Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

1810.

Of the four captured 40-gun frigates, the Bellone, under the name of Junon, and the Astrée, under that of Pomone, were all that were purchased for the use of the british navy. The Iphigenia was restored to her rank among the 18-pounder 36s; but the old battered Néréide, rendered so famous by the gallantry of her captain and crew, was in too bad a state to be removed from Grand Port, and was sold only to be broken up.

477

BRITISH AND FRENCH FLEETS.

[ocr errors]

The principal feature, that distinguishes the pre- 1811. sent abstract* from the generality of those which have wo preceded it, is the insignificant total at the foot of the column of“Purchased enemy's national vessels.”+ Shetlerie This is to be attributed to the effectual manner in tish which the ports of France had been blockaded, navy. rather than to any diminution of strength or spirit in the french navy. The latter, indeed, notwithstanding its reverses, had been, and was still, increasing in its numbers, as we shall presently have occasion to show. The decrease compartment of the abstract also exhibits a reduction, by as much as one half, in the numerical, if not in the tonnage, amount of its first and more important column. I

The number of commissioned officers and masters, Officers, belonging to the british navy at the commencement of the year 181], was, Admirals

65 Vice-admirals

60
Rear-admirals

56
superannuated 35
Post-captains

753

29 Commanders, or sloop-captains 558

superannuated 50 Lieutenants

3071 Masters

544 And the number of seamen and marines, voted for the service of the same year, was 145000.9

&c.

.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

* See Appendix, Annual Abstract No. 19. + See Appendix, No. 15.

See Appendix, No. 16. $ See Appendix, No. 17.

force in the

1811. Such had been the unremitting exertions of the

shipwrights in the arsenal of Antwerp, that, by the French latter end of the summer, vice-admiral Missiessy was naval at anchor at the mouth of the Scheldt, with a fleet

of 15 sail of the line, one frigate, and nine brigs, Scheldt waiting to elude the vigilance of admiral Young;

who, since the preceding May, had superseded sir Richard Strachan in the chief command, and, with a corresponding feet, was cruising outside. In addition to the above french force in this quarter, the Gorée squadron, consisting of three sail of the line, the Chatham of 80, Hollander of 74, and Tromp of 68 guns, had recently been buoyed over the fats and brought to Antwerp, where they were repairing. Upon the stocks at Antwerp, Terneuse, and Flushing, were from 12 to 15 ships of the line, five or six of them in a state of great forwardness. To protect the vast dépôt now formed and forming along the shores of the Scheldt, immense fortifications had been constructed, particularly at Flushing; the seafront alone of which mounted 100 long 36-pounders and 60 (french) 12 inch mortars.

The opposite or Cadzand shore had also had its fortifications greatly strengthened. In the Texel seven franco-batavian sail of the line were ready for sea. Proceeding southward, we find that, besides the two 74s at anchor in the road of Cherbourg, two were on the stocks in the arsenal; and that Lorient, Rochefort, and Toulon had all their building slips full.

The latter port, indeed, was dividing with FlushPoulon ing the attention of the British. The road of Toulon,

in the course of the present year, contained as many as 16 sail of the line, and nearly half as many frigates, including among the former four immense three-deckers. The command of this fine and power

ful fleet had, since the preceding year, devolved Pellew upon vice-admiral Emeriau, who had under him rearlieves admirals Cosmao, Lhermite, and Baudin. During

the first half of the year the british Mediterranean Cotton, fleet remained under the command of admiral sir

Force

Sir Edw.

sir Chas.

Charles Cotton; but the latter, returning to Eng- 1811. land to take the command of the Channel fleet, was July, succeeded off Toulon, on the 18th of July, by viceadmiral sir Edward Pellew, whose force consisted of the

[ocr errors]

14 Sultan

[ocr errors]

gun-ship

vice-adm. (r.) sir Edw. Pellew, bart. Caledonia

rear adm. (b.) Israel Pellew. 120

captain Richard Harward. Hibernia

lieut. William Holman, acting. 112 Ville-de-Paris

captain George Burlton. 100 Royal-Sovereign..

John Harvey

S rear-adm. (r.) Francis Pickmore. 98 Téméraire

captain Joseph Spear.

srear-adm. (b)Th. Francis Fremantle. Rodney

captain John Duff Markland.
York

Robert Barton.
Kent..

Thomas Rogers.
Conqueror

Edward Fellowes.
Magnificent.

George Eyre.

John West.
Repulse

Richard Hussey Moubray.
Bombay

William Cuming:
Achille

Askew Paffard Hollis.
Implacable

Joshua Rowley Watson.
| Leviathan

Patrick Campbell. Frigates, Apollo, Impérieuse, and Franchise. Early on the morning of the 19th of July the two skir

mish french 40-gun frigates Amélie and Adrienne, on their

bereturn from Genoa with conscripts for the fleet, tween were endeavouring to enter Toulon by the Petite- the

vanced Passe. Since daylight the semiphoric signals along divisithe coast had apprized vice-admiral Emeriau of the the two presence of these frigates; and, just as the british fleets. admiral, who was cruising off Cape Sicie with the above-named 16 sail of the line and three frigates, had made the signal for chase to the Conqueror and Sultan, the two in-shore line-of-battle ships, M. Emeriau weighed and sailed out of the road, with 13 sail of the line and the Incorruptible frigate, to cover the Amélie and Adrienne. At 11 h. 30 m. A. M. the Conqueror got near enough to open her fire upon the two frigates; and presently afterwards both the Conqueror and the Sultan exchanged a few

.

M. Emeriau

1811. distant broadsides with the french advanced division, Aug. consisting of the Ulm, Danube, Magnanime, and

Breslau 74s. The two frigates very soon got completely under the protection of their fleet, which then bore up and returned to Toulon road.

Neither of the two british ships appears to have been struck by a shot; but, according to M. Emeriau,

the Ulm had some of her rigging cut by the fire of French the British. As of course the Conqueror, who was boast- the nearest in-shore, on finding herself getting within the oc- gun-shot of four french 74s, with a fleet of nine more casion. Iine-of-battle ships close in their wake, (M. Emeriau

admits he sailed out with 13,) shortened sail and tacked off to rejoin her fleet, the french admiral, in his despatch, was enabled to say,

enabled to say, “L'ennemi," meaning the british fleet, not the advanced 74,

ayant pris la bordée du large, j'ai fait retourner les vaisseaux au mouillage."

On the 7th of August the british fleet came to

anchor in the bay of Hyères, out of gun-shot of the and the batteries, leaving a line-of-battle ship and two or

three frigates, as a squadron of observation off Cape Sicie. This afforded to vice-admiral Emeriau several opportunities to sail out with his fleet, and chase “ the enemy" from off the port ; but he invariably returned to his anchorage after effecting this important service : important, indeed, for the admiral wrote a despatch every time he weighed, and the minister of marine invariably published that despatch in the columns of the Moniteur.

On the 13th, while the british fleet was getting

under way in very light winds, the Téméraire drifted batte. near to the battery at Pointe des Mèdes, Instantly the bay of battery opened a fire upon her; which was returned Hyères by the Téméraire, as well as by the Caledonia, who

was also within gun-shot. By the aid of their boats, both ships got out of reach of the battery; but not until some shots had struck them, particularly the Téméraire, who had one of her maindeck guncarriages disabled, and her master, Mr Robert

teur.

Témé. raire and the

« AnteriorContinuar »