July 20 1815: A Lucky Fellow

On the 20th of July, early in the morning, we spoke the Swiftsure, on her way from England to reinforce me in the blockade of Rochefort. The astonishment of Captain Webley can scarcely be conceived, when, on his entering the ship, I said, “Well, I have got him.” “Got him! got whom?” “Why, Buonaparte; the man that has been keeping all Europe in a ferment these last twenty years.” “Is it possible?” said he; “well, you are a lucky fellow.” We had some further conversation; but Captain Webley was not introduced to Buonaparte, who had not then left his cabin; and as the Swiftsure was going to the southward, and I was desirous of getting to England as quickly as possible, we soon parted company.

— Captain Maitland of H.M.S. Bellerophon  writes about July 20 1815.

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