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TO HIS EXCELLENCY THE MARQUIS DE NIZA.
Palermo, September 27th, 1799. My dear Marquis,
Your meeting with Vaubois has this good effect—that we must take Malta, if we mean to have it: therefore, all our exertions must be used. I have applied earnestly to Minorca for some troops, and I hope also, that the Russian Admiral will soon be able to leave Naples and to join you off Malta, when, he tells me, he can land 2000 men. • You will, I am sure, co-operate with the Russian Admiral in the most cordial and friendly manner, and give directions to all under your orders to do the same. I have got two 13-inch mortars and 1200 shells, if any more are wanted, with carcases, &c, but the Maltese do not like to have the Town destroyed. That would not be minded, if we had a regular force. I send you an extract of a letter from Tunis. I know it to be true from other quarters, therefore I think if you can, to have some Vessels off Lampedosa, and a look-out kept on the top of it. I shall send also to Minorca for our Ships to keep a look-out towards Sardinia. It is these succours which make Vaubois so determined to hold out, therefore our intercepting them is of the very greatest consequence.
I am truly sorry to see all our Ships in such a bad state, but I yet hope we shall have it before the winter. I have sent bread and wood by a Transport. Duckworth arrived at Gibraltar the 13th. In England not a word is said against Lord Keith: all minds are taken up with the secret expedition—therefore, I think it very probable, we may see the French Fleet once more in the Mediterranean: therefore, be on your guard by a good look-out. We are all ill and uncomfortable, but ever regard you and believe me, my dear Marquis, &c,
TO EVAN NEPEAN, ESQ., ADMIRALTY.
Palermo, 28th September, 1799.
I have received your letter of the 11th June, and observe with great surprise the premature complaint laid before their Lordships by a Messrs. Patterson, Lie, and Iselim, previous to their knowing whether any injustice had been done them, respecting the 400 pigs of lead landed at Palermo by my order from on board the Oporto, Plofield, Master, which His Sicilian Majesty was in absolute want of for the War; and consequendy, I desired Mr. James Tough,7 His Majesty's Consul here, to value the lead at the price it would fetch at Leghorn, the place of its destination.
This was strictly attended to, and I am informed that the produce has been remitted long since to Messrs. James Sutton and Company, of London, to be distributed to the just proprietors, who at the period of landing the lead were not known, by the bills of lading appearing to order.
Mr. Tough assures me that the nett produce deducting freight, average, aggio, and charges, which Patterson has entirely forgot in demanding the sum of 1663/. 11*. sterling, will be about 1350/. sterling, which exceeds what it would have rendered at Leghorn at the price of 70 ducats, exchange 48, the above charges deducted, and gives a very considerable profit to Patterson and Co.; and I beg you will assure their Lordships that I took care, in the present indispensable case, that every justice was done to all parties. I have the honour to be, with great respect, &c,
'Vide vol. iii. p. 205.
* On the following day, the 29th of September, Lord Nelson completed his fortieth year, on which occasion the Queen of Naples wrote to congratulate him :—
"Palerme, le 20 Septembre, 1799.
"Mon digne et estimable Lord Nelson, recevez mes vceux biens sinceres, pour votre jour de naissance, dans cette annee, qui vous venez de terminer. Combien dinnombrables motifs de reconnoissance n'avous nous point pour vous elre attaches et eternellement devoues! Nous vous devons tout, et croyez que le souvenir en est ineffaf ablement grave dans nos cceurs, car je ne suis que l'interprete des scntimens du Roi, et tie toute ma chere Famille, qui uuis avec moi vous assurent de leur etemelle reconnoissance, et des voeux qu'ils font au Ciel, pour votre parfail bonheur VOL. rv. D
TO EVAN NEPEAN, ESQ., ADMIRALTY.
[Autograph in the Admiralty, and published in the "London Gazette" of November 18th, 1799.]
Palermo, 1st October, 1799. Sir, I have desired Commodore Troubridge to send you for the information of their Lordships extracts of all his letters to me with the terms entered into with the French for the evacuation of the City of Rome and Civita Vecchia," on which event I sincerely congratulate their Lordships, and am, Sir, with great respect, &c,
TO COMMODORE SIR THOMAS TROUBRIDGE, BART.
October 1st, 1799. My dear Troubridge,
Most affectionately do I rejoice in the honour the King has conferred upon you;' and you may depend that if the Marines can be got at, they will be at your service. General Acton sent me a letter this morning detailing what you have done at Civita. Vecchia, but as no dates are stated I can only hope that you have done the job. If it is necessary to leave a few of your and Louis's Marines, do it, and one or two of the Small craft, for the protection of the trade. I want certainly all the Line of Battle Ships, and such of the Small craft, as are not absolutely wanted there. My intention is, to go almost directly to Minorca, and arrange a proper Naval defence for that Island, and to try to get troops to finish the business of Malta, which the French intend to relieve. Five polacres and the two Venetian Ships are loading provisions and stores: therefore, I want to fix our Ships on the spot most likely to intercept them: at Lampedosa, and Cape Bon, and in the track from Toulon to Ajaccio. These are my ideas; for as to blocking Toulon for so few Ships, they would escape, the first north-west wind, if the whole Fleet was there. I need only say to you these are my objects, for you to support me, which it is my pleasure always to acknowledge.
et longuc conservation. Becevez done les souhaits dune famille, d'une nation entiere, qui sent toute l'obligation qu'elle vous doit, et croyez moi pour la vie, avec la plus profonde cstiine et veritable recounoissance, votre ties attachee et affectionfe, Charlotte."—Autograph, in the Nelson Papers.
0 Captain Trowbridge's official Letter, Terms of Capitulation, &c., were published in the London Gazette of the 10th of November, 1799. On the same day, Lord Nelson wrote to Earl Spencer, to precisely the same effect, adding, " I sincerely congratulate your Lordship on this event, so honourable to our Country, for the French would treat with no Country but Britain."—Letter-Book.
I send you an order respecting the re-establishing the Sovereign Pontiff, as far as my power extends. Great Britain only (I hope) wishes to see all things as they were before the war. I send you a little bread. To say the truth I have been expecting you so long that it has been deferred from time to time. If the place has not fallen and you think it useful to keep the blockade, I leave it to you. Captain Mundy* is this moment arrived. I am confident, my dear friend, that you have acted in the best manner for all parties. I have only to repeat that you have my ideas of what is necessary to be done, and you will come as soon as you can; for our business is never done. I have sent to General Acton, as the Pope is dead, whether the Pope's colours ought to be hoisted. At this moment therefore be guided by Acton's order; but always hold out that our Country has no object but the good of all Europe. I desire you will say to Mr. Nepean, that in obedience to orders from me, that you send extracts of your letter to me, and the Capitulations, &c.; for I am the temporary Commanderin-Chief in the Mediterranean. May God bless you, and remember me to Louis and all with you. Believe me, your affectionate,
How happy you have made us! my pen will not say what I feel.
• Of the Transfer, now Vice-Admiral Sir George Mundy, K.C.B.
TO HIS EXCELLENCY THE HONOURABLE WILLIAM F. WYXDHAM. [Autograph, in the possession of the Honourable Mrs. Wyndham.]
Palermo, October 1st, 1799.
Sir, Although His Majesty's Ships are in duty bound to protect the trade of His Allies when bound the course of the respective Ships, I am afraid it will be impossible for our country to keep Convoys for all the trade of Tuscany, but my endeavours shall not be wanting to afford them all the protection consistent with the utmost stretch of my duty, and therefore it was needless for your Excellency to lay such a stress to remind me of what, I dare say, you thought the duty of a British Admiral. I am not accustomed to be wanting in the service of our King, of which, I trust, you will bear witness.3 I am, with great respect, your Excellency's most obedient servant,
To Commodore Sir Thomas Troubridge, Bart.
Palermo, October 1st, 1799.
"My dear Troubridge, Mr. Parker' is just gone home by desire of the King of Sardinia—therefore it is matter for consideration whether Lord Spencer would take it well, sending one on every occasion; but if you think it will answer a good purpose, send your First Lieutenant, and write Lord Spencer and Mr. Nepean, that it is my directions, as a mark of entire approbation of
* The letter of Mr. Wyndham's here alluded to, has not been found, nor does the Letter-Book contain a copy of any part of it.
'Lieutenant William Parker, now Vice-Admiral Sir William Parker, Bart., G.C.B., who is mentioned in the Preface to the second Volume. Lady Nelson writing to her husband from Roundwood, on the iilst of October 1799, said—
"Lieutenant Parker called last night at ten o'clock, just to tell me you were well on the *th of September. Thank God for it; and may you eujoy health, and every other blessing this world affords. This young man's extreme gratitude and modesty will never be obliterated from your good father's and my memory. He stayed a very few minutes, as the express from Vienna was in the chaise at the door."