HMS Implacable

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HMS Implacable was a 74-gun third rate ship of the line, launched sometime between 1795 and 1800, and sunk in 1949.

The Historical Implacable

Implacable originally served in the French naval forces, launched by the French sometime between 1795 and 1800 as the Duguay-Trouin. She fought with French forces at the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805, and was captured by Royal Navy forces a few days after the battle. The vessel was taken into the Royal Navy, renamed Implacable, and served in and out of commission in various capacities throughout the 19th century and early 20th century.

After World War II, unwilling to fund continued maintenance and upkeep of the ship, the British government offered to return Implacable to the French government. The French government, similarly unwilling to spend money on her, declined. Implacable was towed out of Portsmouth on December 2, 1949 and scuttled by the explosion of charges placed in her hold. Her figurehead and stern galleries were saved and are on display in the National Maritime Museum at Greenwich. She was one of the last surviving examples of the 74-gun third rate, the most popular variety of "ship-of-the-line." Implacable was, at the time of her sinking, the second oldest vessel in the Royal Navy, behind Victory.

SPOILER WARNING:  Plot or ending details for "Blue at the Mizzen and 21: The Final Unfinished Voyage of Jack Aubrey"  follow.

In the Canon

In the Canon, Implacable first appears as the flagship of Admiral Lord Barmouth in The Hundred Days. She does not appear again in the Aubrey-Maturin series, but is alluded to on the second-to-last page of Blue at the Mizzen, in which Captain Jack Aubrey is ordered to
"proceed to the River Plate, there joining the South Afican Squadron: you will go aboard HMS Implacable, hoisting your flag, blue at the mizzen, and take command of the blue squadron."

When Aubrey makes his rendezvous with the squadron at the River Plate in 21: The Final Unfinished Voyage of Jack Aubrey, it is HMS Suffolk, and not Implacable, which serves as his flagship.

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