Destruction of the Royal Fortune

21st February 1720/21


Great Britain

Ship NameCommanderNotes
Swallow (50) Chaloner Ogle (1681-1750)


Ship NameCommanderNotes
Royal Fortune (40) Bartholomew Roberts (1682-1721/22) Captured
Name Unknown (32) James Skyrme Captured

Notes on Action

On February 21st, 1722, Roberts and Skyrm lay anchored under Cape Lopez, there came down on them H.M.S. Swallow, 50, Captain Chaloner Ogle, which, since the preceding year, had been on that coast. Ogle knew with whom he had to deal; and when Skyrm, taking him for a merchantman, slipped in chase, he bore away out of earshot of the Royal Fortune. He then turned upon Skyrm, and, after a sharp encounter, took him. Returning to Cape Lopez and hoisting the French flag, he lured Roberts into attacking him. Roberts, overmatched and taken by surprise, made a desperate fight, which did not cease till he himself had been killed. Of 202 prisoners taken it is well to notice that 52 were hanged, and that only 77 were acquitted on trial. The captured ships were taken to England, where they were bestowed on Ogle, who also for this good piece of work received the honour of knighthood.

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