Pallas and Nymph
st. George and defence
List of shipwrecks of the royal navy
between 1793 & 1850
Some time ago a friend suggested that a selection of the most interesting naval shipwrecks might be made from the official documents of the Admiralty, in illustration of the discipline and heroism displayed by British seamen under the most trying circumstances of danger: permission to search the records was accordingly asked, and most kindly granted by the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty, and the present volume is the result.
The Author is well aware that the task of preparing these materials for publication might have fallen into better hands; and whilst he gratefully acknowledges his obligations to the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty, for allowing him to have access to their Records, he desires also to express his most cordial thanks for the assistance he has received from those friends, who have kindly revised and improved his pages as they passed through the press. Without such aid, his own literary inexperience would have left the work more defective than it is. He is especially indebted to some naval friends for correcting his errors in the use of nautical terms and descriptions.
A list of all the shipwrecks that have occurred in the Royal Navy since the year 1793 has been appended to this volume, in the hope that it may be useful as a table of reference. The ships are classed, first, under the initial letter of their names; and secondly, they are arranged in chronological order as regards the time of their wreck.
At the request of my son, the Author of this volume, I have undertaken to write the Preface, and to say a few words on the very peculiar and noble traits of character, which distinguish the British seaman on all trying occasions, and especially in the terrible hour of shipwreck.
Many circumstances have combined to make me take a warm interest in all that concerns the navy. In early life, having passed several months in a line-of-battle ship during the war with France, I was an eye-witness of scenes and events, which called forth some of those qualities that are illustrated in the following pages. For the restoration of my health, in the year 1811, I was advised to try the effects of sea air and a change of climate, and was glad to accept the opportunity offered me, by the captain of an eighty-gun ship, to take a cruise with him off the southern parts of the French coast.