Battle of St Paul, Bourbon

A contemporary print of the action at St Paul on 21 Sep 1809. The caption is part of the engraving and reads:

‘Attack on St PAUL’S, ISLAND of BOURBON, Septr. 21st 1809 By the British Squadron under Commodore Rowley, consisting of H M Ships Raisonable, Boadicea, Sirius, Mereide, Otter & E.I.C. Schooner Wasp and the land forces under Lt. Col. Keating 56th Regt. The advanced British Frigate is the Sirius, Capt Pym, raking the French Frigate La Caroline, the first battery was taken by Lt. Cottel, commanding R Marines & Lt Knight, 56th, per orders of Lt. Col. Keating.’

The patches of white on the coast are the guns firing on French ships from the two captured batteries. There are British Flags flying from each battery. HMS Boadicea had been employed in blocking the port of St Paul while troops were being fetched from Rodriguez. The print has the name of the artist at bottom left: The Honourable Charles Leonard Irby R.N. He was the son of Lord Boston, and his brother Edward, an officer in the 3rd (Scots) Guards, was killed at Talavera two months earlier, on 27 July 1809. The print was published by Edward Orme of Brook Street, London.

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by Stephen Luscombe