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|Aristide Aubert Du Petit Thouars|
Portrait of Du Petit Thouars by Antoine Maurin
31 August 1760|
|Died||2 August 1798
Ship Tonnant, off Abukir
|Rank||Chef de division|
|Battles/wars||Battle of the Nile|
He was born on August 31, 1760, in the castle of Boumais, near Saumur. He studied at the Collège Royal de La Flèche, and entered the French Navy in 1778. He participated that same year in the Battle of Ouessant. In 1790, he participated in the conquest of Saint-Louis du Sénégal.
He was promoted to Lieutenant (Lieutenant de Vaisseau) in 1792. He left that year on board the 12-gun brig Diligent, in search of Jean-François de La Pérouse. In Brazil, he was imprisoned by the Portuguese, but released in 1793. After that he lived for three years in the United States.
Back in France, he was reintegrated (he had become destitute as an aristocrat), and was promoted to Captain, commander of the Tonnant at the Battle of the Nile, where he died on August 2, 1798. During the battle, he forced HMS Majestic to break off combat, with 50 killed, including Captain Westcott, and 143 wounded. After having lost both legs and an arm, he continued to command from a bucket filled with wheat, until he died.
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