Wednesday, 21 October 2009

Jean Bart

Today is the birthday of this famous privateer. A son of a fisherman he first served under De Ruyter and then later in the French service.
According to the wiki article he
achieved his greatest successes during the Nine Years' War (1688 - 1697).
In 1689, in the beginning of this war he was captured by the English , together with
Claude de Forbin , and taken to Plymouth. But 3 days later, they succeeded in escaping to Brittany in a rowboat, together with 20 other sailors.
In 1691 he slipped through the blockade of Dunkirk, terrorizing the allied merchant fleet and burning a Scottish castle and four villages.
In 1694 he achieved his greatest success in the
Action of 29 June 1694 , when he captured a huge convoy of Dutch grain ships, saving Paris from starvation.
In 1696 he struck another blow against the Dutch in the
Battle of Dogger Bank (1696).
Peace of Ryswick (1697) put a close to his active service.


Andrew said...

He escaped in a row boat with 20 other sailors?? How did he manage that feat?

P.S. Did you see I painted some of my 28mm Pilgrim rangers?

Jonathan said...

Interesting figure Jean Bart. For even more colourful events and personalities your readers might want to look up the exploits of Du Clerc and Duguay Trouin in their successive raids on Rio de Janeiro, in 1710 and 1711. Duc Clerc's raid was unsuccesful and he was captured. Allegedly he was murdered by the jealous husband of a local lady. Duguay Trouin, was wholly succesful and after taking the city, left with a veritable king's ransom. CR Boxer has a great chapter on all this. I've been looking for sometime as to the exact composition of Duguay Trouin's force. Maybe one of your readers has more detail?