HMS Circe

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Circe, 1785
Type: 6th rate ; Armament 28
Launched at Dover : 1785 ; Disposal date or year : 16 Nov 1803
Disposal Details : Wrecked, November 16, on the Lemon and Ower, North Sea, in chase of an enemy: crew saved. Captain Charles Fielding.
Tons (BM) : 598.

Circa May 1793 captured the French privateer Auge in the Channel.

Circa May 1793 captured the French privateer Didon in the Channel.

26 May 1793 Circe and Aimable captured the French privateer Courier in the Channel.

Oct 1793, Circe frigate chased into Falmouth by a French Squadron.

30 Nov 1793 when in company with the Nymphe, between Brest and Ushant, detained the French sloop of war L'Espeigle, 16, 100 men, commanded by ensign de vaisseau M. Pierre Biiler.

3 Oct 1797 Remained off the Dutch coast whilst the remainder of the North Sea fleet victualled etc. at Yarmouth.

11 Oct 1797 engaged the Dutch fleet in what was to be known as the Battle of Camperdown (Admiral Duncan).

21 Feb 1798 prize money resulting from the sale of Dutch ships captured on the 11 Oct 1797 due for payment.

1 Jan 1799 Capt. R. Winthrop. North Sea.

9 Jun 1799 at Sea. Having received information that several Dutch gun-vessels were lying at the back of the Island of Ameland, and Captains Temple and Boorder, of his Majesty’s sloops Jalouse and L'Espeigle having very handsomely volunteered their services to cut them out, I ordered the boats of his Majesty's ships Circe, Jalouse, Pylades, Espeigle, Tysiphone to proceed under their command on the night of the 17th inst. for that purpose, and anchored with the ships as near the shore as possible, in readiness to afford every assistance in my power.
I am sorry to say it now appears that the gun-vessels had previously shifted their berth with the ebb-tide, and were lying aground when the boats got in at a place where it was impossible to get near them. The officers and men were therefore ordered to cut out as many vessels from the Wadde as it might be practicable to bring away, and I have the satisfaction to add, they succeeded in getting out twelve, without a man being killed or wounded, though the enemy annoyed them as much as possible from their batteries. Six of the vessels have valuable cargoes, and were bound to Amsterdam. The others are in ballast. I have the honour to remain, &c. R. Winthrop."

11 July 1799 off Ameland. ..... the Boats of our little Squadron, Circe, Pylades, Espeigle, Courier cutter, and Nancy cutter, Day, made another dash into the Watt, at the back of Ameland last Night, and brought out 3 valuable vessels deeply laden with sugar, wine, and brandy, they also burnt a large Galliott, laden with brass ordnance and stores, which could not be brought off, notwithstanding the perseverance of Captain Mackenzie, to whom I am very much indebted for his coolness and judgment in the management of this affair; and also to Captain Boorder, whose local knowledge has been of great use to me. Lieutenant Searle, who commanded a schoot converted into a gun boat, and Lieutenant Pawle, who commanded the Circe's boats, upon this (as well as upon a former) occasion, conducted themselves very much to my satisfaction, as did the honest fellows under their command, who were at their Oars fifteen or sixteen hours in a very hot day, opposed to an enemy of superior force, but I am happy to say not a man was hurt. I have the Honour to be, my Lord, &c. R. Winthrop."

Aug-Oct 1799 employed on expedition to Holland.

9-11 Oct 1799 Circe, in the River Ems, with the Hawke and Nancy Hired Cutters, and ships boats, captured from off the port of Delfzel the sloop Lynx, of 12 guns, 8 and 12 pounders, and 75 men and the schooner, the Perseus, mounting 8 four-pounders, and 40 men, lying within musquet shot of the batteries, without any loss, notwithstanding the enemy's guns were loaded, primed, and the matches lit.

22 Jan 1800 a seaman from the Alkmaar by the name of James Tester was court martialled on board the Circe, at Sheerness, for striking the boatswain's mate when on duty, and was sentenced to be hanged, but in view of his excellent character was recommended to mercy.

22 Jan 1800 an unnamed seaman from the Trusty was court martialled on board the Circe, at Sheerness, for desertion, and was sentenced to receive 50 lashes.

Circa Feb 1800 Captain Isaac Wooley is appointed to the Circe, of 28 guns, fitting at Sheerness.

Circa Feb 1800 Captain Winthrop, of the Circe, succeeds Captain Yorke in the Stag.

2 Jun 1800 Portsmouth, arrived with the Plover, Eugenie, and Osprey, with fifteen flat-bottomed boats from the Downs.

17 Jul 1800 Portsmouth, departed with the Venus, and Tromp, with a convoy for the West Indies

25 Jun 1800 in company with the Venus captured the Danish Vessel Carolina, laden with Wine, from Bourdeaux bound to Bremen.

11 Mar 1801 the Falmouth packet Lady Frances arrived Martinique, and departed some time later for Jamaica, arriving there on the 30 Mar, during which time she spoke to the Volage and Circe at sea.

16 Oct 1801 the Falmouth packet, Princess Elizabeth, Capt Kidd, called at Jamaica, where he found HM Ships Cumberland, Abergavenny, Topaze, Circe, Cerberus, Retribution, Volage, Shark, Calypso, and Merlin, and during her stay the Carnatic, Seine, and Crescent arrived, and Capt Kidd departed Jamaica 2 Nov., with HM ship Apollo in company.

19 Jan 1802 arrived Spithead the Ambuscade, 36, Captain the Hon. John Colvill, from Jamaica. She sailed from Port Royal on the 7th of December, and left there R.-Adm. Montagu, in the Sans Pareil, with H.M. ships Carnatic, Abergavenny, Crescent, Melampus, Juno, Circe, Bourdelais, and Tisiphone.

Circa 13 Jul 1802 Captain Hayes apptd to the Circe.

4 Sep 1802 anchored in Cawsand Bay, from Jamaica, the Spencer, 74, the Circe, 28, Captain Woolley, having left Vice-Admiral Sir T. Duckworth, Bar, Captain Dunn, in the Leviathan, 74, and it was supposed he would not leave that station till the Spring.

5 Sep 1802 went into Plymouth Sound.

9 Sep 1802 arrived Sheerness and passed through for Chatham to be paid off.

17 Nov-30 Dec 1802 prize money resulting from the expedition to Holland due for payment.

10 Jun 1803 has been docked at Chatham.

7 Jul 1803 at Chatham, contract riggers are getting forward with the Circe, Capt Fielding.

28 Jul 1803 warped down from Chatham to Gillingham to take in their stores.

4 Aug 1803 has been appointed to take the next Baltic convoy at Sheerness, a great number of vessels having gathered for the off already.

8 Aug 1803 sailed passed N Yarmouth with her convoy, which was joined by a number of vessels from that place.

19 Sep 1803 last night arrived Hull with a convoy from the Baltic.

21 Sep 1803 arrived N Yarmouth, from the East, with a convoy of 40 sail of merchantmen and transport No. 75, and remains, the wind blowing a fresh SEly.

25 Sep 1803 arrived Sheerness.

29 Sep 1803 departed Sheerness for the Downs.

30 Sep 1803 arrived in the Downs the Circe and with the Harpy, York and Immortalite departed on a cruise. Wind W., with rain.

1 Oct 1803 put back to the Downs, the wind having gone round to the NW, blowing them on to the French coast.

7 Oct 1803 departed the Downs, the Circe, the Hecla, and the Vesuvius, bombs, and the Minx, gun brig, on a cruise off the coast of France.

9 Oct 1803 arrived in the Downs from the French Coast.

12 Oct 1803 departed the Downs on a cruise and then the Nore where she was appointed to take the next Baltic convoy.

23 Oct 1803 arrived with a convoy at N Yarmouth in the early afternoon, the Circe, and departed later in the afternoon with her convoy, along with vessels that joined at Yarmouth, en route for the Baltic.

20 Nov 1803 it was reported at N Yarmouth that Wednesday last that when the Circe was in chase of a French privateer she struck on the Lemon and Oar (sic) several times, by which means she sprung a leak, and the water gaining on the crew they were compelled to leaved her the following day, when she soon went down. The officers and men were saved by 3 fishing vessels which arrived here Friday evening and put them on board the Repulse, 74, Adm Russell.

28 Nov 1803 a court martial was held at Sheerness, on Capt Fielding and officers, to inquire into the loss of the Circe frigate, when it appearing to the court that the misfortune arose from erroneous charts, they were all honourably acquitted.