Built in 1779, Thames.
Broken up in 1814.
- 1782 Capt. H. E.STANHOPE, Nore.
- 1784 Capt. H. E. STANHOPE, North America.
- 1797 Capt. T ROGERS, Newfoundland.
- 1799 Ditto, re-fitting at Portsmouth.
On 18 January 1800 the EMDEN from New York was sent into Plymouth by MERCURY and on the 19th. she passed up the Channel with part of the Newfoundland fleet.
On 24 January MERCURY was cruising some 85 miles S. W. of Scilly and recaptured the ship AIMWELL of Whitby which had been taken fifteen days before by the French privateer ARRIEGE while bringing a valuable cargo from Quebec.
While returning to Spithead on the morning of 5 February Capt. ROGERS discovered a French privateer brig EGYPTIENNE close in to Peverel Point where she was hoping to waylay vessels going in at the Needles.
When challenged by MERCURY she hauled down her colours but then opened fire with muskets which wounded one of MERCURY's men.
Mounting 15 brass guns and carrying 66 men she had sailed from Cherbourg the previous evening.
On 1 April Mr John HOPGOOD, Boatswain of MERCURY, was tried by court martial at Portsmouth on a charge of absenting himself from the ship without leave. When the charge was proved he was sentenced to be dismissed his ship.
- 1801 Mediterranean under the orders of Capt. DIXON in GENEREUX.
While cruising off Minorca on 6 January Capt. ROGERS fell in with a convoy bound for Marseilles from Cette. Because there was little wind he had to rely on the efforts of his officers and men in the boats to capture 15 of the merchantmen without loss. The gunboats escorting them fled on MERCURY's approach. The prizes were deeply laden with brandy, corn, wine, and oil and, as soon as they were taken safely into Port Mahon on the 19th., he sailed again and the following day, 120 miles W. N.W.
of Sardinia, fell in with French national corvette SANS PAREILLE.
After a chase of nine hours in a fresh wind he succeeded in capturing her.
Commanded by Lieut. Gabriel Renault, she mounted eighteen long brass 9-pounders and two howitzers, but had a complement of only 15 men. She had left Toulon the previous day laden with shot, arms, medicines and other stores for the French army at Alexandria.
- From a small vessel from Ancona which he captured on 25 May Capt. ROGERS learnt that the captured sloop BULLDOG was lying at the mole there ready to sail with supplies for the French army in Egypt. He therefore sailed immediately for Ancona and anchored off the mole in the darkness. MERCURY's boats left the ship at half past ten under the direction of the first lieutenant, Mr MATHER. They managed to get on board BULLDOG without being detected and seized the vessel about midnight but the alarm was raised along the mole and the came under fire from cannon and musketry as the mooring ropes were cut and the boats started to tow her out. As there was a breeze they were soon able to hoist the sails and within an hour they were out of range of the batteries. Unfortunately the wind now dropped and the current started to carry them along the coast towards a number of gunboats which came out to attack them. Lieut. MATHER's people were fatigued after rowing all night and when the enemy started to rake BULLDOG he felt obliged to abandoned his prize after holding her for three hours. He had the satisfaction of leaving her so badly damaged that her sailing for Egypt would be long delayed. MERCURY was unable to come to his assistance as the two vessels drifted farther apart.
- John GRAY, seaman, and Morgan DAVIS, marine, were killed and William HAINES, Thomas GUILLAIN, William MORRIS and Henry MEW were wounded.
- On the morning of 23 June the brig EL CORSO chased a notorious pirate vessel, a tartan named TIGRE, among the rocks of the Tremite Islands in the Adriatic.
When MERCURY appeared the renegades landed and posted themselves with a 4-pounder gun on a hill to cover their vessel which they had run ashore.
While MERCURY and CORSO kept up a covering fire from the sea, the boats under Lieut. MATHER of MERCURY went in under a hail of grape and musketry from the vessel and the hill.
The marines under Lieut. WILSON cleared the hill and held it while the seamen secured the TIGRE and brought her out with several prisoners. She had been fitted out at Sinigalia with an armament of eight 6 and 12 pounders but had sailed immediately from Ancona with a crew of French and Italians.
Bales of cotton and other goods plundered from a number of different vessels were found on board.
- 1803 Capt. Hon. Duncombe Pleydell BOUVERIE.
MERCURY was fitted out as a floating battery for the defence of Guernsey.
In December 1804 she sailed from Portsmouth to convoy the Mediterranean trade and she was retained off Cadiz under the orders of Vice Ad. John ORDE.
On the morning of 4 February 1805 MERCURY captured a lateen rigged Spanish gun-vessel FUERTE DE GIBRALTAR which had sailed the previous day from Cadiz for Algiciras but had been driven off the land. She was armed with two long 12-pounders, two 16-pound carronades with swivels and a large quantity of small arms, and carried a crew of 59 men. Her commander was Lieut. Don Ramon Eutate.
Ad. ORDE considered that the prize, newly equipped and copper-bottomed very suitable for naval service at Gibraltar.
- 1805 Capt. Charles PELLY. For Quebec 21 August.
Three brigs from the Newfoundland convoy which MERCURY was convoying to Portugal were taken by privateers.
The ADVENTURE of Poole and the ARGO of Teignmouth were recaptured by the STAR sloop and the GOOD INTENT by Mercury.
- In the spring of 1807 Capt. James Alexander GORDON was appointed to MERCURY and escorted a convoy to Newfoundland. From there she was placed under the orders of Lord COLLINGWOOD in the Mediterranean.
On 4 April 1808 MERCURY and GRASSHOPPER, being off Cadiz under the orders of Capt. Murray MAXWELL in ALCESTE, saw a fleet of Spanish vessels coming along the shore under the protection of about 20 gunboats and a train of artillery. When they arrived off Rota the ships attacked and after about two and a half hours two of the escorts had been destroyed, the rest scattered and the batteries silenced. The boats were then sent in and brought off seven tartans laden with timber although they were defended by armed barges and pinnaces sent from Cadiz. During the action the wind was blowing on shore and the ships were forced to tack every fifteen minutes among the shoals off Rota.
- 1809 Capt. Henry DUNCAN, Mediterranean.
The boats of SPARTAN, AMPHION and MERCURY, armed with carronades, guns and rockets, took station off the mole of Pesaro on 23 April 1809; Capt. BRENTON of SPARTAN then demanded the surrender of all the vessels there. When no flag of truce was seen the boats opened fire until the commandant and his troops abandoned the town. Thirteen vessels, deeply laden with oil, almonds, hides, etc. were brought off and the castle blown up.
- During an attack on shipping at Ceseratico on 2 May by the same three ships, MERCURY took the ground as she endeavoured to get as close in as possible. Fortunately she was able to take her full part in the bombardment and she was later hove off without injury. Twelve vessels were captured and the castle and magazine blown up. The boats of MERCURY destroyed a number of trabaccolos and other vessels on the beach at Roti near Manfredonia during July.
- On 7 September 1810 her boats, under Lieut. PALL, boarded and carried the French schooner PUGLIESE in the port of Barletta, about 30 miles north of Bari on the Adriatic. Although she was protected by two armed feluccas, a castle and her own two guns and muskets, it was accomplished without loss.
- 1810 (en flute) Capt. John TANCOCK, 06/1810, Portsmouth to Lisbon as a troopship.
At the end of 1811 he removed to GRIFFON.
- 1812 Cdr. Clement MILWARD, West Indies.
He was promoted to Captain.