Hornby, Phipps (DNB00)
HORNBY, Sir PHIPPS (1785–1867), admiral, born on 27 April 1785, was fifth son of Geoffrey Hornby, rector of Winwick in Lancashire, by Lady Lucy Stanley, sister of the twelfth Earl of Derby. His sister Charlotte Margaret married her cousin Edward, thirteenth earl of Derby. He entered the navy in May 1797, on board the Latona frigate, with Captain John Bligh, just before the outbreak of the mutiny at the Nore, of which he was a witness. With Captain Bligh he continued to serve in the Romney, Agincourt, and Theseus, chiefly on the coast of North America and in the West Indies. In 1804 he was sent out to the Mediterranean, where he joined the Victory off Toulon, and on 1 Aug. was promoted from her by Nelson to be lieutenant of the Excellent, with Captain Frank Sotheron. The promotion was confirmed on 16 Nov., and Hornby, continuing in the Excellent, was employed through 1805–1806 in the operations on the coast of Italy, including the defence of Gaeta and the reduction of Capri. On 15 Aug. 1806 he was promoted to the command of the Duchess of Bedford armed vessel, and in her fought a sharp action in the Straits of Gibraltar with two heavy privateers, which he succeeded in beating off. In February 1807 he was moved into the Minorca sloop, in which he was several times engaged with the Spanish gunboats off Cadiz, and in 1809 was employed in the Adriatic. On 16 Feb. 1810 he was advanced to post rank, and, after a short period in command of the Fame of 74 guns off Toulon, was appointed to the Volage, a small frigate of 22 guns, and in her on 13 March 1811 took part in the brilliant frigate action off Lissa [see Hoste, Sir William], for which, with the other captains, he received the gold medal. The Volage had thirteen killed and thirty-three wounded, Hornby himself being among the latter. He afterwards commanded the Stag at the Cape of Good Hope, and the Spartan in the Mediterranean, where he co-operated with the Tuscan troops in taking over the island of Elba from the French, a service for which he received the Austrian order of St. Joseph of Wurzburg. On 4 June 1815 he was nominated a C.B.
After paying off the Spartan in the summer of 1816, he had no further service till 1832, when he was appointed superintendent of the Royal Naval Hospital and victualling yard at Plymouth, from which post he was transferred in January 1838 to Woolwich, as superintendent of the dockyard. He was comptroller-general of the coastguard from December 1841 till he became rear-admiral on 9 Nov. 1846. From August 1847 to August 1850 he was commander-in-chief in the Pacific, with his flag in the Asia of 80 guns, and in 1851–2 was one of the lords of the admiralty. On 7 April 1852 he was nominated a K.C.B., became vice-admiral on 21 Jan. 1854, admiral on 25 June 1858, was made a G.C.B. on 28 June 1861, and died at Little Green, near Petersfield, Hampshire, aged nearly 82, on 19 March 1867.
Hornby married in 1814 Sophia Maria, eldest daughter of Lieutenant-general John Burgoyne (1722–1792) [q. v.], by whom he left, besides several daughters, two sons; of who the elder, Sir Geoffrey Thomas Phipps Hornby, G.C.B., is now (1891) admiral of the fleet; the younger, James John Hornby, D.D., is provost of Eton.
[Marshall's Roy. Nav. Biog. vi. (supplement, pt. ii.) 70; O'Byrne's Naval Biog. Dict.; Gent. Mag. 1867, pt. i. p. 671; Colburn's United Service Mag. 1867, pt. ii. p. 123; Foster's Peerage, s. n. ‘Derby’; notes by Sir Geoffrey Hornby.]