Capture of La Desire 1800
Capture of La Desire Jul 7th 1800. Painted by T. Whitcombe. Engraved by T. Sutherland. Publish'd Nov 1st 1816 at 48 Strand for J. Jenkin's Naval Achievements. Included with the print is the original folio text pages account of the action as first published with the aquatint and watermarked J. Whatman 1816.
Original aquatint engraving on medium weight wove paper with wide margins. Good overall condition with exceptional original colour. The plate has the date of publication and the name of the publisher beneath the engraved title. The approx engraved image area of the plate is 7" x 10.25" (175mm x 260mm). Engraved plate mark area is approx 8.5 x 11.75 (215mm x 300mm). The folio sheet size is approx 11.5" x 14" (290mm x 355mm).
Short extract from the folio text pages included: CAPTURE or LA-DESIREE, JULY 7, 1800. CAPTAIN. INMAN having been appointed to the command of a small squadron of frigates, for the purpose of watching the enemy’s force in Dunkirk, proceeded off that place and after some time spent in the most irksome part of the service, that of blockading an enemy’s port, he conceived the idea of destroying the frigates in the harbour, and accordingly submitted his plan to the Admiralty which being approved, a small reinforcement, consisting of fire-ship's and other vessels, joined him soon after. Every thing being prepared, the attempt was ordered to be made on the night of the 7th July. The plan was, that the fireships should run along side and grapple the two frigates farthest in the harbour, whilst the others were to be carried by boarding. The annexed plate represents the Dart sloop, Captain P. Campbell, in the act of boarding La Desirée frigate of 40 guns, which, after a most obstinate resistance, was carried and brought out.
James Jenkins The Naval Achievements of Great Britain. From the Year 1793 to 1817." As a record of naval events spanning a period of over twenty years it has no precedent. At no time prior to 1817 had a publisher attempted such a complete volume of documentary naval prints. It is the quality of accuracy which makes Jenkins so valuable" Roger Quarm curator of pictures at the National Maritime Museum 1998.
A genuine antique print over 200 years old.