Thomas Vaisset

On 25 September 1911 the battleship Liberté exploded in Toulon harbour. This tragedy is just one of the many disasters that the French fleet suffered at the end of the nineteenth and the beginning of the twentieth centuries and also represents the peak of these calamities, since it is undoubtedly the most deadly suffered by a French Navy ship in peacetime. The aim of this article is to study how the navy managed this disaster and the resulting deaths of service personnel, which were all the more traumatic because the incident happened in France’s main military port and in circumstances that do not match the traditional forms of death at sea.

Human Remains and Violence: An Interdisciplinary Journal
Peter D.G. Thomas

to £670,000, but no formal treaty of alliance was ever made. Early in 1760 the survival of Prussia still remained uncertain. Overseas, by contrast, the war was proving a glorious triumph for Britain with success against France in America, Africa, and Asia. In 1760 the final conquest of Canada was imminent, and Britain’s mastery of the sea had been confirmed by Admiral Sir Edward Hawke’s Chap 2 19/8/02 11:41 am Page 29 The political scenario in 1760 29 defeat of the French navy at Quiberon Bay late in 1759: this ensured that France would not save the rest of

in George III
Open Access (free)
Servicemen
Nicholas Atkin

blister’ by Rear-Admiral Watkins following a cocktail party in which the Frenchman accused the Royal Navy of stealing his officers.50 Crémieux-Brilhac suggests that, at this point, the marine counted 3,200 men.51 In November 1941, we know that the Free French Navy comprised 287 officers and 3,839 ratings; 20 officers were sailing with the Royal Navy, along with 408 men.52 By any reckoning, it was a pitiful number. When, on 14 July 1940, de Gaulle marched his troops past the Cenotaph and the statue of General Foch in Grosvenor Gardens, provoking such headlines as ‘France

in The forgotten French
The Vichy consulates
Nicholas Atkin

especially by the Foreign Office, which despaired of de Gaulle, that the marshal’s regime might reconstitute itself in Algeria, taking the sizeable French navy with it. Pétain would have none of this. In unconscious imitation of Lord Nelson, another warrior keen to thwart Anglo-French understanding who placed his blind eye to the telescope and declared ‘I see no ships’, in December 1940 the Vichy leader immediately denied having received proposals from Churchill stating that Britain would assist France militarily so long as it re-entered the fight from North Africa.8 There

in The forgotten French
Open Access (free)
Refugees
Nicholas Atkin

fishermen and their families who made their home in the West Country. The presence of Breton fishermen has always been well known. In his memoirs, de Gaulle observes, ‘In the last days of June a flotilla of fishing boats reached Cornwall, bringing over to General de Gaulle all the able-bodied men from the island of Sein.’127 Crémieux-Brilhac suggests that, in September 1940, such Breton fishermen constituted the bulk of the Free French Navy.128 It is Map 1 Principal ports visited by French refugee fishermen and their families in 1940 2499 Chap2 7/4/03 54 2:42 pm

in The forgotten French
War and peace
Peter D.G. Thomas

revenge, based on the reconstruction of the French navy, even before the peace was agreed, Pitt displayed sounder judgement than the Duke of Bedford. That Duke feared that France would be alienated by too severe terms, and objected to Pitt’s apparent idea of retaining every conquest. Bedford displayed more shrewdness in his expectation of trouble from Britain’s American colonies if the French threat from Canada was removed, and pointed out that French planters would be difficult to control in any conquered West Indies islands. Bedford also voiced fears that British

in George III
Open Access (free)
Continuous theatre for a creative city
David Calder

1999, the city of Nantes relocated its annual Summer Festival from the Castle of the Dukes of Brittany to the former slipways and metal shops of Dubigeon. The covered slipway on which workers once assembled top-secret submarines for the French Navy became the music festival’s largest stage. When asked if he was shocked to see his place of work become a concert venue, former shipyard worker Gérard Tripoteau replied: On the contrary, it warms the heart to see the people of Nantes appropriating the site. When these were the shipyards, they didn’t come here, they just

in Street theatre and the production of postindustrial space
Sweden and the lesser powers in the long eighteenth century
Erik Bodensten

main opponent, France. This deprived France of an important ally, or at any rate created distrust between the two allies; strengthened Sweden’s negotiating position, thus forcing France to increase its subsidies; and prevented a Swedish (and perhaps also a Danish) squadron from uniting with the French navy at a critical stage.62 The lack of other options than France constitutes an important reason why Sweden remained a French subsidy ally for so long and ended up being highly dependent on France. This became particularly evident during the fifteen-year period

in Subsidies, diplomacy, and state formation in Europe, 1494–1789
Erik Thomson

vessels to the French navy as well as the largest single supplier of artillery to the French crown. Other members of the Liège diaspora watched his progress, and considered their own commercial opportunities in relation to the French, with a hint of scepticism. When writing to his partner Pieter Trip to tell him to stop extending credit to the French in 1627, Louis de Geer commented, ‘I know that French court all too well. Hoeufft hasn’t got much from there. He would have made a lot, if the profits counted as they stand in the book, and not in the cassa.’ 21 Subsidies

in Subsidies, diplomacy, and state formation in Europe, 1494–1789