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MORS-AUT-GLORIA Gunboat Spanish gun-boat armed with one long brass 36-pounder and a 6 inch howitzer. Her bows were decorated with a death's head and cross-bones.
  • 1810 William Henry SMYTH, 04/9/1810, Cadiz, until the beginning of March 1811. With a British crew of 35 men she was part of the gunboat flotilla of 30 boats employed against the French army under Marshal Victor besieging Cadiz.
  • On 12 September two of her crew were badly wounded when the French batteries near Matagorda opened fire and were immediately answered by the flotilla and on the 19th. MORS-AUT-GLORIA and two Spanish gunboats silenced a small battery in the Bay of Bulls. The following day the French by increasing the elevation of their guns, succeeded in throwing red-hot shot at the squadron from Santa Catalina, a distance of three miles.
  • Fort Santa Catalina was attacked by the bombs and gunboats during the night of 3 October and a number of fires were started and the walls breached. The following day MORS-AUT-GLORIA was twice hit by shot and on the 5th. she joined in an attack on Fort Napoleon, an earth battery of 16 heavy guns near Matagorda, and on Fort Luis, on Trocadero Island. The later fort mounted 14 guns firing towards Puntales and the same number covering the inner harbour.
  • Early in the morning of 1 November seven of the enemy gunboats from the Gualdalquivir flotilla, protected by Fort Conception and horse artillery on the beach, succeeded in reaching Puerto San Maria although they were attacked by the British gunboats as soon as they were discovered. Lieut. SMYTH pressed home his attack until MORS-AUT-GLORIA was nearly caught on the bar by the falling tide. In the afternoon, with a strong west wind and a thick haze, she joined in the pursuit of some enemy gunboats running along the shore from Rota.
    The French flotilla attempted to get into the Trocadero Creek near Puerto Real on the night of the 14th. but the British gunboats drove some into the Rio Guadalete and others into the Rio San Pedro, from where they were transported overland to the creek.
    On the 23rd. the gunboats, with AETNA, DEVASTATION and THUNDER, carried out a bombardment of Fort Santa Catalina from 2.30 in the afternoon until 10 o'clock at night. MORS-AUT-GLORIA fired more than seventy rounds and although several of her sweeps were smashed by enemy fire she suffered no other damage.
  • The evening of Christmas day was spent making preparations for an attack on the French gunvessels which had been dragged overland. During the night the British flotilla moved into the inner harbour and anchored near Cantera with the Spanish vessels. The French opened fire at daylight the following morning but it was not returned until, with the high tide at one o'clock in the afternoon, the whole force swept over to the enemy side. The Spaniards attacked Fort Luis, Fort Puntal opened fire on Matagorda and the British flotilla attacked the enemy gunboats, destroying seventeen of them before hauling off at half past three.
  • An Anglo-Portuguese force under Lieut. General GRAHAM was landed at Algeciras on 22 February 1811 and the troops marched to Tariffa where they were joined by 7,000 Spaniards under General La Pena. The Spanish general marched his troops across the front of the two French divisions commanded by Marshal Victor on the ridge of Barrosa and disappeared into the distance. This left GRAHAM's small force, tired after a sixteen hour march, to fight an enemy numbering more than eight thousand. Lieut. SMYTH had been sent with dispatches after General GRAHAM and he arrived at Barrosa at the termination of the battle in which 3,000 French were killed or wounded for the loss of 1243 on the Anglo-Portuguese side.
    One French general was killed and two taken prisoner along with 47 other officers and 460 men. Lieut. SMYTH was still there when La Pena came marching back to claim the victory in which he had taken no part whatsoever.

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© 1995, 2007 Michael Phillips