Sep 212016
 
My paternal ancestor Charles William MARTIN was born in Magdeburg, Prussia (now Germany) circa 1784. He came to England via France in about 1798, joined the British Navy and served on HMS Achille at the Battle of Trafalgar on 21 October 1805. 
 
The French spelling celebrates the capture of ships of this name from the French…On 21 October 1805, under the command of Captain Richard King, Achille was in Admiral Collingwood’s column at the Battle of Trafalgar, seventh in the line, between Colossus and Revenge. Achille opened fire on the rear of the French and Spanish fleet at 12.15, engaging the Montanes of 74 guns for fifteen minutes, before sailing on to meet the Argonauta of 80 guns, which had already been battling with other British ships. After hours of fierce fighting, Argonauta fell silent and closed her gunports, but before Achille could accept her surrender, her French namesake Achille of 74 guns moved in to engage the British ship. After exchanging broadsides, the French ship sailed on and was replaced on the starboard side by the 74-gun French ship Berwick, and for the next hour and a quarter she lay close alongside Achille, receiving a pounding that eventually forced her to surrender with over 250 casualties – almost half her crew. Achille took possession, and transferred some of her crew back on board as prisoners. Achille suffered 13 killed and 59 wounded in the battle, in stark comparison to the heavy losses she inflicted on her French and Spanish adversaries. [Wikipedia]
 
 
 
Next week’s letter is ‘N’. Has anybody got any interesting snippets that marry up N with surname studies?  If so, please send them to Ros Haywood at sos [at] surname-society.org

letter M courtesy of openclipart.org