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P R E F A
of which we treat was so abundant in military event, that if all other memorials of the fame nature were lost, it might afford no very inperfect transcript of the art of modern war in all its forms, whether by sea or by land. Though we are not astonished by the appearance of such immense armies as have so often desolated the old world, nor by those actions which have in a day decided the fate of nations and empires, we see as vast, though less concentrated, operations of war, conducted upon its most scientific principles. When taken in a general view, the combination of its detached parts forms a great whole, whether confidered with respect to action or consequence. We see the war rage, nearly at the same time, in the countries on both sides of the North River, on the Chesapeak, in South Carolina, the Floridas, North Carolina, Virginia, the West Indies, the American and West Indian seas. Through this arrangement, in part fortuitous and in part the effect of design, we are presented with a number of the bestconducted and severest actions recorded in history. We behold, in an unhappy contention between Englishmen, the greatest exertions of military skill, a valour which can never be exceeded, and all the perfection of discipline exhibited on the one side, and opposed on the other by an unconquerable resolution and perseverance, inspired and supported by the enthusiasm of liberty.
If the foldier finds abundant matter of entertainment and observation in the recital of these events, the ftatesman and philosopher will not find less room for ferious contemplation in the causes and consequences of the contention. They have led to the establishment of a new epocha in the history of mankind; they have opened the way to new fyftems of policy; and 'to new arrangements of power and of commerce. To the whole British nation, however dispersed in the old or in the new world, every part of the history of this contention, in all its circumstances and consequences, must at all times be in the highest degree interesting.
It would be trespassing too far on the indulgence of the public, to trouble them with any detail of the unavoidable and unfortunate interruptions which have occasioned the delay of our present publication. We console ourselves in the hope, that those causes will not appear in any degree to have operated with respect to the attention which we have paid to a faithful dif charge of our duty in the conduct of the History. The happy return of the public tranquillity will, by lessening our labours, enable us to recover our former station in point of publication.
FOR THE YEAR 1781.
E U R O P E.
CH A P. I.
Retrofpective view of affairs in Europe in the year 1780. Admiral Geary
appointed to the command of the channel fleet on the death of Sir Charles Hardy. East and West India convoy taken by the combined fleets, and carried into Cadiz. Loss Sustained by the Quebec fleet. Admiral Geary reßgns, and is fuccceeded by Admiral Durby. M. de Guichen arrives at Cadiz, and the French fleets return to France. Great gallantry displayed in various engagements between British and French frigutes. Seige of Gibraltar. Spanish fireships destroyed. Success of General Elliot in destroying the enemy's works. Queen of Portugal refuses to accede to the armed neutrality. Germany. Election of the Archduke Maximilian to the coadjutorship of Cologne and Munster, opposed in vain by the King of Prusia. Correspondence between the King and the Elector of Cologne on the subject. Meeting of the Emperor and the Empress of Russia, at Mohilow in Poland. Proceed together to Petersburgh. King of Sweden vifite Holland. Death of the Empress-Queen, and some account of that great princess. Question, by torture, abolished for ever by the French king. Great reform of his household. Loans negociated by the court of Madrid. Public and private contributions to relieve the exigencies of the state. Humanity of the Bishop of Lugo. Duke of Modena abolishes the Inquistion in his dominions.
THE death of Sir Charles ty with respect to a proper comman
May 1780, occasioned some difficul- tant charge of the channel fleet, as Vol. XXIV.
the discontents which had so long ceived intelligence, that a detachprevailed in the navy, kept several ed squadron of French and Spanish of our best officers from the service. ships of war, under the conduct of To remove this difficulty, Admi- M. de Beausset, were cruizing on ral Geary, an experienced officer, the coasts of Spain and Portugal, but who, like his predecessor, had the squadron proceeded to the for many years
retired from actual southward, at leaft to the height service, was prevailed on to aban- of Cape Finisterre, in the hope of don his retreat, and to enter a-, intercepting the enemy. new into the active duties of his In the mean time, a rich and profeffion.
considerable convoy for the East He failed from Spithead pretty and West Indies, under the conearly in June, with 23 sail of the duct of Capt. Moutray of the Raline, several of which were capital milies, and two or three frigates, ships, and was juined during his failed from Portsmouth in the latcruize by five or fix more. In the ter end of July, and were intermean time, the French fleet from cepted, on the gth of August, by Brest had, according to a custom the combined fleets, under Don now becoming annual, formed a Louis de Cordova. junction with the Spaniards at Ca- included, besides the merchantdiz; by which the allied nations men, eighteen victuallers, storeacquired such a superiority, at thips, and transports, destined for leatt in point of number (though the service in the West Indes; one with respect to real force and con- of these was of particular importdition it might perhaps have ad- ance, being laden with tents, and mitted of some doubt), as afforded camp equipage, for the troops dethem the apparent dominion of the figned for active service in the European seas.
Leeward Isands. The five East. Admiral Geary had the fortune, Indiamen, likewise, besides arms, in the beginning of July, to fall ammunition, and a train of artilin with a rich convoy from Portlery, conveyed a large quantity of au Prince, of which he took twelve naval stores, for the supply of the merchantmen; but a thick and British squadron in that quarter. fucilen fog checked his success, The five East-India ships, and and along with the nearness and above fifty West-Indiamen, indanger of the enemy's coast, af- cluding thofe upon government forded an opportunity to the rest, account, were taken. The Raas well as to the ships of war by milies, with the frigates, and a whom they were guarded, to make few West-India ships, had the form their escape. It happened unfor- tune to escape. tunately, that the satisfaction af- Such a prize had never before forded by this small success was entered the harbour of Cadiz. An foon overwhelmed and lost, in the English fleet of near fixty ships, contemplation of one of the hea- led captive by a Spanish squadron, viest blows that ever had been sur- was extremely flattering to a peotained by the British commerce. ple, to whom naval captures, from
But before this event took place, Tuch an enemy, were an unusual the naval commanders having re- fpectacle. All their ancient lotses,