Saturday, 11 August 2012

Nelson's Private Diary, August 15th - 31st 1803

Monday Aug 15th 1803
First part modte. breezes & steering for Toulon.  Sent the Phoebe as convoy for the 2 transports to Malta.

Tuesday Aug 16th
The Bellisle join'd with a small sloop prize to the Carmelion.  Fine weather.

Wednesday Aug 17th
At 8 o'clock saw a ship to the SW she proved to be the Canopus Ad. G. Campbell.

Thursday fine weather all day.

Friday Aug 19th 1803
Beginning to noon fresh.  Sent the Active to look into Marseilles & the Maidstone to look into Toulon.  All night strong breezes.  Heavy sea standing to the westward.

Saturday Aug 20th
becoming strong all this morning.  The Canopus carried away her full yard.  Afternoon by getting under the Spanish shore more modte. & confined too all night.

Sunday Aug 21st 1803
Modt. weather.  The Triumph storeship & 2 victuallies joined from Gibt.  All night thunder Lightning & Rain.  Sent the Bellisle to Roses.

Monday a swell all day from the northward.

Tuesday Aug 23rd
Blowing fresh standing to the West.  The Gibt. & Narcissus joined the first from Sardinia which is every moment expected to be taken by the French the other [?] & represents Sicily as ... to fall into the hands of the French.

Wednesday Aug 24th
Clearing the Transports laying too All day fine weather.

Thursday Aug 25th
Surprised as yesterday Active Maidstone & Theseus joined.

Friday Aug 26th
Sent Narcissus & Active to try & intercept some troops from Marseilles.

Saturday Aug 27th 1803
Squally weather.  Sent the Triumph & her prizes to Malta [?] a transport for Wine & Bullocks to the Bay of Roses.  Fresh breezes all night northerly.

Sunday Aug 28th
Fresh breezes.  The Raven and a transport with wine Water & provisions joined from Malta.  Sent the Canopus to look into Toulon.

Monday Aug 29th
Clearing the transport fine weather.  The Canopus made the signal that the enemy were in port as before.

Tuesday Aug 30th
Fine weather.  A flag of truce in sight at north it turned out not to be a flag of truce.

Wednesday Aug 31st
A heavy swell from the westward.  At noon fresh breezes.  Sent the Bellisle to look into Toulon Stood to the westward an [...?] gale at sunsett struck [...?] all night strong gales.

From the British Library Additional Manuscript 34,966

Active: 38-gun 5th rate, Capt. Richard Mowbray.
Ad. G. Campbell: Rear-Admiral Sir George Campbell (1759-1821).
Bellisle: Nelson slightly misspelt Belleisle, a 74-gun 3rd rate, Capt. John Whitby.
Canopus: 80-gun 2nd rate, Rear-Admiral George Campbell (whom Nelson is referring to when he writes Ad. G. Campbell), Captain John Conn.
Carmelion: Nelson misspelt Cameleon, a 16-gun brig.
Gibt: Either Gibraltar the place, OR HMS Gibraltar, 80-gun 2nd rate, Capt. George Frederick Ryves.  On 21st August, Nelson is referring to the place; on the 23rd, the ship.
Maidstone: 32-gun 5th rate, Capt. George Elliot.   
Narcissus: 32-gun 5th rate frigate, Capt. Ross Donnelly. 
Phoebe: 36-gun 5 rate frigate.
Raven - An 18-gun brig.
Roses/Bay of Roses: A bay not far to the north-east of Barcelona in Spain.
Theseus: 74-gun 3rd rate, Capt. John Bligh. 
Triumph: 74-gun 3rd rate, Capt. Sir Robert Barlow.

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