Figurehead of the RY Royal George
RY Royal George
© National Maritime Museum
Photo: © National Maritime Museum
On display in the Atlantic Worlds Gallery, NMM
Gold-painted figurehead of the 330-ton royal yacht 'Royal George' ,1817, in the form of a classical-style bust of George III wearing a laurel wreath, with two supplicating African supporters. The supporters clearly relate to the 'Am I not a man and a brother?' emblem of the Society for the Abolition of the Slave Trade, the implication being that the figurehead commemorates the magnanimity of George III under whom the trade was formally abolished in 1807, exactly ten years before the yacht was built at Deptford Dockyard.
Grayfoot and Overton
H193 x W91.4 x D101.6 cms
Wood: Mahogany, Lead paint
Transferred from the R.U.S.I. by the H.M. The Queen. This object came via the RUSI. According to the RUSI catalogue, 1932, p. 90, it was 'given by His Majesty King Edward VII', which indicates that the figurehead was not a loan in (as the old card catalogue might imply) and was free to become part of our permanent collection.
The RY Royal George was paid off to the Harbour Service in 1843 on commissioning of a new Royal Yacht, the Victoria and Albert. The Royal George served as an accomodation hulk for the V&A before being sold for breaking up in 1905.
David Pulvertaft 'Figureheads Of The Royal Navy(Seaforth, 2011) p.227
National Maritime Museum
Royal Museums Greenwich, London SE10 9NF
Ownership can be cited online
Accessible to public
Data verified by owner