The Royal Charles, pride of the English navy, temporarily returns home

The Royal Charles, pride of the English navy, temporarily returns home

In 1667, the Dutch entered the Thames and they destroyed much of the English fleet at Medway. The Royal Charles ship, the English flagship, was captured and taken to Holland where it was displayed as a trophy.

The Second Dutch War ended with the signing of Treaty of Breda (1667) and since then, part of the ship is exhibited in the naval port in Hellevoetsluis and later in the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam. It was built in 1655 and became the largest ship in the Royal Navy with 80 guns and three decks. His capture was a devastating blow for King Carlos II, since the ship was a symbol of the English naval force.

The battle was conceived by Johan de Witt, a politician from the Netherlands who contributed to the English defeat, but it was his friend Admiral Michiel de Ruyter who led the Dutch fleet stealthily to the mouth of the Thames and caused the fatal blow.

All the ships were destroyed except the Royal Charles, which was abandoned by its crew and towed to the Netherlands. Over the years, the ship deteriorated considerably, which meant that its maintenance became increasingly expensive, so the stern metal piece was discarded and kept, which is the one that was exhibited until now in the museum.

It shows the english coat of arms with a lion and a unicorn, plus a white flag. It remained there for 345 years until recently he returned to his homeland, England, where it will be exhibited temporarily at the National Maritime Museum, thus celebrating the museum's 75th anniversary and the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.

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Video: The Dutch Fleet and the Raid on the Medway