Basilisk (8)

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Hierarchical Path: Seven Years War (Main Page) >> Navies >> British Navy >> Basilisk (8)

Origin and History

The bomb was built by Richard Wells at Deptford dockyard and launched on February 10 1759.

During the Seven Years' War, the fireship was under the command of:

  • in 1759: commander John Clarke
  • in 1761: commander Robert Brice
  • in 1762: commander Lowfield (killed in action on October 29 1762)

The bomb was captured on October 29 1762.

Service during the War

On July 2 1759, the bomb was part of the squadron of rear-admiral George Brydges Rodney who sailed from St. Helen's to destroy the flat-bottomed boats and the supplies which had been collected at Le Havre for the projected invasion of England. On July 4 at sunrise, Rodney, with his 6 bomb ketches stationed in the channel leading to Harfleur, began the bombardment of Le Havre and of the flat-bottomed boats. The bombardment lasted for 52 hours until July 6 at 8:00 AM and 1,900 shells and 1,150 carcasses were fired on the town. Le Havre burnt furiously for 6 hours despite the continual efforts of several hundred men to extinguish the fire. This attack totally destroyed any French preparations in this town for the invasion of England. Rodney, with some of his frigates, remained off the port of Le Havre for the rest of the year, and captured numerous prizes.

On October 19 1761, the bomb sailed from Great Britain to reinforce Pocock's squadron.

In 1762, the bomb took part in the siege of Havana. On October 29, she was captured by the French privateer Audacieux (18).

To do: more details on the campaign from 1760 to 1762


Technical specifications
Guns 8
Gundeck not available
Quarterdeck not available
Forecastle not available
Crew not available
Length at gundeck not available
Width not available
Depth not available
Displacement not available


Blasco, Manuel, Unrated 1714-1792, 3 Decks Wiki

Phillips, M., Michael Phillip's Ships of the Old Navy


N.B.: the section Service during the War is mostly derived from our articles depicting the various campaigns, battles and sieges.