Battle of the Saintes

Battle of the SaintesThe Battle of the Saintes started on the 12th April 1782 and took place over 4 days in the West Indies between Dominica and Guadeloupe.

The Royal Navy, under the command of Sir George Rodney with 36 ships of the line defeated a French fleet of 33 ships under the command of the Comte De Grasse.


De Grasse reversed his course to protect a dismasted ship that was being chased by four British ships as he made for Guadaloupe. The change of course and a sudden shift of wind left gaps in the French line and Rodney's flagship Formidable and several other ships, including the Duke and the Bedford, broke through, raking the ships as they did so. The resultant confusion in the French line and the severe damage to several of the French ships, including De Grasse's flagship Ville de Paris, led eventually to De Grasse's surrender and the retreat of many of his ships in disorder. Four French ships were captured and one, César, blew up after she was taken.

The British lost 243 killed, including 2 capytains, and 816 wounded. The French loss in killed and wounded has never been stated, but of captains alone, six were killed.. It is estimated that the French loss may have been as much as 8,000. A total of over 5,000 French soldiers and sailors were captured.

Novels based around this battle.

  Ships Guns Captain Ships fate
  British Fleet - Van  
UK Marlborough 74 Taylor Penny  
UK Arrogant 74 Samuel Cornish  
UK Alcide 74 Charles Thompson  
UK Nonsuch 74 William Truscott  
UK Conqueror 74 George Balfour  
UK Princesse 70

Flag - Rear-Admiral Sir F. Samuel Drake
Cptn. - Charles Knatchbull

UK Prince George 98 James Williams  
UK Torbay 74 John Gidoin  
UK Anson 64 William Blair (Killed in Action)  
UK Fame 74 Robert Barber  
UK Russell 74 James Saumarez  
  British Fleet - Centre  
UK America 64 Samuel Thompson  
UK Hercules 74 Henry Savage  
UK Prothée 64 Charles Buckner  
UK Resolution 74 Lord Robert Manners  
UK Agamemnon 64 Benjamin Caldwell  
UK Duke 98 Alan Gardner  
UK Formidable 98

Flag - Admiral Sir George Brydges Rodney
Cptn. of the Fleet - Sir Charles Douglas
Cptn. - John Symonds

UK Namur 90 Charles Inglis  
UK St Albans 64 William Cornwallis  
UK Canada 74 Thomas Dumaresq  
UK Repulse 64 N. Charrington  
UK Ajax 74 Robert Fanshawe  
UK Bedford 74 Flag - Commodore Thomas Graves
Cptn. - Sir Edmund Affleck
  British Fleet - Rear  
UK Prince William 64 George Wilkinson  
UK Magnificent 74 Robert Linzee  
UK Centaur 74 John Nicholson Inglefield  
UK Belliqueux 64 Alexander Sutherland  
UK Warrior 74 James Wallace  
UK Monarch 74 Francis Reynolds  
UK Barfleur 90 Flag - Vice-Admiral Sir Samuel Hood
Cptn. - John Knight
UK Valiant 74 G. S. Goodall  
  Yarmouth 64 A. Parry  
  Montagu 74 George Bowen  
UK Alfred 74 W. Bayne  
UK Royal Oak 74 Thomas Burnett  
  French Fleet - Blue (Third) Squadron  
France Hercule 74 Chadeau de la Clocheterie  
France Souverain 74 de Glandevez  
France Palmier 74 de Martelly-Chautard  
France Northumberland 74 de Saint Cézaire (Killed in Action)   
France Neptune 74 Renaud d'Aleins  
France Auguste 80 Flag - Rear-Admiral Louis-Antoine, Comte de Bougainville
Cptn - Castellan
France Ardent 64 de Gouzillon UK Captured
France Scipion 74 de Chavel  
France Brave 74 d'Amblimont  
France Citoyen 74 d'Ethy  
  French Fleet - White (First) Squadron  
France Hector 74 de la Vicomte UK Captured
France César 74 de Marigny UK Captured & burnt
France Dauphin Royal 70 de Roquefeuil-Montperoux  
France Languedoc 80 d'Arros d'Argelos  
France Ville de Paris 104 Flag - Admiral François Joseph Paul, Marquis de Grasse Tilly, Comte de Grasse
Cptn. - Lavilleon de Vaugirauld
UK Captured
France Couronne 80 Mithon de Genouilly  
France Eveillé 64 le Gardeur de Tilly  
France Sceptre 74 de Vaudreuil  
France Glorieux 74 d'Escars UK Captured
  French Fleet - Blue (Second) Squadron  
France Diadème 74 de Monteclerc  
France Destin 74 Dumaitz de Goimpy  
France Magnanime 74 le Begue  
France Refléchi 64 de Medine  
France Conquérant 74 de la Grandiere  
France Magnifique 74 Macarthy Macteigne  
France Triomphant 80 Flag - Vice-Admiral Louis-Philippe Rigaud, Marquis de Vaudreuil
du Pavillon
France Bourgogne 74 de Charitte  
France Duc de Bourgogne 80 Coriolis d'Espinouse De Champ-martin  
France Marseillais 74 de Castellane Majastre  
France Pluton 74 d'Albert de Rions  
  French Fleet - Also Present  
France Richemond (frigate)   Montemart