Florentin..... Captain Falkner takes a French East Indiaman..... Prize taken in the West Indies..... Engagement between the Hercules and the Florissant..... Havre-de-Grace bombarded by Admiral Rodney..... Admiral Boscawen defeats M. de la Clue..... Preparations made by the French for invading England..... Account of Thurot..... French Fleet sails from Brest..... Admiral Hawke defeats M. de Conflans..... Proceedings of the Irish Parliament..... Loyalty of the Irish-Catholics..... Dangerous Insurrection in Dublin..... Alarm of a Descent in Scotland
Certain summers ago our cruisers, the St. Louis and the Harvard, arrived at Portsmouth, New Hampshire, with sixteen or seventeen hundred Spanish prisoners from Santiago de Cuba. They were partly soldiers of the land forces picked up by our troops in the fights before the city, but by far the greater part were sailors and marines from Cervera's ill-fated fleet.
The two armies were divided only by the East river, which is generally less than a mile wide. Immediately after the victory at Brooklyn, dispositions were made by the enemy to attack New York, and a part of the fleet sailed round Long Island, and appeared in the Sound.
They granted the more favourable terms, as the enemy continued to assemble in the rear of the British army; as the season was become wet, stormy, and cold, threatening the troops with sickness, and the fleet with accident; and as a considerable advantage would result from taking possession of the town while the walls were in a state of defence.
Beatty's four remaining battle cruisers continued to engage the five German battle cruisers, at a range of 14,000 yards, assisted by the two leading ships of Evan-Thomas's Battle Squadron. The other two battleships engaged the head of the advancing German battle fleet at the extreme range of 19,000 yards as often as they could make out their enemy.
When the fleet arrived in the harbour of Plymouth, the English Admiral heard to his amazement that peace had been declared some time before, and that all conquests made by the fleets or armies of either France or England after 24th April, 1629, must be restored.
The Americans now assumed the offensive. Count d'Estaing was approaching the coast with a powerful French fleet. Should he be able to defeat Lord Howe and get control of the Delaware river, the British army in Philadelphia would be in danger of capture. Accordingly on the 18th of June that city was evacuated by Sir Henry Clinton and occupied by Washington.
After ramming one ship and sending a shot through the boiler of another, they put back to port. In April, Admiral Dupont tried to seize Charleston Harbor with his fleet of seven monitors and two iron-clads. In a two hours' action the monitors were seriously injured by the heavy guns of the forts, and the fleet withdrew.
About November he arrived at AEgina, with an overwhelming fleet of 150 triremes, and proceeded to devastate Salamis and blockade Piraeus. At the same time the whole Peloponnesian army was marched into Attica and encamped in the precincts of the Academus, at the very gates of Athens.
The Aurora sailed on the second day, and with a fine breeze, stood across, making as much northing as easting; the consequence was, that one fine morning they saw the Spanish coast before they saw the Toulon fleet.