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1807, next day, the 5th, the treaty was signed, and the
island, which was much wanted as a safe asylum for the english cruisers in these dangerous waters, became a possession of Great Britain.
BRITISH AND TURKISH FLEETS. The unbounded influence which, in the autumn of ence of 1806, France had acquired in the councils of the with divan, threatening a rupture between Turkey and Turkey Russia, England, as the ally of the latter, endea
voured to restore the amicable relations of the two countries ; but her ambassador, Mr. Arbuthnot, found himself completely foiled by the intrigues of the french ambassador, general Sebastiani. This artful emissary had arrived at Constantinople on the 10th of August, and in a few days succeeded in persuading the Porte to recall the reigning hospadars from Moldavia and Wallachia. On the 16th of September Sebastiani demanded, that the canal of Constantinople should be shut against russian ships, which, by a former treaty, were allowed to pass it; threatening war in case of refusal, and pointing to the powerful french army then in Dalmatia.
On the 22d of October the british admiralty directed ralty vice-admiral lord Collingwood, who still cruised orders off Cadiz, but, in the peaceable demeanour of the Darda- franco-spanish squadron, found little to occupy his pells to attention, forthwith to detach three sail of the connoi- line, to reconnoitre the situation of the forts of the tred. Dardanells and fortifications adjacent, as a measure
of prudence, in case circumstances should call for an attack upon them by a british force. Owing to the quick passage of the vessel bearing the despatches,
lord Collingwood was enabled, on the 2d of NovemLouis ber, to send rear-admiral sir Thomas Louis upon is der the delicate and important service in view. And upon yet, on the 15th of February, 1808, in the House of
Commons, the honourable Thomas Grenville, the first lord of the admiralty who had given the orders, but who was then out of office, stated, that sir Thomas
Louis had not been detached until the 5th of 1807. December, and seemed to complain, as in that case well he might, that six weeks from the date of the orders had been allowed to expire before any step was taken to put them into execution. This shows how requisite it is to attend to dates.
On the 8th sir Thomas, with the 80-gun ship Canopus, bearing his flag, captain Thomas George Shortland, 74-gun ship Thunderer, captain John Talbot, 64-gun ship Standard, captain Thomas Harvey, one frigate, and one sloop, anchored in Valetta harbour, island of Malta; and, having taken in water and provisions, the squadron sailed again on the 15th. On the 21st the rear-admiral anchored off the island His of Tenedos, situated about 14 miles to the southward of the entrance to the Dardanells, for the
purpose of obtaining pilots, and a change of wind to the off Tesouthward. While these two indispensable articles nedos. are being waited for, we will endeavour to give a brief description of the passage which the squadron was preparing to enter. The channel is full 12 leagues long, and, between the capes Greco and Janizaryat its scripentrance, about three miles wide. About a mile
up the strait are a pair of forts, called the outer castles Dardaof Europe and Asia. Here the channel is about nells. two miles wide. About three leagues higher is a promontory, that contracts the passage to little more than half a mile. On each side of this narrow, the proper Dardanells, stands a castle, mounted with heavy cannon. These are called the inner castles of Europe and Asia, or the castles of Sestos and Abydos. Above these castles the passage widens, and then forms another constriction, which is hardly so wide as the former, and is also defended by forts. The passage again widens, and, after slightly approximating at Galipoli, opens into the sea of Marmora. At nearly the opposite extremity of this small sea, and at about 100 miles from the entrance to it, stands the city of Constantinople. : On the 27th, at 3 A. M., pilots being on board and
tion of the
pus enters the
1807, the wind fair, the squadron weighed and stood
towards the strait. At 9 A. M. the Thunderer and Cano- Standard anchored in Azire bay, about two miles
below the castle of Abydos; and the Canopus, Darda- with a light west south-west wind, proceeded alone. uells. At 10 A. M. the rear-admiral interchanged salutes
with the fort of Mydore, and, at 4 P. M. on the 28th,
with Seraglio point; off which, at 5 P. M., the Cachors nopus anchored, in company with the 40-gun frigate oftcoin. Endymion, captain the honourable Thomas Bladen nople. Capel, who had carried out Mr. Arbuthnot, and was
waiting the result of his negotiation.
It would appear that, intimidated by the preparations of the russian ambassador, Italinski, to leave the capital, the Turks had, since the 15th of October, reversed the decrees which Sebastiani had extorted
from their fears, and acceded to all Italinski's deinvades mands, when, on the 23d of November, the russian Turkey general Michelson, at the head of a powerful army,
entered Moldavia, and took possession of Chotzim, Bender, and Jassi. The news of this invasion turned the tide of affairs ; and Italinski, on the 25th of December, went on board sir Thomas Louis's ship.
On the 28th, early in the morning, the rear-admiLouis ral weighed and steered for the Dardanells, leaving sails on the Endymion to attend upon Mr. Arbuthnot. On
the 2d of January, 1807, the Capopus joined the and an- Thunderer and Standard in Azire bay; where were in Azire also lying the 38-gun frigate Active, captain Richard bay. Hussey Moubray, and 18-gun ship-sloop Nautilus,
captain Edward Palmer. On the 4th the russian ambassador removed on board the Active, and
the latter sailed with him to Malta. On the 31st, Endy- at 10 A. M., the squadron was joined by the Enjoins dymion, having on board the british ambassador and Writish suite, and the whole of the british merchants ambas- late residents of Constantinople; with whom the
frigate, having cut her cables, had sailed on the 29th, at 11 P. M.
appears that the cause of all this alarm was
some private information, that the turkish govern
1807. ment meant to seize the Endymion, also the ambassador, his suite, and all the british residents, with Cause the view of detaining them as hostages, and of alarm “ putting them to death by torture,” in case a british among force should commence hostilities. The merchants resiplaced such reliance upon the intelligence, that they did not wait to carry off any part of their property. Sir Thomas Louis immediately weighed with his passengers, and, dropping down, reanchored the same evening off the entrance of the strait. On the Sir following morning, the 1st of February, the squa-andron again weighed, and anchored soon afterwards chers off the island of Tenedos.
In anticipation of a rupture of the negotiations with the Sublime Porte, the british admiralty, on the 22d of November, 1806, had directed viceadmiral lord Collingwood to detach a force to the DuckDardanells, to be ready, in case of necessity, to act Worth offensively against the Turks; and, proceeds the dered order, “ as the service pointed out will require Pardamuch ability and firmness in the officer who is to com- nells. mand it, you are to intrust the execution thereof to vice-admiral sir John Thomas Duckworth."* Owing to these orders having been put on board a squadron, which was detained by contrary winds, it was not until the 12th of January that they reached lord Collingwood off Cadiz. On the 15th, from in the evening, sir John parted company from the off cafleet, in the 100-gun ship Royal-George, captain Richard Dalling Dunn, with instructions to the following purport.
After having assembled the ships he had been His indirected to take with him, the vice-admiral was to tions. proceed as expeditiously as possible to the Straits of Constantinople, and there take up such a position às would enable him to bombard the town, in case of a refusal to deliver
the turkish fleet, (the paper
* Parliamentary papers ordered March 23, 1808,
1807. force of which was 12 sail of the line and nine friJan. gates,) together with a supply of naval stores from
the arsenal sufficient for its equipment. This was all plain sailing; but some contingencies were tacked to the vice-admiral's instructions, which rendered them complicated and obscure. For instance, he was to consult Mr. Arbuthnot on the “ measures proper to be pursued ;” and it was only, when the british ambassador was “of opinion that hostilities should commence," that the british admiral was to make the peremptory demand of the surrender of the turkish fleet. “At this crisis,” says lord Collingwood, “ should any negotiation on the subject be proposed by the turkish government, as such proposition will probably be to gain time for preparing their resistance or securing their ships, I would recommend that no negotiation should continue more than half an hour; and, in the event of an absolute refusal, you are either to cannonade the town, or attack the fleet wherever it may be, holding it in mind, that the getting the possession, and next to that the destruction, of the turkish fleet, is the object of the first consideration.” Lord Collingwood added, that the force appointed for the service was greater than had originally been intended, on a belief that the russian squadron would not be in a situation to cooperate ; but that his lordship had, by letter, requested vice-admiral Seniavin, then cruising in the Archipelago, with a russian squadron of eight or 10 sail of the line, to detach four of his ships to serve under sir John Duckworth in the expedition.
On the 17th the Royal-George arrived at Gibraltar, John, and on the 18th sailed again, accompanied by the at Gib-98-gun ship Windsor-Castle, captain Charles Boyles, raltar. and Repulse 74, captain the honourable. Arthur
Kaye Legge, all three ships, as ordered by lord Collingwood, having completed their provisions to four months. On the 30th the squadron anchored in Valetta harbour, island of Malta; and on the 1st