Action off Bolougne

20th September 1811
Part of : The Napoleonic Wars (1803 - 1815)
Previous action : Action off Calvados 7.9.1811 - 8.9.1811
Next action : Action of 1811-10-19 19.10.1811


United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland

British Vessels
Ship NameCommanderNotes
Naiad (38) Philip Carteret (1777-1828)
Castilian (16) Edmund Denman
Rinaldo (10) James Anderson (1765-1835)
Redpole (10) Colin MacDonald
Viper (8) E. A. d'Arcy

Empire Français

French Vessels, Pierre Baste (1768-1814)
Ship NameCommanderNotes
La Ville de Lyon (16)  30-40 casualties Captured

Notes on Action

On September 20th 1811, Bonaparte having arrived at Boulogne, a grand marine fete took place there, the Emperor, in his barge, visiting several vessels of the flotilla. Off the road lay the Naiad, 38, Captain Philip Carteret; and Bonaparte presently ordered a division of seven 12-gun prames, under Rear-Admiral Baste, to stand out and attack her. Carteret waited with springs on his cable, and, for about half an hour, sustained a distant action with the foe. The French were then reinforced by ten 4-gun brigs, and a bomb; and the engagement continued for two hours more, the frigate weighing before the close of it with a view to repair slight damages and to improve her position. At 4.45 P.M. the flotilla retired under the batteries. The Naiad lost neither man nor spar. On the following day the seven prames, with fifteen smaller vessels, renewed the attack; but, in the interval, the Naiad had been joined by the Rinaldo, 10, Commander James Anderson, Redpole, 10, Commander Colin M'Donald, Castilian, 18, Commander David Brainier, and Viper, 8, Lieutenant Edward A d'Arcey. After some manoeuvring, the enemy was thrown into confusion by the British fire; Rear- Admiral Baste's prame narrowly escaped capture; and the Ville
de Lyon, 12, in endeavouring to succour her, was first badly mauled by the Rinaldo and Redpole, and then boarded and carried, after she had lost between 30 and 40 men, by the Naiad. The engagement lasted for some time longer, until, the French being close under the batteries, the British drew off. Their loss was 3 killed, including Lieutenant Charles Cobb, of the Castilian, and 16 wounded.

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