Wednesday, November 21, 2007
At Dover, looking at the situation on 29 May 1652
We wanted to watch the action unfold (and record what happened) on 28 and 29 May 1652. We initially zoomed out to a fairly great altitude so that we could see Dover, the Downs, and as far as Rye Bay. We knew that the Dutch had been forced across the Channel by bad weather and had lost anchors in the winds and had dragged other anchors. The two English squadrons had experienced the same weather, but on the west side of the Channel. On 28 May (the English, using the Old Style calendar, called it 18 May), the Dutch fleet of more than 40 ships entered the roads, unnerving the English commander, Nehemiah Bourne. He flew his flag on the 2nd Rate Andrew. Tromp sent the Lam and the Hoorn, commanded by Jan Thijssen and Pieter Allertszoon, to explain to Bourne that they were just taking refuge from the weather. The Dutch captains explained to Rear-Admiral Bourne that Tromp had stayed away so that he wouldn't be expected to strike his colours. The next day would see some action.