[London]: Thomas Harrison, 1780. [3 pp.]. Sm. 4to. Removed. First edition. Very good, with minor wear to edges and margins, partial inked stamp on corner. Item #43923
The first British report of the April 17th, 1780 naval battle near Martinique, West Indies between the British forces, including 20 ships of the line, led by Sir George Rodney and the French Squadron, with 23 ships of the line, led by Comte de Guichen. 470 were killed, 860 wounded, and a number of ships badly damaged. The French plans to attack and seize Jamaica did not succeed, but they did manage to avert a disaster and turn the battle into a draw, though you might not be able to tell that from the British report attributed to Captain Samuel Uvedale of the Ajax, whom Rodney had dispatched with the news of his victory. "The reality was much different, and deprived of what he had expected to be a glorious victory Rodney vented his wrath upon his subordinates whilst saving praise only for Captains Bowyer, Young, Molloy, Houlton and Douglas who received certificates commending their actions. Such was the veracity of his dispatch home, including comments to the effect that ‘the British flag was not supported’ that the first lord of the Admiralty, Lord Sandwich, felt constrained to edit parts before releasing it to the public in England" (Richard Hiscocks: The Battle of Martinique -17 April 1780 at "MoreThanNelson). In addition to the description, includes a list of the line of battle and the names of killed and wounded officers.