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Surveillante-class frigate

Model showing characteristics and original painting scheme
Model showing characteristics and original painting scheme of Belle Poule.
Class overview
Name: Surveillante
Operators:  French Navy
Preceded by: Romaine class
Succeeded by:
Completed: 9
General characteristics
Class and type: Surveillante-class frigate
Displacement: 2500 tonnes
Length: 54 metres (177 ft)
Beam: 14.10 metres (46.3 ft)
Draught: 3.80 metres (12.5 ft)
Propulsion: sail
Complement: 300
Armament:
Armour: Timber

The Surveillante class was a type of sixty-gun frigate of the French Navy, designed in 1823 by Mathurin-François Boucher.[1]

One of the main innovations with respect to previous design was the disappearance of the gangways, which provided a flush deck capable of harbouring a complete second battery. With the standardisation on the 30-pounder calibre for all naval ordnance that occurred in the 1820s, this design allowed for a frigate throwing a 900-pound broadside, thrice the firepower of the 40-gun Pallas class that constituted the majority of the frigate forces during the Empire, and comparable to that of a 74-gun.

By far the best-known ship of the class is Belle Poule, which achieved fame when she transported the ashes of Napoléon back to France in the so-called Retour des cendres; for this occasion, she was painted all black, a colour scheme that she retained later in her career, but which is uncharacteristic of the ships of this type.

Builder: Lorient
Begun:
Launched: 29 September 1825
Completed:
Fate: deleted 22 August 1844.
Builder: Cherbourg
Begun:
Launched: 28 June 1828
Completed:
Fate: renamed Indépendante 9 August 1830, deleted 24 October 1860.
Builder: Cherbourg
Begun:
Launched: 28 July 1828
Completed:
Fate: deleted 20 March 1845.
Builder: Lorient
Begun:
Launched: 25 August 1828
Completed:
Fate: wrecked off Bermuda 3 December 1838.
Builder: Cherbourg
Begun:
Launched: 26 March 1834
Completed:
Fate: deleted 19 March 1861.
Builder: Lorient
Begun:
Launched: 6 February 1841
Completed:
Fate: wrecked 16 February 1855 off Bonifacio.
Builder: Lorient
Begun:
Launched: 8 March 1841
Completed:
Fate: deleted 17 August 1869.
Builder: Cherbourg
Begun:
Launched: 16 September 1841
Completed:
Fate: deleted 23 October 1883.
Builder: Lorient
Begun:
Launched: 15 August 1860
Completed:
Fate: hulked 23 October 1883

Sources and references

References

  1. ^ Maquette de bateau, Belle Poule, frégate de 1er rang, 1834, Musée national de la Marine
  2. ^ Roche, p. 428
  3. ^ Roche, p. 69
  4. ^ Roche, p. 304
  5. ^ Roche, p. 241
  6. ^ Roche, p. 70
  7. ^ Roche, p. 410
  8. ^ Roche, p. 41
  9. ^ Roche, p. 208
  10. ^ Roche, p. 339

Sources