A True ACCOUNT OF A FIGHT BETWEEN Captain Iohn Leech, Commander of the Ship Ann of London, of 14 Guns, and 19 Men, from Iamaica, And a French Privateer of 24 Guns, and some Petteraroes: As it came in a Letter to his Owners from Plymouth, Dated the Second of this Instant Ianuary, 1689.

Licensed Ianuary 8th. 1689/90.

THE 29th. of December in the Morning at day-light having not made the Land, but reckoning our selves very near, the Wind being at West North-West, moderate clear Weather, I sent a Man up in the top to look about, who immediate­ly cryed out, A Sail on our Starboard Quarter, and I think Land on our Lee Bow; expecting the Sail to be what she was, I called up all Hands to make a clear Ship, and sling the Yards, and get the Ship in a fighting Posture, which required more time than we had then to spend to do it Authentick, being disordered by much Tempestuous Weather, and a Sea ship'd the 18th. of December at Night, which broke in some of our Stern, and spoiled a great many of our small Arms, and had put us much out of Fighting Posture, in which we kept always before, and withal wash'd away our Wads out of the Garlings, and where they were hung up, so that we had nothing to make more of left us, but our own Men with their Ruggs, Blankets, and what Cloaths came first to hand, supplyed that want, and stood couragiously by me all the time of Fight. He came up with us with in Gun-shot at half an hour past Seven of the Clock in the Morning, with English Colours abroad, which I perceiving, caused our Colours to be nailed fast to the Staff. When he came nigher, he struck his English Colours, and hoysted his French Ensign, ran a Head, and fired a Gun over our Quarter, Commanding us to Strike; so desiring God to be my Assistance, I fired a Gun off the Quarter-Deck in Defiance; so he came up within half-Pistol shot of us, and poured in a Volly of [Page 2] small shot of about an hundred Arms, with a whole Broad-side of Round, and Bar, and Patridge, besides Petteraroes, with which my Second Mate was killed, and no one else Wounded, blessed be God for it. After this▪ I thought h [...] would have Boarded us, but he received our Broad-side, and sheered off, and loaded aga [...], and came up▪ and did in the like manner as before on the Larboard-side, and running a-head, and falling a-stern, gave us the other fresh Broad-side on the Starboard-side; continuing in this posture running up one side, and backing the Stern on the other side as fast as he could load and fire with small and great Shot till Twelve of the Clock, at which time our Main-Mas fell; and he received some Damage from us under Water, and was forced to bring his Ship upon the C [...]ne for the space of three Glasses, in which time we got our Deck cleared, and the broken Mast and Rigging over-board, and all in readiness to receive him again. Our Men now were more Couragious than at the beginning (Glory be to God that gave the Hearts▪) After this, he came up with as much Fury as possibly he could on the Larboard-side, and fired as fast as he could, laying us a-board on the Bow, but sheered off again and entred no Men. This manner he continued on our Larboard side, loading and firing, till half an hour past Five at Night▪ at which time our Mizen-Mast came by the board, and some of our Cotton on the Poop took fire, and then he sheered near us, as though he would have come on Board us, but through God's Assistance we got both our Mizen-Mast and Rigging all clear from the Ship, and the fire in the Cotton was put out, and then he brought too, and left us. Our eight serviceable Guns that we had, did not lye still all the day any more than his. At Night the Wind vered more Southerly, and we steered with that little Sail God had left us North, in hopes to make the Land, and in the Morning it pleased God that we were fair within a League and a half of Ram-head, and Plymouth Sound opened to us; for which Mercy and Deliverance I desire to return Thanks to Almighty God.

The Ship will take a long time fitting, for she is a perfect Wreck; the more we look about her, the more disabled we find her; we have abundance more Shot in her Hull than I expected, above three hundred. As to the Mizen-Mast, and Main-Mast, with all the Rigging and Sails, they are quite gone; the Fore-Mast is much wounded, together with the Boltsprit, and cannot be made Serviceable; the Fore-yard, and Sprit-sail-yard are in twain; the Fore-top-mast and Fore-top sail only remain sound, but the Rigging and Sails much shattered; both our Boats are shot in pieces, our fine carved work Galleries and Stairs are very much defaced and torn away with shot, and one of our Great Guns split▪ so that I believe Five Hundred Pounds will not Repair and make her as good as she was.

The Captain and his Men behaving themselves so Bravely, the Mer­chan'ts are making a Purse to Present him.


Printed for Sam▪ Crouch, at the Corner of Popes-Head-Alley in Cornhill. 1690.

This keyboarded and encoded edition of the work described above is co-owned by the institutions providing financial support to the Text Creation Partnership. This Phase I text is available for reuse, according to the terms of Creative Commons 0 1.0 Universal. The text can be copied, modified, distributed and performed, even for commercial purposes, all without asking permission.