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Copyright Vicki Hassona 2013




Amazon chasing a French frigate, possibly Belle Poule, by Nicolas Pocock.

38-gun 5th rate frigate

  • Launched in May 1799. 
  • Broken up in May 1817.
  • She was Nelson's flagship in the Channel for a short time, Sept - Oct 1801, before he returned to London.


  • Feb 1800: Captured a French privateer, the Bourgainville, in the English ChannelBut the French ship collided with the Amazon and sank, although all but one of her crew were saved.  Amazon suffered little damage.
  • March 1801: Joined the North Sea fleet under Admiral Sir Hyde Parker, and Lord Nelson.  The fleet sailed for the Baltic.
  • 2nd April 1801: Under Captain Edward Riou, she served a key role in the Battle of CopenhagenNelson thought very highly of Riou, and appointed him commander of the frigate squadron.  During the battle, Riou took the frigates to fire upon the Trekroner Fort, a risky move, but one that Nelson surely would have approved of.  But when Admiral Parker signalled to order Nelson to retreat, a signal which Nelson famously 'turned a blind eye' to, Riou was forced to comply.  In doing so, the frigates had to turn their backs on the fort, and in their vulnerability suffered very heavy losses, including that of the brilliant Captain Riou.  He despairingly cried "What will Nelson think of us?", knowing that Nelson had ignored the signal which Riou, as a junior officer, could not do.  His last words were to cry, "Come then, my boys, let us die together!" before a shot cut him in two.  Lieut. John Quilliam then took command. Nelson went aboard the Amazon after the battle to speak to Quilliam, and apparently was so impressed with him that he later took him onto the Victory.
  • Sept - 24th Oct 1801: Briefly Nelson's flagship after the attack on Boulogne, before he returned to London.
  • 1801 - 1803: Under Captain Samuel Sutton, and then Captain William Parker, remained in the Channel.
  • 16th July 1803: Captured the French privateer Felix. (Capt. William Parker)
  • Late 1803 - 1805: With Nelson's fleet in the Mediterranean.  Nelson used her to regularly reconnoitre the French in Toulon, and he thought highly of Capt. Parker.  When Sir John Orde took command of the station off Cadiz, and Nelson suspected he would poach Nelson's ships, he ordered Parker to avoid any of Orde's ships which may carry orders for them to place themselves under Orde's command.  Amazon was in fact intercepted by the Eurydice, Captain William Hoste, but managed to convince Hoste to let the Amazon return to Nelson.  Parker then managed to capture several prizes and the prize money went to Nelson, despite Orde's protests. 
  • May 1805: Went with Nelson's fleet on the chase of the French fleet to the West Indies.  During the journey, to save time, Nelson gave his battle plans to Parker to pass from ship to ship, rather than stop. 
  • 17th Sept 1805: Captured a Spanish privateer, Principe de la Paz, off Ushant. 
  • 13th March 1806: As part of Sir John Borlase Warren's squadron in the Atlantic, Amazon was with London and Foudroyant in an engagement with two French ships.  Amazon chased and captured the Belle Poule; the Marengo was also captured. (Capt. Parker)   
  • 21st Jan 1810: Captured the French privateer General Perignon. (Capt. Parker)
  • 23rd March 1811: Captured the French privateer Cupidon (Capt. John Joyce)