Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton
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MARRYAT, Frederick, British author, born in London, England, 10 July, 1792; died in Langham, Norfolk, England, 2 August, 1848. His father was an eminent merchant, who published several works on economical subjects, and his mother a native of Boston, Massachusetts. He entered the British navy as a midshipman in 1812, and served in the war with France and through the American war of 1812-'15, distinguishing himself by cutting four vessels out of Boston harbor and in an action with gun-boats on Lake Pontchartrain in 1814 just before the battle of New Orleans. In 1829, when he had attained the rank of captain, he published " Frank Mild-may," a novel dealing with life in the British navy, in which some of his own early adventures were recounted. "The King's Own" (London, 1830), "Midshipman Easy" (1836), "Peter Simple "(1837), and others followed at intervals of a year or two, and, owing to their faithful and spirited depiction of sea-life and of naval customs and characters, acquired wide and lasting popularity. While Nathaniel P. Willis was in England, Captain Marryat printed in the " Metropolitan Magazine," which he was then editing, a review of " Pencillings by the Way," containing personal abuse of the American author. Willis challenged him to a duel, and they met at Chatham and exchanged pistol-shots. In "A Code of Signals for the Use of Vessels employed in the Merchant Service" (London, 1837), Captain Marryat described a system of marine signalling that was devised by himself, and which was adopted by the English and other governments. He made a tour in the United States in 1838, and on his return home published " A Diary in America, with Remarks on its Institutions," displaying strong prejudices (1839). Other works treating of America are " The Narrative of Monsieur Violet in California, Sonora, and Western Texas, 1839" (1843), and "The Settlers in Canada" (1844). His " Life and Correspondence" was published by his daughter, Florence.--His son, Samuel Francis, author, born in 1826; died in London, England, 12 July, 1855, while serving as a midshipman in the British navy, made notes and drawings for a book on Borneo, which he published after resigning his commission (London, 1848). In 1850 he established himself in California, but in 1853 returned to England and published an account of his adventures as a gold-hunter, with illustrations from his own sketches, under the title of " Mountains and Molehills, or Recollections of a Burnt Journal" (1855).--Frederick's daughter, Florence, author, born in Brighton, England, 9 July, 1837, who married Mr. Ross-Church, and for her second husband Francis Lean, became editor of "London Society" in 1872, is also an actress and operatic singer, and has published more than forty novels and other works, in-eluding one on this country.
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