The noted naval officer was born in Gosport in 1737 into a seafaring family: his father Richard was a lieutenant in the Royal Navy and William Bligh of Mutiny on the Bounty fame was a third cousin. His godfather was Captain George Brydges Rodney, later admiral, who won fame during the American War of Independence.

Richard first went to sea, on the Rainbow, in 1750. He was given his first command, that of the Virgin, in 1762. He became a rear-admiral in 1794, vice-admiral in 1799 and admiral in 1804. He saw no more service after 1804. At some stage in the early 19th century he bought Bellevue House in Southampton and died there in 1821. He built Blighmont House (see below) for his son George Miller Bligh in the early 19th century.

Sir Richard Rodney Bligh

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Engraved by William Ridley from a work by John Opie, 1805.

see also

Further Reading:
Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, 2004, Volume 6


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