Capture of the L'Invention

On the 27th of July, 1801, at 1 a.m., in latitude 43°3' N. and longitude 11°42' W. the British 19-pounder 36-gun frigate Immortalité, Captain H. Hotham fell in with an enemy cruiser of a very extraordinary appearance, a ship with four masts; which the former immediately chased, and at 7.30 a.m. the 38-gun frigate Arethusa, Captain Thomas Wolley, in sight, captured. The prize proved to be the L'Invention, French privateer, nine days from Bordeaux, on her first cruise, having only been launched since the beginning of the month. The L'Invention had been designed by her commander, M Thibaut, and was peculiar in more respects than her masts, her length being 147 feet, with only 27 feet in breadth of beam. Her force consisted of 24 long 6-pounders on a single deck and two 12-pounder carronaders, either on her poop or top-gallant forecastle, with a crew of 210 men and boys. Her four masts were at nearly at equal distances apart, the first and third of the same height, the second stouter and higher, and the fourth much smaller; she had four top-gallant yards, rigged aloft, and was accounted a good sea boat and sailer.
William James: The Naval History of Great Britain from the declaration of war by France … 1793, to the accession of George IV … 1820, with an account of the origin and progressive increase of the British Navy; illustrated, from the commencement of the year 1793, by a series of tabular abstracts.
London, 1822-1824. Vol. 3.

Transcribed by Lars Bruzelius

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