Action of 1778-10-20

20th October 1778
Part of : The American War of Independence (1775/04/19 - 1784/01/14)
Previous action : Capture of the Raleigh 27.9.1778
Next action : Battle of St. Lucia 14.12.1778 - 15.12.1778

 

Great Britain

 
Ship NameCommanderNotes
Jupiter (50) Lord Francis Reynolds (1739-1808)3 killed, 7 wounded
Medea (28) James Montagu (1752-1794)1 killed, 3 wounded
 

Royaume de France

 
Ship NameCommanderNotes
Le Triton (64) Ligondes (Comte de Ligondes), de Roquart13 killed, about 20 wounded
 

Notes on Action


DescriptionTRN4
On October 20th 1778, the Jupiter, 50, Captain Francis Reynolds, and the Medea, 28, Captain James Montagu, whilst cruising off Finisterre, fell in with the French line-of-battle ship, Triton, 64, Captain Comte de Ligondes. The Jupiter ranged up on one board, the Medea on the other, about nightfall, and cannonaded the Triton hotly. The French captain succeeded in turning the same broadside to both his assailants, but after about an hour's fighting was wounded in either arm and had to hand over the command to Lieut, de Roquart. The engagement lasted two hours, before a squall of wind and rain, and the impenetrable darkness of the night separated the combatants. The Triton had thirteen killed and about twenty wounded: she had fifty shot in her hull or masts: and her sails and rigging were much cut up. According to Captain Reynolds she stood off and abandoned the battle, though the Medea had been struck by a 36-pound shot on the bows below the water-line and was virtually out of action after the first half-hour. The Jupiters loss was three killed and seven wounded; the Medea's loss was one killed and three wounded.


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