French Ship Fougueux (1785)

The Fougueux was a Téméraire class 74-gun French ship of the line built at Lorient from 1784 to 1785 by engineer Segondat.

In 1796, she took part in the Expédition d'Irlande under Esprit-Tranquille Maistral.

She took part in the Battle of Trafalgar, firing the first shot of the battle upon HMS Royal Sovereign. She later attempted to come to the aid of the Redoutable by engaging HMS Temeraire. After badly damaging the Fougueux with broadsides, Temeraire's first-lieutenant, Thomas Fortescue Kennedy, led a boarding party onto Fougueux, entering the French ship via her main deck ports and chains. The French tried to defend the decks port by port, but were steadily overwhelmed. Fougueux's captain, Louis Alexis Baudoin, had suffered a fatal wound earlier in the fighting, leaving Commander Francois Bazin in charge. On learning that nearly all of the officers were dead or wounded and that most of the guns were out of action, Bazin surrendered the ship to Kennedy.

According the report of Captain Lucas of the Redoutable,

the Fougueux, which, having fought against several of the enemy's ships, had been left by them without having lowered her flag. She was dismasted and unrigged, and floating an unmanageable hulk. On fouling the group of ships she was boarded by the Temeraire. The Fougueux was, however, beyond making serious resistance. Her brave captain, Baudouin, though, even then made an effort, but in vain. He was killed at the outset, and his second in command was wounded at the same moment; whereupon some men of the Temeraire sprang on board and took possession.

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