Ships

There are three ships often confounded, viz. the Great Harry, the Regent, and the Henry Grâce de Dieu.

The GREAT HARRY was built in the third year of Henry VII. (1488). It was a two-decker with three masts, and was accidentally burnt at Woolwich in 1553.

The REGENT was burnt in 1512 in an engagement with the French.

The HENRY GRÂCE DE DIEU was built at Erith in 1515. It had three decks and four masts. It was named Edward, after the death of Henry VIII. in 1547. There is no record of its destruction.

“Though we are not acquainted with all the particular ships that formed the navy of Henry VIII., we know that among them were two very large ones. viz. the Regent, and the Henry Grace de Dieu. The former being burnt in 1512, in an engagement with the French, occasioned Henry to build the latter.” —Willet: Naval Architecture, xi. 158.

Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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