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HMS Bacchante (1876)

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Launched19 October 1876
Builders measure2679 tons
Displacement4130 tons
Ships bookADM 135/34
Snippets concerning this vessels career
15 July 1879
- 31 August 1882
Commanded (from commissioning at Portsmouth until paying off at Portsmouth) by Captain Charles Thomas Montague Douglas Scott, Detached squadron, and bearing the royal cadets, Albert Victor, duke of Clarence and Avondale, and his younger brother George (later King George V), who made their first cruise in her (September 1879 - May 1880: to Gibraltar and the Mediterranean, Madeira, the Canaries, the West Indies and Bernuda; August 1880 - August 1882: to Ferrol, Madeira, the Cape Verde Islands, the River Plate, the Falkland Islands, the Cape of Good Hope, Australia, Fiji, Japan, Shanghai, Cabton, the Straits Settlements, Ceylon, Cairo, Palestine, Athens, Crete, Corfu, Sicily and Gibraltar)
30 March 1885
- 25 February 1888
Commanded (from commissioning at Portsmouth) by Captain Arthur William Moore, flagship of Rear-Admiral Frederick William Richards, East Indies
25 February 1888Commanded by Captain Reginald Friend Hannam Henderson, flagship of Rear-Admiral Edmund Robert Fremantle, returning from the East Indies
Extracts from the Times newspaper
We 26 November 1884The unarmoured corvette Bacchante went out of Portsmouth harbour yesterday morning for a full-power trial of her machinery. After the engines had been worked up to the requisite number of revolutions, so dense a fog settled upon the water that it was not deemed advisable to make the intended runs upon the measured mile in Stokes Bay. During the day the opportunity was taken advantage of to try the effect of the fire of the breechloading guns upon their Vavassour mountings. Although the improved armament of the Bacchante comprises 21 guns, varying from 7-inch to 6-pounders, only four are breechloaders, As in the case of the Active, these consist of 6-inch Armstrongs, two being fitted on each broadside. The four guns were each fired with a 7lb. scaling charge, a full charge of 17lb., and a battering charge of 34lb. The result of the test was satisfactory, and the impression has become general that the neglect of the scaling charge caused the explosion on board the Active. The Bacchante returned into harbour in the evening. The engine trial will be resumed to-morrow.
Fr 28 November 1884The Bacchante, unarmoured corvette, after undergoing a thorough overhaul of her hull, fittings, and machinery at Portsmouth, went out of harbour yesterday morning for a measured mile trial of her engines, The wind was blowing strongly at the time from the westward, and consequently up the course in Stokes Bay. The trim of the ship was light, her draught forward being 19ft. 4in. and aft 22ft. 6in. Four runs with and against the wind and tide were made with the following satisfactory results: - Steam in boilers 72lb.; revolutions, 74 per minute; horse-power, high, 2,288∙8, low, 2,838∙5; total indicated, 5,127∙3 horses. The mean speed realized was 14∙47 knots. There was an abundance of steam, the safety valves lifting at 70lb., and from the gross result it will be perceived that the power developed was only 292 horses less than at the trial when everything was new. The engines are by Messrs. Rennie. After having been underway three hours the Bacchante returned into harbour, and will be pushed forward in readiness for her second commission, when she will relieve the Euryalus as flagship on the East India Station.
Ma 30 March 1885The Bacchante, unarmoured corvette, is to be commissioned by Captain Moore on the 14th, but with respect to her there is no mystery, as she is intended to relieve the Audacious
[shoud be: Euryalus]
on the East India station and to hoist the flag of Admiral Sir Frederick Richards.
Ma 30 March 1885The Bacchante, unarmoured corvette, will he commissioned at Portsmouth on the 14th prox. by Captain Moor, last in command of the Firefly, as the flagship of Admiral Sir Frederick Richards in the East Indies. The Euryalus, which was recommissioned at Malta in January, 1882, will return to England on being relieved by the Bacchante.
Tu 14 April 1885Admiral Sir F. Richards made an inspection of his flag ship, the Bacchante, at Portsmouth, yesterday morning. She is to be commissioned this morning for the East India station.
We 15 April 1885The Bacchante, unarmoured corvette, has been commissioned at Portsmouth as the flagship of Rear-Admiral Sir F. Richards, who succeeds Admiral Sir William Hewett in the command of the East India station. The Euryalus, which was re-commissioned at Malta on the 27th January, 1882, will return to England on being relieved.
Fr 17 April 1885At Portsmouth the work of preparation goes briskly forward. In addition to the multitude of hired artificers who have been engaged under the extra grant of money, pensioners are being pressed into the service, and between 300 and 400 men have been transferred from the Steam Reserve, and 100 bluejackets from the Excellent, to the dockyard departments, to accelerate the completion of ships of war. Considerable progress has been made in the provision of the new breech-loaders to the unarmoured ships of the Bacchante, Gem, and Comus class fitting out, and the men employed at the torpedo workshops are working extra hours, in replenishing our stock of an instrument of warfare, which, though it has not before been tried on an extensive scale, is expected to play a part no less terrible than prominent in all future naval operations.
Th 23 April 1885The Bacchante will leave the harbour on Monday and take in her powder and shell at Spithead previous to leaving for China. She was moored in the stream yesterday morning to prevent desertions among her crew, seven having run away. It is not the intention of Admiral Richards to hoist his flag on board the Bacchante at Portsmouth, as he purposes proceeding to his station by overland route.
Th 30 April 1885The unarmoured corvette Bacchante, Captain Moore, made a satisfactory three hours’ full-power trial of her machinery on Tuesday morning previous to starting for her station. Her sea trim showed her to have a draught of 22ft. 4in. forward, and 24ft. 2in. aft. The mean pressure of steam in the boilers was 73lb. and the revolutions 72. Under these conditions the engines developed 4,655∙4-horse power and a mean speed of 14∙268 knots an hour was realized. The Bacchante is expected to leave Spithead, where she now remains, to-morrow for the East Indies to relieve the Euryalus as flagship.
Sa 2 May 1885The Bacchante, Captain Moore, sailed from Spithead yesterday morning for the East India Station, where she will hoist the flag of Rear-Admiral Richards.
Th 14 May 1885A Reuter telegram, dated Malta, May 13, says: - Her Majesty’s Ironclad Téméraire left to-day for Port Said. Her Majesty’s turret ship Neptune has arrived here from Portsmouth. Her Majesty’s corvette Bacchante sailed hence to-day for Port Said.
Th 18 June 1885Rear-Admiral Sir F.W. Richards, K.C.B., Commander-in-Chief on the East Indies Station, sailed on Tuesday last from Aden in the Bacchante, flagship, with the Reindeer, for Colombo and Trincomalee.
A Reuter telegram, dated Gibraltar, June 17, says:- "Her Majesty’s frigate Euryalus passed here to-day, going west. The armed cruiser Oregon has arrived."
Th 25 June 1885The Euryalus, Capt. Hastings, having been relieved on the East India Station by the Bacchante, and the Boadicea. Capt. Church, which has been relieved at the Cape by the Raleigh, are shortly expected at Spithead. The former will be paid out of commission at Sheeness and the latter at Portsmouth.
We 1 July 1885Rear-Admiral Sir Frederick W. Richards, K.C.B., Commander-in-Chief in the East Indies, in the Bacchante with the Reindeer, arrived at Trincomalee from Aden on Sunday last.
We 23 September 1885Letters received at the Admiralty from Rear-Admiral Sir F.W. Richards, K.C.B., Commander-in-chief on the East Indies station, up to the 29th ult, state that the Bacchante, flagship, would start from Colombo on the 5th inst. on a cruise and would visit Diego, Garcia, Mauritius, Tamatave, Johanna, Zanzibar, and Seychelles, arriving at Bombay on the 19th of November. The Turquoise was to return to Trincomalee in the course of a few days, and would assume the duties of senior officer’s ship in the Bay of Bengal on the departure of the Bacchante. The Philomel, at Colombo, would leave on the 3d inst. for Bombay and the Persian Gulf. The Briton, at Trincomalee, would leave for Zanzibar about the 5th inst. to assume the duties of senior officer’s ship on the East Coast of Africa. The Woodlark, at Thayetruyo, was to leave on the 25th of August, and return to Rangoon.
We 21 October 1885Rear Admiral Sir F.W. Richards, K.C.B., Commander-in-Chief on the East Indies Station, arrived in the Bacchante, flagship, at Zanzibar, on Monday last.
Ma 26 October 1885


RANGOON, Oct. 24.

The preparations for war continue. The police garrison the stockades on the British frontier beyond Thayetmyo, while the Goorkha police hold the Aeng Pass, through the Youma mountains, in Arrakan. The Burmese army, under Bandula, crossed the Aeng Pass in the first Burmese war.
The Government steamer Irrawaddy, carrying 20-pounder breech-loaders, Nordenfelts and Gardners, and two steam launches carrying nine-pounders and Gardners, will ascend the Irrawaddy to the frontier on the 26th instant. They are manned by Blue-jackets and Marines from the gunboat Woodlark. The river is now too shallow for the Woodlark to ascend it safely. Directly the Bacchante and Turquoise arrive here (about the 27th instant) eight other armed launches will ascend the river to the frontier.

Th 12 November 1885Rear-Admiral Sir Frederick W. Richards, K.C.B., Commander-in-Chief on the East India Station, in the Baccchante, arrived at Trincomalee yesterday, and is to pro ceed to Rangoon to-morrow.
Sa 21 November 1885Rear-Admiral Sir Frederick W. Richards, K.C.B., Commander-in-Chief on the East Indies Station, arrived at Rangoon in the Bacchante, flagship, onThursday last.
Th 31 December 1885The commander-in-chief on the East Indies stations, Rear-Admiral Sir Frederick W. Richards, K.C.B., was in the Bacchante at Rangoon on the 29th ult. The Turquoise, the Woodlark, the Sphinx, and the Mariner were at Rangoon.
Sa 30 January 1886Rear-Admiral Sir Frederick W. Richards, K.C.B., Commander-in-Chief of the East India station, in the Bacchante, at Rangoon, up to the 1st inst., supplies the Admiralty with the following movements of Her Majesty’s ships on that station:- The Commander-in-Chief was to leave Rangoon in the Sphinx on the 5th of January, and visit Akyab, Chittagong, and Calcutta, arriving there on the 13th inst. The Turquoise, the Woodlark, and Ranger were at Rangoon, the last-named vessel having arrived at Trincomalee with a draft of supernumeraries from the British India steamer Rena. The Mariner, at Rangoon, would shortly proceed to Moulmein. The Briton, senior officer’s ship, on the East Coast of Africa division, at Zanzibar, on the 29th of December, was placed at the disposal of Col. Kitchener, Boundary Commissioner, to convey him to the various ports on the East Coast if desired. The Dragon, at Mauritius, would return to Zanzibar about the end of January; the Osprey was at Bushire; and the Philomel at Bussorah.
Ma 26 March 1888The Admiralty have issued instructions for the Boadicea, 14, second-class screw cruiser, 4,40 tons, 5,130-horse power, to be commissioned the first week in April by Captain the Hon. Assheton G. Curzon Howe, late of the Royal yacht Osborne, for the relief of the Bacchante, cruiser, as flagship of the Commmander-in-Chief of the East Indies station.
Ma 26 March 1888The Admiralty have issued instructions for the Boadicea, 14, second-class screw cruiser, 4,40 tons, 5,130-horse power, to be commissioned the first week in April by Captain the Hon. Assheton G. Curzon Howe, late of the Royal yacht Osborne, for the relief of the Bacchante, cruiser, as flagship of the Commmander-in-Chief of the East Indies station.
Th 26 April 1888The unarmoured corvette Boadicea, has been commissioned at Portsmouth by Captain Curzon Howe, with a crew of 426 officers and men, as flagship for the East India station. During her refit two of her armament of 14 7-inch muzzleloaders have been changed for the same number of 5-inch breechloaders, while the couple of 64 pounders which she formerly carried, have been superseded by four quick-firing guns. She is also provided with 11 machine-guns. It has not been deemed necessary to fit her with torpedo booms as she will take over those of the Bacchante on arriving at her station.
Fr 11 May 1888The Boadicea, Captain Curzon Howe, which is to relieve the Bacchante in the East Indies, left Portsmouth yesterday for her station.
Ma 14 May 1888The Boadicea, which, as already stated, left Portsmouth on Thursday for the East India station, made a very successful six hours’ full-power run of her machinery on her way to Plymouth. As the stokeholds were worked by her ordinary complement of stokers, the mean power developed was less than at the three hours’ trial before starting. The average amounted to 3,500 horses, and the speed realized was 13∙8 knots. There was a little priming, but this would wear off as the boilers get used. She left on Friday for her station, and was expected to meet the Bacchante at the Mauritius.
Ma 6 August 1888Her Majesty’s cruiser Bacchante arrived at Durban on Friday last and sailed the same day.
Th 9 August 1888A Reuter telegram, dated Cape Town, Aug. 7, says Her Majesty’s cruiser Bacchante has arrived in Simon’s Bay.
Fr 14 September 1888Her Majesty's second-class cruiser Bacchante, Capt. E.F.H. Henderson, lately flagship of the Commander-in-Chief on the East Indies Station, arrived at St. Helena on the 27th ult. homeward bound.
Ma 17 September 1888Her Majesty’s ship Bacchante, Captain R.F. Henderson, was to leave St. Vincent, Cape Verd, on Saturday last, homeward bound from the East Indies station.
Fr 9 November 1888The Bacchante, unarmoured cruiser, which has been relieved by the Boadicea on the East India Station, has been paid out of commission at Portsmouth into the second division of the reserve. Under the new regulations the ship was restored by her own crew to nearly the same state as she was in before being dismantled. The men have been granted leave until the 27th prox. It is probable that the Bacchante will take the place of the Devastation at Queensferry, while the latter is having new engines placed on board.

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