1805 - Sir Richard Strachan's Action


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Naval history of Great Britain - Vol. IV
William James
1805 Sir Richard Strachan's Action 113

had occasionally raked the former while engaging the Formidable.

At 3 h. 5 m. P.M., having had her mizen topmast shot away and her fore topmast and mainmast left in a tottering state, and observing the Cæsar, who had since refitted her damaged rigging in the act of opening her fire, the Formidable hauled down her colours, and was taken possession of by the Namur ; who, having had her main yard cut in two by the French 80-gun ship's fire, was incapacitated from making sail. At 3 h. 10 m. P.M. just as the Duguay-Trouin and Mont-Blanc had bore up, to form a fresh line ahead of the Scipion, the latter ship, having, by the united fire of the Courageux and frigates, had her fore topmast and main and mizen masts shot away, struck her colours, and was taken possession of by the Phoenix and Révolutionnaire.

Seeing the fate of the Scipion and Formidable, the Duguay-Trouin and Mont-Blanc endeavoured to make off ; but they were soon overtaken by the Hero and Cæsar. After a close and well-maintained cannonade of about 20 minutes' duration, in which the British 80-gun ship's heavy broadsides were most sensibly felt, the two French 74s, being reduced to a shattered and defenceless state, and observing the Courageux ready to open her fire, hauled down their colours, the Duguay-Trouin to the Hero, and the Mont-Blanc to the Cæsar. This occurrence took place at about 3 h. 35 m. P.M. ; when the ships of both squadrons were nearly in the positions represented in the following diagram:

The Cæsar lost four men killed and 25 wounded ; the Hero, as a proof of the conspicuous part she took in the action, one second lieutenant of marines (Robert Morrison) and nine men killed, one lieutenant (John Shekel), one second lieutenant of

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