Corrections to the blogosphere, the consensus, and the world

Tuesday, June 01, 2004

Don't Diss the Dean

Friedrich Hermann von Schönberg was born in Heidelberg in 1615. He fought on the Thirty Years War and after joining the Dutch army served in France until following the revocation of the Edict of Nantes in 1685 he was forced to leave and became Generalissimo of the Prussian army. In 1686 he advised William of Orange to go to Ireland, promising his support. Having failed to persuade his family to erect a monument to the Duke, Jonathan Swift penned the following inscription:

Beneath this stone lies the body of Frederick Duke of Schomberg, who was killed at the Boyne AD1690. The Dean and Chapter earnestly and repeatedly requested the Duke's heirs to undertake the erection of a monument in memory of their father. Long and often they pressed the request by letter and through friends. It was of no avail. At long last they set up this stone that at least you may know, stranger, where the ashes of Schomberg lie buried.

The renown of his value had greater power among strangers than had the ties of blood among his kith and kin.


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