Admiral (Royal Navy)
Admiral is a senior rank of the Royal Navy of the United Kingdom, which equates to the NATO rank code OF-9, outranked only by the rank of admiral of the fleet. Royal Navy officers holding the ranks of rear admiral, vice admiral and admiral of the fleet are sometimes considered generically to be admirals; the rank of admiral is the highest rank to which a serving officer in the Royal Navy can be promoted, admiral of the fleet being in abeyance except for honorary promotions of retired officers and members of the Royal Family. King Henry III of England appointed the first known English Admiral Sir Richard de Lucy on 29 August 1224, he was followed by a Sir Thomas Moulton in 1264, he held the title of Keeper of the Sea and Sea Ports he was succeeded by Sir William de Leybourne, as Admiral of the Sea of the King of England being appointed in 1286 Admiral of the Navy he held the rank of admiral until 1294 serving under King Edward I of England; as the English Navy was expanding towards the end of the thirteenth century, new appointments of admirals with specific administrative and geographic responsibilities were created, Sir John de Botetourt was appointed Admiral of the North in 1294 this command lasted until 1412.
In the same year the king appointed Sir William de Laybourne the dual commands of Admiral of the South, Admiral of the West. The first royal commission as Admiral to a naval officer was granted in 1303. By 1344 it was only used as a rank at sea for a captain in charge of fleets. In 1364 the post of Admiral of the North and West was created until 1414. Beginning in 1408 these admirals responsibilities were absorbed by the office of the High Admiral of England and Aquitaine leading to a centralized command the process ended in 1414. In 1412 the Admiral of the Narrow Seas was established until 1413, it was in abeyance until 1523 when it was revived on a more permanent basis until 1688. In Elizabethan times the fleet grew large enough to be organised into squadrons; the squadron's admiral flew a red ensign, the vice admirals white, the rear admirals blue on the aft mast of his ship. As the squadrons grew, each was commanded by an admiral and the official ranks became admiral of the white and so forth, however each admirals command flags were different and changed over time.
The Royal Navy has had vice and rear admirals appointed to the post since at least the 16th century. When in command of the fleet, the admiral would be in either the lead or the middle portion of the fleet; when the admiral commanded from the middle portion of the fleet his deputy, the vice admiral, would be in the leading portion or van. Below him was another admiral at the rear of the fleet, called rear admiral. Promotion up the ladder was in accordance with seniority in the rank of post-captain, rank was held for life, so the only way to be promoted was for the person above on the list to die or resign. In 1747 the Admiralty restored an element of merit selection to this process by introducing the concept of yellow admirals, being captains promoted to flag rank on the understanding that they would retire on half-pay; this was the navy's first attempt at superannuating older officers. They were assigned to shore-based administrative roles, such as commander of a port or commissioner of one of the Royal Dockyards.
During the Interregnum, the rank of admiral was replaced by that of general at sea. In the 18th century, the original nine ranks began to be filled by more than one man per rank, although the rank of admiral of the red was always filled by only one man and was known as Admiral of the Fleet. After the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805 the rank of admiral of the red was introduced; the number of officers holding each rank increased throughout the 18th and early 19th centuries. In 1769 there were 29 admirals of various grades. Thereafter the number of admirals was reduced and in 1853 there were 79 admirals. Although admirals were promoted according to strict seniority, appointments to command were made at the discretion of the Board of Admiralty; as there were invariably more admirals in service than there were postings, many admirals remained unemployed in peacetime. The organisation of the fleet into coloured squadrons was abandoned in 1864; the Red Ensign was allocated to the Merchant Navy, the White Ensign became the flag of the Royal Navy, the Blue Ensign was allocated to the naval reserve and naval auxiliary vessels.
The 18th- and 19th-century British Navy maintained a positional rank known as port admiral. A port admiral was a veteran captain who served as the shore commander of a British naval port and was in charge of supplying and maintaining the ships docked at harbour; the problem of promoting by seniority was well illustrated by the case of Provo Wallis who served for 96 years. When he died in 1892 four admirals under him could be promoted. By request of Queen Victoria, John Edmund Commerell became Admiral of the Fleet rather than Algernon Frederick Rous de Horsey, who as senior active admiral nearing the age limit would customarily have received the promotion. All these younger men would die at least a decade before de Horsey. In the time before squadron distinctions were removed or age limits insti
The French ship Glorieux was a second-rate 74-gun ship of the line in the French Navy. Built by Clairin Deslauriers at Rochefort and launched on 10 August 1756, she was rebuilt in 1777. On 30 August 1781, she was with the French fleet under Admiral de Grasse. According to French sources, the British sloop Loyalist and the frigate Guadeloupe were on picket duty in the Chesapeake when they encountered the French fleet. Guadeloupe escaped up the York River to York Town, where she would be scuttled; the English court martial records report that Loyalist was returning to the British fleet off the Jersey coast when she encountered the main French fleet. The French frigate Aigrette, with the 74-gun Glorieux in sight, was able to overtake Loyalist; the French took her into service as Loyaliste in September, but gave her to the Americans in November 1781. The British captured Glorieux at the Battle of the Saintes on 12 April 1782 despite the best efforts of Denis Decrès, commissioned her into the Royal Navy as HMS Glorieux or HMS Glorious the following day.
She was rated as a third rate. She sailed with the fleet for England on 25 July 1782 but was lost that year in a hurricane storm off Newfoundland on 16–17 September, along with the other captured French prize ships Ville de Paris and Caton. Glorieux was lost with all hands, including her captain, Thomas Cadogan, son of Charles Cadogan, 3rd Baron Cadogan; this disaster to the fleet of Admiral Graves saw the loss of HMS Ramillies, HMS Centaur, the storeships Dutton and British Queen, other merchantmen from a convoy of 94 ships, with a total of over 3,500 men lost. Heller SA has created a 1:150 scale model of Le Glorieux in its French guise. HMS Glorioso HMS Glorious HMS Glory Ronald Deschênes, "Jacques Kanon"
The Commander-in-Chief, Plymouth was a senior commander of the Royal Navy for hundreds of years. Plymouth Command was a name given to the units and staff operating under the admiral's command. Prior to 1914 the holder of the office was referred to as Commander-in-Chief, Devonport; the Commanders-in-Chief were based in what is now Hamoaze House, Plymouth from 1809 to 1934 and at Admiralty House, Mount Wise, Devonport from 1934 until 1996. The post dates back to around 1743, it extended along the South Coast from Exmouth in East Devon to Penzance in Cornwall. In 1941, during World War II, elements of Plymouth Command were transferred to Western Approaches Command, established at Derby House in Liverpool. Meanwhile, Plymouth Command occupied a new combined Headquarters, known as the Maritime Headquarters, at Mount Wise; the post of Commander-in-Chief, Plymouth was merged with that of Commander-in-Chief, Portsmouth in 1969 to form Naval Home Command. Between 1952 and 1969 the Commander-in-Chief, Plymouth double-hatted as Plymouth Sub-Area Channel Command commander in NATO's Allied Command Channel, from 1969 to 1994 he double-hatted as Naval Base Commander Devonport, NATO Commander Central Sub-Area and Commander Plymouth Sub-Area Channel.
After 1969, Admiralty House and the Maritime Headquarters became the home of the Flag Officer, Plymouth until that post was disbanded in 1996. At around the same time the nearby RN Dockyard and barracks were reconstituted as HM Naval Base Devonport and placed under the command of a Commodore. Commanders-in-Chief and Flag Officers have included: 1761 – 1763 Vice-Admiral Philip Durell Jan 1763 – Jun 1763 Vice-Admiral Lord Colville 1763 – 1766 Vice-Admiral Sir Thomas Pye 1766 – 1771 Vice-Admiral Sir George Edgcumbe 1771 – 1775 Vice-Admiral Sir Richard Spry 1776 – 1778 Vice-Admiral John Amherst 1778 – 1783 Vice Admiral Sir Molyneux Shuldham 1783 – 1786 Vice Admiral Mark Milbanke 1786 – 1790 Vice-Admiral Sir Thomas Graves 1790 – 1792 Vice-Admiral Sir Richard Bickerton 1792 – 1793 Vice-Admiral Phillips Cosby 1794 – 1796 Vice-Admiral Sir Richard King 1796 – 1799 Vice-Admiral Sir Richard Onslow 1799 – 1802 Vice-Admiral Sir Thomas Pasley 1802 – 1803 Vice-Admiral Sir James Dacres 1803 – 1804 Vice-Admiral Sir John Colpoys 1804 – 1810 Vice-Admiral Sir William Young 1810 – 1813 Admiral Sir Robert Calder 1813 – 1815 Admiral Sir William Domett 1815 – 1817 Admiral Sir John Duckworth 1817 – 1821 Admiral Viscount Exmouth 1821 – 1824 Admiral Sir Alexander Cochrane 1824 – 1827 Admiral Sir James Saumarez 1827 – 1830 Admiral Lord Northesk 1830 – 1833 Admiral Sir Manley Dixon 1833 – 1836 Admiral Sir William Hargood 1836 – 1839 Admiral Lord Amelius Beauclerk 1839 – 1842 Admiral Sir Graham Moore 1842 – 1845 Admiral Sir David Milne 1845 – 1848 Admiral Sir John West 1848 – 1851 Admiral Sir William Gage 1851 – 1854 Admiral Sir John Ommanney 1854 – 1857 Admiral Sir William Parker 1857 – 1860 Vice-Admiral Sir Barrington Reynolds Jun 1860 – Oct 1860 Vice-Admiral Sir Arthur Fanshawe 1860 – 1863 Vice-Admiral Sir Houston Stewart 1863 – 1866 Vice-Admiral Sir Charles Fremantle 1866 – 1869 Admiral Sir William Martin 1869 – 1872 Admiral Sir Henry Codrington 1872 – 1875 Vice-Admiral Sir Henry Keppel 1875 – 1878 Admiral Sir Thomas Symonds 1878 – 1880 Admiral Sir Arthur Farquhar 1880 – 1881 Admiral Sir Charles Elliot 1881 – 1884 Admiral Sir William Stewart 1884 – 1887 Admiral Sir Augustus Phillimore 1887 – 1888 Admiral Lord John Hay 1888 – 1890 Admiral Sir William Dowell 1890 – 1893 Admiral The Duke of Edinburgh 1893 – 1896 Admiral Sir Algernon Lyons 1896 – 1899 Admiral Sir Edmund Fremantle 1899 – 1900 Admiral Sir Henry Fairfax 1900 – 1902 Vice-Admiral Lord Charles Montagu Douglas Scott 1902 – 1908 Vice-Admiral Sir Lewis Beaumont 1908 – 1911 Vice-Admiral Sir Wilmot Fawkes 1911 – 1913 Vice-Admiral Sir William May 1913 – 1916 Vice-Admiral Sir George Egerton Mar 1916 – Dec 1916 Vice-Admiral Sir George Warrender 1916 – 1918 Admiral Sir Alexander Bethell 1918 – 1920 Vice-Admiral Sir Cecil Thursby 1920 – 1923 Admiral Sir Montague Browning 1923 – 1926 Vice-Admiral Sir Richard Phillimore 1926 – 1929 Vice-Admiral Sir Rudolph Bentinck 1929 – 1932 Vice-Admiral Sir Hubert Brand 1932 – 1935 Vice-Admiral Sir Eric Fullerton 1935 – 1938 Admiral Sir Reginald Drax 1938 – 1941 Admiral Sir Martin Dunbar-Nasmith 1941 – 1943 Admiral of the Fleet Sir Charles Forbes 1943 – 1945 Vice-Admiral Sir Ralph Leatham 1945 – 1947 Admiral Sir Henry Pridham-Wippell 1947 – 1950 Vice-Admiral Sir Robert Burnett 1950 – 1951 Vice-Admiral Sir Rhoderick McGrigor 1951 – 1953 Vice-Admiral Sir Maurice Mansergh 1953 – 1955 Vice-Admiral Sir Alexander Madden 1955 – 1958 Vice Admiral Sir Charles Pizey 1958 – 1961 Vice-Admiral Sir Richard Onslow 1961 – 1962 Vice-Admiral Sir Charles Madden 1962 – 1965 Vice-Admiral Sir Nigel Henderson 1965 – 1967 Vice-Admiral Sir Fitzroy Talbot 1967 – 1969 Vice-Admiral Sir Charles Mills Jul 1969 – Sept 1969 Vice-Admiral John Roxburgh 1969 – 1970 Vice-Admiral Sir Anthony Griffin On 30 December 1970, Vice-Admiral J R McKaig CBE was appointed as Port Admiral, Her Majesty's Naval Base and Flag Officer, Plymouth.
On 5 September 1971, all Flag Officers of the Royal Navy holding positions of Admiral Superintendents at Royal Dockyards were restyled as Port Admirals. 1970 – 1973 Vice-Admiral Sir Rae McKaig 1973 – 1975 Vice-Admiral Sir Arthur Power 1975 – 1977 Vice-Admiral Sir Gordon Tait 1977 – 1979 Vice-Admiral Sir John Forbes 1979 – 1981 Vice-Admiral Sir Peter Berger 1981 – 1982 Vice-Admiral Sir Simon Cassels 1982 – 1985 Vice-Admiral Sir David Brown 1985 – 1987 Vice-Admiral Sir Robert Gerken 1987 – 1990 Vice-Admiral Sir John Webster 1990 – 1992 Vice-Admiral Sir Alan Grose 1992 – 1996 Vice-Admiral Sir Roy Newman This article includes some minor copied content from this article HMNB Devonport section Administration
François Joseph Paul de Grasse
François Joseph Paul, comte de Grasse was a career French officer who achieved the rank of admiral. He is best known for his command of the French fleet at the Battle of the Chesapeake in 1781 in the last year of the American Revolutionary War, it helped gain the rebels' victory. After this action, de Grasse returned with his fleet to the Caribbean. In 1782 British Admiral Rodney decisively captured Grasse at the Battle of the Saintes. Grasse was criticised for his loss in that battle. On his return to France in 1784, he demanded a court martial, his grown children from his marriages all emigrated to Saint-Domingue, his eldest son Auguste assigned there as a naval officer, joined by his stepmother and sisters after the father's death. They had lost property in the French Revolution, he was among French officers. Auguste and his four sisters went as refugees to Charleston, South Carolina, where two sisters died of yellow fever. One founded a family line with her husband in New York City. Grasse's natural, adopted Indian-French son, George de Grasse, emigrated to New York City by 1799, where he married and made his adult life.
The admiral's eldest son, known as Auguste de Grasse, returned to France after Napoleon came to power, re-entered the military. He inherited his father's title as count. François-Joseph de Grasse was born and raised at Bar-sur-Loup in south-eastern France, the last child of Francois de Grasse Rouville, Marquis de Grasse, he supported his Provençal family. De Grasse married Antoinette Rosalie Accaron in 1764, they had six children who survived to adulthood, among them his eldest son Alexandre Francois Auguste de Grasse. Auguste had a career in the French army and inherited his father's title as count in 1788, his younger brother Maxime died young in 1773. They had four sisters: Amélie Rosalie Maxime, Adélaide, Melanie Veronique Maxime, Silvie de Grasse. Silvie married M. Francis de Pau in Charleston, South Carolina, raised a family with him in New York City. After his wife Antoinette died young, de Grasse married again, to Catherine Pien, widow of M. de Villeneuve. She died before him. Thirdly, he married Marie Delphine Lazare de Cibon.
In addition, while in service in India during and after the Seven Years' War, Grasse is believed to have fathered a mixed-race, French-Indian boy with an Indian woman in Calcutta. The boy, born about 1780, was known as Azar Le Guen. Grasse brought the boy back to Paris with him for his education and formally adopted him, naming him George de Grasse. After his father's death, the young man went to the United States by 1799, where he settled in New York City, he worked for a time for Aaron Burr meeting him through a connection of his father's. Burr gave him two lots of land in Manhattan, George de Grasse became a naturalized citizen in 1804, he married well and educated his three children: his son John van Salee de Grasse was the first African American to graduate from medical school and became a respected physician in Boston. The eldest son Isaac became a preacher, daughter Serena married George Downing, who became a renowned restaurant entrepreneur and civil rights activist. At the age of eleven, de Grasse entered the Order of Saint John as a page of the Grand Master.
He served as an ensign on the galleys in battles against the Moors. In 1740 at the age of 17, he formally entered the French Navy, he participated in French naval action in India during the Seven Years War. He was intermittently stationed in Calcutta, from the 1760s to 1781. Following Britain's victory over the French in the Seven Years War, Grasse helped rebuild the French navy in the years after the Treaty of Paris. In 1775, the American War of Independence broke out when American colonists rebelled against British rule. France supplied the colonists with covert aid, but remained neutral until 1778; the Treaty of Alliance established the Franco-American alliance, France entered the war on behalf of the rebels and against Great Britain. As a commander of a division, Comte de Grasse served under Louis Guillouet, comte d'Orvilliers at the First Battle of Ushant from July 23 to 27, 1778; the battle, fought off Britanny, was indecisive. In 1779, he joined the fleet of Count d'Estaing in the Caribbean as commander of a squadron.
He contributed to the capture of Grenada that year, took part in the three actions fought by Guichen against Admiral Rodney in the Battle of Martinique. Grasse was promoted to lieutenant-general of the Navy in March 1781, was successful in defeating Admiral Samuel Hood and taking Tobago. de Grasse responded to Washington and Rochambeau's Expédition Particulière when they appealed for his aid in 1781, setting sail with 3,000 troops from Saint-Domingue, where the French Caribbean fleet was based. Grasse landed the French reinforcements in Virginia. Afterward he decisively defeated the British fleet in the Battle of the Chesapeake in September 1781, he drew away the British forces and blockaded the coast until Lord Cornwallis surrendered at Yorktown, ensuring the independence of the new United States of America. De Grasse returned his fleet to the Caribbean, he was less fortunate in 1782 and defeated at the Battle of St. Kitts by Admiral Hood. Shortly afterward, in April 1782, Admiral de Grasse was defeated and taken prisoner by Admiral Rodney at the Battle of the Saintes.
He was taken to London for a time. While there
Seven Years' War
The Seven Years' War was a global conflict fought between 1756 and 1763. It involved every European great power of the time and spanned five continents, affecting Europe, the Americas, West Africa and the Philippines; the conflict split Europe into two coalitions, led by the Kingdom of Great Britain on one side and the Kingdom of France, the Russian Empire, the Kingdom of Spain, the Swedish Empire on the other. Meanwhile, in India, some regional polities within the fragmented Mughal Empire, with the support of the French, tried to crush a British attempt to conquer Bengal; the war's extent has led some historians to describe it as World War Zero, similar in scale to other world wars. Although Anglo-French skirmishes over their American colonies had begun with what became the French and Indian War in 1754, the large-scale conflict that drew in most of the European powers was centered on Austria's desire to recover Silesia from the Prussians. Seeing the opportunity to curtail Britain's and Prussia's ever-growing might and Austria put aside their ancient rivalry to form a grand coalition of their own, bringing most of the other European powers to their side.
Faced with this sudden turn of events, Britain aligned itself with Prussia, in a series of political manoeuvres known as the Diplomatic Revolution. However, French efforts ended in failure when the Anglo-Prussian coalition prevailed, Britain's rise as among the world's predominant powers destroyed France's supremacy in Europe, thus altering the European balance of power. Conflict between Great Britain and France broke out in 1754–1756 when the British attacked disputed French positions in North America. Hostilities were heightened when a British unit led by a 22 year old Lt. Colonel George Washington ambushed a small French force at the Battle of Jumonville Glen on 28 May 1754; the conflict exploded across the colonial boundaries and extended to the seizure of hundreds of French merchant ships at sea. Meanwhile, rising power Prussia was struggling with Austria for dominance within and outside the Holy Roman Empire in central Europe. In 1756, the major powers "switched partners". Realising that war was imminent, Prussia pre-emptively struck Saxony and overran it.
The result caused uproar across Europe. Because of Austria's alliance with France to recapture Silesia, lost in the War of the Austrian Succession, Prussia formed an alliance with Britain. Reluctantly, by following the imperial diet, which declared war on Prussia on 17 January 1757, most of the states of the empire joined Austria's cause; the Anglo-Prussian alliance was joined by smaller German states. Sweden, seeking to regain Pomerania joined the coalition, seeing its chance when all the major powers of Europe opposed Prussia. Spain, bound by the Pacte de Famille, intervened on behalf of France and together they launched an utterly unsuccessful invasion of Portugal in 1762; the Russian Empire was aligned with Austria, fearing Prussia's ambition on the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth, but switched sides upon the succession of Tsar Peter III in 1762. Many middle and small powers in Europe, as in the previous wars, tried to steer clear away from the escalating conflict though they had interests in the conflict or with the belligerents.
Denmark–Norway, for instance, was close to being dragged into the war on France's side when Peter III became Russian emperor and switched sides. The Dutch Republic, a long-time British ally, kept its neutrality intact, fearing the odds against Britain and Prussia fighting the great powers of Europe, tried to prevent Britain's domination in India. Naples-Sicily, Savoy, although sided with the Franco-Spanish alliance, declined to join the coalition under fear of British naval power; the taxation needed for war caused the Russian people considerable hardship, being added to the taxation of salt and alcohol begun by Empress Elizabeth in 1759 to complete her addition to the Winter Palace. Like Sweden, Russia concluded a separate peace with Prussia; the war ended with the Treaty of Paris between France and Great Britain and the Treaty of Hubertusburg between Saxony and Prussia, in 1763. The war was successful for Great Britain, which gained the bulk of New France in North America, Spanish Florida, some individual Caribbean islands in the West Indies, the colony of Senegal on the West African coast, superiority over the French trading outposts on the Indian subcontinent.
The Native American tribes were excluded from the settlement. In Europe, the war began disastrously for Prussia, but with a combination of good luck and successful strategy, King Frederick the Great managed to retrieve the Prussian position and retain the status quo ante bellum. Prussia emerged as a new European great power. Although Austria failed to retrieve the territory of Silesia from Prussia, its military prowess was noted by the other powers; the involvement of Portugal and Sweden did not return them to their former status as great powers. France was deprived of many of it
St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador
St. John's is the capital and largest city of the Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador, it is on the eastern tip of the Avalon Peninsula on Newfoundland. The city is North America's easternmost city, its name has been attributed to the Nativity of John the Baptist, when John Cabot was believed to have sailed into the harbour in 1497 and to a Basque fishing town with the same name. Existing on maps as early as 1519, it is one of the oldest cities in North America, it was incorporated as a city in 1888. With a metropolitan population of 219,207, the St. John's Metropolitan Area is Canada's 20th largest metropolitan area and the second largest Census Metropolitan Area in Atlantic Canada, after Halifax; the city has a rich history, having played a role in the French and Indian War, the American Revolutionary War, the War of 1812. Italian inventor Guglielmo Marconi received the first transatlantic wireless signal in St. John's, its history and culture have made it into an important tourist destination.
St. John's is the oldest post-Columbian European settlement in North America, with fishermen setting up seasonal camps in the early 16th century. Sebastian Cabot declares in a handwritten Latin text in his original 1545 map that St. John's earned its name when he and his father, the Venetian explorer John Cabot became the first Europeans to sail into the harbour, in the morning of 24 June 1494, the feast day of Saint John the Baptist. However, the locations of Cabot's landfalls are disputed. A series of expeditions to St. John's by Portuguese from the Azores took place in the early 16th century, by 1540 French and Portuguese ships crossed the Atlantic annually to fish the waters off the Avalon Peninsula. In the Basque Country, it is a common belief the name of St. John's was given by Basque fishermen because the bay of St. John's is similar to the Bay of Pasaia in the Basque Country, where one of the fishing towns is called St. John; the earliest record of the location appears as São João on a Portuguese map by Pedro Reinel in 1519.
When John Rut visited St. John's in 1527, he found Norman and Portuguese ships in the harbour. On 3 August 1527, Rut wrote a letter to King Henry on the findings of his voyage to North America. St. Jehan is shown on Nicolas Desliens' world map of 1541, San Joham is found in João Freire's Atlas of 1546. On 5 August 1583, an English Sea Dog, Sir Humphrey Gilbert, claimed the area as England's first overseas colony under Royal Charter of Queen Elizabeth I. There was no permanent population and Gilbert was lost at sea during his return voyage, thereby ending any immediate plans for settlement; the Newfoundland National War Memorial is on the waterfront in St. John's, at the purported site of Gilbert's landing and proclamation. By 1620, the fishermen of England's West Country controlled most of Newfoundland's east coast. In 1627, William Payne, called St. John's "the principal prime and chief lot in all the whole country". Sometime after 1630, the town of St. John's was established as a permanent community.
Before this they were expressly forbidden by the English government, at the urging of the West Country fishing industry, from establishing permanent settlements along the English-controlled coast. The population grew in the 17th century: St. John's was Newfoundland's largest settlement when English naval officers began to take censuses around 1675; the population grew in the summers with the arrival of migratory fishermen. In 1680, fishing ships set up fishing rooms at St. John's, bringing hundreds of Irish men into the port to operate inshore fishing boats; the town's first significant defenses were erected due to commercial interests, following the temporary seizure of St. John's by the Dutch admiral Michiel de Ruyter in June 1665; the inhabitants fended off a second Dutch attack in 1673, when it was defended by Christopher Martin, an English merchant captain. Martin landed six cannons from his vessel, the Elias Andrews, constructed an earthen breastwork and battery near Chain Rock commanding the Narrows leading into the harbour.
With only 23 men, the valiant Martin beat off an attack by three Dutch warships. The English government planned to expand these fortifications in around 1689, but construction didn't begin until after the French admiral Pierre Le Moyne d'Iberville captured and destroyed the town in the Avalon Peninsula Campaign; when 1500 English reinforcements arrived in late 1697, they found rubble where the town and fortifications had stood. The French attacked St. John's again in 1705, captured it in 1708, devastating civilian structures with fire on each instance; the harbour remained fortified through most of the 19th centuries. The final battle of the Seven Years' War in North America was fought in St. John's. Following a surprise capture of the town by the French early in the year, the British responded and, at the Battle of Signal Hill, the French surrendered St. John's to British forces under the command of Colonel William Amherst. In the late 1700s Fort Amherst and Fort Waldegrave were built to defend the harbour entrance.
There has been some controversy regarding. As mentioned above, while English fishermen had set up seasonal camps in St. John's in the 16th century, they were expressly forbidden by the English government, at the urging of the West Country fishing industry, from establishing permanent s
The United Kingdom the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, sometimes referred to as Britain, is a sovereign country located off the north-western coast of the European mainland. The United Kingdom includes the island of Great Britain, the north-eastern part of the island of Ireland, many smaller islands. Northern Ireland is the only part of the United Kingdom that shares a land border with another sovereign state, the Republic of Ireland. Apart from this land border, the United Kingdom is surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, with the North Sea to the east, the English Channel to the south and the Celtic Sea to the south-west, giving it the 12th-longest coastline in the world; the Irish Sea lies between Great Ireland. With an area of 242,500 square kilometres, the United Kingdom is the 78th-largest sovereign state in the world, it is the 22nd-most populous country, with an estimated 66.0 million inhabitants in 2017. The UK is constitutional monarchy; the current monarch is Queen Elizabeth II, who has reigned since 1952, making her the longest-serving current head of state.
The United Kingdom's capital and largest city is London, a global city and financial centre with an urban area population of 10.3 million. Other major urban areas in the UK include Greater Manchester, the West Midlands and West Yorkshire conurbations, Greater Glasgow and the Liverpool Built-up Area; the United Kingdom consists of four constituent countries: England, Scotland and Northern Ireland. Their capitals are London, Edinburgh and Belfast, respectively. Apart from England, the countries have their own devolved governments, each with varying powers, but such power is delegated by the Parliament of the United Kingdom, which may enact laws unilaterally altering or abolishing devolution; the nearby Isle of Man, Bailiwick of Guernsey and Bailiwick of Jersey are not part of the UK, being Crown dependencies with the British Government responsible for defence and international representation. The medieval conquest and subsequent annexation of Wales by the Kingdom of England, followed by the union between England and Scotland in 1707 to form the Kingdom of Great Britain, the union in 1801 of Great Britain with the Kingdom of Ireland created the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland.
Five-sixths of Ireland seceded from the UK in 1922, leaving the present formulation of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. There are fourteen British Overseas Territories, the remnants of the British Empire which, at its height in the 1920s, encompassed a quarter of the world's land mass and was the largest empire in history. British influence can be observed in the language and political systems of many of its former colonies; the United Kingdom is a developed country and has the world's fifth-largest economy by nominal GDP and ninth-largest economy by purchasing power parity. It has a high-income economy and has a high Human Development Index rating, ranking 14th in the world, it was the world's first industrialised country and the world's foremost power during the 19th and early 20th centuries. The UK remains a great power, with considerable economic, military and political influence internationally, it is sixth in military expenditure in the world. It has been a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council since its first session in 1946.
It has been a leading member state of the European Union and its predecessor, the European Economic Community, since 1973. The United Kingdom is a member of the Commonwealth of Nations, the Council of Europe, the G7, the G20, NATO, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development and the World Trade Organization; the 1707 Acts of Union declared that the kingdoms of England and Scotland were "United into One Kingdom by the Name of Great Britain". The term "United Kingdom" has been used as a description for the former kingdom of Great Britain, although its official name from 1707 to 1800 was "Great Britain"; the Acts of Union 1800 united the kingdom of Great Britain and the kingdom of Ireland in 1801, forming the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. Following the partition of Ireland and the independence of the Irish Free State in 1922, which left Northern Ireland as the only part of the island of Ireland within the United Kingdom, the name was changed to the "United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland".
Although the United Kingdom is a sovereign country, Scotland and Northern Ireland are widely referred to as countries. The UK Prime Minister's website has used the phrase "countries within a country" to describe the United Kingdom; some statistical summaries, such as those for the twelve NUTS 1 regions of the United Kingdom refer to Scotland and Northern Ireland as "regions". Northern Ireland is referred to as a "province". With regard to Northern Ireland, the descriptive name used "can be controversial, with the choice revealing one's political preferences"; the term "Great Britain" conventionally refers to the island of Great Britain, or politically to England and Wales in combination. However, it is sometimes used as a loose synonym for the United Kingdom as a whole; the term "Britain" is used both as a synonym for Great Britain, as a synonym for the United Kingdom. Usage is mixed, with the BBC preferring to use Britain as shorthand only for Great Britain and the UK Government, while accepting that both terms refer to the United K