AIM25 : Click here to go back to the AIM25 homepage
Archives in London and the M25 area


Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0064 SOU
Held at: National Maritime Museum
  Click here to find out how to view this collection at ›
Full title: Phillipps-Southwell
Date(s): [1661-1717]
Level of description: Collection
Extent: 3ft: 91cm
Name of creator(s): Southwell | Edward | 1671-1730 | statesman
Southwell | Sir | Robert | 1635-1702 | Knight | diplomat
Blathwayt | William | ? 1649-1717 | statesman
Finch | Daniel | 1647-1730 | 2nd Earl of Nottingham | 7th Earl of Winchilsea | statesman


Administrative/Biographical history:

Sir Robert Southwell (1635-1702), who was appointed Clerk to the Commission of Prizes in 1664 and, as well as holding diplomatic posts, became Principal Secretary of State for Ireland in 1690. His son Edward Southwell (1671-1730) succeeded him in the latter post. There are also papers of William Blathwayt, Secretary at War (1649?-1717), whose daughter married Edward Southwell in 1717. Since the Southwells and Blathwayt were often abroad, many of these letters are from the Secretary of State at home, who was for the greater part of the time Daniel Finch, Earl of Nottingham (1647-1730), giving news of decisions reached by the Queen, and after her death in 1694, by the Lords Justices.


Scope and content/abstract:

The collection, consisting of nineteen volumes, relates to the administration of the Navy, naval policy during the war with France, 1690 to 1698, and questions of Admiralty jurisdiction, and falls into four main groups. The first, of six volumes, contains letters received by William Blathwayt between 1690 and 1703; they concern the conduct of the war and questions of naval administration, including some, 1697 to 1703, from Josiah Burchett, Secretary of the Admiralty (1666?-1746). The second group of four volumes relates mainly to the time of the Dutch Wars when Robert Southwell was a Commissioner for Prizes. It contains drafts, orders and precedents relating to the Commission, 1661 to 1705, as well as a volume devoted to the legal problems of wrecks, 1687 to 1705. There are also some letters from Blathwayt to Robert Southwell for this period. The third group of four volumes contains letters by Lord Nottingham, 1690 and 1692 to 1693, to Blathwayt and Sir Robert Southwell, some with draft replies. Apart from reporting on naval affairs, there are later private letters, 1711, 1716, and Irish affairs, 1703, are also mentioned. The final four volumes are miscellaneous in nature, including a volume relating to the conduct of the war, 1695 to 1697; a working reference book on the proceedings of the Commission of Prizes, 1665 to 1667; and two volumes of miscellaneous papers relating to all the subjects mentioned above, 1674 to 1708.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

Conditions governing access:

Please contact the Archive for further information.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Please contact the Archive for further information.

Finding aids:

Detailed catalogue online at the: National Maritime Museum website .

Archival Information

Archival history:

Sir Thomas Phillipps purchased these manuscripts in 1836 (see A N L 'The formation of the Phillipps Library', Phillipps Studies, No.3, Cambridge, 1954, p.85).

Immediate source of acquisition:

Purchased by Sir James Caird in 1946.

Allied Materials

Related material:

Publication note:

Description Notes

Archivist's note:
Edited by Sarah Drewery, Sep 2011.

Rules or conventions:
Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions:

Related Subject Search

* To search for other records with similar subjects, tick any subjects above then click "Run New Search"

Related Personal Name Search

* To search for other records with similar names, tick any names above then click "Run New Search"

Related Corporate Name Search

* To search for other records with similar names, tick any names above then click "Run New Search"