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PEACOCK (18) Built in 1806, Bayley's Yard, Ipswich (Cruizer class).
Taken in 1812.

  • 1808 William PEAKE, Coast of Spain.
  • 1812 sent to reinforce Sir J. B. WARREN on the American station.
    When the MONTAGUE chased the American sloop HORNET away from the harbour of San Salvador where she had been blockading BONNE CITOYENNE, HORNET'S Capt. Lawrence, decided that it would be prudent to shift his cruising ground away from the Brazilian coast and moved to the Caribbean.
  • On the 24 February he discovered ESPIEGLE at anchor outside the bar of the Demerara River and was beating round the Carobana Bank to get at her when he saw a man-of-war brig on his weather quarter.
    This was PEACOCK which hoisted English colours at 4.
    20 PM and an hour later the two brigs exchanged broadsides at half-pistol-shot as they passed each other.
    PEACOCK got in another broadside from her starboard battery before HORNET ran her close on board on the starboard quarter and kept up such a heavy fire that fifteen minutes later she surrendered.
    Capt. PEAKE and four men were found dead on board; one midshipman, the master, the carpenter, the captain's clerk and 29 men were wounded, three dying of their wounds, and nine were drowned.
    Four of PEACOCK's men took to her stern boat and set out for the shore.
    HORNET's men did their best to plug the shot holes in PEACOCK and to keep her afloat by throwing the guns overboard and pumping and baling but she sank in five and a half fathoms of water. She carried down with her three men from HORNET and 13 from PEACOCK but four of them managed to reach the foretop and were taken off by the boats.
    Four others escaped in the stern boat and made for the shore.
    HORNET's loss was trifling, one killed and four wounded, one mortally.
  • Meanwhile ESPIEGLE lay at anchor 6 miles inshore and the Americans were apprehensive that she would beat out to the assistance of her consort so they worked hard to repair damage and prepare the ship for further action.
    Instead ESPIEGLE weighed and sailed into Demerara.

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