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Art Marine

HMS Surprise - Scratch built model

HMS Surprise - Scratch built model

Regular price £795.00 GBP
Regular price Sale price £795.00 GBP
Sale Sold out
Shipping calculated at checkout.
This is a scratch-built detailed scale model using the plank on frame (teak wood) technique. The sails are made of cotton with very detailed rigging, the latter being to an exceptionally high quality.

The model is supplied fully assembled and box packing is included in the price.

The Surprise was made famous by the writings of Patrick O’Brian, in his books on the adventures of Captain Aubrey and the surgeon Maturin, described by the world famous writer as his favourite ship. A short history of the original Surprise is listed below.

The fabulous frigate was constructed in Le Havre as L’Unite in 1794. It was a 24-gun corvette, armed with 8lb long guns. The British captured her in April 1796 in the Mediterranean, and her name changed to the Surprise. She was re-armed and classed as a 28-gun ship. She carried 24 32lb carronades on her main deck, 8 32 lb carronades on her quarter deck, and 4 6 lb long guns on her foredeck.

French frigates were much sought after by the British, because of their manoeuvrability and speed. The streamlined design of the hull below the waterline meant that these frigates could outrun most other ships.

Her big moment came in October 1799 under the command of Captain Edward Hamilton for the daring rescue of the frigate Hermoine. The latter’s crew had mutinied, killing their commander and officers. The ship was surrendered to the Spanish and was taken to the harbour at Puerto Cabello in modern day Venezuela.

In trying to rescue the ship, the boats of the Surprise were spotted and fired on by patrolling gunboats. They soldiered on, boarded the Hermoine, cleared the deck and sailed her out. Their losses were 12 wounded, whilst the Spanish suffered a loss of 216 wounded (including many dead). Captain Hamilton who led the rescue was knighted for his conduct, and the Hermoine restored to the British Navy.

Full size: Length 100cm, Width 34cm, Height 72cm.

Three-Quarters size: Length 75cm, Width 22cm, Height 57cm

The model is built to order, and it may take up to eight weeks to deliver if it is not in stock at Art Marine.

Please note that the stated shipping cost is valid in the UK only. For overseas orders, please email Julian Thomas for a shipping quote.
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