Operations in the Bay of Naples

24th June 1809 - 26th June 1809
Part of : The Napoleonic Wars (1803 - 1815)
Previous action : Attack at Santa Maura 31.5.1809
Next action : Cyane vs Cerere 27.6.1809


United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland

British Ships, George Martin (1765-1847)
Ship NameCommanderNotes
Canopus (80) Charles Inglis (d.1833)Fleet Flagship
Spartiate (74) Sir Francis Laforey (2nd Baronet Laforey) (1767-1835)
Warrior (74) John William Spranger (d.1822)
Cyane (22) Thomas Staines (1776-1830)
Espoir (16) William Henry Higgs, Robert Mitford

Allied (Kingdom of Naples & Empire Français)

Neopolitan Vessels, Giovanni Bausan (1757-1821)
Ship NameCommanderNotes
Cerere (40) Giovanni Bausan (1757-1821)
Fama (30) Francesco Saverio Grimaldi

Notes on Action

In June it was determined to attack the Neapolitan islands of Ischia and Procida; and, on the 24th, a number of transports, under convoy of the Canopus, 80, Captain Charles Inglis, carrying the flag of Rear-Admiral George Martin, Spartiate, 74, Warrior, 74, Cyane, 22, Captain Thomas Staines, Espoir, 18, Commander Robert Mitford, and numerous British and Sicilian gunboats, anchored to the north of the islands. The Cyane, Espoir, and twelve gunboats were presently detached to the south to blockade on that side. Whilst on their station, on the 25th, they sighted the Neapolitan ships Cerere, 40, Commander Giovanni Bausan, Fama, 30, Commander Sozi Carafa, and several gunboats, coming out of Pozzuoli Bay. They at once approached the enemy and opened fire. After a few broadsides the enemy fell back. Ischia surrendered on the morning of the 25th, though a fort on the south-east of the island held out for some days longer; Procida, in the evening. On the morning of the 26th the Cyane, Espoir, and gunboats attacked a flotilla of gunboats, which was coming up from the south, with such effect that eighteen were taken and five sunk. The British loss was small. In the afternoon the guns of a Neapolitan battery on Cape Miseno were spiked.. Next day another battery in Pozzuoli Bay was attacked and silenced, and its guns were spiked. That evening the Cerere, Fama, and twenty gunboats made a fresh attempt to get from Pozzuoli Bay to Naples, but were at once assailed by the Cyane. Drawing ahead of the Espoir and the British gunboats, and using her sweeps, she closed with the Cerere, and fought her till all her powder was exhausted, when she drew off in a disabled condition with 2 killed and 20 (including the gallant Staines and Lieutenants James Hall and John Ferrier) wounded. The Cerere is said to have lowered her flag, but, on receiving a reinforcement of men from Naples, to have hoisted it again. Her losses were about 50 killed or wounded. The Fama gave no help to her consort.

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