whither, Opdam, dost thou flie?
Can this rash Valor please the pow'rs on high:
It can't, it won't -- or woud'st thou proudly die
By such a mighty Hand? no Opdam, no:
Thy Fate's to perish b'yet a nobler Foe.
Heav'n only, Opdam shall thy Conqu'ror be,
A Labor worth its while, to conquer thee.
Heav'n shall be there, to guard its best lov'd House,
And just Revenge inflict on all your broken Vows.
---Abraham Cowley, 1708

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Chart showing the number of references in each month of the diary’s entries.



  • Aug