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twelves. The inference meant to be drawn was, 1805. that the Cleopatra, in every respect, was the equal F.C.’ of the Ville-de-Milan; and that, therefore, the victory gained by the latter redounded to the honour of the french navy. One admission has slipped out, which, as coming from a Frenchman, is rather important, and so precisely applicable to the case of the Cleopatra and Ville-de-Milan, that, offering our acknowledgments, we adopt the very words: “We should seem here” (alluding to an opinion just given) “to be passing sentence upon several french captains, did we not hasten to remark, that, to be equal in force, it is not enough that two vessels be armed with the same guns, in number and caliber, but they ought to be of an equal strength in their hull, masts, and rigging.” “ Nous semblerions prononcer ici l’arrêt de plusieurs capitaines de vaisseau français, si nous ne nous hātions de faire remarquer que, pour étre égaux en force, il ne suffit pas que deux bátimens soient armés d'une artillerie pareille, quant au nombre et au calibre, mais qu'ils doivent étre d'une égale solidité dans leur coque, leur màture, et leur gréement.”* All curiosity about the circumstances that at-False tended the capture of the Ville-de-Milan herself.is stifled at once by the sweeping falsehood, that of the british 40-gun frigate Cambrian was aiding and ..." assisting the feander in the very difficult task she brian. had to perform. And yet he, whom, after what has already appeared in these pages, it will be no libel to call the imperial fictionist, and who actually took some interest in this particular case, wholly overlooked the circumstance of the alleged interference of a second british ship. “Il parait,” says Napoléon, in a letter to his minister of marine, dated May 10, 1805, “que la Ville-de-Milan a été prise, mais mon la Cléopâtre qui s'est sauvée. Les renseignemens
* Victoires et Conquêtes, tome xvi. p. 66, note.
ue j'aime donnent lieu de croire que la Cléopâtre était très-loin de la Ville-de-Milan, et n'a puprendre art au léger combat qui a eu lieu contre le Léandre; que le commandant de la Ville-de-Milan, voyant que l'état de délabrement oil elle était la compromettrait, lui fit le signal des'éloigner, et que lorsqu'il la vit hors de danger, il amena son pavillon: c'est dans ce sens que vous devez en parler.”* The last sentence of this account would lead us to infer, that Buonaparte had, in reality, received no intelligence, but was inventing a story to deceive his minister of marine, and, through him, the public. Our assertion, that the Cambrian had parted company from the Leander on the night of the 15th, and, at the moment of the Ville-de-Milan's capture, was in the act of coming to an anchor in a harbour of the Bermudas, may not carry conviction to the quarter intended; but the depositions of the two principal surviving officers, late belonging to the french frigate, probably will. Both of them, then, have sworn and certified, and the documents are at hand to be referred to, that no other ship than the Leander was present, either at the recapture of the Cleopatra, or at the capture of the Ville-de-Milan. That the Ville-de-Milan's late officers were not the authors of the mistatement is clear from the fact, that the writer in the “Victoires et Conquètes” complains of having no french official account to resort to, and of his consequent inability to specify the loss which the Ville-de-Milan had sustained. Sir Robert Laurie, in his official letter, rather incautiously stated, that the Ville-de-Milan had “ been intended for a 74.” This, as being contrary to the fact, very naturally gave umbrage to the French. The truth is, the Ville-de-Milan was a regular frigate, and, instead of being, as a contemporary states, “ 1200 tons,”H was even a trifle smaller than several french frigates which had pre
* Précis des Evénemens, tome xi. p. 259. t Brenton, vol. iii. p. 509.
viously been captured. The ship was afterwards
* See vol. iii. p. 393.
high state of discipline of her crew; and the already-
Roxo, off the port of Cape Roxo in the island of Porto
Boats of Bacchante at Mariel.
Rico, a large armed schooner was discovered lashed
three long 24-pounders, and round its circumference 1805. numerous loop-holes for musketry. The daring and `. piratical conduct of these privateers, who plundered and maltreated Americans as well as Englishmen navigating the gulf, determined captain Dashwood, notwithstanding the strength of their position, to endeavour to cut them out. Accordingly, in the evening, he despatched on that service two boats, containing about 35 seamen and marines, under the command of lieutenant Thomas Oliver, assisted by lieutenant John Campbell, with directions to attack and carry the fort previously to entering the harbour, so as to secure a safe retreat. The boats pushed off, and, on nearing the tower, were discovered and fired at. Seeing that no time was to be lost, lieutenant Oliver, without waiting for his companion, who was astern, pulled rapidly for the shore, in the face of a heavy fire, which badl wounded one man. Leaving in the boat a midship- Gallant man, the honourable Almeira De Courcy, and three.* men, including the one wounded, lieutenant Oliver, o: then, with 13 men, gallantly rushed to the foot of “ the tower, and, by means of a ladder which his men had brought, scaled, and without any further loss carried, the tower, although garrisoned by a spanish captain and 30 soldiers; of whom two were killed and three wounded. Having performed this noble exploit, left a sergeant of marines and six men as a guard at the fort, and been joined by lieutenant Campbell and his boat's crew, lieutenant Oliver proceeded to execute the second branch of the duty assigned him. To the mortification, however, of both lieutenants, the three privateers had, the day previous, sailed on a cruise. Not to quit the harbour o lieutenant Oliver took possession of two schooners laden with sugar; and which he gallantly brought away from alongside a wharf, in spite of several discharges of musketry from the troops and militia, that were pouring down in numbers from the surrounding