HMS Daring (1804)

HMS Daring was a 12-gun gun-brig of the Archer class of the British Royal Navy. She was launched in 1804 and in 1813 scuttled to avoid capture on the West Africa Station.

United Kingdom
Name: HMS Daring
Ordered: June 1804
Builder: Jabez Bayley, Ipswich
Laid down: June 1804
Launched: October 1804
Commissioned: November 1804
Fate: Scuttled 27 January 1813
General characteristics [1]
Class and type: Archer-class gun-brig
Tons burthen: 1784094 (bm)
  • Overall: 80 ft 2 in (24.4 m)
  • Keel:65 ft 10 34 in (20.1 m)
Beam: 22 ft 6 34 in (6.9 m)
Depth of hold: 9 ft 5 in (2.9 m)
Sail plan: Brig
Complement: 50
Armament: 10 x 18-pounder carronades, and 2 chase guns


She was built under contract by Jabez Bailey, of Ipswich and launched in October 1804. Lieutenant Charles Ormsby commissioned her in November 1804.[1] On 13 August 1805 Daring detained the Danish ship Venners Aventure.[2] Vennerus Aventura, Neilson, master, was sailing from Amsterdam to Naples. Daring sent her into Cowes.[3]

Lieutenant George Hayes took command in November 1805.[4] serving in the Channel and the North Sea.[1] On 8 April 1806 Daring shared with the Hardy and Moucheron in the capture of Minerva.[5] Daring and Hardy also shared the capture of Anna Charlotta, Frederica de Liefde, and Pomona on 7, 8, and 9 April.[6] On the 9th, Daring sent Anna Charlotta, Smith, master, and Delesse, Ball, master, from Bordeaux, into Plymouth.[7] Daring also sent the brig Bachus, sailing from Baltimore to Hamburg, into Portsmouth.[7] A few days later, Daring sent Josephine, which had been sailing from Bordeaux to Altona, into Portsmouth too.[8] In mid-August, Daring sent into Portsmouth "Alexander, O'thman, master, which had been sailing from Bordeaux to Cherbourg."[9]

About a year later, towards the end of August 1807, Daring sent into Portsmouth Slark, which had been sailing from Oporto to Tonningen.[10] On 31 August Daring captured Odin.[11] Oden, a galliot from Arundahl, came into Portsmouth on 4 September.[12]

In 22 November 1808 Daring and Encounter recaptured the schooner Hope.[13] Hope, Allen, master, had been sailing from Plymouth to London when was first captured; she arrived at Portsmouth on the 23rd.[14] That same day, Daring was in company with Coquette when they captured Espiegle.[15]

In August 1809, Daring served in the Walcheren Campaign,[16] in the West Scheldt, being detached under Sir Home Popham to take soundings. Daring was at the siege of Flushing, and was instrumental in saving the brigs Reynard and Cracker after they had grounded within point-blank shot of the enemy.[4]

On 29 April 1810, Daring was in company with Armide at the captured of the Aimable Betsie.[17] On 6 November Daring escorted a convoy from Plymouth.[18] Hayes left Daring in November 1810.[4]

In December 1810 she was under the command of Lieutenant Thomas Allen.[1]

Lieutenant Campbell replace Allen in 1811, but Lieutenant William R. Pascoe replaced Campbell in June. He recommissioned her as she was fitting out at Sheerness before proceeding to the coast of West Africa. Pascoe and Daring sailed for West Africa in March 1812.[1] Towards the later end of March, Daring had to put into Vigo. She was convoying three transport ships laden with Government stores for Africa, and one of them, Alfred, Chapman, master, had sprung a leak.[19]

On 9 June Daring captured the ship Esperanza.[20] Later, on 30 June, Daring captured the schooner Centinella. Then on 5 July Daring captured the brig St Carlos.[21]


On 27 January 1813 Pascoe was forced to run the Daring aground on Tamara (one of the Iles de Los off Guinea), and burn her to avoid the French frigates Aréthuse and Rubis capturing her. Pascoe had approached a group of three ships believing them to be Brazilian slavers. When he discovered that the three were two French frigates and their prize, he attempted to flee, but was unable to do so and instead scuttled Daring. Pascoe and his crew then escaped to Sierra Leone in several small trading boats.[22]

Pascoe arrived in the Sierra Leone River with the greater part of his crew on 28 January and reported to Captain Frederick Paul Irby of Amelia.

Irby sent Pascoe back in a small schooner to reconnoitre. Pascoe reported back that the two frigates were unloading a Portuguese prize before preparing to sail to intercept British home-bound trade.[23]

After Pascoe returned on 4 February he found that a cartel had arrived with the master and crew of Daring. Captain Irby, his crew depleted by sickness but reinforced by the men from Daring, sailed to attack the French vessels, hoping that on the way he might join up with any Royal Navy vessels in the area. He eventually engaged Aréthuse, which was anchored well to the north of the Rubis, and which came out to meet him.[23] Rubis did not join the fight; unbeknownst to Irby, she had struck a rock that had disabled her). Amelia engaged Aréthuse for four hours and suffered heavy casualties - 51 killed (including Lieutenant Pascoe), and 95 wounded. The two vessels then disengaged and Amelia sailed off.[23]

Although she had been badly damaged, Amelia returned to Britain via Madeira. Aréthuse returned to the stranded Rubis. The French burnt her on 8 February when it turned out that they could not refloat her.


  1. Winfield (2007), p. 341.
  2. "No. 16703". The London Gazette. 13 February 1813. p. 337.
  3. Lloyd's List (LL), №4241. Accessed 30 July 2019.
  4. O'Byrne (1849), p. 487.
  5. "No. 16434". The London Gazette. 11 December 1810. p. 1984.
  6. "No. 16200". The London Gazette. 12 November 1808. p. 1542.
  7. LL, №4043. Accessed 30 July 2019.
  8. LL, №4044. Accessed 30 July 2019.
  9. LL, №4074. Accessed 30 July 2019.
  10. LL, №4183. Accessed 30 July 2019.
  11. "No. 16367". The London Gazette. 5 May 1810. p. 663.
  12. LL, №4185. Accessed 30 July 2019.
  13. "No. 16253". The London Gazette. 2 May 1809. p. 629.
  14. LL, №4304. Accessed 30 July 2019.
  15. "No. 16330". The London Gazette. 2 January 1810. p. 25.
  16. "No. 16650". The London Gazette. 26 September 1812. pp. 1971–1972.
  17. "No. 16487". The London Gazette. 21 May 1811. p. 947.
  18. LL, №4517.
  19. Lloyd's List, №4660. Accessed 19 July 2016.
  20. "No. 16860". The London Gazette. 19 February 1814. p. 393.
  21. "No. 16782". The London Gazette. 28 September 1813. p. 1946.
  22. Hepper (1994), pp. 144-5.
  23. "No. 16713". The London Gazette. 20 March 1813. pp. 582–583.


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