Thomas Griffin (Royal Navy officer)

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Thomas Griffin
Born c. 1692
Died 23 December 1771
Allegiance  Kingdom of Great Britain
Service/branch  Royal Navy
Rank Admiral
Commands held HMS Shoreham
HMS Blenheim
HMS Oxford
HMS Princess Caroline
HMS Burford
HMS St George
HMS Captain
East Indies Station
Battles/wars War of Jenkins' Ear
Seven Years' War

Admiral Thomas Griffin (c. 1692 - 23 December 1771) was a Royal Navy officer who became Commander-in-Chief of the East Indies Station.

Naval career[edit]

Griffin joined the Royal Navy in 1718 as third lieutenant of HMS Orford.[1] He was given command of HMS Shoreham in 1731, HMS Blenheim in 1735, HMS Oxford in 1738 and HMS Princess Caroline in 1739.[1] In 1741 he commanded HMS Burford at the Battle of Cartagena de Indias in Spring of that year.[1] In September 1742 he was involved in an incident whereby he evicted some of his officers from their cabins to accommodate some passengers: considerable acrimony followed.[1] He went on to command HMS St George from later in 1741 and HMS Captain from 1743.[1] While in command of the latter ship he was involved in an incident whereby he was accused of engaging a small French vessel and ignoring two much larger enemy ships; his explanations were accepted at the time but revisited later.[1] He was appointed Commander-in-Chief of the East Indies Station in 1746.[1] After reinforcing Fort St. David near Cuddalore in March 1747,[2] he was promoted to rear-admiral of the red in July 1747, promoted to vice-admiral of the blue in May 1748 and then sailed back to England in January 1749.[1] On his return his judgement was again questioned, he was court-martialled and found guilty of negligence.[1] After his court martial George II reinstated him and he was promoted to admiral of the white.[1] He served as Member of Parliament for Arundel from 1754 to 1761.[1]

He acquired Goodrich Castle in Herefordshire in 1740.[3] He also bought land at Dixton and built Newton Court[4] and he is buried at St Peter's Church in Dixton.[1]


Parliament of Great Britain
Preceded by
Garton Orme
Theobald Taafe
Member of Parliament for Arundel
With: Sir George Colebrooke
Succeeded by
Sir George Colebrooke
John Bristow