antique prints, maps and watercolors

Battle off of Cape St. Vincent. London: Boydell, 1798. $900.00

(The Battle off Cape St. Vincent)

Drawn by Lieutenant Jahred Brenton of the Royal Navy.
Engraved by James Fittler, Maritime Engraver to His Majesty.
London: John & Josiah Boydell, June 4, 1798.

“To the Rt. Hon.ble John Jervis, Earl of St. Vincent, Admiral of the Blue, & K.B….This Representation of the Sea fight off Cape St. Vincent on the 14 of Feb. 1797.”

A fabulously detailed and skillfully engraved rendering of the famous Napoleonic sea Battle of Cape St. Vincent that had taken place off the coast of Portugal. The print commemorates the amazing and daring victory of Admiral Sir John Jervis’ Victory over the much larger Spanish fleet. The scene is filled with ships, including the British Namur, Victory, Diadem, and the aptly named, Excellent.  Sails are tattered, smoke billows and crews raise their swords on the decks. Jervis used his 9 ships to divide the 35 ship Spanish fleet in a technique that was witnessed by Horatio Nelson and later employed by him at the Battle of Waterloo.

The text below the image on the right side of the print lists the names of the Spanish ships and their “guns.” The text on the left side provides a detailed account of the course of the battle:

“Represents the Captain boarding the San Nicholas and San Josef. The Excellent engaging the Santissima Trinidada. The Namur passing to windward of the Salvador del Mundo. The Victory coming up, followed by the Barfleur & other British ships. The signal flying for the Diadem to take possession of the Salvador del Mundo. After the Excellent had poured three close broadsides into the Salvador, she attacked the San Ysidro who made but short resistance & then struck her colours. The Excellent passing between the Captain and the San Nicholas & San Josef then fired several broadsides into them & immediately proceeded to attack the Santissima Trinidada which ship she engaged for a considerable time & would have probably (word?) had not the loss of all her running rigging unavoidably thrown her to leeward.”

Copperplate engraving.
20 x 27 inches, sheet.
29 1/4 x 35 1/2 inches, framed.
Professionally restored to excellent condition.
Framed to museum standards.