Action off Cuba

18th October 1760
Part of : Seven Years' War (1756/05/17 - 1763/02/10)
Previous action : Siege of Pondicherry 4.9.1760 - 15.1.1761
Next action : Unicorn vs Vestale 8.1.1761


Great Britain

British squadron
Ship NameCommanderNotes
Hampshire (50) Coningsby Norbury (d.1786)
Boreas (28) Samuel Uvedale (1729-1808) 1 killed, 1 wounded
Lively (20) Frederick Lewis Maitland (1729/30-1786) 2 wounded

Royaume de France

French Squadron
Ship NameCommanderNotes
Le Prince Edouard (32)  
Duc de Choiseul (32)   Burnt
La Fleur de Lys (30)   Sunk
La Valeur (24)  38 killed, 25 wounded Captured
La Sirène (30)   Captured 80 killed and wounded

Notes on Action

In the autumn Rear-Admiral Holmes learnt that a French convoy, escorted by five frigates, was about to sail from Cape Francois for Europe and he despatched the Hampshire, 50, Captain Coningsby Norbury (2), the Boreas, 28, Captain Samuel Uvedale, and the Lively, 20, Captain the Hon. Frederick Lewis Maitland (1), to intercept them. On October 16th the French put to sea, the escort consisting of the vessels mentioned in the note. [Sirene, 32; Due de ChoisetH, 32; Prince Edward, 32; Fleur de Lys, 32; and Valeur, 20] Next morning at dawn the British ships sighted and chased them, but closed very slowly until evening, when the breeze freshened. At midnight the Boreas engaged the Sirene, but, being disabled aloft, fell astern, and could not come up with her again till 2 P.M. on October 18th, off the east end of Cuba. A hot action then began, and at 4.40 P.M. the Sirene struck, having lost 80 killed and wounded. The Boreas had lost but one killed and one wounded. In the meanwhile the Hampshire and Lively had been in chase of the other frigates. Soon after daybreak on the 18th, the Lively, by using her sweeps, got alongside of the Valeur, and, after an hour and a half, forced her to surrender, she having lost 38 killed and 25 wounded, and the Lively but two wounded. Both the Sirene and Valeur were added to the Navy under their own names. The Hampshire at 3.30 P.M. got between the Duc de Choiseul and the Prince Edward, but the former, having the advantage of the wind, got into Port an Paix. The latter ran ashore and struck, but was, nevertheless, subsequently burnt by her crew. On the 19th the Hampshire and Lively were about to attack the Fleur de Lys, which lay in the bay to leeward of Port au Paix, when the enemy saved them the trouble by abandoning and burning the ship.

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