HMS Leviathan (1790)

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HMS Leviathan (1790).jpg
Royal Navy EnsignUK
Name: HMS Leviathan
Ordered: 9 December 1779
Builder: Chatham Dockyard
Laid down: May 1782
Launched: 9 October 1790
Honours and
Fate: Sold and broken up, 1848
General characteristics [1]
Class and type: Courageux class ship of the line
Tons burthen: 17078994 (bm)
Length: 172 ft 3 in (52.50 m) (gundeck)
Beam: 47 ft 9 in (14.55 m)
Depth of hold: 20 ft 9 12 in (6.3 m)
Propulsion: Sails
Sail plan: Full rigged ship
  • 74 guns:
  • Gundeck: 28 × 32 pdrs
  • Upper gundeck: 28 × 18 pdrs
  • Quarterdeck: 14 × 9 pdrs
  • Forecastle: 4 × 9 pdrs

HMS Leviathan was a 74-gun third-rate ship of the line of the British Royal Navy, launched on 9 October 1790.[1] At the Battle of Trafalgar under Henry William Bayntun, she was near the front of the windward column led by Admiral Lord Nelson aboard his flagship, HMS Victory, and captured the Spanish ship San Augustin. A flag said to have been flown by the Leviathan at Trafalgar is to be sold at auction by Arthur Cory in March 2016 - Bayntun is thought to have given it to his friend the Duke of Clarence (later William IV), who then gave it to Arthur Cory's direct ancestor Nicholas Cory, a senior officer on William's royal yacht HMS Royal Sovereign, in thanks for helping the yacht win a race and a bet.[2][3]

Leviathan, Pompee, Anson, Melpomene, and Childers shared in the proceeds of the capture on 10 September 1797 of the Tordenskiold.[4]

Attack on convoy of eighteen French merchant ships at Laigrelia, 1812

On 27 June 1812, Leviathan, HMS Imperieuse, HMS Curacoa (1809) and HMS Eclair (1807); four British ships attacked an 18-strong French convoy at Laigueglia and Alassio in Liguria, northern Italy.


In 1816, after the end of the Napoleonic Wars, she was converted into a prison ship and in 1848 was sold and broken up.[1]


  1. ^ a b c Lavery, Ships of the Line vol.1, p180.
  2. ^
  3. ^
  4. ^ "No. 15704". The London Gazette. 22 May 1804. p. 652.


  • Lavery, Brian (2003) The Ship of the Line - Volume 1: The development of the battlefleet 1650-1850. Conway Maritime Press. ISBN 0-85177-252-8.