Richard Bolitho – A Life

Richard Bolitho - A LifeTo Glory We Steer was published in 1968, and was such a success that the publicity director of Hutchinson suggested I should map out (roughly) Richard Bolitho’s life from birth to death so it could be used on a bookmark, each bookmark to be updated on the publication of a new novel. Not an easy job, I might add, so I sat down and worked it all out, the essential parts of his career. I chose his date of birth with care because as he matures it leads him through the most interesting time in naval history, so he wouldn’t be too young or too old at any point, like the American and French revolutions and the Battle of Trafalgar.”

– Douglas Reeman

1756 born in Falmouth, son of James Bolitho
1768 entered the King's service as a midshipman on Manxman (80)
1772 Midshipman Gorgon (74)
Richard Bolitho - Midshipman
Midshipman Bolitho and the Avenger
1774 promoted Lieutenant Destiny (28); Rio and the Caribbean
Stand Into Danger
1775 - 1777 Lieutenant Trojan (80) during the American Revolution; later appointed prizemaster
In Gallant Company
1778 promoted Commander Sparrow (18); Battle of the Chesapeake
Sloop of War
1780 Birth of Adam, illegitimate son of Hugh Bolitho and Kerenza Pascoe
1782 promoted Captain Phalarope (32); West Indies; Battle of Saintes
To Glory We Steer
1784 Captain Undine (32); India and East Indies
Command a King's Ship
1787 Captain Tempest (36); Great South Sea; Tahiti; suffered serious fever
Passage to Mutiny
1792 Captain, the Nore; recruiting
With All Despatch
1793 Captain Hyperion (74); Mediterranean; Bay of Biscay; West Indies
Form Line of Battle!
Enemy in Sight!
1795 promoted Flag Captain Euryalus (100); involved in the Great Mutiny; Mediterranean; promoted Commodore
The Flag Captain
1798 Battle of the Nile
Signal - Close Action!
1800 promoted Rear-Admiral; Baltic
The Inshore Squadron
1801 Biscay; prisoner of war
A Tradition of Victory
1802 promoted Vice-Admiral; West Indies
Success to the Brave
1803 Mediterranean
Colours Aloft
1805 Battle of Trafalgar
Honour This Day
1806-1807 Good Hope; second Battle of Copenhagen
The Only Victor
1808 Shipwrecked off Africa
Beyond the Reef
1809-1810 Mauritius campaign
The Darkening Sea
1812 promoted Admiral; second American war
For My Country's Freedom
1814 defense of Canada; second American war
Cross of St George
1815 killed in action
Sword of Honour