HMS Bienfaisant (1758)

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Career (France) French Royal Navy Ensign
Name: Bienfaisant
Launched: 1754
Captured: 25 July 1758, by Royal Navy
Career (UK) Royal Navy Ensign
Name: HMS Bienfaisant
Acquired: 25 July 1758
Honours and

Participated in:

Fate: Broken up, 1814
General characteristics [1]
Class and type: 64-gun third rate ship of the line
Tons burthen: 1360 tons (1381.8 tonnes)
Length: 153 ft 9 in (46.86 m) (gundeck)
Beam: 44 ft 6 in (13.56 m)
Depth of hold: 19 ft 4 in (5.89 m)
Propulsion: Sails
Sail plan: Full rigged ship
Armament: 64 guns of various weights of shot

Bienfaisant was a 64-gun ship of the line of the French Navy, launched in 1754.

She was captured by the Royal Navy on the night of 25 July 1758 during a cutting out expedition ordered by Admiral Edward Boscawen during the 1758 Siege of Louisbourg. Bienfaisant and the 74-gun Prudent were the last remaining ships of the line of the French squadron in Louisbourg harbour. Prudent was aground and so was burnt but Bienfaisant was successfully cut out by men commanded by Commander George Balfour, of HMS Aetna. The action was decisive moment of the siege as the fortress surrendered the next day. The captured Bienfaisant was commissioned as the third rate HMS Bienfaisant. [2][3] She took part in the Battle of Cape St Vincent in 1780.

Bienfaisant was broken up in 1814.


  1. Lavery, Ships of the Line, vol. 1, p. 178.
  2. Ships of the Old Navy, Aetna.
  3. Ships of the Old Navy, Bienfaisant.


  • 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.
  • Michael Phillips. Aetna (8) (1756). Michael Phillips' Ships of the Old Navy. Retrieved 24 November 2007.
  • Michael Phillips. Bienfaisant (64) (1758). Michael Phillips' Ships of the Old Navy. Retrieved 24 November 2007.