Royal Naval Biography/Clinch, Timothy


TIMOTHY CLINCH, Esq.
[Post-Captain of 1812.]

Was made Lieutenant in Aug. 1798; and Commander, Mar. 22, 1803. We subsequently find him in the Busy sloop, protecting the trade bound to Halifax and Newfoundland.

On the 13th April, 1804, Captain Clinch sailed from Portsmouth for the West India station; where he removed to the Osprey 18, in which vessel he captured le Teaser, French privateer, of 7 guns and 51 men, May 17, 1805. On the 27th June following, being then about 60 leagues to the N.E. of Barbuda, in company with the Kingfisher sloop, Captain Richard William Cribb, he was pursued by five French frigates; but no sooner did the enemy observe the Osprey and her consort hoist signals and fire guns, as if to a fleet a-head of them, than they relinquished the chase, and set fire to fifteen British merchant vessels under their charge, which had been captured about three weeks before, by the French and Spanish combined squadrons under Mons. Villeneuve: by this successful ruse on the part of Captains Cribb and Clinch, our inveterate enemies were deprived of booty which they valued at upwards of 200,000l.

In July, 1812, one of the Osprey’s boats, in company with another belonging to the Britomart brig, captured l’Eole French privateer, of 6 guns and 31 men, to the N.W. of Heligoland. In this spirited enterprise, which was conducted by Lieutenant Henry Dixon, of the Britomart, the British had 2 killed; 5 dangerously, 3 severely, and 4, including the commanding officer, slightly wounded.

Captain Clinch’s post commission bears date Aug. 12, 1812.