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of June, the birth-day of his late Majesty, King George III. The whole place was now in the power of Captain Maitland, who was permitted by the inhabitants to take away the vessels lying in the harbour: they were La Confiance, pierced for twenty-six guns, twelve and nine pounders, and a French privateer brig, pierced for twenty guns; neither of them had their guns on board. The latter, with a merchant brig in ballast, they burnt; the Confiance was brought away, and being purchased into the service, was commissioned as a sloop of war, and Lieutenant Yeo appointed to the command of her.
If the conduct of the victors was honourable in these achievements, their treatment to the captives and the inhabitants was still more so. The Bishop and one of the principal men came off to express their gratitude for the generosity with which they had been treated, no instance of pillage having occurred; and the Bishop offered them every refreshment which the place would afford.
In the month of December, the Loire, in company with the Egyptienne, fell in with a French frigate off Rochefort, and very soon brought her to action, which the French Captain maintained with great bravery until disabled, and twenty of his men killed and wounded, when he struck. The ship was called La Libre, mounted twentyfour eighteen pounders on her main deck, six thirty-two pound carronades, and ten long nine pounders on her quarter-deck and forecastle. Lieutenant P. C. Handheld commanded the Egyptienne, in the absence of Captain Fleming. Captain Maitland, in the Loire, conducted the prize into port.
In the transactions of the year 1804, we have omitted to mention the gallant action between the Wolverine and the Blonde. Captain Henry Gordon commanded the British vessel, one of those built for a merchant-ship, and converted to a sloop of war, by the simple operation of cutting some ports much nearer to the water than they should have been, and placing in them guns and carriages fit for any thing but to fight with. In this vessel, having seventy-six men, and thirteen guns of different calibre, and a convoy to protect, Captain Gordon sailed for Newfoundland. On the 24 th of March, in longitude 23° west, he fell in with the Blonde, a French frigate privateer of thirty guns, and a hundred and eighty men. Captain Gordon owns that he might have avoided an action, but chose to try the fortune of war, and was beat, owing entirely to the miserably defective equipment of the Wolverine. He, however, fought till his ship was sinking under him, and in a quarter of an hour after the prisoners were removed she went down; she had five men killed, and ten wounded, being a fifth part of her complement. Captain Gordon, though many years a prisoner, was promoted to the rank of post-captain, and, on. his return to. England, most honourably acquitted by the sentence of a court-martial.
Nelson's appointment to command in the Mediterranean— Proceeds to his station—Loss of the Indostan by fire— Approaching hostility of Spain—Fleet in Agincourt sound— Skirmishes off Toulon, between British and French fleets— Despicable falsehood of French admiral—Indignation of Nelson—Death of LaToucheTreville—Boat expedition toHieresbay—French fleet puts to sea from Toulon—List of British fleet—Nelson's third voyage to Egypt—His reasons for going— French fleet puts back to Toulon—Nelson to the gulf of Palma —Gallant action of Arrow and Acheron—Capture of their convoy—Dey of Algiers dismisses British vice-consul—Gantheaume attempting to sail, is driven back by Lord Gardner— Villeneuve sails about the same time, and escapes—Is seen and pursued—His force and destination—Missiessy and the Rochefort squadron—Proceedings of Villeneuve—He raises the blockade of Cadiz—Is reinforced by seven sail of the line —Destination changed—He goes to the West Indies—Napoleon's three naval expeditions—He determines to take St. Helena—Affairs of the West Indies—Boats of the Tartar and Blanche—Commodore Hood fortifies the Diamond Rock— Action between the Osprey and Egyptienne—Between Egyptienne and Hippomanes—Commodore Hood and Sir Charles Green take Surinam—Arrival of the despatches—Bonaparte resolves to regain the colonies—Honourable Sir A. Cochrane goes from Ferrol in pursuit of Missiessy, who ar-. rives at Martinique—Attacks Dominica, Nevis, St. Kitts, and Montserrat—Relieves the city of St. Domingo, and returns to Europe—Villeneuve—His route—Instructions—Orders to victual at Gibraltar—Magon, with four sail of the line, sails to join Villeneuve—Nelson, with the British fleet, in chase of the French—Victuals in Lagos-bay—Arrives at Barbadoes— Takes Lieutenant-general Sir W. Myers on board, and sails for Trinidad—Visits other islands, and goes to Antigua— Lauds the troops—Sends home the Curieux with despatches
—Particulars of the recapture of the Diamond Rock—Nelson hears of Viileneuve, and ascertains (bat he has sailed for Europe—Follows him—Arrives off Cape St. Vincent—Length of the chase—He goes to Gibraltar to refit—Letters to Collingwood—Sails again—Joins the Channel fleet—Is ordered to Portsmouth—Arrival there.
Our readers are, no doubt, impatient to hear something of our favourite hero, whom we have scarcely noticed since the recommencement of the war.
Having been appointed to the command in the Mediterranean, Lord Nelson sailed in the Victory from Spithead, on the 20th of May, 1803. Captain George Murray, who so nobly led into action at Copenhagen, went out as captain of the fleet, and Captain S. Sutton in command of the ship; Captain T. M. Hardy, in the Amphion of thirty-two guns, accompanied the Admiral until they reached Ushant, when, joining Admiral Cornwallis, Nelson shifted his flag into the Amphion, and leaving the Victory as a temporary reinforcement to the Channel fleet, proceeded to Gibraltar, and thence to Toulon, where the Victory soon after rejoined him; he again returned to her, and on their going to Malta, an exchange took place between the Captains Sutton and Hardy; the former taking the command of the Amphion, the latter the Victory.
In the month of October, his ships being short of water, he bore up for the Madelena islands, where an excellent anchorage had been recently surveyed for him, by Captain G. F. Ryves of the Agincourt. Nelson named it "Agincourt Sound;" it is situated in the straits of Bonifacio, between Corsica and Sardinia, on the northern extremity of the latter island. Nelson greatly preferred Sardinia to Malta, and fervently prayed that the British government would take possession of it, "If we do not," he says, "the French will." When at sea, he kept the fleet generally off Cape Palma, or Cape St. Sebastian. These being to the westward of Toulon, gave him the advantage in strong westerly gales of running into the bay of Rosas, or under the Hieres islands, for shelter; or, when the weather was moderate, of keeping a watch on the Spanish fleet in Carthagena, and preventing them from forming a junction with the French at Toulon. There was one circumstance which happened on this station, that does not appear to have been sufficiently dwelt upon by the biographers of Nelson, although it seems to have plunged him into more difficulty than all the other casualties of his arduous cruise. He had been ten months out of England, at sea the greater part of the time, and without having received any material supplies.
Government, aware of his situation, sent out the Indostan, a ship built for an Indiaman, of eleven hundred tons burden, loaded with every article of which the British squadron could be supposed to stand in need. This ship was commanded by Captain Le Gros, her crew consisted of about three hundred people, including passengers, women, and children; she arrived at Gibraltar in March,