A BRITISH NAVAL MOTTLEY CREW?

 

As a presumptive, you will of course know that Mottley in this case is spelled as Motley with one 'l', so what is this word Mottley all about?

Well it's the surname of a Hampshire family with some members living in Portsmouth and some in Gosport either side of the premier naval port and harbour. As long ago as 1799, two years after the great fleet mutinies at Spithead followed by Chatham and Devonport followed by brutal death penalties, and deep into the French Revolution War which started in 1793 [with the Guillotine working over time], the Mottley's published a newspaper which they called "The Portsmouth Telegraph OR The Mottley Naval and Military Journal". Many long years afterwards this newspaper became the HampshireTelegraph which is still extant.

It was packed full of all manner of things and stories covered by the grand Journal title, some of them expected and some, gob-smacking as you will see. Portsmouth at that time was still, first and foremost an Army Garrison town with few naval shore-side features and buildings [no naval barracks for example but lots of separate army barracks] although enough ships in harbour to keep the authorities alert!  At one stage a seasoned army Colonel promoted to a brigadier was the commandant of the Garrison as depicted in the ornate memorial just north of the Clarence Pier at the end of Pembroke Street in Southsea just outside the boundary fence of Victoria Barracks [now a housing estate] colloquially known as Vicky Barracks. His name ?....Brigadier Bernard Montgomery.

Here is a glimpse of the 14th October 1799 edition which is grossly dis-coloured, and despite my best efforts I can not improve on it.

Note in the column immediately under the date the heading "Naval Vocabulary" as shown in the picture below. It goes on to say [approximately] "Dedicated by permission of Debretts  K.G. Elegantly printed  into twelve Volumes.  Price 8s. A Vocabulary of Sea Phrases  and Naval Architecture in two parts, I English and II,  French carefully selected from the........"

These, whatever, were the everyday sea-language of Lord Nelson who at this time was in Naples Italy.  He was putting down the Naples Republic which was a bloody affair. This file covers Naples very briefly Nelson and the revolution of 1799 in Naples..docx It was also Nelson first real and lasting association with the Hamilton's and the King of Naples. At this long period of a score of years, blood and gore were everyday sights and occurrences, thought about like today we feel about cancer. We fear it but of course it wont happen to us!

 

Despite our almost constant warring with our neighbour's, particularly with the Dutch, the Spaniards and the French, a great deal of our language came from France either by way of classical French or plebian [street/proletariat French], and many of our naval terminologies come from a root French word or expression.  There are many books and written pieces which describe these transitions and this PHD thesis is about the best possible example I have ever researched https://old.upm.ro/ldmd/LDMD-05/Lds/Lds%2005%2047.pdf

Such naval vocabularies were repeated, tweaked, amended over the years and I have a wonderful book called Royal Navy Seamanship circa 1907 without one bloody French word,  and of course a copy of Jack's Speak, which in truth I consult once in a blue moon for it has mistakes and ambiguous references,  whereas in books of historical merit, I see often and enjoy learning of new things. My copy of the 1907 version was once personally owned and signed by one of our most famous admirals namely namely Algernon Usborne Willis HMS Glory Mediterranean Fleet Jan 19th 1908.  He served in WW1 and saw action at Jutland and other actions. In WW2 he was C-in-C South Atlantic, C-in-C Levant [Eastern Mediterranean and Middle East countries], Second Sea Lord, C-in-C Mediterranean and finally C-in-C Portsmouth. He became an admiral of the fleet.

One of the stories I read was almost unbelievable,  and I am sure that you too will find the following incredulous too.

Remember we are in October 1799, where you are told of the "English National Lottery" WHAT - in 1799?  Yes it ran for 250 years, this one centred on 1694 until its banning in 1826.

OK, but it was probably pennies  - max of 1s 3d per week winnings, if that?  Come on then spill the beans - splash the cash - keep us out of our misery.

OK then, have a gander at this. 

Just in case you find the text difficult to read and follow, here a mini re-type.

A Grand Scheme

The English State Lottery

1799 begins drawing March 3 1800

No of Prizes   Value of Each   Total Value
2 at 30,000 is   60,000
3 " 20,000 "   60,000
3 " 10,000 "   30,000
4 "   5,000 "   20,000
5 "   2,000 "   10,000
10 "   2,000 "   20,000
10 "      500 "     5,000
26 "      200 "     5,200
54 "        50 "     2,700
16650 "        28 " 299,700
         
16767 Prizes       500,000approx
38233 Blanks
         
55,000 Tickets      

On the left, it shows how the lottery worked and how it became profitable to the lottery licensee. In this case, 55,000 tickets were sold having in or on them 16,767 prizes, but a whooping 38,233 blank tickets on which there was absolutely no return: zilch and an utter waste of money [scratch card type of thing], UGH except for the licencees!  A simple ratio based on 10 spent, viz 38233/55000th returned 6.9 sheer profit - a nice little earner.    

Part of the......capital will be determined by order.......

First drawn 20th day 20,000
First drawn 26th day 30,000

Tickets and shares are selling at the  Licensed Lottery Office in England, Scotland and Ireland  at the present low prices viz

Tickets 15.10.0
Halves 7.19.0   Eighths 2.0.0
Quarters 4.0.0   Sixteenths 1.0.0

Back in 1799 15 would have been a fortune involving a rich man's purchase! I don't of course understand what the various tickets and their costs would have purchased.

That's it - end of snippet