Cf. Robin Reilly, Wedgwood Volume II (1989), p. 503, pl. 852, for a lilac jasper dip portrait medallion of Richard, first Earl Howe, modelled by John De Vaere and Surgeon Captain P. D. Gordon Pugh, Naval Ceramics (1971), pl. 24C for a similar medallion.
Richard Earl Howe (1726-1799) was reputedly the most able naval officer of his day, and his most glorious victory was defeating the French off the western coast of France in 1794. Howe had only twenty five ships of the line, whilst the French had twenty-six, which were superior in size and number of crew. After a struggle the French withdrew and the British captured seven vessels. Howe joined the fleet at fourteen and by 1745 he was made lieutenant. Ten years later Howe took command of the Dunkirk and joined the fleet under Admiral Boscawan which was sent to intercept the French squadron off Newfoundland. Howe captured the Lys and the Alcide in the opening incident of the Seven Years' War. Howe succeeded to the family title on the death of his brother in 1755 as the fourth Viscount Howe. In 1759 under De Conflans he defeated a French squadron and capturing all their ships. He was appointed a Lord of the Admirality in 1763 and was Treasurer of the Navy from 1765 to 1770. He was promoted rear-admiral in 1770 and vice-admiral in 1775. In 1782 Howe was appointed admiral and created a British peer. In 1788 he was created Lord Howe.