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already abundantly occupied with other matters, allowed him to retire quietly into the country.
On the return of Monk into England, and the restoration of the secluded members, Montagu and he were joined in a commission for the execution of the office of lord-high-admiral. The king secretly ratified this appointment; but such was Montagu's impatience to gain the royal favour, that he sailed for Holland without orders, leaving only two or three of the smaller ships to convey the parliamentary deputation. On his arrival, he surrendered his command to the duke of York, and, a few days after, received Charles on board his own ship. For these services, he was invested with the garter, and advanced to the peerage by the titles of Baron Montagu of St Neots, Viscount Hinchinbroke, and earl of Sandwich.
In June, 1661, he sailed on an expedition against the piratical states of Barbary; whence he proceeded to Lisbon, where, having officiated as proxy for Charles in the ceremony of espousing Catharine of Braganza, he conveyed that princess to Portsmouth. In the great engagement with the Dutch feet, on the 3d of June, 1644, Sandwich, as admiral of the blue squadron, performed eminent services, and is said to have been the first to practise the bold expedient of breaking the enemy's line. There had long existed a great degree of jealousy betwixt Monk and Montagu. An opportunity which offered itself some time after this, of preferring a complaint against the earl, was eagerly embraced by Monk, who sought nothing less than the ruin of his rival. It would appear that, contrary to the admiralty rule that bulk, as it is called, of any captured ship, shall not be broken till it be brought into port, and adjudged to be lawful capture, Sandwich bad gratified his seamen with a partial distribution of prize-money while yet at sea. Monk threatened him with impeachment, and succeeded in stirring up a great popular clamour against him; but the king dexterously interposed betwixt the rivals, and by appointing Sandwich his ambassadorextraordinary to the court of Madrid, got him honourably extricated from the danger and disgrace which threatened him. He arrived at Madrid in May, 1666, and was received with great distinctions. The objects of his mission were to negotiate a treaty of commerce with Eng. land, and to mediate a peace between Spain and Portugal. In both objects he was completely successful, and won for himself renewed royal favour and increased popularity.
In 1672, on the renewal of the Dutch war, he was again appointed vice-admiral of the fleet under the duke of York.–On the 28th of May, the hostile fleets joined battle. The earl's vessel was surrounded by fire-ships, which soon enveloped the vessel in flames. The surviving portion of his crew-of whom three-fourths had already fallen in the close and desperate fight, which the vessel had maintained with superior numbers—betook themselves to the long-boat, but the admiral obstinately refused to quit his ship, and perished in the flames. His body was picked up some days after. The determination with which he sacrificed his life is said to have been occasioned by an affront which he had received from the high-admiral immediately before going into action. Bishop Kennet says : _“ The day before, there was great jollity and feasting in the English flert, in the midst of which my lord of Sandwich was observed to say, that, as the wind stood, the fleet were in danger of being surprised by the Dutch, and therefore, thought it advisable to weigh anchor and get out to sea. The duke of York, lord-high-admiral, slighted the advice, and retorted upon the earl that he spoke this out of fear, which reflection his lordship is thought to have so far resented, as, the next day. out of indignation, to have sacrificed his life, which he might otherwise have preserved.” His remains were deposited in the same vault with those of his competitor, Monk.