HMS Ruby (1652)

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Royal Navy EnsignEngland
Name: HMS Ruby
Ordered: May 1651
Builder: Peter Pett, Deptford Dockyard
Launched: 15 March 1652
Captured: 21 October 1707, by the French
French Royal Navy EnsignFrance
Name: Ruby
Acquired: 21 October 1707
Out of service: 1708
Fate: Broken up
General characteristics as built[1]
Tons burthen: 5567794 (bm)
  • 125 ft 6 in (38.3 m) (gundeck)
  • 105 ft 6 in (32.2 m) (keel)
Beam: 31 ft 6 in (9.6 m)
Depth of hold: 15 ft 9 in (4.8 m)
Propulsion: Sails
Sail plan: Full rigged ship
Complement: 226
Armament: 40 guns (1660); 48 guns (1677)
General characteristics after 1706 rebuild[2]
Class and type: 46-54-gun fourth rate ship of the line
Tons burthen: 6748894 (bm)
Length: 128 ft 4 in (39.1 m) (gundeck)
Beam: 34 ft 8 in (10.6 m)
Depth of hold: 13 ft 7 in (4.1 m)
Propulsion: Sails
Sail plan: Full rigged ship
Armament: 46-54 guns of various weights of shot

HMS Ruby was a 40-gun frigate of the Commonwealth of England, built by Peter Pett at Deptford[1] and launched on 15 March 1652.

She took part in numerous actions during all three of the Anglo-Dutch Wars of 1652-54, 1665–67 and 1672-74. She later served in the West Indies, and in 1683 was sent to the Leeward Islands to protect their British settlements against Carib and pirate raids.[3] In 1687 the notorious English pirate Joseph Bannister was captured by the crew of Ruby and brought to Port Royal for trial. He later escaped and returned to piracy, but was recaptured by HMS Drake. Fearing another escape the governor of Jamaica had him hanged without trial before he could get off the ship

Ruby was rebuilt in 1687 at Sir Henry Johnson's shipyard at Blackwall. On 7 April 1694 Ruby captured the French privateer Entreprenante, which the Royal Navy took into service as HMS Ruby Prize.

She served in the War of the Spanish Succession and, commanded by Captain George Walton, took part in the Action of August 1702 as part of a fleet under Admiral John Benbow. She was one of the only ships to support the Admiral in HMS Breda in that engagement.

HMS Ruby was rebuilt at Deptford in 1706 as a fourth rate ship of the line carrying between 46 and 54 guns.[4] However, Mars captured Ruby on 21 October 1707 (NS) during the Battle at The Lizard.

The French brought Ruby back to St Malo 8 January 1708[5] and commissioned her into the French Navy. She took part in a campaign to the Levant, and was decommissioned the next year to be broken up.[6]

Capt. Hon. Peregrine Bertie (2 February 1677 – 1709), 5th son of James Bertie, 1st Earl of Abingdon, commanded HMS Ruby; he died a prisoner of war in France.[7][better source needed]


  1. ^ a b Lavery, 1984, vol.1, p160.
  2. ^ , Lavery, 1984, vol.1, p167.
  3. ^ Burns 1954, p. 334n
  4. ^ Lavery, SoLv1 p167
  5. ^ Gazette No. 1, 28 January 1708, p. 36
  6. ^ Les bâtiments ayant porté le nom de Rubis Archived 16 November 2009 at the Wayback Machine.
  7. ^ James Bertie, 1st Earl of Abingdon


  • Burns, Alan (1954). History of the British West Indies. Allen & Unwin. OCLC 186233189. 
  • Lavery, Brian (2003). The Ship of the Line - Volume 1: The development of the battlefleet 1650-1850. Conway Maritime Press. ISBN 0851772528.