HMS 'Mediator' engaging French and American vessels, 11-12 December 1782 by Thomas Luny

HMS 'Mediator' engaging French and American vessels, 11-12 December 1782

Thomas Luny

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Product details HMS 'Mediator' engaging French and American vessels, 11-12 December 1782

HMS 'Mediator' engaging French and American vessels, 11-12 December 1782

Thomas Luny

On the night of 11-12 December 1782, the British ship 'Mediator', commanded by Captain the Honourable James Luttrell, was waiting off Ferrol to intercept an American frigate lying there. He found a squadron of five of the enemy's vessels, store ships and privateers, heavily armed and with an aggregate of over six hundred men heading for Port au Prince. These formed a line of battle and presented a formidable appearance as the 'Mediator' faced them. Undaunted, Luttrell bore down on them, and in a close action cut off one of the largest, the 'Alexander', compelling her to surrender. She was an American privateer, laden with stores. The 'Mediator' subsequently captured the French 'Eugène' and Ménagère'. The following day a desperate but unsuccessful attempt was made by his prisoner to set fire to the 'Mediator'. The prizes were brought safely to England.

To the left of the centre of the painting, the 'Mediator' is firing from both sides. Left of this, the privateer 'Alexander' is capitulating. To the right the 'Mediator' is also engaging the French ship 'Eugène', flying a commodore's pendant and visible amidst the swirl of gunsmoke. To her right is another Frenchman the 'Ménagère' which is running before the wind in an attempt to escape. The two ships trying to escape in the distance on the right are the French ship 'Dauphin Royal' and an American brig. It is signed and dated 'T Luny 1783''
Thomas Luny

  • Image ref: BHC0455
  • National Maritime Museum

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