An Admiralty Pass Not Honoured, 1808
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In Samuel Walters, Lieutenant, R. N. : his memoirs, ed. C Northcote Parkinson, Liverpool 1949, the arrival of the Diana, a Russian ‘sloop of war’ but apparently a survey ship, at Cape Town is recorded on 3rd May 1808.
Walters (see p65 and p73) says that she was ‘going on a voyage to explore the N.W. coast of America’ and ‘had a pass from our Board of Admiralty’. But the Diana had no welcome from the RN ships at the Cape. She was boarded and detained, and, not surprisingly, her officers took the first available chance to cut her cables and escape, on 28th May.
Why was the Admiralty pass not honoured? Does anyone know?
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The Russians declared war on Britain after [the Franco-Russian Treaty signed at] Tilsit (7 July 1807), and the news of this declaration reached Britain by 2 December 1807. Presumably this news had reached the Cape by May 1808.
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