Origin and History
The ship was built at Portsmouth and launched in 1757.
During the Seven Years' War, the ship was under the command of:
- in 1757: captain James Galbraith
- in 1759: captain Brodrick Hartwell
The ship was retired from service in 1784.
Service during the War
In August 1757, the newly launched ship joined the fleet assembling at Spithead under the command of sir Edward Hawke. On this occasion, the Neptune was the flagship of vice-admiral Charles Knowles. On September 8, the fleet sailed. It escorted 45 transports carrying more then 7,000 foot for an expedition against an undisclosed French port of the Atlantic coast. The raid was finally intended against Rochefort. On September 23, she was part of the ships who bombarded the works on the little island of Aix at the mouth of the river leading up to Rochefort. In half an hour the position surrendered. Despite this success the raid on Rochefort failed lamentably. On October 6, the expeditionary force, returned home with no tangible results.
On February 17 1759, major-general James Wolfe sailed from Spithead in Great Britain aboard the Neptune (90), the flagship vice-admiral Charles Saunders for the expedition against Québec. The voyage was long and tedious. On April 21, when the fleet finally reached Louisbourg, it was to find the harbour blocked with ice, so that the fleet made for Halifax instead. The fleet finally sailed for Louisbourg in May. Between June 1 and 6, the fleet gradually left the harbour of Louisbourg and sailed for Québec. On June 23, Saunders' fleet made a junction with Durell's squadron at Isles-aux-Coudres. On June 26, the whole British fleet of vice-admiral Saunders was anchored safely off the southern shore of Isle-d'Orléans, a few km below Québec without loosing a single ship. The town finally surrendered on September 18. At the end of October, vice-admiral Saunders fired his farewell salute and dropped down the Saint-Laurent river with his fleet on his way to Great Britain.
To do: campaigns from 1760 to 1763
Anonymous, A Complete History of the Present War, from its Commencement in 1756, to the End of the Campaign, 1760, London, 1761, pp. 227-232
Blasco, Manuel, British 2nd Rates, 3 Decks Wiki
Clowes, Wm. Laird, The Royal Navy – A History from the Earliest Time to the Present, Vol. III, Sampson Low, Marston and Company, London: 1898, p. 171-172
N.B.: the section Service during the War is derived from our articles depicting the various campaigns, battles and sieges.