|Naval history of Great Britain - Vol. IV
||Light Squadrons and Single Ships
her guns upon the remaining vessels. These at length, together with the Phoenix herself, were set on fire and destroyed, and the boats got back to their ships with so slight a loss, notwithstanding the heavy fire opened upon them by the batteries, as one marine killed, and one marine and three seamen wounded.
The William corvette was found to be in so unseaworthy a state, that she also was destroyed. The two Dutch 68-gun ships Pluto and Revolutie, which Sir Edward had expected to find in Batavia road, had previously retired, for greater safety, to the fortified harbour of Gressie at the eastern extremity of the island.
On the 23d of October, in the evening, as the British 12-gun schooner Pitt (ten 18-pounder carronades and two sixes), Lieutenant Michael Fitton, was lying at an anchor in the mole of Cape St.-Nicolas, island of St.-Domingo, the man looking out at the mast-head reported two sail in the offing, over the neck of land to the northward, one apparently in chase of the other. The Pitt instantly got under way, and, it being a stark calm, swept herself out of the mole. In the course of the night she was occasionally assisted by a light land wind, and on the 24th, at daybreak, descried three schooners, the largest evidently a privateer of force. Towards the latter the Pitt now steered ; and the stranger, as if confident in her strength, hove to. At 7 A.M. a distant firing commenced between the two schooners ; but, in less than half an hour, the Pitt's opponent, which was no other than the celebrated French privateer Superbe, of 14 guns (12 long 6 and two long 8 pounders), Captain Dominique Diron, bore up, under easy sail, after her two prizes, whom she was conducting to the port of Baracoa in Cuba. The chase continued throughout the day and night, the greater part of the time in calm weather, during which the crew of the Pitt plied their sweeps with unremitting vigour.
On the morning of the 25th, a breeze springing up favourable to the Pitt, the latter was enabled, in the course of the day, again to get within gun-shot of the Superbe ; who, having seen her two prizes safe into Baracoa, lay to off the port, as if determined to give battle to the British schooner, M. Dominique being well aware that, in case of discomfiture, he could run into Baracoa, where already lay four or five freebooters like himself. Aware, in some degree, of the Frenchman's intention, the Pitt contrived to get between the Superbe and her port, and at 4 P.M. recommenced the action. After a tolerably close cannonade of 30 or 35 minutes, the privateer again made sail ; and the Pitt, who, in passing near Baracoa at sunset, had observed five privateers lying there, so manoeuvred as to keep her opponent in the offing. In this way the two schooners passed the third night, the British crew having again to labour occasionally at the sweeps, with the additional duty of repairing their damaged
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