Some of this article's listed sources may not be reliable . (May 2018) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)
The Action of 25 January 1797 was a minor naval battle of the French Revolutionary Wars, fought in the Gulf of Cádiz. The Spanish third-rate ship of the line San Francisco de Asís was attacked and pursued for several hours by a British squadron of three fifth-rates frigates and a sixth-rate corvette under George Stewart, 8th Earl of Galloway. After an intermittent but fierce exchange of fire, the British warships, badly damaged, were eventually forced to withdraw. [ better source needed ] The San Francisco de Asís, which suffered only minor damage, was able to return to Cádiz without difficulties. The commander of the ship, Captain Alonso de Torres y Guerra, was promoted for his success.
The French Revolutionary Wars were a series of sweeping military conflicts lasting from 1792 until 1802 and resulting from the French Revolution. They pitted the French Republic against Great Britain, Austria and several other monarchies. They are divided in two periods: the War of the First Coalition (1792–97) and the War of the Second Coalition (1798–1802). Initially confined to Europe, the fighting gradually assumed a global dimension. After a decade of constant warfare and aggressive diplomacy, France had conquered a wide array of territories, from the Italian Peninsula and the Low Countries in Europe to the Louisiana Territory in North America. French success in these conflicts ensured the spread of revolutionary principles over much of Europe.
The Gulf of Cádiz is the arm of the Atlantic Ocean between Cabo de Santa Maria, the southernmost point of Mainland Portugal and Cape Trafalgar at the western end of the Strait of Gibraltar. Two major rivers, the Guadalquivir and the Guadiana, as well as smaller rivers, like the Odiel, the Tinto, and the Guadalete, reach the ocean here.
A ship of the line was a type of naval warship constructed from the 17th through to the mid-19th century to take part in the naval tactic known as the line of battle, in which two columns of opposing warships would manoeuvre to bring the greatest weight of broadside firepower to bear. Since these engagements were almost invariably won by the heaviest ships carrying the most powerful guns, the natural progression was to build sailing vessels that were the largest and most powerful of their time.
The winter of 1796–1797 was one of the stormiests of the 18th century.The British Royal Navy lost the ships of line HMS Courageux , wrecked off Gibraltar, and HMS Bombay Castle , foundered in the shoals of the Tagus river's mouth, as well as two frigates. A French expedition sent to Ireland to assist the rebel United Irishmen against the British government failed due to the storms. The Spanish navy also suffered the effects of the winter. The third-rate ship of the line San Francisco de Asís, commanded by Captain Don Alonso de Torres y Guerra, which was anchored in the Bay of Cádiz during a mission to protect the arrival of Spanish commercial shipping from America, was hit by the storms, and having lost her anchor, she was forced to go out to open sea.
Gibraltar is a British Overseas Territory located at the southern tip of the Iberian Peninsula. It has an area of 6.7 km2 (2.6 sq mi) and is bordered to the north by Spain. The landscape is dominated by the Rock of Gibraltar at the foot of which is a densely populated town area, home to over 30,000 people, primarily Gibraltarians. It shares a maritime border with Morocco.
HMS Bombay Castle was a 74-gun third rate ship of the line of the Royal Navy, launched on 14 June 1782 at Blackwall Yard. She grounded on 21 December 1796 in the shoals of the Tagus River's mouth.
The Tagus is the longest river in the Iberian Peninsula. It is 1,007 km (626 mi) long, 716 km (445 mi) in Spain, 47 km (29 mi) along the border between Portugal and Spain and 275 km (171 mi) in Portugal, where it empties into the Atlantic Ocean near Lisbon. It drains an area of 80,100 square kilometers (30,927 sq mi). The Tagus is highly utilized for most of its course. Several dams and diversions supply drinking water to places of central Spain and Portugal, while dozens of hydroelectric stations create power. Between dams it follows a very constricted course, but after Almourol it enters a wide alluvial valley, prone to flooding. Its mouth is a large estuary near the port city of Lisbon.
Spain and Britain, which had been allies against the Revolutionary France until the Peace of Basel and had cooperated in the Siege of Toulon (1793), became enemies when Spain aligned itself with France by Second Treaty of San Ildefonso in 1796. The British navy, on the outbreak of the war, withdrew from the Mediterranean Sea and was stationed in the Iberian Atlantic coast, from Cape Finisterre to Gibraltar.Sir John Jervis, commander of the Mediterranean Fleet, took its base at Lisbon, having been ordered by the Admiralty to focus on "taking every opportunity of annoying the enemy", asides of protecting the British trade and cutting Spain from its colonies. Among the British ships based in Lisbon, there was a division under the Earl of Galloway which comprised the frigates Lively , Niger and Meleager , and the sloops Fortune and Raven . According to Sir John Barrow, 1st Baronet, Second Secretary to the Admiralty for 40 years, Galloway, later known as Lord Garlies, was "an excellent man, but of a warm and sanguine temperament".
The Peace of Basel of 1795 consists of three peace treaties involving France during the French Revolution.
The Second Treaty of San Ildefonso was signed on 19 August 1796 between the 1469-1812 Kingdom of Spain and the 1792-1804 First French Republic. Based on the terms of the agreement, France and Spain would become allies and combine their forces against the British Empire.
The Mediterranean Sea is a sea connected to the Atlantic Ocean, surrounded by the Mediterranean Basin and almost completely enclosed by land: on the north by Southern Europe and Anatolia, on the south by North Africa and on the east by the Levant. Although the sea is sometimes considered a part of the Atlantic Ocean, it is usually identified as a separate body of water. Geological evidence indicates that around 5.9 million years ago, the Mediterranean was cut off from the Atlantic and was partly or completely desiccated over a period of some 600,000 years, the Messinian salinity crisis, before being refilled by the Zanclean flood about 5.3 million years ago.
At dawn on 25 January, the three frigates and one sloop of Galloway's division were sighted from the San Francisco de Asís sailing north-eastwards at a distance of 11 leagues from the port of Cádiz, parallel to the city.The lack of response to the signals of recognition made from the Spanish ship put on alert its crew. The British ships began to come close to the San Francisco de Asís relying on their lightness and their advantage, both in number and in artillery, as the division's ships mounted 40 pieces each of the two heaviest frigates, 34 the lesser one, and 28 the sloop. Minerve and Meleager were armed, moreover, with 24-pounder carronades.
At 1 pm the British division had approached enough to open fire on the San Francisco, who had hoisted its flag, ready to engage Galloway's ships,which also hoisted their British flags. The San Francisco then opened fire, and a running battle ensued without intermission until 4 pm. In the process, the San Francisco received the fire of two British frigates which successively shot him with grapeshot. The Spanish ship could only return the fire with the stern chasers of its batteries, although she luffed occasionally to shoot broadsides on the British frigates, inflicting serious damage. The British gunners, noted for their skill through the war, were not particularly accurate during the action, and San Francisco, already hit by the storm, didn't suffer serious damage.
In artillery, grapeshot is a type of shot that is not one solid element, but a mass of small metal balls or slugs packed tightly into a canvas bag. It was used both in land and naval warfare. When assembled, the balls resembled a cluster of grapes, hence the name. On firing, the balls spread out from the muzzle, giving an effect similar to a giant shotgun.
A chase gun, usually distinguished as bow chaser and stern chaser was a cannon mounted in the bow or stern of a sailing ship. They were used to attempt to slow down an enemy ship either chasing (pursuing) or being chased, when the ship's broadside could not be brought to bear. Typically, the chasers were used to attempt to damage the rigging and thereby cause the target to lose performance.
The British frigates left the battle at 4 pm, and although after consulting among themselves the British commanders resolved return to fight at 4:30 pm, they finally withdrew half an hour later. [ dubious ] The imminence of the nightfall and the possibility of running aground on the coast between Huelva and Ayamonte convinced Alonso de Torres y Guerra to turn back to Cádiz instead of chasing Galloway's division, but trying before to sail between the retreating British ships to shoot upon them two complete broadsides. The British vessels, however, managed to avoid the action by taking advantage of its fasteness and the darkness of the dusk.
Huelva is a city in southwestern Spain, the capital of the province of Huelva in the autonomous region of Andalusia. It is located along the Gulf of Cádiz coast, at the confluence of the Odiel and Tinto rivers. According to the 2010 census, the city had a population of 149,410. Huelva is home to Recreativo de Huelva, the oldest football club in Spain.
Ayamonte is a town and municipality located in the province of Huelva, (Spain) near the Guadiana River. According to the 2015 census, the city had a population of 20,357 inhabitants.
The San Francisco de Asís had 2 men killed and 12 wounded in the action. She received a shot at the mainyard, another one awash, and minor damage to the rigging and the hull. The ship had been repaired when, on 14 February, it took part in the Battle of Cape St Vincent. The British fleet, commanded by John Jervis, was victorious over the Spanish fleet under José de Córdoba y Ramos. The San Francisco played a role in the battle, helping at the end of the action to relieve the three-decker Santísima Trinidad , which had been put out of action and was about to be taken by the British fleet. [ additional citation(s) needed ] though the Spanish naval historian Cesáreo Fernández Duro states that one of Galloway's frigates lost its foretopmast.The damage and casualties aboard the British division remain unknown, and the action is not mentioned in English sources,
A success by ship of line fighting alone against a squadron of well armed frigates was not common during the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars.For example, in the Action of 8 March 1795, the 74-gun HMS Berwick was captured in just 15 minutes by the French frigate Alceste , supported by the frigates Minerve and Vestale . As a reward for his victory, Captain Alonso de Torres y Guerra was given the encomienda of Corral de Caracuel in the Order of Alcántara, which included, asides of the title of knight, an income of 15.800 reales. On the other hand, Galloway's career wasn't damaged by the result of the action, and he was chosen by Admiral Jervis to carry back to England news of the victory of St Vincent.
The Battle of Cape St Vincent was one of the opening battles of the Anglo-Spanish War (1796–1808), as part of the French Revolutionary Wars, where a British fleet under Admiral Sir John Jervis defeated a larger Spanish fleet under Admiral Don José de Córdoba y Ramos near Cape St. Vincent, Portugal.
The Battle of Cape St. Vincent was a naval battle that took place off the southern coast of Portugal on 16 January 1780 during the Anglo-Spanish War. A British fleet under Admiral Sir George Rodney defeated a Spanish squadron under Don Juan de Lángara. The battle is sometimes referred to as the Moonlight Battle because it was unusual for naval battles in the Age of Sail to take place at night. It was also the first major naval victory for the British over their European enemies in the war and proved the value of copper-sheathing the hulls of warships.
Neptune was a Bucentaure-class 80-gun ship of the line of the French Navy. Built during the last years of the French Revolutionary Wars she was launched at the beginning of the Napoleonic Wars. Her brief career with the French included several major battles, though she spent the last 12 years of her life under the Spanish flag.
The Battle of Santa Cruz de Tenerife was an amphibious assault by the Royal Navy on the Spanish port city of Santa Cruz de Tenerife in the Canary Islands. Launched by Rear-Admiral Horatio Nelson on 22 July 1797, the assault was defeated, and on 25 July the remains of the landing party withdrew under a truce, having lost several hundred men. Nelson himself had been wounded in the arm, which was subsequently partially amputated: a stigma that he carried to his grave as a constant reminder of his failure.
The Battle of Cape Santa Maria was a naval action of 5 October 1804 that took place off the southern Portuguese coast, in which a British squadron under the command of Commodore Graham Moore attacked a Spanish squadron commanded by Brigadier Don José de Bustamante y Guerra, in time of peace, without declaration of war between the UK and Spain.
The Action of 15 July 1798 was a minor naval battle of the French Revolutionary Wars, fought off the Spanish Mediterranean coast by the Royal Navy ship of the line HMS Lion under Captain Manley Dixon and a squadron of four Spanish Navy frigates under Commodore Don Felix O'Neil. Lion was one of several ships sent into the Western Mediterranean by Vice-Admiral Earl St Vincent, commander of the British Mediterranean Fleet based at the Tagus in Portugal during the late spring of 1798. The Spanish squadron was a raiding force that had sailed from Cartagena in Murcia seven days earlier, and was intercepted while returning to its base after an unsuccessful cruise. Although together the Spanish vessels outweighed the British ship, individually they were weaker and Commodore O'Neil failed to ensure that his manoeuvrees were co-ordinated. As a result, one of the frigates, Santa Dorotea, fell out of the line of battle and was attacked by Lion.
The Assault on Cadiz was a part of a protracted naval blockade of the Spanish port of Cadiz by the Royal Navy, which comprised the siege and the shelling of the city as well as an amphibious assault on the port itself from June to July 1797. After the battle of Cape Saint Vincent the British fleet led by Lord Jervis and Sir Horatio Nelson had appeared in the Gulf of Cadiz. During the first days of June the city was bombarded, but causing slight damage to the Spanish batteries, navy and city. Nelson's objective was to force the Spanish admiral Jose Mazarredo to leave the harbour with the Spanish fleet. Mazarredo prepared an intelligent response and the Spaniards began to build gunboats and small ships to protect the entrance of the harbour from the British. By the first days of July, after a series of failed attacks led by Rear-Admiral Nelson, and with the British ships taking huge fire from the Spanish forts and batteries, the British withdraw and the siege was lifted. The naval blockade, however, lasted until 1802.
The Action of 19 December 1796 was a minor naval engagement of the French Revolutionary Wars, fought in the last stages of the Mediterranean campaign between two British Royal Navy frigates and two Spanish Navy frigates off the coast of Murcia. The British squadron was the last remaining British naval force in the Mediterranean, sent to transport the British garrison of Elba to safety under the command of Commodore Horatio Nelson. The Spanish under Commodore Don Jacobo Stuart were the vanguard of a much larger squadron. One Spanish frigate was captured and another damaged before Spanish reinforcements drove the British off and recaptured the lost ship.
The Battle of Cape St Vincent was a minor naval engagement of the War of the Quadruple Alliance, fought on 20 December 1719 near Cape St. Vincent between a squadron of two British ships of the line and a frigate, under Commodore Philip Cavendish and a squadron of the Spanish ships of the line Conde de Tolosa, Hermione and Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe under Don Rodrigo de Torres sent from Santander to Cádiz to avoid its capture by the Anglo-French forces patrolling the Bay of Biscay.
The voyage of the Glorioso involved four naval engagements fought in 1747 during the War of the Austrian Succession between the Spanish 70-gun ship of the line Glorioso and several British squadrons of ships of the line and frigates which tried to capture it. The Glorioso, carrying four million silver dollars from the Americas, was able to repel two British attacks off the Azores and Cape Finisterre, successfully landing her cargo at the port of Corcubión, Spain.
Neptuno was an 80-gun Montañes-class ship of the line of the Spanish Navy. She was built in 1795 and took part in the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars. She fought with the Franco-Spanish fleet in the battle of Trafalgar, and was wrecked in its aftermath.
The battle of Cape Celidonia took place on 14 July 1616 during the Ottoman-Habsburg struggle for the control of the Mediterranean when a small Spanish fleet under the command of Francisco de Rivera y Medina cruising off Cyprus was attacked by an Ottoman fleet that vastly outnumbered it. Despite this, the Spanish ships, mostly galleons, managed to repel the Ottomans, whose fleet consisted mainly of galleys, inflicting heavy losses.
The Action of 13 October 1796 was a minor naval engagement of the French Revolutionary Wars, fought off the Mediterranean coast of Spain near Cartagena between the British Royal Navy 32-gun frigate HMS Terpsichore under Captain Richard Bowen and the Spanish Navy 34-gun frigate Mahonesa under Captain Tomás de Ayalde. The action was the first battle of the Anglo-Spanish War, coming just eight days after the Spanish declaration of war. In a battle lasting an hour and forty minutes, Mahonesa was captured.
The Battle of Bordeaux was a naval engagement of the Franco-Spanish War of 1635 fought on 20 October 1653 in the Gironde estuary. A Spanish fleet under Álvaro de Bazán, 3rd Marquis of Santa Cruz, sent to relieve Bordeaux, at that time held by the nobles rose up against Louis XIV during the Fronde, encountered a great concentration of French warships belonging to Duke of Vendome's army in the channel of Blaye and captured or destroyed most of it. Shortly after a landing was made by some 1,600 soldiers of the Spanish Tercios which sacked the village of Montagne-sur-Gironde. A similar attempt in the Island of Ré was rejected, so Santa Cruz, having accomplished his orders, returned to Spain.
The Action of 26 April 1797 was a minor naval engagement during the French Revolutionary Wars in which a Spanish convoy of two frigates was trapped and defeated off the Spanish town of Conil de la Frontera by British ships of the Cadiz blockade. The British vessels, the ship of the line HMS Irresistible and the Fifth-rate frigate HMS Emerald, were significantly more powerful than the Spanish frigates, which were on the last stage of a voyage carrying treasure from Havana, Cuba, to the Spanish fleet base of Cadiz.
Francisco Díaz Pimienta (1594–1652) was a Spanish naval officer who became Captain general of the Ocean Fleet.
The San Esteban Apedreado was a fifth-rate frigate in the Spanish navy that ran ashore and was damaged in the Rio de la Plata in 1741, and was broken up in 1744 or 1745.
HMSEmerald was a 36-gun Amazon-class frigate that Sir William Rule designed in 1794 for the Royal Navy. The Admiralty ordered her construction towards the end of May 1794 and work began the following month at Northfleet dockyard. She was completed on 12 October 1795 and joined Admiral John Jervis's fleet in the Mediterranean.
HMS Romulus was a 36-gun fifth rate frigate of the Royal Navy. At the outbreak of the French Revolutionary Wars, Romulus was despatched to the Mediterranean where she became part of the fleet under Lord Hood, initially blockading, and later occupying, the port of Toulon. She played an active role during the withdrawal in December, providing covering fire while HMS Robust and HMS Leviathan removed allied troops from the waterfront.
Velters Cornewall Berkeley (1754–1804) was an officer in the Royal Navy. He served in both the American and French Revolutionary Wars but never rose above the rank of Captain. He died at his home in Oxford in 1804, aged 50.