HMS Thunderer (1783)
|Ordered:||23 July 1781|
|Builder:||John & William Wells, Rotherhithe|
|Laid down:||March 1782|
|Launched:||13 November 1783|
|Fate:||Broken up, March 1814|
|General characteristics |
|Class and type:||Culloden-class ship of the line|
|Tons burthen:||1,679 tons (1705.9 tonnes)|
|Length:||170 ft 8 in (52.02 m) (gundeck)|
|Beam:||47 ft 7 in (14.50 m)|
|Depth of hold:||19 ft 11 in (6.07 m)|
|Sail plan:||Full rigged ship|
HMS Thunderer was a 74-gun third rate ship of the line of the Royal Navy, built at the Wells brother's shipyard in Rotherhithe and launched on 13 November 1783. After completion, she was laid up until 1792, when she underwent a 'Middling Repair' to bring her into service in 1793.
Thunderer was recommissioned in 1803, and in 1805 she fought in Admiral Calder's fleet at the Battle of Cape Finisterre. Her Captain, William Lechmore, returned to England to attend a court-martial as a witness to the events of Admiral Calder's action off Cape Finisterre at the time of the battle.
Later that year she fought at the Battle of Trafalgar under the command of her First Lieutenant John Stockham, The surgeon on board was Scotsman James Marr Brydone, who was the first to sight the French fleet. Thunderer signalled the Victory and three minutes later battle orders were signalled to the British fleet beginning the Battle of Trafalgar.
In 1807, Thunderer served in the Dardanelles Operation as part of a squadron under Admiral Sir John Duckworth and was badly damaged when the squadron withdrew from the area. However, she accompanied Duckworth on the Alexandria expedition of 1807, and in May left Alexandria for Malta, where she was provisioned and repaired over a period of 30 days.
She was decommissioned in November 1808 and broken up in March 1814.
It is reputed that some of her timbers were re-used to build Christ Church, Totland on the Isle of Wight, whilst others were used in the construction of the lych gate at St. Nicolas' Church at North Stoneham near Eastleigh.
Citations and notes
- Colledge, J. J.; Warlow, Ben (2006) . Ships of the Royal Navy: the complete record of all fighting ships of the Royal Navy (Rev. ed.). London: Chatham. ISBN 9781861762818. OCLC 67375475.
- Michael Phillips. Thunderer (74) (1783). Michael Phillips' Ships of the Old Navy. Retrieved 11 August 2008.
- John Lace, born Ramsey Isle of Man, Dec. 25, 1779. Jim Smith's Genealogy Page. Retrieved 2 September 2008.
- Lavery, Brian (2003) The Ship of the Line - Volume 1: The development of the battlefleet 1650-1850. Conway Maritime Press. ISBN 0-85177-252-8.
- Winfield, Rif (2005) British Warships in the Age of Sail, 1793 to 1817. Chatham Publishing. ISBN 1-86176-246-1.