« PreviousContinue »
I cannot sufficiently praise the mit to your lordship two letters of good conduct, the bravery, the cool. the 21st and 28th ult, the former of ness, and the presence of mind, which will have informed you of my evinced by the chief of brigade, arrival with the squadron near Con. baron de Tavast.
stantinople, and the latter of an un. Lieutenant-colonel baron de Ce. lucky attempt, in which the marines derstrom, major d'Essen, the cap. and boat's crews of the Canopus, tains of cavalry, Geger and de Pli. Royal George, Windsor Castle, and ten, and in general all the officers, Standard, had been engaged. as well as the troops, conducted It is now my duty to acquaint themselves with such intrepidity your lordship with the result of the and discipline, that I could not, resolution which, for the reasons I without reproaching myself, refrain have already detailed, I had adopt. from expressing to your majesty ed, of forcing the passage of the the satisfaction I feel at having had Dardanelles. My letter of ihe 21st the command of such brave men, or is dated at anchor eight miles from from giving them that honourable Constantinople, the wind not ad. testimony on my part which their mitting of a nearer approach ; but good conduct has so highly de. the Endymion, which had been sent served.
a-head with a flag of trnce, at the Baron d’Armfeldt entered the request of the ambassador, was en. town of Anclam this morning, where abled to anchor within four miles. he took two officers and 150 men, Had it been then in our power, we besides a considerable booty ; 1995 should then have taken our station Frederics d'or, and about 3000 off the town immediately; but as crowns, belonging to the enemy's that could not be done from the military chest, have also been taken. rapidity of the current, I was rather
(Signed) H. F. D’Essen. pleased than otherwise with the po. Head-quarters at Demnien, April 4, sition we had been forced to take: 1807.
for in the conferences between Mr. P.S. According to all the infor. Arbuthnot and the Captain Pacha, mation received at the time of baron of the particulars of which your Bojie's departure, the number of lordship is in possession, it was pro. prisoners already taken by the mised by Mr. A. that even when Swedish troops exceed 1000 men the squadron had arrived before and 20 officers, amongst whom was Constantinople, the door to pacifi. a French colonel.
cation should remain open, and that he would be willing to nego.
ciate on terms of equality and jus. Particulars from Sir J. Duckworth tice. In consideration of this pro.
to Lord Collingwood, relative to misc, and as it would convince the the Affairs of the Dardanelles, on Porte of his majesty's earnest desire the 19th and 27th of February, to preserve peace, as well as posand 3d of March.
sess her ministers with a confidence Royal George, without the Darda. of the sincerity of our professions,
nelles, March 6. it was the opinion of Mr. A. in My LORD,
which I concurred, that it was for. Together with this letter, I trans. tunate we had anchored at a little distance from the capital, as a nearer ward, and continued light airs or approach might have given cause calm till the evening of the 28th, for suspicion and alarm, and have when it blew fresh from the N. E. cut off the prospect of an amicable and rendered it impossible to change adjustment of the differences which our position. had arisen.
Two days after our arrival near At noon of the Oist, Ysak Bey, a Constantinople, the ambassador minister of the Porte, came off; found himself indisposed, and has from whose expressions Mr. Ar. been ever since confined with a fit buthnot thought it impossible not of illness, so severe ag to prevent to believe, that in the head of the him from attending to business. government (for in the present in. Under these circumstances he had stance erery circunstance proved, delivered in on the 22d, to the that between him and the armed Turkish ministers, a projet, as the populace a great distinction is to be basis on which peace might he premade) there really existed a sincere served; and at his desire, the subse. desire for peace; and the negocia. quent part of the negociation was car. tion was carried on, as will appear riedonin my name, with his adiiceand by the documents transmitted to assistance: and while I lament most your lordshin, till the 27th ; but deeply, that it has not ended in the from the moment of our anchorage re establishment of peace, I derive till we weighed, on the morning of consolation from the reflection, that the ist of March, such was the un. úo effort has been wanting on the fortunate state of the weather, that part of Mr. Arbuthnot and myself it was not at any time in our power to obtain such a result, which was to have occupied a situation which soon seen, from the state of the prewould have enabled the squadron parations at Constantinople, could to commence offensive operations be effected by negociation only, as against Constantinople. On Sun, the strength of the current from the clay the 22d alone, for a few hours, Bosphorus, with the circuitous ed. the breeze was suficient to have dies of the port, rendered it imprac. stemmed the current where we were ticable to place ships for an attack placed ; but such was the rapidity without a commanding breeze ; on shore where the Endymion was which, during the ten days I was ofi at anchor, that captain Capel the town, it was not my good for. thought it very doubtful whether tune to meet with.' the squadron could have obtained I now come to the point of er. an anchorage, though it had been plaining to your lordship the mo. held in preparative readiness, by tives which fixed me to decide on re. signal, from day-break; but the pe- passing the channel of the Darda. culiarly unsettled state of the wea. nelles, and relinquishing every idea ther, and the minister's desire that of attacking the capital; and I feel I should give a few hours for an confident it will require no argu. answer to his letter, through Ysak ment to convince your lordship of Bev, prevented me from trying. the utter impracticability of our Before live o'clock P. M. it was force having made any impression, nearly calm, and in the evening the as at this time the whole line of the wind was entirely from the east coast presented a chain of batteries;
that twelve Turkish line of battle had been reported, that the Turkish ships, two of them 3-deckers, with fleet designed to make an effort nine frigates, were with their sails against us, to give them an opporbent, and apparently 'in readiness, tunity, if such was really their in. filled with troops : add to this, near tention, I continued to stand on two hundred thousand were said to and off during the day, but they be in Constantinople, to march showed no disposition to move. I against the Russians : besides, there therefore, as every hour was of im. were an innumerable quantity of portance, bore up at dusk with the small craft, with boats; and fire. squadron: we arrived off Point vessels had been prepared to act Pesquies towards the erening of the against us. With the batteries alone 2d instant; but the day-light would we might have coped, or with the not admit of our attempting to pass ships, could we have got them out the castles, and the squadron came of their strong hold; but your lord. to anchor for the night; we weigh. ship will be aware, that after coin, ed in the morning, and, when I add bating the opposition which the re. that every ship was in safety out. sources of an empire bad been many side of the passags about noon, it weeks employed in preparing, we was not without the most lively should have been in no state to have sense of the good fortune that has defended ourselves against them as attended us. described, and then repass the Dar. The Turks had been occupied danelles. I know it was my duty, unceasingly, in adding to the numin obedience to your lordship's or. ber of their forts; some had been ders, to attempt every thing (go. already completed, and othors were verned by the opinion of the am- in a forward state. The fire of the bassador) that appeared within the two inner castles had, on our go. compass of possibility; but when ing up, been severe; but, I am the ugaroidable sacrifice of the sorry to say, the cffects they have squadron committed to my charge, had on our ships returoing, has (which must have arisen, had [proved them to be doubly formi. waited for a wind to have enabled dable : in short, had they been al. me to cannonade the town, unat: lowed another week to complete tended by the remotest chance of their defences throughout the chan. obtaining any advantage for his ma. nel, it would have been a very doubt, jesty's service), must have been the ful point, whether a return lay coasequence of pursuing that ob. open to us at all. The manner in ject, it at once became my positive which they employed the interval duty, however wounded in pride and of our absence has proved their as. ambition, to relinquish it; and if I siduity. I transmit your lordship had not been already satisfied on an account of the damages gustained the subject, the increased opposi. by the respective ships; as also tion in the Dardanelles would have their loss in killed and wounded, convinced me I had done right, which your lordship will perceive is when I resolved on the measure as far from trifling. The mainnast of indispensably necessary. I there. the Windsor Castle being more than fore weighed with the squadron on three quarters cut through by a grathe morning of the ist; and as it nite shot of eight hundred weight,
we we have found great difficulty in should our passage be opposed, saring it.
At a quarter before nine o'clock, I have the honour to be, &c. the whole of the squadron had pass.
J. T. DUCKWORTH. ed the outer castles, without having P.S. I am sorry to observe, that, returned a shot to their fire (which in the course of this letter to your occasioned but little injury). This lordship, I have omitted to mention, forbearance was produced by the that having placed the hon, captain desire of his majesty's minister, exCapel, in the Endymion, which had pressed, to preserve every appear. been advanced in the stream of the ance of amity, that he might nego. Bosphorus, for the purpose of as. ciate with the strongest proof of certaining when the equadron could the pacific disposition of our sore. stem the current, and for a watch. reign towards the Porte ; a second sul observation of the movements battery on the European side fired of the Turks, as well as to facili. also with as little effect. At half tate communication with the Porte, past nine o'clock, the Canopus, I feel myself indebted to that of. which, on account of sir Thomas ficer for his zealous attention and Louis's knowledge of the Channel, assiduity during the time he was joined to the steady gallantry placed in that arduous situation. which I had before experienced,
J.T. D. had been appointed to lead, entered
the narrow passage of Sestos and Royal George, off Constantinople, Abydos, and sustained a very heavy My LORD,
Feb. 21. cannonade from both castles, withI had the honour of transmitting in point-blank shot of each. They to your lordship, by the late first opened their fire on our ships as Jieutenant of the Ajax, the various they continued to pass in succession, details relating to the transactions although I was happy in observing of the squadron till the 17th ult. that the very spirited return it met Your Jordship will from thence with had so considerably diminished have been informed of my resolu- its force, that the effect on the tion of passing the Dardanelles the sternmost ships could not have been fisst fair wind. A fine wind from so severe. the southward permitted me to Immediately to the N. E. of the carry it into effect on the morning castles, and between them and Point of the 19th. Information had been Pesquies, on which a formidable given me by his majesty's minister, battery had been newly erected, Mr. Arbuthnot, and sir Thomas the small squadron which I have Louis, that the Turkish squadron, already alluded to were at anchor. consisting of a 64 gun ship, four The van division of our squadron frigates, and several corvettes, had gave them their broadsides as they been for some time at anchor with. passed, and sir Sidney Smith, with in the Inner Castle ; and conceiving his division, closed into the midst; it possible they might have remain. and the effect of the fire was such, ed there, I had given orders to rear. that in half an hour the Turks had admiral sir Sidney Smith, to bring all cut their cables to run on shore. up with the Thunderer, Standard, The object of the rear-admiral was and Active, and destroy them, then to destroy them, which was
most rapidly etfected ; as in less my sigoal, by destroying a frigate than four hours the whole of them with which he had been more parti. had exploded, Xcepi a small cor. cularly engaged, having driven her vette, and a gun-boat, which it was on shore on the European side, after thought proper to preserve. I en- she had been forced to cut her ca. close to your lordship a tatement bles, from under the fire of the of their number; and when I add Pompée and Thunderer. The 64 also an account of the loss his having run on shore on Pe quies majesty's ships have sustained, I Point, I ordered the Repulse to cannot help expressing my satisfac. work up and destroy her, which fion that we have sutered se light. captain Legge, in conjunction with ly; as, had any of their stone shot, the boats of the Pompée, executed some of which exceeded 800 weight, with great promptitude and judg. made such a breach between wind ment. The battery on the point, and water, as they have done jo of more than thirty guns, which, our sides, the ship must have sunk; had it been completely finished, or had they struck a lower mast in was in a position to have annoyed the centre, it must evidently have the squadron most severely in pas. been cut in two ; in the rigging, sing, was taken possession of by too, no accident occurred that was the royal marines and boats' crews not perfectly arranged in the course of the rear division, the Turks ha. of next day. The sprit-sail yard of ving retired at their approach, and the Royai George, the gaft of the the guns were immediately spiked. Canopus, and the main-top-sail. This service was performed under yard of the Standard, are the only the direction of captain Nicholls, of spars that were injured. It is with the Standard's marines, whose spirit peculiar pleasure that I embrace the and enterprize can never be doubt. opportunity which has been at this ed; but as circumstances rendered time afforded, of bearing testimony it impracticable to effect the entire to the zeal and distinguished ability destruction of the redoubt, orders of sir Sidney Smith; the manner in were given by sir Sidney Smith to which he executed the service ene captain Moubray, which I fully aptrusted to him was worthy of the proved, to remain at anchor near reputation which he has long since the Pesquies, and to employ lieu. so justly and generally established. tenants Carrol and Arabın, of the The terms of approbation in which Pompée, and lieutenant Lawrie, of the rear-admiral relates the con. the marines, to complete the deino. duct of captains Dacres, Talbot, lition of the redoubt and guns; Harvey, and Moubray, which, from which when performed, the Active my being under the necessity of was to continue in the passage of passing the Point of Pesquies be. the Dardanelles, till further orders. fore the van could anchor, he had a At a quarter past five P. M. the greater opportunity of observing squadron was enabled to make sail ; than I could, cannot but be highly and on the evening of the next day, flattering ; but I was a more im. the 20th, came to an anchor at ten mediate witness to the able and of. o'clock, near the Prince's Islands, ficer.like conduct which captain about eight miles from Constantino. Moubray displayed in obedience to ple, when I dispatched captain Ca.