/Antoine Vanner

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So far Antoine Vanner has created 193 blog entries.

HMS Santa Margarita and L’Amazone Duel 1782

Frigate Duel, 1782: HMS Santa Margarita vs. L’Amazone In reading about warfare in the Age of Fighting Sail one is invariably impressed by the aggression and sheer bloody-minded will to win that characterised the officers and crews of the Royal Navy. These were the factors that regularly brought victory even when the odds seemed stacked against [...]

HMS Santa Margarita and L’Amazone Duel 17822019-06-11T19:22:35+00:00

SS Strathclyde and SS Franconia 1876

Hit and Run at Sea, 1876 - SS Strathclyde and SS Franconia A recent blog dealt with an 1876 case of a ship “passing by on the other side” and not rendering assistance to a wrecked vessel (click here to read this article). An even more extreme case occurred the same year. In this “Hit and [...]

SS Strathclyde and SS Franconia 18762019-06-04T19:09:21+00:00

Destruction of HMS Crescent 1808

Storm and Horror: The Destruction of HMS Crescent, 1808 For most officers and men, storms represented a greater threat to life than enemy action throughout the Age of Fighting Sail. The loss of HMS Crescent, off the coast of Denmark in December 1808, is an appalling example of how a well-built wooden ship could be [...]

Destruction of HMS Crescent 18082019-05-31T20:26:06+00:00

SS Royal Edward and UB-14, 1915

Massacre at Sea: the Royal Edward and  UB-14, 1915 In both World Wars the greatest danger many troops faced, especially if they were in support or non-frontline roles, may well have been that of sinking of their transports. It is a tribute to the efficacy of convoy and escort provisions that in practice only few of the millions of [...]

SS Royal Edward and UB-14, 19152019-05-28T19:55:36+00:00

HMS Implacable at war with Russia – 1808 & 1809

HMS Implacable at war with Russia – 1808 & 1809  Two events dominate the general impression of Russia’s role in the Napoleonic Wars. The first is the crushing defeat of Russian and Austrian forces at Austerlitz in 1805 – arguably Napoleon’s most impressive battle. The second was the French retreat from Moscow in late 1812, [...]

HMS Implacable at war with Russia – 1808 & 18092019-05-24T20:12:09+00:00

HMS Hector 1782

HMS Hector 1782 – an epic of leadership and survival Inman in later years In a recent blog we met Captain Henry Inman (1762 –1809), a noted frigate commander who was in overall command of operations off Dunkirk in 1800 in which the French frigate Désirée was captured in dramatic circumstances. (Click here [...]

HMS Hector 17822019-05-17T20:25:22+00:00

Passing by on the other side at sea? 1876

Passing by on the other side at sea? 1876 The Good Samaritan has had a deservedly good image over the last two millennia. An equally well-deserved degree of obloquy has been heaped on two others who had previously seen the unfortunate traveller who had fallen among thieves but who “passed by on the other side” without helping. [...]

Passing by on the other side at sea? 18762019-05-14T20:03:59+00:00

HMS Natal and the SS Persia – December 1915

The HMS Natal and SS Persia tragedies Christmas to New Year at Sea - 1915 It was remarkable how little attention has been paid in the media, in popular memory or in large-scale centenary-commemorations to the events of World War 1 at sea, other than the Battle of Jutland.  And yet, throughout the war, a [...]

HMS Natal and the SS Persia – December 19152019-05-10T20:56:23+00:00

HMS Thunderer 1879 – the end of muzzle-loaders

HMS Thunderer 1879: the end of muzzle-loaders in the Royal Navy Three ships of the Royal Navy in the 1870s, HMS Devastation, her close sister HMS Thunderer and her slightly larger sister HMS Dreadnought, can be fairly regarded as the models for subsequent mainstream battleship layout and development. HMS Devastation, HMS Thunderer’s close sister, firing a salute These ships were the first mastless battleships, armed [...]

HMS Thunderer 1879 – the end of muzzle-loaders2019-05-07T19:53:10+00:00