pinnace having out-pulled the launch, was the first boat alongside : Lieutenant Pym and his 12 men at once boarded, and in spite of a very strenuous opposition, carried the schooner. She proved to be the Désirée, of six carriage-guns (4-pounders, probably) and 46 men ; of whom she had three killed, eight drowned, and 15 badly wounded. The pinnace sustained a loss of one seaman killed, one marine drowned, a midshipman, Mr. Aslinhurst, and four seamen badly wounded, and Lieutenant Pym and the remainder of his boat's crew slightly wounded : The launch, much to the regret of those on board of her, did not reach the schooner till her colours were in the act of being struck. Few enterprises of this description, bold as they commonly are, exhibit so much gallantry as the capture of the Désirée schooner.
On the 23d of January, in latitude 50° north, longitude 12° west, the British 36-gun frigate Melampus, Captain Graham Moore, came up with and engaged the French corvette Volage, of 22 guns (20 long 8s and two long 18s) and 195 men; which, after a short but close action, struck her colours. The Melampus had two men mortally, and three dangerously wounded ; The Volage, four killed and eight wounded.
The prize, although a national ship, had been lent to certain merchants of Nantes, and by them been fitted out as a cruiser. Her commander M. Desageneaux, according to his own account, was a capitaine de frégate, and his officers also appear to have belonged to the national marine ; but, in the present instance, they all had a congé, or furlough for three months, to enable them to serve on board a ship, then in the temporary employ of private individuals. The Volage was a fine corvette measuring 523 tons, and was added to the British navy as a 20-gun ship.
On the 3d of February, at daylight, Vigo bearing east distant about 17 leagues, the British 14-gun brig-sloop, Speedy, (4-pounders), Captain Hugh Downman, discovered a strange brig, with all sail set, bearing down on her. This was the French privateer Papillon, a large brig of 360 tons, mounting 14 guns (but pierced for 18), four of them described as long 12s, and the remainder long 8-pounders, with a crew of 160 men. At 3 p.m. the Papillon, being about half a mile from the Speedy, hauled to the wind, and opened her fire. Whereupon the Speedy made sail to close, engaging her adversary until 5 h. 30 m. p.m.; when the latter tacked and stood off. The Speedy also went about and continued to engage until 7 h. 30 m. p.m. ; when the Papillon, profiting by her superiority of sailing and the lightness of the wind, got out of gun-shot. Owing to the great swell that prevailed, the Speedy received no other injury than a shot through her fore topmast, and some damage to her rigging. It now fell calm, and the two vessels, in spite of every effort at the Speedy's sweeps, separated.
At midnight the privateer fired, several guns at, and ultimately
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