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VESTAL (32) 5th rate Built in 1757, Harwich.
Broken up in 1775.

  • 1758 Capt. Samuel HOOD.
    In February 1759 he was stationed as a lookout ahead of the squadron employed in the Channel under Rear Adm. HOLMES. On the 3rd. March news reached the Admiralty that on the 21st. February VESTAL had fallen in with the BELLONA, a French frigate of the same force, with dispatches from the governor of Martinique to the French court; and that after a desperate engagement of four hours, she had taken her and brought her to Spithead. The VESTAL's lieutenant found more than 30 dead upon the deck, when he took possession of BELLONA, and the French acknowledged that they threw 10 or 12 overboard. When she struck she had only her foremast standing without either yard or top-mast; and when Capt. HOOD brought to, all his own top-masts fell over the side; the lowermost mast would likewise have gone, had not the weather proved very fine. The VESTAL had five killed and 22 wounded. When Capt. HOOD first gave chase, the TRENT was about four miles to leeward, and gave chace at the same time; when the engagement began the TRENT was out of sight; and when the BELLONA struck TRENT was about the same distance off as at first setting out. The BELLONA had left Martinique the 16th. January, in company with the FLORISSANT and a frigate of her own force. They were all chased by a part of Commodore MOORE's squadron, but escaped by superiority of sailing, but did not know how it fared with her companions. English troops had landed the very day that she set sail.

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