'A Marine & Seaman fishing off the Anchor on board the Pallas in Senegal Road, Jany 75' [Bray album]

No. 38 of 74 (PAJ1976 - PAJ2049)

Titled, dated and signed at the bottom, on the backing paper 'AVprGB' (to the life by Gabriel Bray). The date can be fairly closely identified as 29-30 January from the ship's log. The men are apparently sitting on the port anchor, though Bray has omitted the lashings supporting it against the ship's side, and the ship itself. There are in fact two anchors, a main bower with a smaller stream anchor on top of it, to which the buoy on which the seaman is sitting is probably attached. The ship is clearly lying off the mouth of the Senegal River, presumably only to single anchor using her starboard bower. The stream anchor was used for carrying out in a boat if the ship needed to be hauled off a shoal or otherwise manoeuvred in anchorages without using the sails.

This is one of 73 drawings by Bray (plus one signed 'NF 1782') preserved in a 19th-century album that was purchased for the Museum by the Macpherson Fund of the Society for Nautical Research in April 1991. They have now been separately remounted. Bray (1750-1823), was second lieutenant of the 44-gun ‘Pallas’ under Captain the Hon. William Cornwallis (1744-1819) – later a well-known admiral - on two voyages (1774-77) to report on British interests in West Africa, including the slave trade. The dated drawings refer only to the first of these, from December 1774 to September 1775, though a few may be from the second. Others comprise country views, some of Deal, Kent (where Bray may have come from), and others of social-history interest.

Object Details

ID: PAJ2013
Collection: Fine art
Type: Drawing
Display location: Not on display
Creator: Gabriel Bray
Date made: Jan 1775; 29 -30 January 1775
Credit: National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, London. Purchased with the assistance of the Society for Nautical Research Macpherson Fund
Measurements: Sheet: 131 x 185 mm; 317 x 481 mm

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