History of HMS Victory, Siege of Gibraltar – Part Four

HMS Victory
Chrono date: 
1782 Sep 15

At this time, the attention of England, and indeed her enemies, was almost entirely fixed on the defence of Gibraltar by General Elliot, and the probable fate of that fortress, which though it had been besieged by both sea and land for more than three years, had never been so hardly pressed as now. Admiral Darby with a powerful fleet had relieved the garrison from the greatest possible distress the year before, but the supplies he then landed were now nearly exhausted, the garrison were again commencing to feel the pangs of hunger, and it was well known that the Spaniards had been for months making preparations for an attack of a new kind, and on a grand scale, which they trusted would compel the proud stronghold to lower its colours. The new feature in the attack was the construction often large floating batteries, so covered and protected as to be considered practically invulnerable; these were armed with 154 pieces of the heaviest ordnance, and backed up as they were by 48 French and Spanish sail of the line, and 40,000 troops, the expected assault was enough to make England tremble for the result. It was accordingly resolved to make a great effort to relieve Gibraltar, and in such a manner that it should be not only a temporary but a permanent relief and to this end a fleet of 36 sail of the line was got together, which was to convoy a large number of merchantmen, laden with every description of supplies, and carrying troops to reinforce the garrison.

 

History of HMS Victory  – Part One

History of HMS Victory, Early Career – Part Two

History of HMS Victory, Engagement with the French off Ushant – Part Three

History of HMS Victory, Siege of Gibraltar – Part Four

History of HMS Victory, Occupation of Toulon – Part Five

History of HMS Victory, Imminent peril of the Victory – Part Six

History of HMS Victory, Battle of Cape St. Vincent – Part Seven

History of HMS Victory, Blockade of Toulon – Part Eight

History of HMS Victory, Nelson’s pursuit to the West Indies - Part Nine

History of HMS Victory, Battle of Trafalgar – Part Ten

History of HMS Victory, Death of Nelson – Part Eleven

History of HMS Victory, Damage sustained by Victory – Part Twelve

History of HMS Victory, Victory again in Active Service – Part Thirteen

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