The following are such Articles of Agreement as have commonly been entered into by the Captains of Privateers and their Crews.

Articles agreed between captain A.B., commander of the private ship of war, called the Terrible, (with twenty guns mounted, carrying nine-pound shot, twenty brass patereroes, four mortars, and some wall-pieces,) manned with two hundred men, now lying in Chruch-hole, (designed to cruise against the French and Spaniards,) on the one part, and the said ship's company on the other, witnesseth,

  1. That the said captain A.B., for himself, and in behalf of the owners of the said ship Terrible, shall put on board her great guns, swivels, powder, shot, and all other warlike ammunition necessary for them; as also small arms, and provisions sufficient for the said ship's company for a six months' cruise at sea from their sailing from the Downs; in consideration of which, the owners, or their assigns, shall lie reimbursed (out of the first prize or prizes taken by the said ship Terrible before any dividend is made thereof) the whole charge of warlike stores (great guns and small arms excepted,) victualling, advance-money, and the expenses the owners are at for surgeon's chest and a set of music; after which, one half of the nett proceeds of such prize or prizes, as shall be taken, to be for the account of the owners, and at the disposition of the managers; and the other half of such nett proceeds to be the nett property of the ship's company; the captain's share of which to be six, (in some 8) per cent., and the residue to be divided in the proportions mentioned in the eleventh article of the presents.
  2. That, for preserving decorum on board the said private ship of war, no man is to quit or go out of her, on board of any other vessels, or on shore, without leave obtained of the commanding-officer on board, under the penalty of such punishment as shall be esteemed proper by the captain and officers.
  3. That it shall be entirely in the captain's power to cruise where he shall esteem most beneficial to the interest of the owners' and ship's company.

    (In some, it is to cruise where the managers, and, in others, where the owners, shall direct.)

  4. That, if any person be found a ringleader of mutiny, or, causing a disturbance o board, refuse to obey the command of the captain and officers, behave with cowardice, or get drunk in time of action, he or they shall forfeit their share, to be divided amongst the ship's company, and be otherwise punished according to law.
  5. That all clothes, bedding, watches and rings in wear, buttons, buckles, and what else is deemed small plunder by custom, is to be divided amongst the ship's company, according to ther[e] several stations, the captain not to interfere with them; the cabin utensils in present use for the commander.
  6. That if any person shall steal, or convert to his use, any part of the prize or prizes, or be found pilfering any money or goods, and be convicted thereof, he shall forfeit his share to the ship and company.
  7. The captain has the power of taking, out of any prize or prizes, whatever stores he may judge necessary for the ship Terrible, without paying for them; provided the prize is not disabled thereby.
  8. That whosoever first spies a sail, which proves to be a prize, shall have seven pounds, (in some only one guinea, in others, five,) and the first man proved to board a prize before she strikes, shall have a gratuity of ten pounds (in some ten, and in others fifteen guineas) for his bravery, to be deducted out of the gross sum of the prize.
  9. That, if any private man shall lose a leg, arm, or eyes, in the time of action, or in the ship's service, he shall, besides the advantage of Greenwich-hospital, have a gratuity of £25, and in proportion to the officers, exclusive of shares; (in others only £20 to a private man, £50 to the captain, £40 to the first lieutenant, and £30 to each of the other lieutenants, master, and surgeon;) the said sum to be deducted out of the gross sum of the prize; and, in case of mortality under cure, the said gratuity and shares to be made good to their assigns.
  10. That, for the further encouragement of the said private ship of war's company, it is agreed that, the chief officers shall have six guineas, the petty officers and able seamen five guineas, able-bodied landmen three guineas, and boys one guinea, advanced to them in the Hope (in some, the officers and seamen have only five guineas, and the landmen two.)
  11. That the half of the nett proceeds of all prizes taken by the ship Terrible, which is appropriated to the ship's company, be divided amongst them in the manner following, after the captain's six or eight per cent., (as shall agreed) is taken thereout as above.

    When the captain has not the above-mentioned 6 or 8 per cent., but divides with the ship's company, he commonly has twelve shares, as follows, viz:

    The captain 12
    The lieutenant 5½ to 6
    The second lieutenant 4½ to 6
    The third lieutenant 3½ to 5
    The master 3½ to 5
    The first mate 3 to 4
    The second mate 2 to 3
    The surgeon 3½ to 4
    The surgeon's mate 2½ to 3
    The lieutenants of the marines 3 to 4
    The gunner 3
    The gunner's mates, to each 2
    The carpenter 3
    The carpenter's mates, to each 2
    The boatswain 3
    The boatswain's mates, to each 2
    The purser 3
    The cooper 1½ to 2
    The music, to each of them 2
    The caulker 2
    The master-at-arms 1½ to 2
    The armorer
    The midshipmen, to each 1½ to 3
    The quarter-masters, to each
    The quarter-gunners, to each 1¾ to 2
    The corporals, to each 1¼ to 1½
    The sail-maker
    The yeom. of the powder-room 2
    The ship's steward 2
    The captain's steward
    The master of languages
    The captain's clerk 2
    The ship's cook 1½ to 2
    The captain's ditto
    The able seamen, to each 1½ to 2
    The able landmen, to each ¾
    The sea-boys, to each ½ to ¾
    The land-boys, to each ¼ to ½
  12. That, on the death of the captain, the command do devolve on the next officer, and so on in rotation; and, for the encouragement of the able seamen and others, on the loss if officers, they are to be replaced out of the ship's company, according to their gallant behaviour, as the captain shall appoint.
  13. That whoever deserts the ship Terrible, within the time herein-under-mentioned, shall forfeit his prize-money to the owners and company, to enable them to procure others in their room.
  14. All and every one on board does covenant and agree to serve on board the said ship Terrible the term of six months, beginning at the said ship's departure from the Downs.
  15. And, lastly, for the true performance of all and every the afore-mentioned covenants and agreements, each and every the said parties do bind themselves, their heirs, executors, and administrators in the penal sum of five hundred pounds, lawful money of Great Britain, firmly by these presents: In witness whereof, the said parties to these presents have hereunto severally set their hands and seals, the
    day of in the year of our Lord,
    and the (fiftieth) year of the reign of our sovereign lord King George the Third.

David Steel: Shipmaster's Assistant, 1817. pp 70-71.

Transcribed by Lars Bruzelius

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