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is thus — ** That the sons of Britain enemy, and wear^ut his rap. ' Suoh
may be sure of an enrolment among the as Lord St. Vincent, therefore, are the
pat aen which iu soil has given birth <nen to whom we should direct our
to.** eves for the supply of that skill, and

lib sovereign, or with equal pro- that prudenpe, which united, bid fairest
piiety, the senate, has taken care that for bringing the teiupest-tost baik of
lomething more than posthumous re- England ig a safe and proud anchor-
wnd sbaU await him : a pension, there- age.

fixe, as well as an earldom and barony, John Jervis, now Lord St. Vinoeot^
lot been conferred on him. In all ages, ts tbe dcsoendant of a very respectable,
and in all coohtries, this laudable prac- and truly ancient family in dtaiFord«
tice has been adoplfid in some shape or shire, which is traced from James Jer*
ttber ; (or whether it were with com- vis, of Cbatkill, in the above-named

ouiobkd thepotsessor in the eyes of his shire, the ancestor of that bracnch at

{eUow-ettizcns. which our hero is the fruit. His elder

Muipi the lemslature can in no in- brother was a short time since Uvins ai

sUaee bf^ter display its patriotism and Meaford, in the county of S^tafiorcT—

diieenune&t, than m looking stedfastly Their mother was Eiizibeth, daughter
forocoiVioiia to reward this class of ofGcorgeParker, esq.ofPalk-hall.inthe

^rorthies, on whom it may be said the parish of Cavers w^le, Staiford, and

nhatioD of Ensfand in a great measure sister to Sir Thomas Pkrker, Chief

depends. On mem ought we chiefly to Baron of tlic Exchequer. On the 6th

cMiikie for preventing our implacable of June, \7b3, our hero, then Captain

foe iouoduc jis bis wooden horse, filled Jeni^, espoused his cousin Miss Maith^,

VallV. - Cc

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194 Biogrdphkal Sketth itf^Earl St. Fincent.

dangliter le llie ftbovc-named Sir The- tinued in the Gospori tilUthe end of tbji
mas Parker, by wliom he has no issue, war, a period but little distinguished by
flis father^ Swynfen Jervis, esq. wasli thfe nature of the uttrritmie service p«r*
barrister at law, and sometime counsel formed. Having remained some ti^ke
to the board of admiralty, and auditor of on the home station, the captain was
^^^tiwich hospital. ordered to the MediterrsDeaD : lelum*

' The son of whom we are speaking ing thence after the ratification* of the
^as, at one time, designed by his pa- treaty of peace, his ship was paid olf,
rents for the faihcr's piolession; out and he held no command frosi thj^ tine
ihe offices held by thatparcnt, naturally till the year IJ^f}, when he was again
itftrodncing his son to ger.tieknen con- ordered to his Mediterranean station,. iik
nected wim nauiical ahairs, it is no the Alarm frigate, ot'32 guns. In Au-
wonder that he cotitmcttd a penchant gust, the next year, he entertained tbs
for k sailor's life. His first senice at Duke de Chablais, brother to the King
sea was on board the Gloucester, of 50 of Sardinia, onboard hi;» ship, at Villa-
guns, sent on the Jamaica station with Franca, who felt himaelf so ^altified and
the broad pendant of the Hon. George pleased at the notice and respect that
Townsheno. His entrance as a mid- had been paid to him by this officer of
shipman was about the end of the y«ar the King of Great Britain, that be made
^T'^^f ^ y^^r, as well srs several others presents, such as became his rank, t»
which followed It, of profound peace j every offieer and seaman on board. Hit
and dn the 19th of February, 1755, he Royal Highness had heard of Capuia
was Kiised to' the rank of lieutenant, in Jcrvis*s adroitness in preserving the
which capacity he ha^ shortly after the Alarm from destruction after «be bad
good fortune to serve under that eji:cel- parted her cables and ivas bxriged op iha
lent oflicer Shr Charles Saunders. He rocks of Meroielles, and was no doubl
accompanied this able commander in agreeably surpriscxi to find the most po«
•the expedition sent against Quebec, at lished behaviour not incompatible with
Wib commencement of the seven yean the sincerity and frankness of a British
war. This was a service, calculated )by sailor.

Its difficulties and disappointments, to A short time after Captain Jervii re*
try the' spirits and coumge of ayouns turned again to England, in 1774, ha
M^mah. He acquitted himaeif to imicn was promoted to the Foudroyant, an
to the satisfaction of the commander, 64 gun ship, originally belonging to the
that he was at no great distance of time French, but taken from diexn by th<
appointed to the Porcupine sloop ; and Momnouth, ()4, in 1^54^ It his
inis appointment was m due course of always been an object of desire, aiU
•time confirmed by the admiralty. — often of great interest, to obtain the
About two years previously to his being command of -a captured French shin (
made a commander, he was, upon the for it is allowed by all Euibpe that tn^
indisposition of Sir John Strachan, sent naval architectures that nation is eqiiai,
ks acting captain on board that offic6r*8 tf not superior, to any in the world,
'^ship, the Experiment, a post ship. Thh Tlie Fouaroyant, then, being reckoned
occurred under Sir Charles Saunders, one of the hne^ two-decked ships ia
who, in 1 766, proceeded as second in our navy, it mtiftt necessarily foUow
coniniani on the Mediterranean station, ^at the* captain*8 services were wt«4
•and a fortunate promotion it tunned out peculiarly high, to have the command
"to be; for falling in with a xebec under "of her confcnred upon him. With so
Moorish colours, though her crew were maiked, so distinguished a preference
auspecled to be chiefly French, he had of this officer, it may seem cxtraordi-
an opportunity to display his skill and nary that he should be sent in the
"intrepidity^ Captain Jcrvis, after his f oudroyant to a station apparently be-
. return to'Englacd, was directed to take low his merit, rank, and staddir^, vjb.
the command of the Unicom, till the to cruise as he did for so. long a time ia
13th of October, \7tSS, when he was Ae Bay of Biscay. But ths contest with
' promoted to ti^e rank of ppst-eaptain by our American eotonies was commenced,
commission, and given the command of and the number «of fr^tes and sloops
the GosDort, of 40 guns. He was at it had been thoH^t eKpedieni^tocm-
the rc-takingofSt. Joihn's, Newfound- ploy in watching their coasts, obliged
%iid, from the Ftendi, and conveyed Lord Sandwich, then first lord of ihiB
the trade homo firom Virginia. He*c<ni* admiralty^ to employ slup^ of the/ine

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Biogral>/uctU'Sideh<f£§rl'Si.Pin&nU. ^

faikt IniQUt office of cruisers. Tbi« the Foudroyuit, got ipto het qwn sta-
wu with the view of preventing all in* tion between* three and four o*cIoc£,
ierooarse the revolted oolonies might ftnd never left it till four the nei^t morn-.
be desirous of keepins -up with tne ing: she was closely enga^d a great
f reach, with whom Sicy were tarn- part of the time, ana thougn she was
pring, aiu} from whom they honed, considerably disabled in her rigging, had
rre long, to receive that succour wnich but 6ve men killed, and eighteen wound-
was in the end affocded them by ^hose ed. He continued attached to the home
i&sidiaus rivals. or channel fleet under the successive

It is a circumstance desening notice, commanders. Sir Charles Hardy, AdmU
,dm during two years vigilant duty in rals Geary and Darby.
thl« tempestuous and much-frequented In April, 1 782, the ministry had 19-
.biy, Cautain Jervis n^e but one cap- telligence tjfjat a French armament, con-
.ture, and that of little value ; as. if in- sistins of four or Ave ships of war, and
iignjint fortune took that way to ex- severul transports, wc^re ready .for sea
press her liissatisfaction at the employ- at Brest, and destined for the East In-
jDeat o£ so valuable a ship and ofiicer m dies. A suitable squadron was ordered
a service titter for a sloo{), with a master out on the occasion, under the co|n-
and cummoader. Admiral Keppe^ was mand of Vice-admiral Harrington, in
now appomted to the command of the the design of intercepting them : th^
Channel fleet, and the Foudroyant was success of that measure was greatly ow«
jprdcred to join it. The merit ot Captain ing to the activity and judgment of the
Jervis was not unknown to that veteran, captain. In the *^admiral*s letter to the
vho chose him for one of his captains; secretary of the board, he speaks of bis
and in this situation lie had an oppor- conduct in the handsomest wa^ : he
timity of cultivating a friendship which says, <* At. the close of the eveniqft.
he steadily manifested on the extraor- se^'en of our ships had Rot ft good dfi"
iinary trial which Sir H«gh Palliser was tance a-head ol me, the Foudroyant,
.the CNccasioa of instituting against him. Captain Jervis, the foremost ; and ^n
The ei'i4ence he gave on that trial was the night, it coming to blow strong,
.greatly noticed, by the whole court and . w ith hazy weather, aftet having lost
auditory, for it;> impartiality and display sight of his doAipanions, at Toriy-
ofnauncal science. Upon the question, seven minuted after t>)velve, he brought
being put to hiin, ^t the instance of the the Pfgase^ of 74 guns, and 700 nien,
Sttuaoi, whether from his station, being to a close action, which continued thr^
nearest the uduiir4 during the pursuit quarters of an hour, when theFoudroy-
of the enemy, and after the action, ant having laid her on board on the lar-
^chgavc him an opportunity of oh- board quarter, the Frenoliman struck,
serviog 1^1 s conduct, and of seeing ob- My pen is not equal to Aie praise that

Cin the same point of view with is due to the ^ood conduct^ bravery,
he saw or knew of any pJirt of and discipline of Captain Jervis, tys
luch conduct in which tlie admiral officers and seamen, bn this occasion :
ittg]jig<5iuiy performed bis duty on the let his own modest narrative, whic)i
27th or 2bth of July. He said— 1 herewith inclose, speak for itself**—
" 1 jeel myself bound to answer that The following is his narrative :
quesiion, believing it to be consonant ** Near sun-set on the 20th, I was
to the general practice of sea courts- near enough to discover that the eneiny •
martial. I cajinoi boast of a long ac- consisted of three or four ships ofwai-,
quaintaace with Admiral Keppel — I two of them at least of the fine, with
Dever had the honour of serving under seventeen . or eighteen sail under ^l^eir.
.kirn before j but 1 am happy in this . convoy, and that the latter dispersed by
oppurtunity to declare to this court, signal. At half past nine, 1 obscned
.and to the world, that during the whole the smallest of the ships of war to speak
.toie the English fleet was in sight of vvith the headmost, and Ulen bear away,
.the French fleet, he di&pl*iycd the —At a quarter past ten, the stcrnmost
|*atc«t Baval skill and abiUiy, as well line of battle snip perceiving we can?e
** the boldest enterpnze, upon the 27th un with her very iast, bore up also,
flf July : which, with the promptitude 1 pursued, and at forty-'seven mintites
ftf Sir ttobert Harland, will be bubjects. after twelve, brought her to close actiop,
sfmvadmiEaiiou and imitation as long which continued three quarters of an
^ilivtt". Captain Jervi^'s own ship, hour, ^ when having kid her on boa^d

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igi Biographical Sketch of Barl Si. Vincent.

on the laiboard quarter^ the French Glhmltar, which" twa closely JpTessc^
ship of war Lc Pegase, of 74 -guns, on the land-side by the forces otSpain,
ana 7OO men, commanded by the Che- and on that of the sea by the united ai*
valicr dc Cillaut, surrendered. The dis- manlents of France and bpatn, amount*
ciploe and good conduct of the officers'ing to nearly fifty ships of the line,—
and men umler my command will best Auer this semce bad been successfully
appear by the state of the killed and performed. Sir John Jervis had a broai
wounded, and of the damages sustained pendant riven him on board the Sa-
in each ship. I am happy to inform tisburyf of 50 guns, with the rank of
you,^ that only two ot- three people, comniodore»beingdestined, withastnall
with* myself, are slightly wounded : — souadron of eight or ten sail of vesseb
but I learn from the Cnevalier de Cillart, 01 war, and armed ^tianspoits, for a
that Le Pegase suFTered a great carnage, secret escpedition. An unexpected xes-
and was materially damaged in ^r sation of hostilities obviated the neccs-
masts and yards, tne mizen-mast and sity of carrying this plan into * exe-
foretop-mast having gone away soon cution. ^

after the action ceasra. It ^lew so The next year after the peace, a gcn^
strong yesterday inorning, that 1 with ral election took place, and Sir John,
difficuhy^put eighty men on board the who had before been returned fa
^ prize, hut received only forty prisoners Laiinceston, was now chosen for the
m return ; In performing which I fear town of North Yarmouth. Although
two of our boats were lost. The dis- he never distinffuished himself by much
abled state of the prize, together with speaking, yet his opinion on most siilr-
the strong wind ana heavy sea; induced jects, and' especially on professional
. me m make the signal for immediate ones, was greatly attended to. Itwai
assistance, which. Commodore Elliot easy to discover tnat his confidence ww
supplied, by makips the Queen*s signal most inclined to repose itself on the
to assist the disabled ship. Whig party. He opjposed with firmnesi

***At eight o'clock last night, they the extravagant scneme for fortifying
IkOreS.S. W. four miles distant from us. the difierent dock-yards, paymg a just
—We lay-tatill ten, in hopes of ihctr and well-merited compliment to tbeun-
loihing j bat iM>t perceiving them, we rivalled and vigilant conduct of the nary
Dore up and ran N. E. twenty- three in general, and expressing a desire to
miles, till day light j wheA seeing no- leave the defence of the arsenals of
thing of them, we brought-<to, and at England where the hero and the patnol
half past eight made saH to join the would wish to see it. At a pfomotion
squaclron. of flag-officers, the 24th of September^

•' By all I can leam from the pri- 1787» Sir John was raised to the rank
8oners» this small squadron, composed of ricar-admiral of the blue, and on the
of Le Protecteor, M. de Soulange, 2 Ut of the same month, in 1799'^^"^
Commodore, Le Pegaae, and L*An- fafther exalted to the same rank in the
dromaque frigate, was making a second white squadron. Upon the apprehen-
attempt to proceed on an expedition to sion of hostilities with the court ofSpain,
the East Indies: some of the troops concerning the trade to Nootka Sound,
having been before captured on that Sir John prepared to attend his old friend
destination, by the squadron under the Admiradoarrington upon an expedition;
command of near-admiral |CempenfeU, but the storm bi owing over, tne ships
in the presence of the above-mentioned were ordered to be dismantled ; Sir John
ships of war. J.Jbrvis. taking upon himselfthe command in the

•* Foudroyant, April 23, 1782." absence of his chief, during which time

Optain Jervts*s wound (although Jie he hoisted his ft<ig on bovd the Bar-
mentions it so slightly) was of rather a fieur. His public attention was wholly
severe nature, being cuused by a flplinter turned to the senate tiU the commence-
strikine him on the temple. " It endan- merit of 1794, when he vacated his scat,
gered his eye-sight. Inis act of gal- upon receiving the command of a squa-
lantry was reward«d by his Sovereign ; dron fitted out for the "West Indies, and
for on the 29th of May follo%ving,/he intended to co-operate with General
was invested with the most honourable Sir Charles Grcv at the head of a fb^-
Order of the Bath. The Knight, as he midable land fo'rce. They commenced
is now becpme, attended Lord Howe their operations by an attack^upon the
With the Chanoel fleet in the relief of^ Fmch island of Martiaiquey wtu^fcfl^

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Shgrapldcal'Sketch ofBartSft. Fmeent:,


ftm a tbiM bnt ytgonma assault ; and
t^ ledbcdon of this prepared the way
Su the fall of the Ulands o^St. Lucia
ittd Guadaloupe. The rapidity vfith
which th»e conqnesta were made^ puts
BsminiiidofCaBsar*smotto, Fenit ridi,
Fki. It was soon proved, however,
that these colonies were easier taken
thiQ retained. Preriously to this exploit,
vk. on the 1st of February* in the pre-
cedingTcar, our admir^ had been made
yiee of^the blue ; and in this rank he
irtoed oidecs, whieli tio^ pleasing his
ctKad^ator General Grey, the latter
thooght proper to contemn, in his o-vn
poblic orders to the anny. This was a
{iroeeeding a;reatly to be regretted, and in
tome situations might have been rainoas
to die senrtce. The admiral, it was said,
tniied the general's opinions with too
fittie deference, and the general in re-
tain looked npon the admiral as of an
iiapncticable temper. Whatever might
have been the cause of so indecent a
aisttnderstanding, neither eomminctt'r
iilhoaghtto have neglected his personil
aiteiefi. Both secured an ample for-
tune by their captures, and botn were
compbaned of by the merchants and
traders for their ngjd conduct, and es-
pecially by those who were r fined or
wBDpointed throo^*i the sudden fall
of Guadaloupe agam into tHe hands of
Ihe Fienoh. The fcibles of the pr vy
council, at the time we are speaking ot,
vete spread over wilh memorials, and
coaater-metnorials. That of the cOm«
taanden in chief occupied, as we Hare
heudy three score sheets ; for howerer
they had disa^fd about the nature of
Ibe ticatment thev should adopt towards
ihe property of fclie cu)tured; they
united in the mode of defending thenK
tehes (rom the aspersions of the in-
joied, malicious, and disap))ointed.-^
llie first complainants signified' to the
Duke of Portland, then secretary of
Hate, that the exactions of the con-
querors were rigorous beyond all ex-
ample, and that should the fortune of
war lam the wheel about, the precedent
coold not fnil to work the ruin of every
merchant and trader int. 'rested in such a
I'cvcne. Other compkitnts were made
by emigrants, and th<J8e persons who,
nom dislike to the measures of the l*)i-
wetory of France, had underhandedly
•sststed the English, by intelligence or
• otherwise, to po^ess thcm^'elvet of the
^ch colonies, that notwhhtftaading
lach aid, their property was nevmheleM

fkposed to indtseriminale eenfiaeation^
It would be improper or tedious to e •
ter at large into the merits of these c m* '
plaints, and their justification. The
commandeid in th^u* justificatory me-
moriai, reply, ** The fear of retahaticn
must arise not from our treatment of
the enemies, but of the friends of tba
French government.*' "To this;*?
(say they) " we can give no other an*
swer than that the peculiar nature of
the war, and ' the oraars transmitted to
us by his Majesty's ministers, left us
no discretion as to the treatment either
of tlwt govern m(»nt, or its supporters.**
They add, ** Upon a reference to our
secret instructions, your Grace will per-
ceive that government (meaning the
French) to be represented as an usur-
pation, having no legal authority, and
lu supporters as rebels and trait^."—
In justtfic t^' II of the seizures they made,
thev cited the instances of formJr wars :
at Vigo, in I7(yi ; at Payta, in* 1741 ;
at Senegal, in 1 7^9 ; at the Havanttah;
in 17^3 ; at Omoa, in l/dO; and at
St. Eustatius, in 178I. The citcudv-
stance, however, which most tended
to shield their conduct from obloquV»
wM the entcKainments given to tb&-
joint commanders by some public com-
naniefi, and the freedom of the city of
Lond«>u being; voted to them.

Sir John J^rvis was now raided tf%-thie
rank of vice-admiral of the white, and
on the ) St of June, J 700, further ad-
vanced to that of admiral of the blue, in
wiiich year he proceeded to the Medi-
terranean in a fri^^ate, and a.^sumed thfc
command of ihe fleet which iiad been
under the orders of Admiral* Hotham.
Tnis was a critical moment ; for the
French having contrived to detach the
Spaxfiards from the interests of Great
Britain, he had not only the Toulon '
fleet to watch, but a much larger one
ot the Spaniards in Cadis. On the ()th
of Februajy l 7M7 , , Rear-admiral Parker
joined him, with a reinforcement from
England ; but sttll he had to contend
wkh an enemy far mdre numerous.
Independently of that superiority, pt>s-
teased in force, thev had the advanta^
and r»attsfaction of being near their own
ports, whither they cjmld retire jinder
a discomfiture, without the danger of
being pursued. On the i3th, at night,
inielligence was given the admiral, by
Capuin Foote of the Nis;er, that the
Spanish squadron was within three or
four leagues distance; and bothfleetn

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igg JK^grnplttCid Sketch if Edad'St.'VmeeHt

urithtn ten of CSape St. Vmoent. The and patriotic syttem of'wfofm/tfi^i^*^
I magmtttde of the object OMde the com- entered the head of man. If he b^d
ipander disregard surroundir^ diiRcul- been seconded in this grand object, -at
lies, and by a new mode of attack, he dught to have been, the saving to
which he is said to have long had in the nation in this department of its aaU
contemplation, he obtained tne moat goings, would have been immense f apd,-
brilltaat victory ever achieved against followed up by the like rerrenchipeat^
each vastodds. The particulars are well in the other branch«« of expenditiue*
known ; the event ennobled hisperson, the country would have derived a great
and tmmortalned his fame. The Sal- portion of that kind of streii(^h, vmidi
vador dei Mundo, the San Joseph, both enabled France, as i^ repubbc> to beat
«if 1 12 guns each, with two other ships, off the forces of ten crowned heads, and
Iwo-deckers, were cut off from the fleet, more ^an an fx\na\ number of sovcrdga
and captured. Kc^l and public j^ati- states. . But no ! retrenchment to ua
tude equalled the importance of thisex* extravagant, is almost a» galting^ as re*
pioit He was reix^ed by the King funding to the peoalator ; a swarm of
•with the titles of Earl of St. Vincent, wasps and hornets, who in indoienee
ihe scene of his bravery, and Baron devour the honey, which should aupr
jervis, of Meaford, the place of his port the industrious bee, was aroused br
birth; together with a pension of 30001. nis searching hand, to Ming'liim ; and
•a^year. It will not soon be forgotten, as his regard for discipline at all tiiEfees«
.that fifteen Brit'sh ships of the line, rendered him often inaccessible, vod
fought and defeated twenty Spanish his manners ndt the most conciliatiia^
ships, the smallest of them carryii^ J A a numberof professional men joined tlie
^uns, and seven others, mounting Irom cry of the discontented, and mado- h^na
J 1 2 to 1 30 each. Adiniral, now Lord despair of effecting his object, and iodiC-
-St. Vincent, continued nearly two years ferent whether he 'remained in pfiipe -er
xblockading the port of Cadiz, when his not. This project, unexampled in him^
health becoming impaired by great fa- nitude and promise, could not have lailr*
;tigue, he was compelled to return to ed in its ^ect, if tried and. imitated i^
England, in July, 1799 ; on his reco- the ,army and ordnance. !\Ien of the
very, to a certain degree, he was enabled, most discernment, saw the salvation of
in the month jof May 1800, to take the their country in it, (for a nation can be
command of the fleet sent out to bid de- as effectually crushed by the weight of
itance to the united armaments of our its own expences aa by'the ibroe of sn
•enemies, foniHdable as tliey may appear enemy,) Subseq^yenteventiihavesbewv
to be. His constitution, however, v(% how repugnant any scheme of ecoaomy
lear, has never been fully established ; must be to the views of a powd^l par-
though he has never been backward in ty, whose pursuit was private gain: a9d»
aiding his country by his sword or his which makes it a more d^ofrable evil
.counsel. Upon the change of ministry, in the eye of the true patnc^^ |» |lo».
which occasioned Lord Spencer to re- tending the uUer mm of his cotin«i)b
tire from the admiralty board, tlie earl this same party has the knowledge, and
was caHed to that important station, for (the means, to obtain that venal »ufira«ea
<which the nation appeared to agree no which among the bulk of the pe<^e;,
one could be better qualified. Since passes for the public voioe^ There are
..thedaysof Lord Hawke, it was thought few newspapers virtuous enough to

Online LibraryUnited States. Supreme CourtThe Universal magazine, Volume 4 → online text (page 35 of 108)