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Derek G.M.Gardner R.S.M.A.

Gardner R.S.M.A.
Derek G.M.Gardner R.S.M.A.

The Action between H.M. Frigates "Indefatigable" and "Amazon" and the French "Droits de L'Homme" off Ushant, 13th January 1797

Medium: Oil on Canvas

Size: 24" x 36"

The French 74-gunship Droits de L'Homme had been part of the Expedition d'Irlande, an unsuccessful attempt by a French expeditionary force to invade Ireland. Two British frigates, the 44-gun H.M.S. Indefatigable and the 36-gun H.M.S. Amazon, had been ordered to patrol the seas off Ushant in an attempt to intercept the returning French force. The ships sighted each other and were faced with the dilemma of engaging in a gale and close to the rocky Breton coast. The British manoeuvred to cut the large French ship off and as the chase developed in worsening weather Droits de L'Homme lost two of its topmasts. After 15 hours the violent sea worked to the advantage of the British, the French crew lost control and she was swept onto a sandbar and destroyed, with the loss of over 900 of the 1300 persons onboard.

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