Nominal Guns74BWAS-1793
NationalityGreat Britain
OperatorRoyal Navy
PreviouslyFrench Third Rate ship of the line 'L'Hercule' (1797) (74)
First Commissioned2.1802BWAS-1793
ShipyardLorient - Brittany BWAS-1793
Ship ClassDuquesne Group variant of Téméraire ClassBWAS-1793
Designed byJacques-Noël Sané (1740-1831)BWAS-1793
CategoryThird RateBWAS-1793
Ship TypeShip of the Line BWAS-1793
Sailing RigShip RiggedBWAS-1793
Broken Up12.1810BWAS-1793


DimensionMeasurementTypeMetric EquivalentBWAS-1793
Length of Gundeck181' 3"Imperial Feet55.1697 
Length of Keel149' 8 ½"Imperial Feet45.4279 
Breadth48' 6 ½"Imperial Feet14.6431 
Depth in Hold21' 9"Imperial Feet6.6294 
Burthen1,876 3394Tons BM 


2.1802Broadside Weight = 888 Imperial Pound ( 402.708 kg)BWAS-1793
Lower Gun Deck28 British 24-Pounder (Gover)
Upper Gun Deck28 British 24-Pounder (Gover)
Quarterdeck2 British 24-Pounder (Gover)
Quarterdeck12 British 24-Pound Carronade
Forecastle2 British 24-Pounder (Gover)
Forecastle2 British 24-Pound Carronade

Crew Complement

Date# of MenNotesSource
2.1802640 BWAS-1793

5 Commanding Officers

2.1802 - 27.5.1803CaptainSolomon Ferris (1748-1803)BWAS-179327.5.1803 - 28.5.1803LieutenantArchibald B HillsBWAS-179328.5.1803 - 1.1804CaptainFrederick Cotterell (1780-1811)BWAS-17931.1804 - 1806CaptainRichard Dalling Dunn (d.1813)BWAS-17933.1807 - 10.1808CaptainJohn ColvillBWAS-1793

2 Flag Officers

1.1804 - 1805Rear-Admiral of the Red John Thomas Duckworth (1748-1817)BWAS-17931805 - 1806Vice-Admiral of the WhiteJames Richard Dacres (1749-1810)BWAS-1793

5 Commissioned Officers

1805 - 29.6.1805LieutenantEdward BurtNBD18491805 - 1806LieutenantDavid BoydNBD18497.4.1806 - 17.1.1807LieutenantGeorge Charles BlakeNBD184916.5.1806 - 1808LieutenantNicholas Alexander (1789-1852)NBD184925.3.1807 - 1808LieutenantWilliam Edward Hughes Allen (1787-1856)NBD1849

1 Warrant Officer

22.3.1799 - 17.4.1800BoatswainGeorge William Forster (d.1820)NAO

4 Petty Officers

1802 - 1805MidshipmanPeter Bayly (d.1853)NBD18493.1804 - 4.1805MidshipmanGeorge Charles BlakeNBD18491805 - 26.2.1806Master's MateArchibald Black (1770-1852)NBD184912.1805 - 11.3.1806MidshipmanJames BrasierNBD1849

Service History

26.4.1798Arrived at PortsmouthBWAS-1793
4.1801Began fitting at Plymouth Dockyard - Plymouth BWAS-1793
8.1801Completed fitting at Plymouth Dockyard - Plymouth BWAS-1793
4.1802Began fitting at Portsmouth Dockyard - Portsmouth BWAS-1793
12.1802Completed fitting at Portsmouth Dockyard - Portsmouth at a cost of £1640.0.0dBWAS-1793
1805At JamaicaBWAS-1793
11.1806Began fitting at Chatham Dockyard - Chatham BWAS-1793
6.1807Completed fitting at Chatham Dockyard - Chatham BWAS-1793
15.8.1807Second Battle of Copenhagen
4.2.1808Sailed for PortugalBWAS-1793
10.1808Laid up at PortsmouthBWAS-1793


Previous comments on this page

Posted by Tim Oakley on Monday 11th of September 2017 06:48

1 Aug 1801 Hercule74 was commissioned at Plymouth by Captain Luke, and she got her lower masts in this day.

Posted by Tim Oakley on Sunday 10th of September 2017 18:28

27 Dec 1802 Hercule74 Captain Solomon Ferris remains at Spithead,. A court martial was held on board the Neptune, on T. Lyons, Master at Arms, of the Hercule74, for Drunkenness, and the charge being proved he was sentenced to be dismissed the Service.

Posted by Tim Oakley on Sunday 10th of September 2017 18:18

8 Apr 1802 a Court Martial was held on board his Majesty's ship Neptune, in Torbay, on Lieut. W. Hill, of HM ship Hercule74 for insulting and shaking his fist in Lieut. Collet's face also, on Capt. Mortimer and Lieut. Dymock, of the Marine Forces, belonging to the said ship, for scurrilous and scandalous behaviour to the Rev. Charles Burnes. The charges being proved against Lieut. Hill, he was sentenced to be dismissed HM service and the charges being only in part proved against Capt. Mortimer and Lieut. Dymock, the former was severely reprimanded and the latter dismissed the ship. The Rev. C. Burnes was afterwards tried on a charge of drunkenness exhibited against him by Lieut. Hill, which case he could not substantiate, he was therefore acquitted.

Posted by Tim Oakley on Sunday 10th of September 2017 17:27

Circa Aug 1801 W. Thompson, Esq., Purser of the Boadicea to the Hercule.

Posted by Tim Oakley on Sunday 10th of September 2017 05:05

Officers in 1803
Lieutenant J B.Hills
Lieutenant S. Perrot
Lieutenant Nesbit Willoughby
Lieutenant Edward Nicolls [RM]
Lieutenant William Woolley

Posted by Tim Oakley on Sunday 10th of September 2017 04:58

In mid-1803, the squadron under Captain Henry William Bayntun, consisting of Cumberland, Hercule, Bellerophon, Elephant, and Vanguard captured Poisson Volant and Superieure The Royal Navy took both into service.
In May 1803, HMS Hercule's captain Solomon Ferris died suddenly on board the ship.
On 28 June 1803, during the Blockade of Saint-Domingue, HMS Hercule encountered the French frigate Poursuivante and the corvette Mignonne. Hercule attempted to capture the Poursuivante, but the frigate outmaneuvered her and she received raking fire. The Hercule was under the command of first lieutenant John B Hills at the time, who was assigned acting captain because Captain Ferris had died the previous month. HMS Goliath then captured Mignonne.

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