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|Abel Aubert Dupetit Thouars|
Abel Aubert Dupetit Thouars
3 August 1793|
La Fessardière, near Saumur, France
|Died||16 March 1864
|Years of service||1804–1858|
He was born at the castle of La Fessardière, near Saumur. His uncle Aristide Aubert Dupetit-Thouars was one of the heroes of the Battle of the Nile. He joined the French Navy in 1804, where he was a cabin boy in the Boulogne fleet.
He was the captain of the Inconstantfrom 1823 to 1825. He sailed her to Brazil, and remained her captain on station in Brazil. He was promoted to Commander (Capitaine de frégate) in 1824.
He was later put in charge of the Southern Seas command, in the Pacific Ocean. In 1834 he played a key role in protecting French shipping interests against the Peruvians.
He became "Capitaine de vaisseau" on 6 January 1834, and accomplished a circumnavigation between 1836 and 1839 on the frigate Vénus. Also on board were the hydrographer Urbain Dortet of Tessan, the doctor-naturalist Adolphe Simon Neboux, and the surgeon Charles René Augustin Léclancher. During this voyage the Marquesas were explored. He published an account in 1840 with the title Voyage around the world on the frigate Venus during the years 1836-1839 (French: Voyage autour du monde sur la frégate "la Vénus" pendant les anné 1836-1839); the book contained maps of the ports visited.
He was made Rear-Admiral (French: Contre-amiral) on 12 July 1841, in charge of the Pacific Naval Division. His mission was to take possession of the Marquesas Islands. In Tahiti, he confronted Queen Pōmare IV, and the English missionary and Consul George Pritchard (1796–1883). He managed to expelled Pritchard and established a French protectorate over Tahiti, and the Marguesas Islands, which continues as of 2018. He was initially denounced for his actions by the French government, which feared a conflict with Great Britain. Relations between France and Great Britain soured considerably during the reign of Louis-Philippe, due to this so-called "Pritchard Affair".
Dupetit Thouars became a Vice-Admiral (French: Vice-amiral) in 1846.
Dupetit Thouars retired from the navy in 1858.
He died in Paris in 1864.