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Sail schooner-brigs (16 guns)

GAZELLE class (launched 1822-41)

GAZELLE class sail schooner-brigs (16 guns)

Displacement: 320t
Dimensions:90ft 5in wl, 98ft 5in deck x 26ft 3in mld x 11ft 8in mean, 14ft 1in max.
Same, meters:27.57, 30.00 x 8.00 x 3.55, 4.30m
Masts:As brig-aviso: Main 44ft 5in x 1ft 7in; Fore 38ft 11in x 1ft 5in. Sail area 1112 sq.yd.
Armament:16-18p carr. (1832) 8-18p carr., 2-12p. (1839) 10-18p carr., 2-12p. (Several c1845) 4-16cm shell

Name          Builder    Laid downLaunched Commiss. Fate         
GAZELLEBayonne9.2122. 1837
ANTILOPEBayonne7.228.6.2311.6.23Stk. 4.4.32
AIGRETTEBayonne9.2313. 28.7.32
VOLAGEToulon4.249.4.2529.11.25Stk. 7.3.56
SURPRISEToulon4.2422.4.2523.1.26Stk. 11.4.51
FLECHERochefort4. 11.12.51
RAILLEUSERochefort4. 26.1.39
BAUCISBayonne6.2430. 19.11.29
ALCYONEBayonne6.2430.6.2512.9.25Stk. 5.10.53
COMETEToulon182515. 12.12.53
CIGOGNEBayonne6.2420.7.2626.7.27Stk. 4.3.50
ECLIPSEBayonne9.6.2420.7.2624.8.27Stk. 16.10.49
AVENTUREToulon182512. 14.5.30
BADINEBayonne1. 29.10.42
CAPRICIEUSEBayonne1. 11.36
DUNOISBayonne12.2818.4.3022.6.33Lost 4.9.42
SYLPHEToulon182825.9.3020.11.33Stk. 1854
DUPETIT THOUARSToulon10.284.12.301.5.33Stk. 31.12.64
BOUGAINVILLEToulon26.4.3016.5.3224.10.35Stk. 7.3.56
ARGUSToulon11.3013.6.3223.6.36Stk. 20.4.57
LAURIERCherbourg5.6.3028.6.3224.3.36Stk. 29.8.49
BORDABayonne12.2826.9.3215.4.34Stk. 11.6.49
LUTINBrest18308.5.3313.7.34Stk. 11.12.51
FABERTRochefort4.3030.12.333.6.36Lost 16.8.38
CERFToulon10.3130.12.3310.12.36Stk. 10.5.58
MESSAGERRochefort26.8.4017.8.4125.10.41Stk. 20.4.57
PAPILLONRochefort26.8.402.9.4115.11.41Stk. 14.8.51

Class. This class was designed by Marestier following his return from a trip to the United States to study steam navigation and naval architecture there. He used ideas from American designs and completed his plans for a class of "schooner-brigs" with 16-18p carronades in 5.21. In 4.26 Marestier produced a plan of a schooner-brig entirely rigged as a brig, and subsequent ships were probably built with this rig and a reduced armament. (Eclipse was rerigged 9.29.) On 14.1.30 the class was formally given the new designation brig-aviso and assigned an armament of 12-18p carronades and 2-12p, which was further reduced on 15.8.32. The number of 18p guns was increased to ten on 9.9.39 to provide officers of the newly-created grade of Capitaine de Corvette with enough suitable commands (ships with more than ten guns). The height of the battery above the water was 4ft 3in.

Sylphe, Argus, and Lutin were originally named Primauguet, Etienne Marchand, and Lahire, and were renamed 3.8.31. Borda was renamed Observateur 18.12.39. At least three non-naval ships were built to this design: Sylvestre, Dupont de Nemours, and Ecrevisse.

Disposals. Baucis was BU 1831 at Brest. Comète was hulked, renamed Ouessant before 1865 and BU 1879. Aventure was lost on the Algerian coast. Badine and Capricieuse were BU at Brest in 1842 and 1836 respectively. Dunois disappeared at sea, probably in a storm in the Bahamas Channel. Dupetit Thouars became a school hulk, was renamed Mousse 1867 and Ouessant 1878 and was BU 1893. Argus was hulked, renamed Argonaute 1860 and BU 1882. Observateur ex Borda became a hulk and was BU 1897. Fabert disappeared at sea while returning to Brest from Jamaica. Cerf became a hulk and was BU 1891.

Two vessels acquired in Algeria in 1830, Cassauba and Torre Chica, appeared on the navy list in 1834 as brig-avisos but became service craft on 21.10.35.

Copyright © Stephen S. Roberts 2004-2015.