Gustaf von Psilander : inledning

1669-1703 : uppväxt,
ungdom och tidiga karriär

Konvojerna : den historiska bakgrunden

Konvojerna 1703-1704


vägen mot toppen

1716-1734 : landshövding och riksdagsman

1734-1738 : president i

Den "private" Psilander

"Kuriosa- kabinettet"

Gustaf von Psilanders familj

Legenden skapas : 1700- och 1800-talen

12. William Whetstones andra rapport

Nedanstående är ett brev från Whetstone, som finns bland Robert Harleys papper i British Library. Det förefaller vara riktat till flottans ledning och den kopia som finns bland Harleys handlingar saknar tyvärr de rapporter om de engelska fartygens skador som omnämns.

Dateringen 29 juli motsvarar 30 juli enligt den svenska stilen

Brevet är återgivet efter nedanstående källa. Originalet har jag ännu inte haft tillfälle att undersöka. Jag kan därför inte gå i god för att det är korrekt återgivet.

Rear-Admiral Whetstone to ----------------

1704, July 29. Yarmouth Roads. - "My last was by express of the 21st instant from Yarmouth, which gave account of our seeing the Dunkirk squadron, twelwe in number, which we saw go out of the Channel, between that place and Ostend. The Dutch and we were then together; we all chased them, but were outsailed by them, except the Winchester, who a little before night was within two miles of them and discovered their force; the wind was then at S. W., but that night shifted to N. E. The Dutch having left us, we stood close upon a wind over the coast of England, according to my order to call att Yarmouth. Sailing close upon a wind the next day, we saw from our topmast head seven sail, which we judge to be part of that squadron ; we kept our wind, but they were soon out of sight of us. We stopped that leetide before Lowestoft (Loestoff), where I called a consultation of the captains, and it was unanimously concluded that I should take what of her Majesty's ships of war could be spared to join us in pursuit of the enemy.

"The next morning, with the windward tide, we weighed, got off of Yarmouth, sent in our boat with orders to the Worcester, who was then in the roads, the Russian merchant-ships being gone without convoy four days before. We immediately plied away to the northward, the winds at N. N. E. and N. E., and so have continued ever since, blowing strong.. We met with several Danes, who told us of some small privateers they had seen, and of a French man-of-war of forty-four guns belonging to Port Lewis, cruising off the Texell : we believing we had once sight of him, but he outsailed us; but none we have yet met with can give an account of that squadron , nor can we learn the place of their rendezvous.

"About five o'clock on Thursday morning, just after we had tacked, before our head sails was trimmed, the Worcester runned us on board on the lee quarter, staved her own head and cutwater and knee in pieces, that they had much ado to secure the masts, and disabled the ship from farther service till docked ; broke several of our quarter timbers and gunwale, carried away our gallery and ensign staff, split our mizen, broke our mizen yard ; so that I fear this ship must be sent in to fit what amiss [sic], and may then clean, being very foul, if it be his Royal Highness' pleasure. The master being the only officer on deck, I have ordered Capt. Butler to confine him till the Prince's pleasure be known. These misfortunes brought us now into this place. The Chester and Assistance are gone to their respective convoys, who have had no wind to sail with since our going from thence.

"About four hours after the Worcester runned on board us we saw from the mast-head twelwe sail of ships, ten of them a little upon our weather bow, which by their number we judged to be the Dunkirk squadron, and therefore made all the sail we could to get up with them.. The Worcester, Winchester and Dover sailing best, came up with them some time before the rest; it proved a Swede's man-of-war and nine convoys, some bound to France and some to England, as he said. The Worcester fired two shots at the man-of-war to make him strike. The Swede sent his boat to Capt. Butler to tell him he would not strike his topsails to any prince what-ever. Captain Butler fired a third shot, which the Swede returned with a whole broadside, he having fifty guns. He battled those ships very resolutely, and some others fired a broadside or two at him till he was much disabled, and then he struck. He has done much damage to our ships and men; the carpenter of the Winchester is killed and the boatswain of this ship. The damages and defects of them are enclosed. I have appointed such officers as the captains have recommended for good men till his Royal Highness's pleasure is farther known. I humbly recommend William Till for boatswain of the Litchfield, a person that is now mate of the said ship, well known to Captain Billingsly, and a very good officer to my own knowledge. Yesterday morning we saw a fleet of ships, which, coming up with, found to be the Hamburgh fleet, to whom I joined those Swedes, and sent only the Worcester to go in with them, because of her disability, sending an order to the Sorlings to join me again in this place, where last night I came to an anchor with the ships in the margin, and find the Rochester is gone from hence to look for us.

"I received here his Royal Highness's commands of the 22nd. By my express from this place I gave account of Rear-Admiral de Bours' answer to me, and of his leaving me upon the coast of Flandres. By the Worcester I have sent the Swede's captain's commission and instructions directed to you, to be laid before his Royal Highness. he showed abundance of contempt to her Majesty's sovereignty in these seas, and without expostulating, fired his broadside into the Worcester before they expected anything like it. The Dover has received several unlucky shot, which made the captain request a survey on his ship ; the report of which is enclosed. I pray his Royal Highness's commands as to that ship. The Litchfield has received much damage by the Worcester running us aboard.

"We have among our ships about sixty or seventy men killed and wounded in fight with the Swede's man-of-war."

Historical Manuscripts Commission
Report on the manuscripts of His Grace the Duke of Portland....
vol. VIII, s. 131-133
London, 1907

Bengt Nilsson

Senast uppdaterad: december 30, 2000.
Föregående sida: Whetstones första rapport, författad samma dag som striden ägde rum.

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