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the deck, and the Renommée, like with him, and offering

still on our weather bow, ran up and put her bowsprit between our main and mizzen mast. It was now dark. Then came a Midshipman named Auchinlick, who told me that the Captain was dangerously wounded, and took me to the foot of the quarter-deck ladder, where he lay-not a soul near him. I approached close, and he said, 66 Jackson, take me down"; and we carried him below directly. At the bottom of the ladder he exclaimed, "Thank you, Jackson, thank you; now encourage the men to fight bravely."

I returned to my post, and saw the gunroom steward coming towards me. He said that we had struck. To satisfy myself as to the fact, I went to the quarter-deck ladder, where I was met by a salute of bayonets and the exclamation, "En bas bas.. On this I repaired as fast as I could to the Captain's cabin. Poor fellow, he was lying there disabled by four severe wounds; and as I entered he turned his head and remarked with a smile, "Damn 'em, Jackson; they've spoilt my dancing."

The French Commodore then came on board and went to the Captain. Whitehurst, one of the Midshipmen, and an old messmate of mine in the Inflexible, acted as interpreter, of whom more by-and-by. The Frenchman behaved with the utmost courtesy, requesting to know whom the Captain would

him every attention. The Captain chose myself, Auchinlick, and another Midshipman named John Thompson. The latter was a brave young fellow, and I could not help being forcibly struck with his courage when, previous to the ship being taken, he was ordered to find the signal-book which the Captain had left aft. He passed amidst the shower of musket balls to execute his commission, displaying the most consummate coolness and indifference to the risk he ran, luckily escaping without a wound. The book was ultimately found by the Frenchmen on the binnacle. Auchinlick also deserved his meed of praise for assiduous and affectionate consideration for the Captain. The scene on board during the night was a trying and miserable one.

One poor man, a Marine, was completely perforated through the jaws, and each time I passed him he called for water; but not a drop was to be found. At last I procured a bottle of porter and poured him out a glass, which he drank with grateful avidity. He died within a few hours. Whenever the Captain wanted anything he sent for me, and the prayers of the wounded men were loud everywhere for water. I was stepping across a figure apparently dead, on my passage from the Captain's cabin once, when it suddenly raised itself and caught hold of my arm. "God

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bless me, Appleby,' I exclaimed, "what are you doing here ? Go below, man.' He pointed to his wound and remarked, "It matters not where I die, Mr Jackson; as well here as elsewhere." I insisted on his going below, and he dragged himself off and took possession of my cabin.

The doctor, Evan Evans by name, was in a most pitiable situation. Besmeared up to his shoulders with blood, he was plying his instruments with untiring energy, and encouraging the sufferers with kind words, but hardly able to turn for the implorations of those yet unattended to. He had no one to help him in his dreadful work, and the men would crawl about him with the bleeding forms of their messmates; while those who could amongst the wounded would clutch him with their hands, and beseech him to turn to them if only to stop the blood gushing from their bodies. At times he would cry out in a way peculiar to him, "N'am of goodness me men, bear with it a bit, bear with it a bit; I'll serve you in yer turn," and then call out for his boy. "Where is my boy?" he would shout; but no boy was forthcoming, nor would he ever come again. In going the rounds I went forward in the bow of the ship, and there I soon discovered the reason of his absence from his post of duty. Excepting his legs

and his arms, nothing remained of him the size of an apple. He must have been bending down with his body in a horizontal position when a shot through the bow struck him straight on end, carrying away the trunk and shivering it into atoms. The last duty I performed on board was to throw the dead bodies into the sea. Our losses amounted to sixty killed and wounded.

I mentioned the Captain's cabin, but he was really lying in the cabin of the First Lieutenant. The latter, on being ordered by the French Commodore to repair on board the Renommée, had been unable to remove his things, so the next in rank being ordered instead, I was made his substitute, to my infinite regret.

Before taking leave of my Captain I helped him into the boat which conveyed him to one of the Armées-en-flute, whither he was carried. I was accompanied by Conn and Thomas, who were likewise ordered to the Renommée. The other survivors were then distributed among the four French ships.

On our way we fell in with an English frigate, when all the prisoners were sent below in the hold, and stowed away regardless of rank or fortune. Whilst in this confinement, sitting cramped up in a corner and scarcely capable of moving, two of my men showed a mark of attention to me which pleased

1 Thomas Appleby, a midshipman.

me very much. They took off their neckerchiefs and tied one end of each to the battens overhead, tying the other under each arm, which then provided a sort of sling, a tolerable substitute for lying down. One of the men addressed me whilst we were in durance vile with the words, "You struck me on the head to-day, sir, with the guns." I scarcely remembered the circumstance, but he brought it more prominently forward by some additional remark, and I replied, "Yes, but what were you leaving your quarter for?" "I was going to fetch a match or something to fire the guns off with, and after all could only get some cinders from the galley." I was sorry to have punished him when I discovered this to be the fact; I had thought he was running away from his duty.

We heard a shot presently, as we thought, between the foremast and the mainmast, and our hopes rose at the thought of an action; but the English frigate, it appeared later, intending to intercept them before they could reach their destination, made a shortcut to Guadeloupe. Unluckily for us, she only sucIceeded with the two Arméesen-flutes. The Renommée now met with a mischance, and struck on the


but we came across an English West Indiaman which had been captured, and the Commodore settled to put us on board of her. So we were had up; and

I, as Senior Officer, signed a declaration that we would steer south at a certain distance from Madeira before we proceeded to England. All had been arranged for us to go on board in the morning early, when to our grief an English frigate came in sight and altered the whole proceeding. Instead of sailing home in the West Indiaman she was burnt without delay, and we continued prisoners without a prospect at present of release. The burning of the ship was a sufficient indication of an enemy's presence, and the English frigate kept to the windward. They little imagined what an easy prize was within their reach, as the Renommée, being crippled with the loss of SO many guns, could have offered but small resistance. She was, however, a fast sailer, and I was amused, despite my disappointment, to see the ruse they adopted to keep away from the English frigate by not hauling the bowline and sheets aft. We then hastened forward to Brest, and passed another English frigate at night, evidently ready for action, as all her main deck was lighted up. But we kept dark, and it is possible that we were not observed. Twelve hours later we landed in Brest, and, after undergoing quarantine, were landed and sent to the hospital, where Whitehurst joined us. The captive officers, including the Captains of merchantmen, amounted to nine in number. The Commodore then called

upon us, and gave Conn and myself £25 apiece, and took our receipt to reimburse when we could. The act was noble and generous, as indeed had

been all his conduct towards us since our capture. Whitehurst had also found equal comfort with the Captain of the Clorinde.

Before we left the hospital at Brest, a Dane, the Captain of a neutral vessel which was permitted to carry merchandise of a certain kind between England and France by an international understanding, came to see me on the eve of his starting for Granville, and asked me if I had not some notion of making an escape, and promised that if I could get to Granville he would do his best to carry me over to England. I mentioned Whitehurst, and he exclaimed vehemently that he wouldn't have anything to do with him, and said that I was the only one that had treated him with any civility during our association in hospital. Whitehurst's behaviour had been quite the reverse, he said, and he'd have none of him.

As it happened, Whitehurst and I had already put our heads together and formed a plan for our escape. The Captain of the Clorinde had given him a map of the country and a box of opium pills; and chance had chalked out our first route to Granville, the very place where the Danish Captain had advised me to go.

Our short sojourn at the hospital was, considering all


things, a pleasant one. Between the nine of us we managed to devise plenty of means for our amusement, and sailors are proverbially fertile in resources. All sorts of games were the order of the day, and the surveillance of our guards, though complete, was not embarrassing. At meal times we were always favoured with the society of the softer sex, who in the profession of Mary stood behind our chairs to watch our welfare, ordered all things to our comfort, and finally won our hearts to a man.

Whitehurst was a fine-looking fellow, standing quite 6 ft. 2 in., and apparently (I mean no scandal) an especial favourite with our fair protectresses. Thomas, the Midshipman, was a lad exactly suited to carry the citadel of a lady's heart by storm-a particularly wellfavoured specimen of a handsome youth. Conn and myself, disdaining the evanescent qualities of mere superficial beauty, held our proper position in the estimation of all by the force of superior rank. On leaving their charge we severally and collectively received their blessing, and, with the benediction ringing in our ears, marched forth under a convoy of as

many French soldiers as were and drank away unsuspectingly. men in our little band.

Whitehurst and I had sufficient penetration to observe the character of our military escort. They warmed up without reserve to those who were cheerful and unconstrained, so we kept up a continual flow of mirth along the journey, and let nothing interrupt us. At the first halt, after supper we proposed some mulled wine which was produced accordingly, and shared equally with the parties without distinction. And we passed to our beds after a cheerful and perhaps rather noisy entertainment.

On the second night we halted at another inn, and were all allotted rooms. We all met together as before, and the cup went round merrily, we enjoying ourselves as much as the soldiers. Whitehurst and I were to sleep together this night, so, quite casually as it were, we selected a bed nearest the window at the end of the room. We had no opportunity of conferring with the others, so counselled as well as we could between ourselves. Towards the time for turning in, Whitehurst, as if on the spur of the moment, suggested one more glass. This I resisted warmly, declaring that we had had quite enough, and that it was unreasonable. He insisted, and called for the wine and set to work mixing it, taking an opportunity during the brewing of dropping some of the pills into all the glasses but our own. The soldiers were delighted,

Soon afterwards we prepared for rest. Half of the party repaired to a different room, and left two merchant captains, Whitehurst and myself, together with our sleepy guards, to our glory. Whitehurst, unobserved, slipped into bed with his clothes on. I leisurely commenced to divest myself of mine; and the soldiers, but more actively, for they were drowsy, followed my example. They closed the shutters of the windows and barred them, and hung their knapsacks thereon, leaving their guns against the wall close by. It was not very long before they were completely overcome by their last draught, and as heavy as logs. I had not been idle in the interval, but had now, thanks to sundry complicated movements under the sheet, become fully dressed again and ready for work. Whitehurst was naturally inclined to be awkward, and moved about more like an elephant than a human being. Emerging from my side of the bed noiselessly, I removed the soldiers' knapsacks, unbarred the shutters, and got the window open, completing the whole of my task fortunately without a blunder. There was nothing now but to get to the ground outside, for we were in an upper room about 12 feet from the level. I went first, and Whitehurst followed, coming, of course, upon his feet like the animal above mentioned, so that I was horribly frightened lest any of

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