Barricado or Barricade?

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    Malcolm Lewis

      Re-reading David Cordingly’s excellent book Billy Ruffian about the history of the 18th century HMS Bellerophon at the Battle of the Glorious First of June 1794, on page 81 he records Matthew Flinders (the explorer) noting that Admiral Pasley lost his leg “by an 18-pound shot which came through the barricadoes on the quarter deck”.
      The Oxford Companion to Ships and the Sea refers to barricado as a 17th century small oared boat or sailing harbour tender to large ships whilst other 17th century naval dictionaries (Diary of Samuel Pepys Vol 8 1667) refer to a barricado as a fender.
      The Oxford Companion also includes “barricade” meaning a rail across the quarterdeck between two posts with mats suspended beneath as a protection against pistol shot. Perhaps there is confusion between barricado and barricade. Any thoughts please?
      Many thanks.

      Malcolm H

        Dear Sir,
        In ‘Falconer’s New Universal Dictionary of the Marine, 1815 Edition’ page 34 states that a “BARRICADE, (barricade, Fr. barricada, Span.)a strong wooden rail, supported by stanchions, extending across the foremost part of the quarter-deck: the upper part, which contains a double rope-netting, above the rail, is stuffed with full hammocks, to intercept the motion, and prevent the execution of small shot, in the time of battle.
        Malcolm Holden.

        Malcolm Lewis

          Thanks for your comment Malcolm. Seems there is some confusion between the two very similar words with different meanings. I forgot to mention that David Cordingly gave the following source in his book for barricadoes as NMM FLI/8b. Perhaps a member could kindly assist with confirming the content of this reference please.

          David Hepper

            From Alexander Falconbridge, An Account of the Slave Trade on the Coast of Africa (London, 1788), on describing the layout of a typical slave ship:
            “Near the mainmast a partition is constructed of boards which reaches athwart the ship. This division is called a barricado. It is about eight feet in height and is made to project about two feet over the sides of the ship. In this barricado there is a door at which a sentinel is placed during the time the Negroes are permitted to come upon the deck. It serves to keep the different sexes apart; and as there are small holes in it, where blunderbusses are fixed and sometimes a cannon, it is found very convenient for quelling the insurrections that now and then happen…”

            For an example of this, see the log of the slaver Count du Nord, entries for 18 November and 21 November 1783 where the term Barricado is used

            For naval uses, see a letter of 1747 which refers to a barricado:

            and another from 1786…

            Malcolm Lewis

              This is a photo of the “barricade” situated at the fore end of the quarterdeck on Victory today. It is merely described as a “rail” on diagrams of the ship. I can find no reference to barricades or barricadoes anywhere. One assumes hammocks were laid across the top and mats beneath. Little protection for those on the quarterdeck from sharpshooters in the enemy tops above as Nelson was to find out to his cost in the battle.

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