The Barrington Papers, Vol. 77. Originally published by Navy Record Society, London, 1937.
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Letters - 1762
Swiftsure, in Basque Road. 6th January, 1762.
In the Line of Battle, the Achilles is to be placed between the Trident and Sandwich, the Superb between the Princess Amelia and Prince Frederick.
For the better distinguishing each other in the time of Battle, when the Commanding Officer shall hoist blue Colours, each Ship of the Squadron is to do the same.
|To the Hon. Capt. Barrington, Achilles.||T. Stanhope. (fn. 1)|
By Sir Thomas Stanhope, Commanding His Majesty's Ships and Vessels in Basque Road.
You are hereby required and directed to put yourself under the command of the Right Honble the Lord Howe and follow his Orders for your further proceedings.
Dated on board His Majesty's Ship Swiftsure in Basque Road 7th March 1762.
By the Lord Viscount Howe, Commander in Chief of His Majesty's Ships and Vessels employed and to be employed in and about the Road of Basque.
The Achilles being of the Squadron of H.M. Ships appointed by the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty to remain under my command, You are therefore hereby directed to apply as you have occasion and be guided in your future proceedings, by the Instructions you may receive from me from time to time, till further Orders.
You are to keep the Ship you command in constant readiness for the sea, and compleat, as opportunity offers, in the Stores and Provisions agreeable to the last Orders which you have received upon that head from the Board of the Admiralty.
Given in Basque Road the 7th day of March 1762.
By command of the Commodore, J. Cerrit.
Orders of Distinguishing Signals to the
When the Commodore would speak with the Captain of any of His Majesty's Ships or Vessels undermentioned, he will put abroad a Pendant as against that Ship or Vessel's name; If with a lieutenant the same Signal with a Weft of the Ensign; And for a Boat without an Officer the Weft will be hoisted only half staff up.
For all other Signals you are referred to the General Printed Sailing and Fighting Instructions, and likewise to the Additional Signals and Instructions herewith delivered.
Dated on board His Majesty's Ship Magnanime in Basque Road 7th day of March 1762.
Line of Battle
The Nassau is to lead on the Starboard and the Monmouth on the Larboard Tack.
N.B. When the Squadron is to be formed by Signal into two separate Lines of Battle as in the 53rd Article of the Additional Instructions, the Ships appointed as above to lead on the different Tacks, are constantly to lead the separate Divisions alike upon both Tacks.
Given on board the Magnanime in Basque Road the 7th March 1762.
By command of the Commodore, J. Cerrit.
Signals by which the Ships of War of the Squadron
are to be made known to each other in case of
meeting after separation by Day and Night
By Day: When any Ship lose company, upon discovery of the Squadron again the Ship to Windward is to be made known by clewing the Foretopsail sheets up, with the Yard aloft; And the Ship to Leeward by clewing up the Mizentopsail in the same manner. And upon either being answered in this manner by the other, the Ship first making the Signal is then to hoist an English Jack at the Mizentopmast head; to which the other is to reply by shewing a French Jack at the same place.
By Night: If not within hail by night, the Ship to Leeward is to shew two lights in the fore shrouds, one over the other, at a discernable distance, and the Ship to Windward to shew two lights of equal height at a discernable distance from each other, where they may be most easily distinguished; And upon either being answered by the other as above, the Ship making the first Signal is to burn two false fires one after the other, keeping her lights abroad till replied by the other by two false fires to be burnt at the same time, and having her lights extinguished.
When within hail, the Ship that hailes first is to ask: What Ship's that? The Ship hailed is to answer: For England. The first is to reply: Victory. And is to be answered by the other: And Renown.
Additional Signals and Instructions to be observed by the Ships of War
When at any time the Commander in Chief means that any of the Established Printed Signals should be complied with by a particular Ship only, the Signal as for speaking with the Captain of such Ship will be made at the same time with the Signal expressive of the particular service required:
And if such Signal is not duly observed, notice thereof is to be given from any the nearest Ship discovering the same to the Ships concerned, by shewing the Signal Pendant (having such on board) as appointed for distinguishing that particular Ship.
It is moreover to be observed in addition to the Instructions given on the same occasion in the Established Printed Signal Book; That for the more regular conduct of the Fleet the Ships of War are to bear up, shorten sail, or otherwise, without regard to seniority or other claim of distinction, as most commodious on either part, to prevent the danger of falling on board each other.
The same attention is likewise to be observed in giving place to Ships endeavouring to gain their appointed stations, or proceeding otherwise, as directed by Signal from the Commander in Chief.
All Signals appointing any movement in the Fleet (as for Chacing, the whole, or in part; Order of Battle; or otherwise) will be kept abroad no longer than till they appear to have been duly regarded; But they are to be deemed still in force till countermanded by Signal of different signification: And in respect to the continuance of the Fleet in any Order of Battle or other similar occasion whereon it is customary to keep the Signal abroad, the duration thereof will be limited by the General Signal as in the 21st Article for the Ships of War to keep their appointed stations, in the Order of Sailing.
For the advantage of dispatch and the more convenient distribution of Orders occasionally, the Captains of the Squadron are to direct their Lieutenants summoned by Signal on board the Commander in Chief, to provide themselves accordingly and copy off from the Day Book of the Magnanime such Orders as are intended then to be issued; to which they are to subscribe their names, in the said Day Book respectively, in acknowledgment of their receipt of such Order, if so required.
Upon seeing a strange sail in either quarter of the compass.
In case of seeing a strange Sail in either Quarter of the Compass:
A French Jack at the Mizen Peek is to be hoisted if in the NE Quarter Dutch — NW — French Jack at the Ensign Staff is to be hoisted if in the SE — Dutch — SW —
Which being answered by the Commander in Chief by a French Jack at the Ensign Staff, is then to be lowered and hoisted so many times according to the number of Ships discovered.
|Blue pierced with White||Maintopmast head||(6) For Officers and all other Persons belonging to the Fleet to repair on board their respective Ship; After which Signal is made, no Boat is to be suffered to go on shore on any account whatsoever without leave first obtained from the Commander in Chief. (fn. 2)|
|Ditto||Mizentopmast head, and Ship's Signal||(7) For such Ship to keep a mile ahead of the Fleet during the Night, being then to carry a light in her Stern.|
|Ditto||Mizen Peek||(8) For the Ship or Ships whose Signal is made therewith to pass within hail, under the Commander in Chief's Stern.|
|Red with White Cross||Mizentopmast head, and particular Ship's Signal||(9) For such Ship to make sail ahead (on either Quarter of the Compass, if the Signal Flag expressive of the same is shewn therewith) to make the Land, the which upon discovering thereof is to be signified upon her return to the Fleet by hoisting a White Flag at the Maintopgallant-masthead, that is to be kept abroad till answered from the Commander in Chief by a Blue Pendant at the Foretopgallant masthead.|
|Ditto||Mizen Peek||(10) For the Ship or Ships whose Signals are made therewith to remain by or accompany into the nearest port Ships making Signal of distress; These attendant Ships being, after having seen such disabled Ship in safety, to return in quest of the Fleet agreeable to their appointed rendezvous.|
|Ditto||Ensign Staff||(11) For the Ship whose Signal is made therewith, to examine any strange Ship then standing into the Fleet.|
|Red & White||Maintopmast head||(12) For the Squadron when in chace to engage the Enemy in Line of Battle according to the Order in which they may successively arrive up with them.|
|Ditto||Foretopmast head||(13) For the Ships to prepare for battle.|
|Ditto||Mizentopmast head, and one or more Ships' Signals||(14) For such Ships successively as their Signals are made, to keep between the Commander in Chief and Ships sent out ahead, or to chace, on any Quarter of the Compass as specified by the Chacing Flag for that Quarter hoisted at the same time, to repeat Signals or guide them back to the Fleet.|
|Ensign halfstaff up||with two Guns||(15) To be made on discovery of danger.|
|Dutch Flag||Maintopmast head||(16) When the Ship whose Signal is made therewith is judged to be out of her appointed Station in the Order of Battle.|
|Ditto||Foretopmast head||(17) For Ships chacing upon a wind, and then before the Commander in Chief's Beam, to tack.|
|Ditto||Mizentopmast head||(18) For Ships chacing as before, and then abaft the Commander in Chief's Beam, to tack.|
|Flag White with Red Cross||Maintopmast head||(19) For the Ships whose Signal is made therewith to take in tow any disabled Ship of War or Tender whose Signal (to distinguish the same) will be made after the first Signal is judged to have been observed.|
|Blue with Red Cross||Mizentopmast head||(20) For the Squadron or those Ships whose Signals are made therewith, to make sail ahead, remain astern, bear up, or otherwise, though the Commander in Chief on the contrary, either alone or with the other Ships of War, falls astern or makes sail ahead, &c. &c.|
|Blue and White||Mizentopmast head||(21) When the Ships whose Signals are made therewith, are judged to be out the Stations assigned by the Order of Sailing.|
|Ditto||Ditto with Red Pendant over||When it is meant that the Captains of Ships whose Signal is made therewith, should endeavour to keep Tenders or Ships under convoy, then nearest to them, within the circle of the Ships of War.|
|Ditto||Mizen Peek||(22) For an Account of the State and Condition of the Ship.|
|Ditto||Ensign Staff, and Red Pendant at the Fore and Mizentopmast heads||(23) For all Boats of the Squadron to go to the assistance of, or tow, the particular Ship whose Signal is made therewith.|
|Striped Red, White and Blue||Maintopmast head, and Ship's Signal||(24) For particular Ships to change their Stations in the Line.|
|Ditto||At Mizen Peek, with Blue Pedant over||(25) When the Commander in Chief means anchoring with a Stream Anchor.|
|Ditto||Ensign Staff, with 2 Guns||(26) When the Commander in Chief means, from the circumstances of bad weather, or otherwise, to bear up with the Fleet for the nearest Port.|
|Yellow||Foretopmast head||(27) When laying by, though not in Order of Battle, to fill and stand on.|
|Ditto||Ditto, with Yellow Pendant over||(28) For the Van when in Line of Battle to make more sail; which will be continued abroad till the headmost Ship has made sail in proportion required; the others being to be regulated thereby.|
|Ditto||Mizentopmast head||(29) For the Fleet to bring to, and lay by, when sailing either in Line of Battle, or otherwise, upon a wind.|
|Ditto||Ditto, and Yellow Pendant over||(30) For the Rear when in Order of Battle, to shorten sail; and will be continued abroad till the sternmost Ship has shortened sail in the proportion required; the rest being to be regulated thereby.|
|Striped Red and White||Maintopmast head||(31) For the Ships in the Van of the Fleet to lay by, or shorten sail, till the arrival up of the Commander in Chief.|
|Ditto||Foretopmast head||(32) For the Ship leading the Line to alter course to Starboard, one Point more than that on which the Squadron steered when the Line was first formed, either when sailing by the wind, or large.|
|Ditto||Ditto, with Red Pendant over||If to alter two Points as before.|
|Ditto||Ditto, with White ditto over||If to alter three Points as before.|
|Ditto||Ditto, with Blue ditto over||If to alter four Points as before.|
|Ditto||Ditto, with Yellow ditto over||If to alter five Points as before.|
|Ditto||Ditto, with striped Blue and White ditto over||
If to alter six Points as
But if the Commander in Chief would have such Ship when sailing by the wind, to alter the Course from the wind, more than six Points, he will make the Signal as for leading large on either Tack.
N.B. It is to be observed that when sailing in a Line ahead, the Course is always to be taken from the leading Ship; the others in succession being to be guided therein by their Seconds ahead.
|Striped Blue and white||Maintopmast head||(33) For the Ships in the Rear of the Fleet to make more sail.|
(34) For the Ship leading the
Line to alter the Course
to Port; with the distinctions as in the 23rd
Article to specify the number of Points meant to be
varied from the Course
before steered, either when
sailing by the wind or
N.B. At all times when the Squadron are sailing in Line of Battle ahead, and the Signal is made to tack, by the Union Jack at the Foretopmast head only; It is to be understood; That the Ship then leading upon one Tack is to continue still to lead on the other. But if the Signal for Tacking is made as for the whole Fleet to tack together, the Ship before in the Rear is then to lead in the Line, and the others to fall to leeward in their Stations according to Order prescribed.
|Ditto||Mizentpmast head||(35) For the Pilot from the particular Ship whose Signal is made therewith, to be sent on board to the Commander in Chief.|
|Ditto||Ditto, with Dutch at the Ensign Staff||(36) For a particular Ship whose Signal is made therewith, and whose Pilot is known to be acquainted with the navigation, to lead the Squadron into port; that Ship is thereupon to lead the Squadron into port accordingly, and anchor in a Station nearest to that judged most proper for the Ship of the Commander in Chief.|
|Striped Yellow and White||Mizentopmast head||(37) For the Fireship whose Signal is made therewith to prepare for immediate service.|
|Ditto||With proper Chacing Flag in Mizen Shrouds and Ship's Signal||(38) For such Fireship to proceed on service against the Enemy, in such direction as specified by that Chacing-Flag: The Ship of War whose Signal is made at the same time, being to cover that Fireship, as she is best able to.|
|White||Maintopmast head||(39) For the Fleet to gather nearer round the Com mander in Chief, when judged to be too much extended.|
|Pendant Red||Mizen Peek, with different Chacing Flags in the Mizen Shrouds||(40) For the whole Squadron to chace.|
|English Ensign, with Union downward||At Mizen Peek, with two Guns||(41) To be made by Ships having occasion in bad weather from the accident of springing a leak or other disaster, to part company from the Fleet; The which will be answered by the Commander in Chief, by an English Jack at the Ensign Staff and firing one Gun.|
|Ditto||Mizentopmast Shrouds, with two Guns||
(42) If such disabled Ship
needs likewise the company of another Ship to
see her in safety to the
nearest port; which will
be answered as before.
But if after the Signal for being unable to keep company hath been so made and answered, the Commander in Chief should not then, or soon after, make the Signal and bear up at the same time, the Captain of the disabled Ship is at liberty to part from him, and proceed as he judges most fit for the safety of his Ship, and upon his arrival in any port of Great Britain, he is to acquaint the Secretary of the Admiralty with the occasion of his separation.
|To signify the Chace is of superior force to the Chacing Ships||(43) Ships in chace discovering the Chace to be of superior force to themselves are to hoist a Dutch Flag at the Maintopgallant masthead; upon which the Ships between the Commander in Chief and them are to make all the sail possible to their assistance; having first repeated the Signal to him: To which he will answer by hoisting a Blue Pendant at the Foretopgallant masthead. And it is to be observed that Ships in chace arriving up with the Enemy, the Captains are not to engage with a superior force unnecessarily; But be chiefly attentive to lead the Squadron, or Ships thereof, coming to their assistance, up with the Enemy.|
|To signify the Chace to be an Enemy and may be spoken with without hazard of losing company||(44) Ships in chace discovering the Chace to be an Enemy, the Captain is to signify the same by hoisting a Dutch Ensign at the Mizen Peak and firing two Guns; But if upon discovering the Chace to be an Enemy he judges he shall be able to come up with her without losing Company, the Dutch Ensign is to be hoisted at the Mizentopmast head, and two Guns fired as before.|
|For Ships stationed between the Squadron and Chacing Ships to signify the Signal being made to call them in||(45) When the Commander in Chief sees occasion to recall Ships from chace and makes the proper Signal accordingly, it is to be made known by the Ships stationed between him and them to repeat Signals or guide them back to the Fleet, by their hoisting a Dutch Flag at the Foretopmast head, and firing one Gun or more, as necessary.|
|Upon discovery of a force of the Enemy superior to that of the Squadron||(46) Any Captain being detached by Signal to chace in order to make a nearer discovery of the Enemy, and apprehending them to be of superior force to the Squadron, is to make known the number of Ships of the Line their force consists of, by hoisting a Dutch Flag (by the Staysail Hallyards) half way up between the Maintopgallantmast and the Foretopmast heads; Which being answered from the Commander in Chief by a Blue Pendant at the Foretopgallant mast head, is then to be lowered and hoisted so many times according to the number of Ships discovered; Whereupon he is immediately to return and let the Commander in Chief know the particulars of the discoveries he hath been able to make.|
|Pilot Vessels distinguished by an Union Jack; White Jack||(47) If it should happen that in any part of the navigation during the course of the present destined service, a particular care in the conduct of the Ships should be found requisite; Pilot Vessels wearing an Union Jack at their Mastheads to distinguish them, will at such time be placed in proper Stations to mark out the limits of the Channel to Starboard; And the Vessels limitting the Channel to Port will wear a White Jack at the same place.|
|On joining the Fleet again, after separation in chace||(48) In case of separation in chace, which the Captains are most carefully to avoid, on their return to the Squadron they are to make themselves known by the respective daily Signals as aftermentioned, vizt:|
Signals by Night
As it is necessary in cruizing that all Signals should be made with as few Guns as possible, they will therefore be made in fair weather with Lights only, as directed in the Printed Instructions, except on the following occasions:
Signals in a Fog
N.B. In case when at sea that from any sudden shifting of the wind or change thereof after a calm, the Commander in Chief is put on the contrary Tack to that on which he was before sailing; If he choses to continue on this Tack, he will nevertheless make the Signal for Tacking: Which is to be understood as for changing from the Tack whereon he sailed before the alteration of wind &c happened. And should the wind by such alteration become favourable for sailing large on the course he intends to steer, soon after the Signal for Tacking as aforesaid hath been made and that he thinks it hath been complied with, he will make the appointed Signal for altering the Course as in the 4th Article according to the number of Points he keeps for the wind on the Tack last changed to.
During the Fog, the Ships when before steering by the wind are to alter course by the wind, as the wind alters either way: Observing to keep always to the wind, on the same Tack, till some Signal for altering the Course by tacking or bearing up is made.
Given under my hand on board His Majesty's Ship Magnanime in the Road de Basque this 8th March 1762.
By command of the Commodore, J. Cerrit.
Additions and Alterations to be made in the General Printed Instructions
Article the 9th line the 2nd. Instead of having them bring to with the Starboard Tacks &c, Read have them come to the Wind with the Starboard Tacks &c.
Article 12th, Upon discovery of Danger; referred to Article 15th of the Additional Instructions.
Article 13th, Upon discovery of Strange Ships; referred to Article 5th of the Additional Instructions.
Article 18th, On Springing a Leak or any other Disaster; referred to Article 41 of Additional Instructions.
Article 20th, Line the 3rd. For Ensign Staff, Read Mizen Peek.
Article 23rd, Line 4th. For fire ONE GUN, Read fire TWO GUNS, and the same in Article the 24th.
Signals for Calling Officers on Board.
Article 2nd, Line 1st. For in the same Place, Read Main Shrouds.
Article 23rd, Line 3rd. For to Engage the Enemy, Read Each Captain is to Engage the Ship of the Enemy opposed to him in the Line, without particular regard to his Place in the Order of Battle; Otherwise than so as to avoid firing upon any of His Majesty's Ships, or being exposed to their fire by crossing on them Unnecessarily. But is on no account to begin Action before this Signal is made.
Article 18th. For the Van to hoist, lower &c. Referred on this occasion to the 28th and 30th Articles of Additional Instructions.
Given on board the Magnanime in Basque Road March the 8th 1762
By command of the Admiral, J. Cerrit.
N.B. The Transports attending upon the Squadron will be generally anchored to windward of it, where the Frigates will be appointed occasionally to remain for their protection.
Dated 14th March 1762.
By the command of the Commodore, J. Cerrit.
By the Lord Viscount Howe, Commander in Chief of His Majesty's Ships and Vessels employed and to be employed in and about the Road de Basque.
His Majesty's Ship you command being of the Squadron destined to remain at this time in the Road de Basque chiefly to prevent the escape of several of the Enemy's Ships of War, known to be now waiting in the River Charante, to embrace the first opportunity of putting to sea; You are during your continuance on this service, to observe relative thereunto and for the better security of the Squadron whilst at anchor, the following general Instructions:
Your Ship being to remain stationed whilst at anchor according to the form prescribed, You are to keep her in constant readiness to cut, or slip, and put suddenly to sea or proceed on any action, or service as occasion may require: And that no discovery may be made by the Enemy of the precautions taken for the security of the Squadron, during the night, you are always to have at that time an Armed Boat lying alongside, or otherwise in readiness, to be employed for the stopping and examining all Vessels whatever endeavouring to pass near or through the Squadron, on your part, which you are to prevent by every means in your power: And you are moreover to keep at least one third part of the Crew of your Ship under arms, as the other necessary duties will permit, that you may be found better prepared [against] any sudden attempts which from their near neighbourhood, the Enemy may be encouraged to undertake.
No Boats to be allowed to pass the Ships of War without being challenged, or Officers absent from their proper Ships after the Watch is set; except the Guard Boats declaring themselves to be such when hailed, or such Boats as may be employed on the business of the service. All other Boats are to be stopped; and if upon examination found to be absent from their respective Ships contrary to the intent of this appointment, they are to be detained and a report made of the circumstance and occasion thereof to the Commander in Chief the next morning pursuant thereunto. All persons passing through the Squadron after the Watch is set, are to obey the Call of the Centinels in the different Ships and relate on demand the occasion of such their absence from their proper Ships accordingly; as Orders will be given to fire upon such persons as disobey this injunction.
The Guard Boats for the Out Guard as appointed daily at the proper season being suitably armed and provided with Grenades and Fire Grapnels, and commanded each by a trusty Petty Officer, are to be kept always passing backwards and forwards on each part (not exceeding one or two miles at the discretion of the Lieutenant) to windward of the Squadron as the tide and weather will allow: And when it may be necessary to relieve the Crews from the fatigue of a too constant duty in this kind, they are permitted to wait alongside any of the weathermost Ships, Armed Cutter, or Frigates lying without the body of the Squadron on that part, or return to be changed successively at their respective Ships as the Lieutenant of the Guard shall direct. They are not to suffer any Boats to pass them during the night, but such as have [sic, ? having] been first examined they see reason so to do, conformable to the purport of the preceding Article, nor any Vessel whatsoever to approach the Squadron at that time. The Guard Boats of each Division are to be commanded by a Lieutenant named daily for that duty; who is to collect from the different Boats under his orders, and deliver in a Report of the occurrences on his Guard, to the Commander in Chief, the next morning by eight o'clock; But the Boats of his Division are to be dismissed to return to their respective Ships at the relief of the Watch.
A Watch-Word will be daily given for the Guard Boats respectively to distinguish each other: And it is only to be communicated to the Lieutenants having the Watch in the different Ships, and the Officer commanding each of the Guard Boats; and if the Lieutenant of the Watch in any Ship sees occasion to call a Guard Boat on board to him, which he is doubtful of in the night, and demands the Words, it is to be privately given by the Officer of the Guard Boat to the Lieutenant meeting him at the side for that purpose.
Upon occasion of any Guard Boat passing a Ship from whence it hath not been hailed, or otherwise examined agreeable to the tenour of these Instructions, mention is to be made of that Ship's name and the circumstances of such omission reported.
The Ships of War lying on different parts of the Squadron are to use force occasionally for the detention and examination of any Boats or Vessels steering into or passing near the Squadron at any time, contrary to the intent of this appointment: On which account, and for the due observance of these Regulations, the most public communication is to be made of them in the different Ships respectively.
Given under my hand in Basque Road 15th March 1762.
Signals & Instructions for the Conduct of the Out and other Guard Boats on duty during the Night
|Guard Boats discovering danger to the Squadron from an Enemy superior to the force of all their Boats and Cutters united.||(1) The Guard Boats upon the Out Guard discovering any danger to be apprehended by the Squadron from the attempt of an Enemy, of a force superior to themselves and that of the Guard Boats in waiting and Guard Cutters united, are immediately to burn many false fires, fire Musquets without discontinuance, till answered as hereafter specified, and return forthwith to communicate the particulars to the Commander in Chief and the Ships nearest to them.|
|When the Out Guard Boats assisted by the Boats of the Squadron would be able to repel the Enemy.||(2) But upon the approach or expected attempts of an Enemy in opposition to which the assistance of the Guard Boats in waiting and Guard Cutters is deemed sufficient, the Lieutenant of the Guard is to burn 2 false fires, at the same time, and fire single Musquets successively till the Signal is taken notice of as before, and the Guard Boats in waiting are thereupon to be dispatched forthwith from the nearest Ships to the assistance of that Guard without delay. Upon the arrival of them, the Officer is to attack the Enemy as he sees practicable with the precautions for his future security of sending to make known his situation to the Commander in Chief as circumstances will admit.|
|When the Boats on the Out Guard are able alone to examine strange Ships discovered.||(3) Upon the appearance of an Enemy giving cause of alarm, or discovery of strange Ships approaching the Squadron near his Guard, and which he thinks himself already of force sufficient to seize upon or prevent, he is then to burn only one false fire; But to repeat it from time to time as in the preceding Article, till answered by the Commander in Chief by one false fire and one light shewn at the Ensign Staff; He is thereupon to advance supported by a proper disposition of his other Boats, (fn. 3) to make a more exact enquiry into the particular subject of alarm: or oppose the Enemy as he is able: And he may be assured that upon his distinguishing himself on this occasion his Merits shall be suitably made known.|
|To send the earliest information to the Commander in Chief of the particulars upon occasion of any alarm.||(4) He is to send always upon any cause of alarm the earliest information he is able of his conjectures on the subject of it, to the Commander in Chief, or the nearest Ships, as circumstances will admit; in order that the most timely assistance may be provided for his support: And if the Commander in Chief would have the Guard Boats in waiting to repair to the assistance of that Guard, he will make the proper Signal accordingly. But it is to be observed that the Out Guard Boats of the other Divisions are not to quit their Stations on any of these occasions (unless already very near at hand) until the Signal for the Squadron to cut or slip, or the General Signal for calling in the Guard Boats is made; Lest the first alarm given by the Enemy should have been only meant to engage the attention of the Squadron on that part whilst they meditate their real insult at another Quarter.|
|Private Ships to repeat Signals from the Guard Boats if not immediately answered by the Commodore.||(5) Private Ships seeing any of these Signals from the Guard Boats, and that they are not most quickly observed by the Commander in Chief, are to repeat the same by Signal as for seeing strange Ships in that Quarter and fire one Gun if necessary.|
|If the Commodore would have all the Guard Boats on duty to return to their respective Ships.; For Boats manned and armed and if to chace.; To recall the Guard Boats in waiting back to their respective Ships.||(6) If the Commander in Chief from any appearance of danger or otherwise would have all the Out Guard Boats to return to their respective Ships, he will shew one light at the Ensign Staff and one at the Mizen Peek and fire one Gun, and if for the Guard Boats in waiting to repair to the assistance of either of the advanced Divisions, he will shew the lights at the Ensign Staff, as for all Lieutenants, and the number of lights at the Mizen Peek expressive of the Quarter whereunto they should repair (as appointed for seeing Ships in that Quarter) and fire 2 Guns: Which he will moreover at all times do with the Signal for all Lieutenants, with or without the lights at the Mizen Peek, when he wants the Boats manned and armed to chace or otherwise in the night. But if from further information in any of the foregoing instances, he should afterwards think it necessary to recall these last from chace, he will fire one Gun as a preparation to the Signal and presently afterwards burn 2 false fires at a short space of time distant one from the other, and repeat them if necessary.|
|For the Squadron to cut upon any sudden occasion.||(7) When in consequence of any of these Signals made from the Guard Boats, the Commander in Chief would have the Ships to cut from their Anchors in order for placing themselves in a better position to repell or avoid the efforts of the Enemy, he will fire 2 Guns precipitately (as near one after the other as possible), burn many false fires at the same time, and shew the distinguishing lights as for coming up with the Enemy at the Mizen Peek: He will also then wear the 3 lights in the Stern Lanthorns. Each private ship is thereupon to shew a light immediately, or the distinguishing lights as soon as may be.|
|For the Squadron to slip on the same occasion, circumstances admitting of that greater delay.; The Ships to remain with springs on, in readiness for casting.||(8) But if he would have the Squadron slip only as judging there will be sufficient time to get the Ships under way in that more leisure[ly] manner, he will shew the distinguishing and Poop lights as before, and burn false fires, but fire only one Gun; Each private Ship being at the same time to shew the lights as directed in the preceding Article. And to prevent the hazard to the Ships of falling on board each other on either of these occasions, they are always to remain with a spring upon their Cables in order to cast them in the narrowest compass.|
Given under my hand in Basque Road 15th March 1762.
By command of the Commodore, J. Cerrit.
General Order of Battle
The Nassau to lead on the Starboard and the Monmouth on the Larboard Tack.
Order in which the Squadron is to form the Line when the Union Flag is hoisted at the Mizen Peek alone, or with a Pendant under.
But if upon viewing the form of the Enemy I should choose to have the Ships placed differently from the Order in which they succeed each other as above, and wherein they are proposed in general to be drawn up; Either for the purpose of being myself opposed to the Commanding Officer of the Enemy placed in the Centre of their Line as is their usual practice; Or that upon finding them composed, as is possible, of a number of Ships greater than that of which the British Squadron consists; In which last case I may perhaps attempt by studied delays to conceal from them my purpose of bringing them to action, till later in the day, and that an opportunity offers of doing it more to advantage: To specify in either circumstance, the Order in which I would then have the Ships placed, When I make the Signal for the Line by hoisting an Union Flag at the Mizen Peek, I will hoist also over that Flag, according to the different occasions, the Pendants respectively as undermentioned:
|Second Order of Battle.|
|Union Flag at Mizen Peak with white Pendant over.|
|Ships' Names.||Against which of the Enemy to be opposed.|
Whilst the Squadron remains formed in two separate Lines of Battle pursuant to the Signal in the 53rd Article of the Additional Instructions, the Ships appointed to lead in the General Order as above, on the different Tacks, are constantly to lead the separate Divisions alike upon both Tacks.
Given under my hand in Basque Road the 11th day of
IIth April 1762
By the Lord Viscount Howe, Commander in Chief of a Squadron of His Majesty's Ships and Vessels employed and to be employed in and about the Road de Basque.
Whereas I have good reason to believe that the Enemy are providing materials of every kind, probably for the purpose of renewing their former extravagant attempts upon the Squadron by Fire Vessels; or possibly in view of putting to sea with their Ships of War at all the hazard attending it, as is known once to have been their orders; And that in case of opposition from the Squadron, their reliance was placed upon the supposed facility of carrying the Ships by Boarding; And though their hope of success, in either instance, could only be grounded on the mistaken presumption of finding the Squadron unprepared; Nevertheless, in order to guard further against the confusion inseparable from surprise, and the disgrace thence ensuing, I have thought requisite to make the following Additions to the Regulations already established, for obtaining the earliest notice of their approach, should they still deem the escape of their Ships practicable:
Two Ships will be anchored on that part, and Cutters with Guard Boats attending them, will be appointed to keep at proper seasons during the night, off of the Channels on each side of the Isle of Aix; But at such distances these last from the Shore, as to secure them from the hazard of being cut off by the Enemy's Row Gallies &c in case of little wind. They are to be retired back to their advance Stations in the morning by dawn of day, in order to keep concealed from the Enemy as much as possible this provision, for being timely warned of their attempts.
Signal is to be made from the Cutters to signify any approach of the Enemy, by burning false fires, shewing lights, and firing Guns successively, till answered by one false fire and one light at the Ensign Staff: Which if not immediately done, the Signal from the Cutter is to be repeated from the Ships in view thereof as appointed in the 5th Article in the Instructions for the Conduct of the Guard Boats, on the same occasion. And if I would have such Ship to chace, I shall then (upon having answered their Signal as above) quickly after burn two false fires.
But in case such Ships of the Enemy are deemed of superior force to the Ships discovering them, notice thereof is to be given by shewing two lights of equal height at the Mizen Peek and one at the Ensign Staff, and burning of false fires expressive of the number of the Enemy's Ships seen: Whereupon an equal number of Ships next at hand are to slip and chace in succession unless countermanded. And the Cutters or Guard Boats are to follow the Enemy at a suitable distance for leading the chacing Ships up to them, and carry a light for that purpose, but so disposed as to remain concealed as much as possible from the view of the Enemy. But if the appearance of the Enemy is deemed such that a general attack upon the Squadron is to be apprehended, Signal is to be made by firing two Guns precipitately, shewing the lights as before, and burning many false fires at the same time: Whereupon the Ships are to be got under sail immediately, and kept in proper command for chacing or otherwise acting against the Enemy as the exigency requires. But particular care must be taken to shew on such occasions, either the Distinguishing Lights (as for coming up with an Enemy) or other lights immediately, to avoid the accident else to be apprehended of running foul of each other: And the Parole for that night is to be the General Answer between the Ships to know each other when hailed (as is more especially enjoined to be done before firing) in case the Distinguishing Lights liable to be shot away or otherwise extinguished, are not upon the approach of the Ships together in the course of the night, mutually seen.
In order that the Ships may be better suited for this occasion besides the precaution before directed specifying in what manner they are to be prepared for casting in the narrowest compass, they will remain at Single Anchor, the Quarters to be kept clear and provided with every article necessary for immediate action; And the sails furled with yarns in readiness for being set at the shortest warning; And upon discovery of any Fire Vessels approaching the Squadron, the Ship apprised thereof is to signify the same by firing 2 Guns precipitately and shew 2 lights at the Ensign Staff, and one at the Mizen Peek, if the time will admit. The Squadron will likewise be sufficiently alarmed by the steps taken in that Ship for her defence; And the Guard Boats are immediately to repair to her assistance, and endeavour at all hazard to tow off the Fire Vessels with which she may be engaged.
In the employment of the Boats for intercepting the Fire Vessels of the Enemy, particular attention should be had to the cutting off the retreat of the Persons conducting them: As the seizing upon the Boats prepared for their escape, will be one of the surest means of throwing them into confusion, and thence preventing in a great measure the effect of their intent; Wherefore proper Instructions should be given to the Officers commanding the Boats so appointed, on this head.
The Guard Boats to attend upon and remain with the Cutters for the night, are to be furnished from the Ships anchored apart as before mentioned, whilst it is thought necessary to continue this Guard. But as it is judged that the same appointment may not be requisite when the wind is to the westward, the attendance of the Boats will then be dispensed with, and the Cutters employed on other service. And if upon any change of wind, favourable to the Enemy as before, I should think proper to re-establish these Guards: If in the daytime, I will shew a Flag Red striped with White, at the Mizentopmast head. But with a Pendant over, if for the Cutters only: Whereupon the Boats and Cutters (or Cutters alone) are to proceed after dark to their advanced Stations as before. But if in the night, I will then shew one light in the Main, one in the Fore, and one in the Mizen Shrouds, and burn one false fire, or fire a Gun if necessary; Which is to be answered by the Ships whose Boats are in appointment for this duty: And Cutters also, by shewing one light: And the Boats (if the weather is suitable) and Cutters are thereupon to repair to their respective Stations as before.
If after the movement of the Ships on these or any other occasions, they should need the assistance of the Boats of the Squadron to tow them, Signal is to be made to signify the same in the daytime, by hoisting an Union Jack at the Foretopgallantmasthead; And in the night by two Lights at the Ensign Staff and one at the Mizen Peek, as in the 4th Article preceding; But fire one Gun only, or burning one false fire, as necessary for making the Signal noticed; and according to the urgency of the occasion.
Great care is to be taken that no lights are shewn during the night, when it can be avoided, in order to deprive the Enemy of the means that will be otherwise thence afforded them for avoiding the Squadron, upon any attempt to put privately to sea; For which reason it is to be observed that I shall not shew any Top or Poop Lights during my stay in this Road, but to distinguish the Ship when having occasion to make any Night Signal.
Given in Basque Road the 15th April 1762.
N.B. The Armed Cutters will answer the Signal Lights shewn from any Ships, in case of their being seen in the night, by Lights only as directed in the Article for the Ships to know each other on that occasion.
By the Lord Viscount Howe, &c.
You are to keep His Majesty's Ship under your command in readiness to proceed immediately to the port of Plymouth as soon as you have received my dispatches to the Secretary of the Admiralty and other public Letters delivered at the same time; which you are to land there on your arrival; and having acquainted the Secretary of the Admiralty therewith, are to be governed in your further proceedings, and for the disposal of the Prisoners, (fn. 4) according to the Orders lodged for you, or as the Commanding Officer at that port shall direct.
Given under my hand in Basque Road 29th April 1762.
By Philip Durell, Esq., RearAdmiral of the Red and Commander in Chief of His Majesty's Ships and Vessels at Plymouth.
Pursuant to directions from the Right Honble the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty, you are hereby required and directed to repair with His Majesty's Ship under your command to Portsmouth; (fn. 5) for which this shall be your Order.
Dated on board His Majesty's Ship Duke in Hamoze the 11th May 1762.
By command of the Admiral, Ph. Dumaresq.
By His Royal Highness The Duke of York, &c. &c, RearAdmiral of the Blue Squadron of His Majesty's Fleet.
Pursuant to Orders from the Admiral Sir Edward Hawke, Knight of the Bath, Commander in Chief, &c. &c, You are hereby required to put yourself under my command and be governed in your future proceedings by such Directions and Instructions as you shall receive from me from time to time, in addition to those which have been delivered or you may hereafter receive from Sir Edward Hawke. For which this shall be your Warrant.
Given under my hand on board His Majesty's Ship Princess Amelia at Spithead 23rd June 1762.
By command of His Royal Highness, Chas. Brett.