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Thomas Sanders Dupuis

In the west cloister of Westminster Abbey is a white marble tablet with an urn in memory of Dr Thomas Sanders Dupuis, musician. He came from a Huguenot family and was organist and composer at the Chapel Royal in London, where he had been a chorister under Bernard Gates. The sculptor was Richard Wilford and the inscription reads:

Sacred to the memory of Thomas Sanders Dupuis, Mus. Doc. Oxon, organist and composer to his Majesty, who departed this life July 17th 1796, aged sixty six years. He was a man as much esteemed for every moral and social virtue, as he was eminently distinguished in his profession.

The coat of arms on the urn shows "Or, an eagle rising from a mount" impaling (presumably) his wife's arms. The crest is of an eagle's head holding a cross". He was a son of John and Susannah and was probably born on 5th November 1733. He was a member of the Royal Society of Musicians, a harpsichord teacher and organist at the Charlotte Street chapel. For the 1784 Handel Festival held in the Abbey he was assistant director. Haydn was impressed with his organ playing and he also composed songs, glees and keyboard works. He married Martha Skelton and had three sons, Thomas who died in 1795, George who died an infant and Charles who died in 1824. Dr Thomas died from an overdose of opium.

Further reading

"Huguenot family of Dupuis" by H. Wagner

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography 2004



17th July 1796




Cloisters; West Cloister

Memorial Type

Grave; tablet

Material Type


Thomas Sanders Dupuis
Thomas Sanders Dupuis

Charles Turner [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Thomas Sanders Dupuis
Thomas Sanders Dupuis memorial

This image can be purchased from Westminster Abbey Library

Image © 2020 Dean and Chapter of Westminster

Related commemorations

You are surrounded by history at the Abbey, not like a museum where it’s just displayed, but here you are standing where history has happened.

Gerlinde - Abbey Marshal

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