Convoys from Cadiz to Italy & Smyrna

Convoy to Italy and Smyrna
Bay of Smyrna
An old pic of the bay of Smyrna.
Date:June 1690 - May 1691
Outcome:Alliance Feat
United Provinces

1 Convoy to Italy & Smyrna

1.1 How the pages are connected

The 1690 voyage of the big fleet to the Mediterranean would kind of end at Cadiz, from where the last of the big warships would sail home. The story of how the convoys next sailed into the Mediterranean is a different one. This is also how I cut the stories up. All events related to the convoys sailing into the Mediterranean are on this page. The Story of how the merchants got back from Spain to the north will remain with the big fleet pages (Myrna Fleet 1691) for the moment.

1.2 French control in the Mediterranean?

It's also interesting to note that while the alliance convoy was still at Cadiz, the French seemed to be in control in the Mediterranean. On 1 June English ships were waiting for convoy in SmyrnaOHC 19 Aug 1690. On 19 June the 'Fame of Louis le Grand', Jean Manaire arrived from Marseille in LivornoOHC 11 July 1690. On 31 July the French St Joseph arrived in Venice from SmyrnaOHC 12 Aug 1690. Somewhere in July the French St Jacques arrived in Livorno from AlessandretteOHC 1? Aug 1690. Letters from Livorno had that 2 richly laden English ships were blocked in Messina, while 5 small French ships were expected to arrive from SmyrnaOHC 5 Aug 1690. On 31 July arrived in Livorno 3 French ships: the St. Barbara, Guillaume Crivelier from Alexandria; the St Jan Baptist; and Zeebloem Jan du Brocard from SmyrnaOHC 19 Aug 1690.

2 Sequence of convoys from Cadiz

The starting point of all this is of course the return of the warships to Cadiz after their pursuit of Chateau-Renault. According to the Burchett's source this was on May 31st. According to the OHC this was on 1 June OHC 1 July 1690.

Traditionally the events are described as 3 convoys sailing from Cadiz. One for Alicante (on a separate page), one for Smyrna, and one for Iskendrun. In fact all convoys sailed to Alicante. The convoy that sailed there first and the ships that did not sail further are designated as the convoy to (Malaga and) Alicante. Some of the ships that originally sailed with it would however continue east with the other convoys.

The convoys to Smyrna and Iskendrun were really one convoy that first sailed to eastern Spain, then to Italy, and probably only split up east of Messina. They were designated as the convoys to Smyrna and Iskendrun, but in the Western Mediterranean they were still united. With at least 7 small ships of the line it outnumbered all enemies that could attack it.

3 Convoy to Italy

19? June Warships in the Convoy to Italy
Ship Guns Captain notes
Tiger 52 Cole
Portland 50 Legs
Greenwich 52 Eduard
Oxford 52 Mijns
Falcon 50 Ward
Cap. Conbent*
De Vrede(A) 52 Van Laer
Huys te Vlaerdingen(N) 46 Jan Poel
*This captain is in the list, let's see whether he surfaces again
19? June merchant ships in the Convoy to Italy
Ship CaptainnotesShipCaptainnotes
English ships: English Ships
Levant Merchant Providence
Factor of Aleppo Lydia
Asia Susanne
Bernardiston City of Cadiz
Concord Cornelis & Robert
Loyalty William
George Dutch ships:
Virginia Stad AmsterdamMetaelman
Unicorn Generale VredeChristiaan Vlies1 July in Alicante
Dorothy St Jan Baptist2Jochem Fransz.
Pelican St. JorisJan Bogaert
Mary Etellery Arke NoèGerrit Nieustat
Leopard PostillionHubert Petit
Expedition Juffrouw ErckenraetPieter Bennebroeck1 July in Alicante
Heritage St. Pieter (& Paul?)W. Doncker1 July in Alicante
William & Anne MariaA. Gouwenaer
William & Anne2 ships so named ConstantinopolenH. Opmeer1 July still in Cartagena
Tunisian Merchant Admirael de RuyterJan Payn
Italian Merchant HollandiaFrans Bernardts1 July in Alicante
Europe Gouden LeeuwPieter Fonteyn1 July in Alicante
New Africa

3.1 Convoy to Italy via Spain

We have a note that the convoy to Italy left Cadiz on 19 June, but it's not very specific on this dateOHC 29 July 1690. The same does have a list of what it considered to be the convoy to Italy, with merchants and escortsOHC 29 July 1690. Notable is that for several of the Dutch ships there were messages that they arrived in Cartagena and AlicanteOHC 29 July 1690. Later on we'll have that on 1 July an English fleet arrived in Alicante, bound to continue to Genoa on 9 JulyOHC 8 August 1690. The simple conclusion is that the convoy to Italy sailed via Alicante, and arrived there while the Malaga/alicante convoy was also there.(this is something to try and pinpoint)

3.2 The escort

For the escorts subtracting the three ships that sailed to Malaga and Alicante leaves only 5 warships for Italy. We also have a note of a captain Conbent. One supposition could be that he was captain of the Richmond sailing with the Italy convoy, but returning with the Malaga/alicante. With regard to the number of guns on the English escorts, one might be tempted to conclude that they used their ligther fourth rates. It would be a nice puzzle to see whether the English had a distinction between 4th rates in general, and those meant for escort duties.

3.3 From Alicante to Italy

From Alicante there was a simple message: The convoys to Smyrna and Scandaroon have left for Italy on 13 JulyOHC 12 August. On 4 August there was a message from Marseille, that two squadrons had been sighted at the longitude of Nizza, i.e. sighted after 31 July. One Squadron for Genua and one for LivornoAC 17 Aug 1690. The course of the convoy was that it first dropped of those ships going to Livorno, then continued to Genoa, and then returned to Livorno.

3.4 Livorno and Genoa

On 31 July the convoy arrived in Livorno (Leghorn). It had 33 English merchant ships and two Dutch: St. Jan Baptist, Jochem Fransse; Mercurius, Jan Pijns. The escort consisted of 4 English and 2 Dutch warships, 'most of which left for Genua, together with some merchants'. Fifteen Spanish galleys and 2 of the escorts tried to capture a French or Algerine privateer, but even though they exchanged some shots, they probably failed to do soOHC 19 Aug 1690. On 2 August the convoys arrived in GenoaOHC 26 Aug 1690, and were expected to rejoin the fleet at Livorno shortly.

On 21 August arrived (back) in Livorno, the warships; Portland, Thomas Ly; that of Captain Richard Edues; Huys te Vlaerdingen, Jan Pael; Vrede, Pieter van Laeren, escorting the Dutch: Arke Noë, Gerrit Nieustad; Generale Vrede, Christiaan Vlies; Stad Amsterdam, Willem Metaelman; Postillion, Robert Petit; Vergulde Leeuw, Pieter Fonteyn; Hollandia, Frans Bernards; Constantinopolen, Hendrick Opmeer; St. Pieter, Willem Doncker; Admiraal de Ruyter, Jan Payn; Witte Roos, Dirck Beest (cf. Malaga convoy); Juffrouw Maria, Adriaen Gouwenaer; Juffrouw Erckenraet, Pieter Harmensz; St. Joris, Jan Borgat; and the English: Arabella, Daniel Parson (cf. Malaga convoy); Friends luck, John Melson; William and Anna, Henry DonOHC 7 Sep 1690.

3.5 to Naples

In the morning of 17 September 6 English and 2 Dutch warships left Livorno with the ships destined for Naples, Messina, Smyrna and IskendrunOHC 7 Oct 1690. These arrived in Naples at some time, because there were said to have left Naples on 30 September with the Smyrna ConvoyOHC 4 Nov 1690.

3.6 Messina

On 8 October the big English and Dutch convoy with all her merchantships to Smyrna and Iskendrun had arrived in MessinaOHC 18 Nov 1690

3.7 Some ships to Venice

Three French warships were hopeful to intercept any ships that wanted to sail via Messina to VeniceOHC 4 Nov 1690. This did not succeed, because it seemed that on 28 October the Mercurius and some ships of her company arrived in Venice1. These had sailed with the Smyrna Convoy from Naples, that the Ventians were rather sure to have arrived in MessinaOHC 11 Nov 1690. All 4 English and 3 Dutch merchant ships reached VeniceOHC 18 Nov 1690.

4 To the Ottoman Empire

4.1 The Convoy splits up

February 1691 ships in Messina from Smyrna*
Ship CaptainnotesShipCaptainnotes
Dutch ships: English Ships
A warship
Stad Amsterdam
St. Pedro
Juffrouw Erkenraad
Goude Leeuw
MercuriusLeft Cythera for Spain
St. JanLeft Cythera for Spain
*AC 24 March 1691

We assume that somewhere east of Messina, the convoy split into a Smyrna convoy and an Iskendrun convoy. The convoy to Smyrna was escorted by the Tiger(52); Newcastle(52) and Oxford(52), Captain Coal commanding. That to Iskenderun ('Scandaroon') was escorted by the Portland(50); Greenwich(52) and Falcon(50). This based on Burchett, who did not report the Dutch escorts.

4.2 Convoy to Smyrna

On 19 November 1690 the Smyrna convoy arrived in SmyrnaOHC 20 Jan 1691. The Tiger was set to have sailed from Cythera to England in 46 days and to have arrived there in February 1691AC 1 March 1691. En route, the Smyrna convoy had taken 8-10 French barcksOHC 1 March 1691. Letters of 5 January 1691 from Smyrna stated that the convoy was to sail on 15 JanuaryOHC 8 March 1691. Later it was expected to leave Smyrna on 20 JanuaryOHC 17 March 1691.

4.3 Convoy to Iskenderun

The Iskendrun convoy was said to have arrived in Cyprus on 3 November 1690, and to have continued from there to Iskendrun on 9 NovemberOHC 30 Dec 1690. On 1 March the Iskendrun convoy arrived back in MessinaOHC 7 April 1691.

5 Back in Italy

26 March 1691: the Convoy as it arrived back in Livorno
Ship CaptainnotesShipCaptainnotes
Iskendrun ships:? Smyrna Ships:?
Juffrouw MariaAdriaen GouwenaerItaly Convoy Gouden LeeuwPieter Fonteyn Italy Convoy
Arcke NoeGerrit NieustatItaly Convoy Smyrna YachtJames Hely
Generale Vrede Christiaan VliesItaly Convoy ProvidenceJohn Bluet Italy Convoy / Smyrna +
Admiraal de RuyterJan PaynItaly Convoy MaegtWilliam Vual
ConcordiaRichard JongItaly Convoy / Iskendrun + ChristophelWilliam Cheselty
HeritageWilliam PatenItaly Convoy HollandiaFrans Bernards Italy Convoy
AsiaJohn HesludItaly Convoy Buon AdventureJohn Fouch
BernardistonWilliam VuaghelItaly Convoy / Iskendrun +Juffrouw ErckenraetPieter BennebroeckItaly Convoy
Factoor van AleppoJohn FranszItaly Convoy / Iskendrun +Olive treeWilliam Porter
Italian MerchantGeorge FeneyItaly Convoy / Iskendrun + LoyaltyHenry Cuttanee Italy Convoy / Smyrna +
ExpeditionJohn TevelItaly Convoy Stad AmsterdamWillem Metaelman Italy Convoy
Levant MerchantRobert BabingtonItaly Convoy / Iskendrun +Goede SocieteitWilliam Morris
Thomas and EugeniaThomas Benet GeorgeCharles Gibson Italy Convoy / Smyrna +
Frigat AnnaCharles Pitcher ExpeditionEdward Matthews Smyrna +
Prince GeorgeNicolas Cheseley Italy Convoy
RecompenceJohn Cooth / Cook + Italy Convoy / Smyrna +
FriendshipJohn Lederland
Smyrna FactorJohn Sciovel Smyrna +
Europe Italy Convoy
Anna Pikkering + Italy Convoy From Smyrna +
IndustryCaleb Grantham Alicante Convoy
RubyAlexander Chenton Alicante Convoy
PostillionHubert Petit Italy Convoy
SuccessWilliam Boret Alicante Convoy / From the Levant +
New AfricanWilliam Allin Italy Convoy / From the Levant +
William and MaryRichard Genis
Warships JamesJames Smith
Tyger Loyal SubjectThomas Rogers From the Levant +
Portland Witte RoosDirck Fredericksz Bery Alicante Convoy
Oxford AngiolaRicard Saut from Gallipoli +
Greenwich Vrienden GelukJohn Messan
Newcastle JagerEduard Barret from Gallipoli +
Falcon Tunisian MerchantJohn Ghuilar Italy Convoy
Vlaerdingen St. George / JorisJan Bogaert Italy Convoy
Vrede Royal MaryJohn Roncivall Iskendrun +
Gouden LeeuwJohn Beli Iskendrun +
+ Information from the Mercurius, it also has the Mary of Hugeson, and Castle Frigate by Eley
+ Information from the Mercurius, it also has 9 other ships joining en route from Italy

5.1 The Smyrna fleet arrives in Messina

Letters of 9 February 1691 from Messina confirmed the arrival of the Smyrna Convoy of 26 sail after a 10-day journeyAC 24 March 1691. The Dutch ships were specified as in the small ships from Smyrna table above. The English ships were only specified as missing the Kitts, the Smyrna Yacht and a small fluyt. One thougth the warships might sail back to Cythera to await the ships from there and IskendrunAC 24 March 1691. The Mercurius and St Jan (Baptist) had set sail from Cythera straight to SpainAC 24 March 1691. (On 26 April the St. Jan Baptist would ail from SPain to HollandOHC 2 June 1691.) The Mercurius of Jan Payn brushed of an Algerine pirate and arrived in Malaga on 27 FebruaryAC 24 March 1691. On 12 March 1691 there was a report in Livorno that there were between 40 and 50 Dutch and English ships in MessinaAC 31 March 1691.

5.2 Combined trip to Livorno

On 1 March the Iskendrun convoy arrived also arrived in Messina. The two convoys next sailed as one from Messina on 8 MarchAC 26 April 1691 heading 6 April, except for the St Pedro of Willem Doncker, that was damaged and beached while sailing out of MessinaOHC 7 April 1691. The fleet that sailed from Messina to Livorno was about 42 strongAC 31 March 1691. A letter from Livorno of 18 March stated that 40-50 ships had been sighted near CitavechiaOHC 5 April 1691.

5.3 An English Algiers squadron

Meanwhile an English squadron of 8 warships had been to Algiers to ratify a peace treaty. There were messages that it had joined the convoy, which was then supposed to haved 16 warships and 3 burnersOHC 7 April 1691. It would then have been superior to the French Mediterranean squadron, and ideas that this combined force could be used to break the siege of Nice, were quite logical. (At the time Nice belonged to Savoy and was was besieged by the French, and blocked by their fleetOHC 7 April 1691.) Meanwhile it was supposed that the French did not dare to sail to LivornoOHC 12 April 1691. Further below we'll see that this conjunction with the Algiers squadron only took place at a later time.

5.4 The combined convoy in Livorno

On 26 March 1691 the combined convoy arrived in Livorno, and the neat list of it is in the tableOHC 14 April 1691. Perhaps there was some kind of order in this list as it was published, and therefore it has been divided over the two columns in a certain way that might point to the origin of the ships.

6 To Spain

6.1 Leaving Livorno

In contrast to the talk about aiding the Savoyans in Nice, the Convoy left Livorno in a hurry on 8 April and set a course for the African coast. The reason were rumors that the French ships which had left Nice were planning to attack the convoy while it was before LivornoOHC 28 April 1691.

6.2 Stop in Cagliari

Due to contrary winds it took the convoy 16 days to sail from Livorno to Cagliari (Sardegna)OHC 16 May 1691. This would mean it arrived there on 24 April. On 1 May the English warship Falcon of the Algiers squadron arrived from Cagliari to Livorno in 5 days, and carried the news of the convoy's arrival. It also stated that the Algiers squadron now had joined the convoy, giving it the protection of 15 warships. In Cagliari the convoy also met the Maria of Joost Jillesz., the St. Rochus and the Halve maen. The Reserve of Captain Cramoli went to Tunis to make peace over there. On 2 May the Swallow would return to Cagliari and escort 3 English merchants to that placeOHC 16 May 1691.

6.3 A Spanish squadron to Barcelona

A Spanish Squadron sailing to Barcelona*
Ship guns Captainnotes
Charles II 70Adm. H.B. Papachino
Francisco 50Don Juan de Nestares
San Lorenzo 50Don Alonso F. de Cordoba
Thomas of Aquino 50Don Melendo Suarez
Augustin Don Rodrigo Pardo
Mater Dolorosa 20Pieter van Hertrik a 'Pink'
*OHC 2 June 1691

On 28 April a Spanish squadron of 5 warships and a pink left Cadiz for Barcelona. I thought it nice to include it here. It landed 3,000 soldiers in BarcelonaAC 4 July 1691

7 Spain

7.1 Alicante

On 7 May the Anglo-Dutch convoy arrived before Alicante. The English and Dutch consul sent a ship to try and persuade the convoy to anchor in Alicante, but the convoy sailed through to Cadiz.

7.2 Back in Cadiz

English Convoy to in Cadiz
Ship gunsmen Captain notes:
Rupert Aylmer
Scepter Rogers
Kingfisher Johnson
Mordaunt Butler
Reserve Cromoly
Saphire Cap. Killegrew
2 Burners
A Yacht
Essex John Hudson
Sarah & Isabella Nicolas Domon
Nicolas & Sarah John Gumal To Alicante 6 Feb.
Sarah John Bradil
Popley John Wilmot
King James David Bishop
Expedition Skipper Paine
George George Moon To Alicante 6 Feb.
Herne Nicolas Willis
Thomas Francis Nicolas Osmund To Med. 6 Mar.
Love William Cogan
Resolution Walter Croncker
Granada James Loder
Charles Thomas Thomson
Joseph Matthias Long
Arado Stephen Withal
Yacht Moses Cock Palandre = Yacht
John & Samuel Patrick Mitchel
St Peter Dutch From Yarmouth
*Commander of this squadron
Dutch Convoy in Cadiz 6-8 Feb
Ship gunsmen Captain notes:
Beschermer Willem vd Saen jr. Arrived 6 Feb.
Prov. Utrecht Philip Schrijver 13 Mar to Med.
Noort Holland Rudolf Swaen 13 Mar to Med.
Orange Cornelis Verhoeven 13 Mar to Med.
A burner 13 Mar to Med.
Merchant Ships:
Diamant Gerrit van Leeuwen
Koning David Jan Hartman
Wapen van Seville Cornelis Bergerboot
Salamander Willem Swemmer
Catalina Adriaen Leeuwen
*Commander of this squadron
16 June 1691: the escort of the convoy arrives in Cadiz*
Ship CaptainnotesShipCaptainnotes
Falcon Ward Original escort Vlaerdingen PolOriginal escort
Tiger Cole Original escort Vrede LaerOriginal escort
Oxford Ninges Original escort
Greenwich Eduard Original escort
Saphire Killegrew Original escort
Newcastle Lambert Original escort
Mordaunt Butler Joined from somewhere Orange Van der Hoeve Joined from somewhere
Rupert Aylmer Joined from somewhere Noort Holland Swaen Joined from somewhere
English Burner Stad Utrecht Schrijver Joined from somewhere
English Burner Dutch Burner Joined from somewhere
*OHC 16 June 1691
16 June 1691: the merchant ships arriving in Cadiz*
Ship Captainnotes ShipCaptainnotes
Concordia Richard Jennings Arcke Noë Gerrit Nieuwlant
Heritage Wiliam Patu Admirael de Ruyter Jan Pain
Asia Haselwood Generale Vrede Christiaan Vlies
Bernardiston William Wackelin Juffrouw Maria Adriaan Gouwenaer
Factor of Aleppo John Frost Vergulde Leeuw Pieter Fonteyn
Italian Merchant George Fening Hollandia Frans Bernards
Expedition John Jewel Juffrouw Erckenraet Pieter Harmensz. Bennebroek
Levantine Merchant Parrington Stad Amsterdam Willem Metaelman
Vergulde Leeuw Bail Postillion Huybert Petit
Anna Charles Pickering Roos Jan Bogaert
Virgina William Wallace De Rhijn Christobal Warrier
St. George Charles Gibson Rosario and Theresia Simon Pualuga
Olive Branch James Potter
Prince George Nicolas Casteleyn
Richard John Cole
Amistad John Leterly
Smyrna Factor John Shovel
New Industry Caleb Grantham
Success Peter Huys
William and Mary William Barward
New Africa William Ades
*OHC 16 June 1691

On 14 May 1691 the convoy arrived before in CadizOHC 16 June 1691. There was some trouble with quaraintaine, which had not been full in Livorno, and this did cause some delay.

This problem with quarantaine seems to be what caused the governor of Cadiz to forbid the entrance of the convoy into the Bay of Cadiz. The convoy did not comply with this order and did anchor in the bayAC 4 July 1691. It does however seem that this migth be the reason that the convoy did not do any business in Cadiz.

8 Conclusion

The alliance had successfully sent a merchant fleet into the Mediterranean in 1690. With a lot of delay it had succeeded in arriving safely back in Cadiz in 1691. The relevance is of course that the Sea powers proved to be able to protect their trade in the Mediterranean despite the recent French naval investments.

9 Sources

Direct sources for this page are the London Gazette (LG), and Dutch newspapers, especially the Oprechte Haerlemse Courant (OHC) and Amsterdamsche Courant (AC)

10 Notes

1) Having the 11 Nov 1690 OHc before me, I was irritated by a remark that such and so happened 'while the letters from Venice were being closed'. Was this a very sloppy way of writing, or may one conclude that the last date mentioned under Venice is the day the Venice letters were closed? (I.e. 28 October)
2) While the paper says St Jan of Jochem Fransz., a comparison with the big fleet reveals the ships was called St Jan Baptist. This becomes relevant further down.