van de Velde drawings, Historical

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The 'Kingfisher's? action against seven Algerine ships, 2 June 1681

van de Velde drawings

Object connections:

Collection van de Velde drawings, Historical
Gallery locationNot on display
Peopledepiction: British Navy, British Navy
undefined: Velde, Willem van de
depiction: Algerian Navy
VesselsKingfisher? 1675 [British navy]

Object details:

Object ID PAG6247
Description This may be the ‘Kingfisher’s action against seven Algerine ships, 23 May [OS]/2 June 1681. An action between and English two-decker and six ships wearing Dutch colours and a seventh (cut off on the right) of which only an English jack is shown. In the foreground is a port broadside view apparently of the ‘Kingfisher’, engaged with a ship close on her starboard quarter, which has a Dutch ensign, a Dutch flag at the main, a plain flag at the fore, and an English jack. On the left is a bow view of another ship firing at the ‘Kingfisher’. Four other ships are across the background. Land is in the distance. The ‘Kingfisher’ (commanded by Captain Morgan Kempthorne) encountered seven Algerine ships soon after leaving Naples. They tried to deceive the ‘Kingfisher’ by changing their colours; first they had French, then Dutch and then some of them Algiers colours; one hoisted an English jack and a Turkish or Algerine flag at the main topmasthead. After a sharp engagement, in which Kempthorne was killed, the Algerines were driven off. A painting in Buckingham Palace apparently of the same action is singed and dated ‘W.V.Velde, de oude, f 1683’; it bears no relation in its composition to this drawing. This is part of a series of over 80 drawings of Charles II’s visit to the ‘Tiger’ at Woolwich and the subsequent passage down the Thames to Sheerness and Chatham, with the return up the river the following day.
Date made 1681?

Artist/Maker Velde, Willem van de
Credit National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, London
Materials grey wash; graphite
Measurements Mount: 10 1/8 in x 15 3/4 in
  • The 'Kingfisher's? action against seven Algerine ships, 2 June 1681 (PAG6247)
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