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1809. springs, under a small battery a little to the south
ward of Pointe-Noire.
Owing to light and baffling winds, the chasing ships Cleo- made
until about 2 h. 30 m. P. M.; attacks when the regular sea breeze, or east-north-east wind, her.
enabled the Cleopatra to begin working up towards the enemy
At about 4 h. 30 m. P. M. the Cleopatra got within 200 yards of the shore, and within halfmusket shot of the Topaze. The latter immediately opened her fire; and, as soon as she had anchored with springs upon her opponent's starboard bow, the Cleopatra did the same. In a short time, having had her outside spring shot away, the Topaze swang in-shore, with her head towards the Cleopatra ; who thereupon raked the french frigate with destructive
effect, and so well maintained her position, that the Jason Topaze could not, at any time afterwards, get more
than half her broadside to bear. At the expiration Hazard of 40 minutes from the commencement of the firing,
in which the battery on shore had, from the first, taken a part, the Jason and Hazard came up. While the Hazard cannonaded the battery, the Jason brought to on the starboard quarter of the Topaze, and opened a fire from her bow guns. Thus assailed, the french frigate had no chance of escape, and therefore, at 5 h. 20 m. P. M., hauled down her colours.
Neither the Jason nor the Hazard sustained any injury from the frigate or the battery; and the damages of the Cleopatra, on account of the secure position she had taken and the high firing of her antagonist, were chiefly confined to her rigging. The loss on board the Cleopatra, for the same reason, amounted to only two seamen killed and one wounded. The Topaze was tolerably struck in the hull, especially about the bows, and had, as acknowledged by her officers, 12 men killed and 14 wounded, out of a complement, including 100 soldiers, of about 430 men.
One third of these, when the frigate surrendered, took to the water; and several must have been drowned, or killed by the Jason's
Mutual loss, &c.
shot, in attempting to reach the shore. The Topaze, 1809. the same that, in July, 1805, captured the Blanche,* was added to the british navy under the name of Alcmène, a Topaze being already in the service.
On the 8th of February, at 2 P. M., the british Asp, 16-gun brig-sloop Asp, captain Robert F. Preston, périand 14-gun brig-sloop Supérieure, (with only, it eure appears, four of her carronades, 18-pounders, on with board,) captain William Ferrie, cruising to the Junon. southward of the Virgin islands, discovered and chased a ship standing to the northward, with the wind at east-north-east. At 3 P. M. the leading brig, the Supérieure, having got into the latter's wake, tacked and stood directly for her. The ship, then about seven miles ahead, was the french 40-gun frigate Junon, captain Jean-Baptiste-Augustin Rousseau, from the Saintes four days, bound to France. At 11 h. 30 m. P. M., when distant full four miles towindward of her consort, and about two astern of the Junon, the Supérieure fired a shot at the latter to bring her to; but the frigate, very naturally, disregarded the summons and pursued her route to the northward. In the course of the night the Asp Asp dropped completely out of sight, and at daylight on partis the 9th the Supérieure and Junon were left to them- pany. selves. At 8 A. M., just as the Virgin-Gorda bore from the Supérieure north-west by north distant five or six miles, the latter fired several shot at the frigate; who, at 10 A. M., hoisted french colours, Junon and fired two harmless broadsides at the brig, then Supéabout two miles off, on her lee quarter. Even this rieure. did not check the ardour of captain Ferrie. The Supérieure merely tacked to avoid a repetition of the salute, and then again pursued the french frigate; who, after bearing away to fire, hauled up again on the starboard tack, with the wind now at north-Latona east by east. In the afternoon the 38-gun frigate the Latona, captain Hugh Pigot, made her appearance to-leeward, and joined in the chase.
* See vol. iv, p, 201.
On the 10th, at daylight, the Supérieure had the Junon on her starboard and weather bow 12 miles off, and the Latona at about the same distance on her lee quarter; all three vessels upon a wind, as before, steering about north by west.
The brig soon shortened her distance from the Junon, but the Latona rather increased hers; and, from her great
superiority of sailing over the latter, the Junon Horatio would no doubt have escaped, had not, at 10 h.
30 m. A. M., latitude 19° 50 north, longitude 61° 30' west, an enemy suddenly hove in sight upon her weather bow. This was the british 38-gun frigate Horatio, captain George Scott, steering on the opposite or larboard tack south by east, and having astern of her, at the distance of about 15 miles, the 18-gun ship-sloop Driver, captain Charles Claridge. At noon, having made out the Horatio to be an enemy's frigate, the Junon put right before the wind; but, in less than half an hour, perceiving the Latona standing across her path, hauled up again, and, having previously hoisted french colours, resumed her course to the northward, captain Rousseau, rightly consider. ing that, if he could disable the weathermost frigate, he should, in all probability, be able to outsail the one that was to-leeward.
At 36 minutes påst noon the Horatio and Junon
met on opposite tacks, and exchanged broadsides in engage. passing. The Horatio then wore, with the intention
of engaging her opponent to-leeward ; but the Junon wore almost at the same instant, and, having run a short distance to-leeward, hauled up again on the starboard tack. In the mean while the Horatio, having come round more quickly, raked the Junon astern with her larboard broadside. The Horatio then ranged up alongside of her antagonist to-windward; and the two frigates, running on upon the starboard tack, became closely and warmly engaged. At 0 h. 50 m. P. m. lieutenant Manley Hall Dixon, first of the Horatio, was badly wounded by a musket-ball, which entered his left groin and passed through his thigh; and at 1 h. 10 m. P. M. captain Scott received a
Horatio and Junon
severe wound in the shoulder by a grape-shot. The 1809. command now detolved upon lieutenant the honour- Feb. able George Douglas. At 1 h. 25 m. the Horatio had her main and mizen topmasts shot way, and at the same moment descried the Latona, at the distance of about eight miles upon her larboard and lee quarter, close hauled upon the starboard tack, standing towards her.
By 2 h. 12 m. P. M., besides the loss of her main and mizen topmasts, the Horatio had had her mainmast state of badly wounded, and fore topgallantmast shot away; also the foretopsail tie and lifts, which brought the yard on the cap, and left her with only the foresail set. At this moment the Junon, having only her foretopsail tie shot away, was enabled to range ahead out of gun-shot. Now was the time for the Driver to have rendered assistance; but that sloop, although her signal to make more sail had been hoisted at 2P.M., was still two miles distant on the Horatio's starboard bow. The Supérieure, however, was near at hand, Also of and raked the Junon, as the latter, with her three who masts standing certainly, but with scarcely any rigging to support them, and with her sails all flying about and hull visibly shattered, put away nearly before the moderate breeze, which the previous heavy cannonade had then left blowing.
At 2 h. 24 m. P. M. lieutenant Douglas hailed the Horatio Supérieure and directed the brig to take the Horatio goes in
pursuit in tow, to enable her the more quickly to get again alongside of her antagonist. The Supérieure did as she had been ordered; but the Horatio, having set her fore topsail and hauled aft her main sheet, was presently going upwards of five knots with the wind on the quarter, and the brig cast her off. At 2 h. Dri40 m. P. M. the Driver fired her bow-chasers at the ver's
signal Junon, then nearly a mile distant from her. This to ensloop continuing to yaw about as if she was afraid gage. to advance, the Horatio, at 2 h. 50 m. P. M., directed the Supérieure to make the Driver's signal to engage more closely.
(Rich and and t five Drive side : the Junoi
13 inclue Commy
As parl match sandi
Having, agreeably to his orders, hoisted this Feb. signal, and doubting, as it was not obeyed, whether Gal- it was rightly understood, captain Ferrie resolved lant be- himself to show its practical meaning. Accordingly, of Su- at 3 h. 4 m. P. M., the Supérieure hauled across the péri- french frigate's stern and gave her a broadside, in
a very gallant style; but, having only two 18-
Finding that the force of example was in the
present instance thrown away, the Horatio, at 3 h. Horatio 10 m. P. M., repeated the Driver's signal to engage
more closely, with two guns shotted. This produced
now firing at the Latona, as the latter was advancing Latter to engage her. At 3 h. 25 m. P. M. the Latona,
having arrived within pistol-shot, opened her broadJunon. side; and shortly afterwards the Driver, becom
ing more bold from having so efficient a consort,
main and mizen masts, unable to resist the lateral Junon pressure against them, fell over the side. The french ders. frigate instantly struck her colours. This was at
3 h. 40 m. P. m., and in two minutes more the Junon's
sails set, rapidly approaching.
(Manley Hall Dixon,) boatswain, (Andrew Lock,)