Cartier (1787 ship)

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Carter-Triton-m021400 009599 p.jpg
Boarding of the Triton by the French corsair Hasard (ex-Cartier) under Robert Surcouf. Painting by Léon Trémisot.
United Kingdom
Name: Cartier
Namesake: John Cartier (Governor of Bengal — 1769-72)
Operator: Bengal Pilot Service
Builder: Bombay
Launched: 1787
Name: Hasard
Acquired: January 1796 by capture
Captured: February 1796
United Kingdom
Name: Cartier
Operator: Bengal Pilot Service
Acquired: February 1796 by recapture
Fate: Unknown
General characteristics
Tons burthen: 150,[1] or 170[2] (bm)
Propulsion: Sail
Sail plan: Brig[1]
Complement: 23
Armament: 4 × 6-pounder guns[1]

Cartier was a brig launched in 1787 for the Bengal Pilot Service as a pilot ship operating at Balasore Roads. The French privateer Robert Surcouf captured her, and then used her to capture the East Indiaman Triton on 29 January 1796. The British Royal Navy subsequently recaptured her.


The brig Cartier operated in Balasore roads, in the Indian Ocean. On 21 January 1796 the French privateer corvette Émilie, captained by Robert Surcouf, captured her.[1][Note 1]

Surcouf had the four 6-pounder guns of Émilie mounted on Cartier, renamed her Hasard,[3] (or Hazard), and transferred aboard with 23 men. Two days later, Hasard encountered the East Indiaman Triton, with a 150-man crew and 26 guns;[4] despite the overwhelming superiority of Triton, after haranguing his men, Surcouf approached under a British flag,[5] before hoisting French colours at the very last moment and launching a violent assault.[6] In the ensuing 45-minute battle,[4] Triton suffered 5 wounded and 10 killed,[7] including her captain, Captain Burnycat (or Burnyeat), and the first officer, Picket;[6] The prisoners were transferred to Diana, which Surcouf released against a 30,000 rupee ransom.[8]

Transferring to his new prize, Surcouf left ten men on Hasard as a prize crew and returned to Île de France (now Mauritius), on Triton. During the journey back, in the month of February 1796, Hasard encountered the 74-gun HMS Victorious, which recaptured her.[1][9]

Notes, citations, and references[edit]


  1. ^ British records state 14 January.[2]


  1. ^ a b c d e Demerliac, p. 309, no 2915
  2. ^ a b Phipps (1840), p.133.
  3. ^ Rouvier, p.254
  4. ^ a b Levot, p.494
  5. ^ Rouvier, p.253
  6. ^ a b Cunat, p.395
  7. ^ Hennequin, p.380
  8. ^ Granier, p.218
  9. ^ Austen (1935), p.79.


  • Austen, H.C.M. (1935) Sea Fights and Corsairs of the Indian Ocean: Being the Naval History of Mauritius from 1715 to 1810. (Port Louois, Mauritius: R.W. Brooks).
  • Cunat, Charles (1857). Saint-Malo illustré par ses marins [Saint-Malo illustrated by her sailors] (in French). Imprimerie de F. Péalat. OCLC 793555867.
  • Demerliac, Alain (2003). Nomenclature des navires français (in French). 1792-1799. Nice: Éditions A.N.C.R.E.
  • Granier, Hubert (1998). Histoire des Marins français 1789–1815 [History of French sailors 1789–1815]. illustrations by Alain Coz. Marines éditions. ISBN 2-909675-41-6. OCLC 468167565.
  • Hennequin, Joseph François Gabriel (1835). Biographie maritime ou notices historiques sur la vie et les campagnes des marins célèbres français et étrangers [Maritime Biography of historical notes on the lives and campaigns of famous French and foreign sailors] (in French). 1. Paris: Regnault éditeur. OCLC 457813464.
  • Phipps, John (1840) A Collection of Papers Relative to Ship Building in India ...: Also a Register Comprehending All the Ships ... Built in India to the Present Time .... (Scott).
  • Rouvier, Charles. Histoire des marins français sous la République, de 1789 à 1803 [History of the French sailors during the Republic, from 1789 to 1803] (in French). Arthus Bertrand. OCLC 6804406.