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But it will now be expected that an account be given of Lord Duncan's late victory over the Dutch, with the glory of which Britain long resounded. The preceding ketch specifies fome circumstances previous to the com mencement of the action. The battle will be best related in his own words. We prefer this mode of communicating it, as possessed of several advantages. Who is better able to describe the scene than the man who is professionally acquainted with such affairs ? Who can delineate it with greater accuracy than the hero by whose superior skill and discernment the victory is archieved ? Besides, we like to hear a celebrated character relating measures in which he himself bore the principal part, and the success of which is intimately connected with the welfare of his country.
Venerable off the coast of Holland, the 12th of Ostuber,
by Log (11th) three P. M. Camperdown, Ě. S. eight
miles, wind N. by E.
SIR, « I have the pleasure to acquaint you, for the information of the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty, that at nine o'clock this morning I got sight of the Dutch fleet; at half past twelve I passed through their line, and the action commenced, which has been very severe. The Admiral's ship is dismalted and has struck, as have several others, and one is
66 I shall send Capt. Fairfax with particulars the moment I can spare him. I am, Sir,
" Your most obedient humble servant, To Evan Nepean, Esq.
" ADAM DUNCAN," Venerable at Sea, 13th of October, 1797, SIR,
off the Coast of Holland. “ Be pleased to acquaint the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty, that, judging it of consequence their Lordships Thould have information as early as possible of the defeat of the Dutch fleet under the command of Admiral De Winter, I ditpatched the Rose cutter at three P. M. on the 12th (inth) ins. with a short letter to you immediately after the action
wag As we
was ended. I have now further to acquaint you, for their Lordship's information, that in the night of the roth instant, after I had sent away to you my letter of that date, I placed my squadron in such a situation as to prevent the enemy from returning to the Texel without my falling in with them. At nine o'clock in the morning of the nith, I got sight of Captain Trollope's squadron, with signals flying for an enemy to leeward ; I immediately bore up, and made the signal for a general chace, and soon got sight of them, forăiing in a line on the larboard tack to receive us, the wind at N. W. approached near, I made the signal for the squadron to fhorten fail, in order to conne&t them; soon after I saw the land be. tween Camperdown and Egmont, about nine miles to leeward of the enemy, and finding there was no time to be loft in making the attack, I made the signal to bear up, break the enemy's line, and engage them to leeward, each ship her opponent, by which I got between them and the land, whither they were fast approaching My signals were obeyed with great promptitude, and Vice Admiral Onslow, in the Monarch, i ore down on the enemy's rear in the most gallant man. ner, his division following his example, and the action commenced about forty minutes past twelve o'clock. The Ve. nerable soon got through the enemy's line, and I began a close action, with my division on their van, which lasted near two hours and a half, when I observed all the maits of the Dutch Admiral's ship go by the board: she was, however, defended for some time in a moft gallant manner; but being over pressed by numbers, her colours were struck, and Admiral De Winter was soon brought on board the Venerable. On looking around
me, I observed the ship bearing the Vice-Admiral's flag, was also dismasted, and had surrendered to Vice-Admi. ral Onflow; and that many others had likewise Struck. Finding we were in nine fathoms water, and not farther than five miles from the land, my attention was so much taken up in getting the heads of the disabled ships off shore, that I was not able to distinguish the number of ships captured; and the wind having been constantly on the land since, we have unavoidably been much dispersed, so that I have not been able to gain an exact account of them, but we have taken possession of eight or nine; more of them had ftruck; but taking advantage of the night, and being so near their own coast, they fuccceded in getting off, and some of them were seen going into the Texel the next morning.
“ It is with the greatest pleasure and satisfaction I make known to their Lordhips the very gallant behaviour of ViceAdmiral Ondow, the Captains, Officers, Seamen, and Marines of the squadron, who all appeared actuated with the truly British spirit, at least those that I had an opportunity of seeing
“ One of the enemy's ships caught fire in the action, and drove very near the Venerable ; but I have the pleasure to say it was extinguished, and she is one of the ships in our poffei. fion. The squadron has suffered much in their masts, yards, and rigging, and many of them have lost a number of men; however, in no proportion to that of the enemy. The carnage on board the two ships that bore the Admiral's flags has been beyond all description ; they have had no less than 250 men killed and wounded on board of each ship; and here I have to lament the loss of Captain Burgess, of his Majesty's fhip the Ardent, who brought that thip into action in the most gallant and masterly manner, but was unfortunately killed soon after. However the ship continued the action close, until quite disabled. The public have loft a good and gallant officer in Capt. Burgess, and I, with others, a fincere friend.
“ Captain Trollope's exertions and active good conduct in keeping light of the enemy's feet until I came up, have been truly meritorious, and, I trust, will meet a just reward.
“ I send this by Captain Fairfax, by whose able advice I profited much during the action, and who will give their Lordships any further particulars they may wish to know.
“ As most of the ships of the squadron are much disabled, and several of the prizes dismafted, I shall make the best of my way with them to the Nore. I am, Sir,
“ Your most obedient humble servant, To Evan Nepean, Esa.
" ADAM DUNCAN.”
Venerable, of Orfordness, 087. 15. “ In addition to my letter of the 13th'instant, containing the particulars of the action of the rith, and which I have not been able to send away until this day, I have to acquaint you, for the information of the Lords Commiffioners of the Admi
ralty, rally, that from the wind continuing to blow on the Dutch coast, the ships have had great difficulty in keeping off the Thore, and that we have been unavoidably separated. On Friday last the wind blew strong from the W. S. W. to W. N. W. and continued so to do until Saturday morning; it then shifted to the North, when I made the signal to wear, food to the Westward, and fortunately anchored here last evening, the Venerable being so leaky, that, with all her pumps going, we could but just keep her free. This morning I observed the Thips named in the margin * at anchor near us ; three near the Kentish Knock, and three in Hosley Bay. The wind, is at N. W. and much against the disabled ships: I have therefore sent the Lancaster and Beaulieu out to render them affiftance.
“ Sir Thomas Williams, in the Endymion, who joined me the day after the action, I also sent in thore, to keep by and aslift the disabled ships; and I am informed that, in the cou:se of the night, he fell in with a Dutch ship of the line off the Texel, and had engaged her : but I have not heard the parti, culars. I am, Sir,
56 Your most obedient humble servant, To Evan Nepean, Esq.
“ ADAM DUNCAN.” To this account of a victory the most brilliant that has adorned our naval annals since the defeat of the Spanish Armada, in the time of Queen Elizabeth, we subjoin the encomium paffed upon it by the Poet Laureat. In his Naval Dominion, an excellent poem, recently published, and whose merits were noticed in our Review for May, the Poet delineates with spirit our various victories at sea. On Lord Duncan he pours forth the following expressive lines :
What trophies shall the Muse to Duncan raise,
* Monarch, Powerful, Lancaster, Beaulieu.
Him to his senate Britain's Monarch calls,
Few victories, either by land or sea, have had a more general effect in raising the spirits of the nation. Of its benefit for the protection of our commerce in particular, we were all sensible. Every token of congratulation was presented to the gallant Admiral and his brave fleet. Every demonstration of joy was given which is usually fhown on those occasions. The king himself meditated two measures expressive of the satisfaction he experienced, one of which was frustrated by the tempestuous. ness of the elements, the other was fully accomplished. His Majesty intended to visit the Nore, whi. ther the feet returned along with the prizes after the action. He embarked at Greenwich, made some way down the river, but contrary winds obliged him to desist from his intention. One object of the expedition however was effected; the pardon of one hundred and eighty men, who had been engaged in the unhappy business at the Nore under Parker, was granted at the interceffion of Lord Duncan. This was nobly done, and worthy of his exalted character. True courage is ever allied to humanity. The other token of his Majesty's satisfaction, was his procession to St. Paul's, on December the 19th, where thanks were returned for the victory. The cavalcade from St. James's was conducted with dignity, and the colours taken from the enemy were triumphantly borne along and deposited in the cathedral.
J. W. De