104 NOTABLE MEN OF WALES. clear of us; but before the boat accomplished its object a shot from the Cumberland cut it in two, and it disappeared in an instant with all its brave and unfortunate crew. The frigate, perceiving the calamity, immediately made all sail in a masterly manner, and was soon out of danger. On the frigate coming down to take the Alcide in tow, the captain of the Victory, one hundred guns, came down below with orders to reserve our fire for the frigate which had bore away to rescue the French seventy-four, then abreast of us and not half-a-mile distant; and although the Victory did fire, and many other vessels also, at this gallant vessel, she had the good fortune to escape any serious accident, having only some of the running rigging cut, which was soon replaced by her daring crew. She got off mojt beautifully, to the astonishment of all our fleet; and I pro¬ nounce this to be the best executed, though unsuccessful, and most daring manoeuvre I ever witnessed in the presence of so very superior a force." Captain Foley is next found in command of the Britannia, flag of Vice-Admiral Charles Thompson, forming part of the force under the command of Admiral Sir John Jervis, afterwaids Lord St. Vincent. This fleet consisted of fifteen sail of the line, and on the 13th of February, 1797, was on its way to its station off Cape St. Vincent, when the Minerve, bearing the broad pennant of Commodore Nelson, joined with the intelli¬ gence that on the 11th, soon after quitting Gibraltar, she had been chased by two Spanish line-of-battle ships, and afterwards in the mouth of the Straits she got sight of the Spanish fleet. The signals were made for the British to prepare for battle, and to keep in close order during the night, at intervals of which the signal guns of the Spaniards were distinctly heard. The grand fleet of Spain, under the command of Don Josef de Cordova, in the Santissima Trinidad, of one hundred and thirty guns, consisted besides of seven ships of one hundred and twelve guns each, two of eighty guns each, and eighteen of seventy-four guns each, with twelve frigates. Their destination was Cadiz. The rumour was that this fleet would proceed on to Brest, join the French and Dutch fleets, and then invade England. The morning of the 14th broke dark and hazy upon the two fleets. The admiral made the signal at 3.15 a.m. for the British to form in close order, and in a few minutes afterwards repeated that of the preceding evening to prepare for battle. We shall not trouble our readers with the oft-told tale of the battle of Cape St. Vincent. The Spanish line had been allowed to separate itself into two portions. The British fleet steered straight into the opening. At 11.28 a.m. the Victory and the other ships hoisted their colours, and at 11.31 the action commenced. At 3.52 p.m. it was over. But the Britannia