<< YCBA Home Yale Center for British Art Yale Center for British Art << YCBA Home

YCBA Collections Search

IIIF Actions
Robert Cockburn, 1812–1836
Sketches in Syria, Euphrates Expedition: Colophon / Robert Cockburn Biography
Part Of:

Collective Title: Sketches in Syria

Materials & Techniques:
Pen and black ink on Thick, slightly textured, cream board with gilded edging
Sheet: 18 × 14 inches (45.7 × 35.6 cm)

Robert Cockburn | Lieutenant, Royal Artillery, | Born 4th. May 1812- Died 21st. May 1836. | The Euphrates Expedition, for the purpose of establishing a line of Steamboats on the river Euphrates, as a route to India, was planned by Colonel Chesney, R.A., afterwards General Chesney, and was | organized by H. M. Government in 1834, Colonel Chesney in command. | Robert Cockburn, was appointed on this expedition as assistant | on the Lurvey, and commanding the Artillery, and Engineer | artificers. Two Steamboats named " The Euphrates" and "The Tigris", were built by Messrs Laird of Birkenhead, and taken asunder for over | land transport. The Expedition sailed from Liverpool on the 10th February, 1835, and landed at Lucdia, in the Levant on the 6th April and under great | difficulties, the materials of the Steamboats were conveyed overland | to Bir, on the Upper Euphrates, where the vessels were rebuilt, and on the 16th March 1836, they commenced their voyage down the river, | Lieutenant Cockburn stationed on board "The Tigris". For 65 days all went well, and a third of the distance to the Persian Gulf had beedescendeded when on the 21st May, at the rocks | of Is- Seria below Lalahyah, a sudden Land "Hurricane of extreme violence struck the ships, and in dense darkness the larger Steamer, | "The Euphrates", was saved with great difficulty, but her consort, " The | Tigris", was blown under water and lost, and of the 28 men on board, 20 perished, Robert Cockburn being one of these. Gifted with rare ability, accomplishing with ease whaterer he undertook, witty and attractive, and if unusually commanding presence, | he was held in high regard alike by equals and inferior and beloved by those who knew him best. A life of the highest promise was cut off in its opening. | His body was recovered, and buried near Annah, beside the Great River.

Credit Line:
Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Collection
Copyright Status:
Public Domain
Accession Number:
Drawings & Watercolors
Prints and Drawings
Accessible by appointment in the Study Room [Request]
Note: The Study Room is open by appointment. Please visit the Study Room page on our website for more details.

If you have information about this object that may be of assistance please contact us.