In 1793-4 Glatton made one round trip to China for the East India Company. Her captain was Charles Drummond and her First Lieutenant was William Macnamarra. Drummond had commanded an earlier Glatton and would command a later one too; Macnamarra too would go on to command a later Glatton on a trip to China for the Company.
Glatton's letter of marque was dated 22 August 1793. The letter of marque permitted her, while under Drummond's command, to assist in the capture of the French brig Le Franc. It was issued after Glatton had left Portsmouth on 22 May 1793. Glatton was part of a convoy that also included the East Indiamen Prince William, Lord Thurlow, William Pitt, Barwell, Earl of Oxford, Osterley, Fort William, London, Pigot, Houghton, Marquis of Landsdown, Hillsborough, Ceres, and Earl of Abergavenny, amongst numerous other vessels, merchant and military, most of the non-Indiamen travelling to the Mediterranean.
From Portsmouth, Glatton reached Manilla on 10 November, and then Whampoa two weeks later. On her return voyage, she crossed Second Bar on 17 February 1794, reached St Helena on 18 June, and Long Reach by 12 September.
The next East Indiaman Glatton, also sailing with a letter of marque, captured a Dutch prow in the Straits of Flores in 1796, and the ship Copenhagen in 1799.
Fitting out for Royal Navy service
Captain Henry Trollope commissioned her in April 1795 and he was responsible for arranging that her original armament consisted entirely of carronades instead of the standard mix of long guns and carronades that other warships carried. His previous command, some eight years earlier, had been the 44-gun Rainbow, which too had been armed entirely with carronades. With her Trollope had in 1782 taken the Hébé, which the British would go to use as the model for the Leda-class frigates.
Carronades had short, relatively thin barrels and so were half the weight of the equivalent cannon. They did not need as large gun crews and could also fire much heavier shot for their weight than a gun of the same overall weight, but at the cost of the accuracy, velocity and range of the shot. This extremely heavy armament meant that the fourth rate Glatton could discharge a heavier broadside than the first rate Victory. But, in combat Glatton would have to endure the fire of the enemy's long guns while closing the gap to point-blank range before she could effectively return fire — if indeed the enemy would allow her to approach so close.
Glatton was originally armed with twenty-eight 68-pounder carronades on the lower deck and twenty-eight 42-pounder carronades on her upper deck. All were non-recoil, which is to say that they were fixed to the deck. Within a month 32-pounder carronades replaced the 42-pounders. However, Glatton's ports were too small to allow the larger guns to traverse properly, and she had no bow or stern chasers. Her guns therefore could only be pointed straight out the side. The month after the action in July 1796 (see below), she received two 32-pounders and two 18-pounder carronades for her forecastle. Later, the Navy replaced the twenty-eight 68-pounder carronades on the lower deck with twenty-eight 18-pounder long guns, ending the experiment.
Trollope was extremely happy with Glatton's seaworthiness, handling and general fitting out. He wrote to John Wells, the shipbuilder and her former owner, "I sincerely hope... we may meet with a seventy four in the Glatton...she would either take her or sink her in twenty minutes."
Under Trollope, Glatton first served in the English Channel where she engaged a French squadron on 15 July 1796. The French squadron consisted of a 50-gun ship, five frigates (two of 36 guns and three of 28), a brig, and a cutter. Glatton drove the French vessels into Flushing, having lost only two men wounded, one of whom died later, and despite having at times been surrounded by the enemy and exchanging fire at less than 20 yards. The French vessels may have included Brutus (a 74-gun cut down to 46-50 guns), Incorruptible (50 guns), Magicienne (32 guns), and Républicaine, and one French vessel apparently sank in Flushing harbour. (It was in this action that Captain Strangeways of the Royal Marines sustained the wound of which he died shortly thereafter, and which the illustration above commemorates.)
In March–April 1797, Trollope kept Glatton's crew from joining the Nore mutiny. By threatening to fire on the 64-gun Overyssel and the 40-gun Beaulieu, which were in open mutiny, he convinced their crews to return to duty. In August Captain Charles Cobb took command.
In April and May 1798 Glatton participated, with many other vessels, in the capture of sundry Dutch doggers, schuyts, and fishing vessels. On 4 and 5 May Glatton was among the vessels that captured 12 outward-bound Greenland ships. The other vessels included the hired armed cutters Fox and Marshall Cobourg, though most were much larger and included Monmouth, Ganges, Director, America, among others. On 28 May Glatton, Monarch, Ganges, America, Veteran, Belliqueux, Director, Apollo, the hired armed cutters Fox the First and Rose when they captured the Janus. All the British vessels were part of the fleet under the command of Admiral Lord Duncan. Next, many of the same vessels, including Glatton, Prosperine, Fox the First and Rose, captured several more Dutch vessels:Hoop (6 June);
Stadt Embden (11 June);
Neptune (12 June);
Rose and Endrast (14 June);
Hoop (15 June); and
Vrow Dorothea (l6 June).
On 18 August 1798, Glatton, Veteran, Belliqueux, Monmouth, Kent, Ganges, Prince Frederick, Diomede, the sloop Busy, and the hired armed cutter Rose captured the Adelarde.
Glatton was with other ships from Duncan's fleet, including Astraea, Scorpion, Cruizer, and the hired armed lugger Rover, and cutters Liberty and Hazard, when they captured the Harmenie on 21 April 1799. Glatton was in company with Kent, Romney, Isis and Ranger when they captured the Dutch hoy Johanna on 16 May 1799.
Then in August 1799, Glatton participated in the Anglo-Russian Invasion of Holland. The expedition was under the command of Admiral Adam Duncan and the Duke of York. Some 250 craft of all sizes transported 17,000 troops from Margate Roads and the Downs across the Channel on 13 August. Due to bad weather it was 21 August before they anchored off Kijkduin. The next day Vice Admiral Mitchell sent a summons to Vice Admiral Samuel Story, calling on him to surrender his fleet. When he declined, the Duke of York landed his army near Den Helder on 27 August under covering fire from the fleet. Den Helder was occupied the following day when the garrison evacuated the town. The expedition then took possession of 13 old warships laid up in ordinary. On 30 August, Glatton, Romney, Isis, Veteran, Ardent, Belliqueux, Monmouth and Overyssel, the Russian ship Mistisloff and the frigates, anchored in line ahead in the Vlieter and Mitchel again summoned Story. This time Story agreed to surrender his squadron of 12 modern warships. The Royal Navy purchased 11 of these. The Dutch surrender, without any resistance, became known as the Vlieter Incident. As a result of the surrender, Duncan's fleet was awarded prize money, in which Glatton shared.
On 15 January 1800 a court martial on board the Glatton, in Yarmouth Roads, tried the surviving officers and crew for the loss on the Cockle Sands of the 12-gun brig Mastif as she left Yarmouth Roads via the Northern Passage for Leith. Her captain, Lieutenant James Watson, and eight of his crew had been lost in the incident. The court absolved the accused for the loss of the vessel.
In November, Captain George Stephen took command of Glatton, followed in 1801 by Captain William Bligh, formerly of HMS Bounty. Bligh was only captain for about a month, but during that month he sailed her to the Baltic where Glatton participated in the Battle of Copenhagen on 2 April 1801. The battle cost her 17 killed and 34 wounded. In 1847 the Admiralty would award the Naval General Service Medal with clasp "Copenhagen 1801" to all surviving claimants from the action.
Glatton was next under Captain William Nowell and then under Captain William Birchall. In August 1801 she was fitted at Sheerness for a guardship in protected waters. Captain John Ferris Devonshire took command that same month.
Captain Nathaniel Porlock recommissioned her in May 1802 as a convict ship. Next, Commander James Colnett assumed command and on 23 September Glatton left England, carrying over 270 male, and 135 female prisoners; of these, seven men and five women died on the journey. She also carried some 30 Free Settlers. A family from the Royal Household boarded the Glatton - this was one of the reasons a Royal Navy vessel was used, to ensure a safe passage. She sailed via a resupply stop at Rio de Janeiro to the penal settlement at Sydney, where she arrived on 13 March 1803. When Glatton arrived about 100 of the people on board her were suffering to varying degrees from scurvy.
She then returned to England, arriving on 22 September 1803, that is, after an absence of 364 days. Because she returned via Cape Horn, she had circumnavigated the world; her actual time at sea for this transit was 277 days.
Glatton was one of only two Royal Navy ships used to transport convicts to Port Jackson.
Return to naval service
Between November and December 1803 she was refitted at Woolwich for service as a man-of-war. Still under Colnett's command, she then served briefly as flagship for Rear Admiral James Vashon.
In 1804 Glatton was reduced to a 44-gun fifth rate. On 11 November she, together with Eagle, Majestic, Princess of Orange, Raisonable, Africiane, Inspector, Beaver, the hired armed cutter Swift, and the hired armed lugger Agnes, shared in the capture of Upstalsboom, H.L. De Haase, Master.
Captain Thomas Seccombe recommissioned Glatton in March 1806 and sailed for the Mediterranean on 22 November. On 19 February 1807, Glatton captured the Turkish vessels San Giovanni Pidomias and Codro Mariolo. That same day Glatton and Hirondelle captured the San Michelle. Four days later, Hirondelle captured Madonna, with Glatton sharing by agreement. On 26 February Hirondelle captured the San Nicollo, and Glatton again shared by agreement.
On 1 March, boats from Glatton cut out a former French corvette in Turkish service from the port of Sigri on the island of Mitylene. The vessel was pierced for 18 guns but only 10 were mounted. The British boarding party lost five officers and men killed and nine men wounded. Hirondelle provided support.
The next day Glatton and Hirondelle captured three other Turkish vessels, names unknown but with masters, Statio, Constantine, and Papeli. Prize money for these vessels, and San Michelle, was paid in October 1816.
On 4 March Glatton and Hirondelle captured another Turkish vessel. One week later, Glatton captured yet another Turkish vessel, name unknown, Ibrahim, master.
Then on 29 November Glatton captured several transports off Corfu that were transferring troops from Otranto to Corfu. Glatton removed some 300 troops before she destroyed the nine vessels they had been on. Two vessels escaped back to Otranto.
Glatton and the brig-sloop Delight had received information that the French had captured four Sicilian gunboats and taken them into Scylla, near Reggio, Calabria. On 31 January 1808, as Delight approached the port, a strong current pushed her towards the shore and she grounded. Seccombe went on board Delight to supervise the recovery effort. As they were trying to free Delight, her boats and those of Glatton came under intense fire from the shore. The boats were unsuccessful in freeing Delight, and Delight's captain, Commander Phillip Crosby Handfield, late of Egyptienne, and many of his crew were killed. Although the crew took to the boats, not all were able to escape and a number of the men on her, including Seccombe, became prisoners of war. The French paroled Seccombe, who had been severely wounded, to Messina, where he died on 3 February 1808.
Glatton came under the command of Commander Henry Hope (acting) and in March 1808 under Commander Charles Irving (acting). Captain George Miller Bligh then took command around December. He brought a convoy home from Malta in July and then sailed her to Sheerness for laying up in October. She sailed briefly to the Baltic in 1811.
From 1812 to 1814 Glatton was under R. G. Peacock (master) at Portsmouth. In 1814 she was converted to serve as a water depot at Sheerness. Between April and June 1830 she was fitted at Sheerness as a breakwater, and in October Glatton sailed for the last time, to Harwich, where she was subsequently sunk.