Earl St Vincent's Medal (Mutiny at the Nore), issued 1800
Obverse, a bust of Earl St Vincent facing left
Reverse, a laurel wreath around a soldier and a marine, to the right and left respectively, shaking hands
Earl St Vincent's Medal, 1800
The Mutiny on the Nore, which occurred in 1797, was the second of two that year in protest against the erosion of sailors' pay by inflation, living conditions aboard ship and various changes in the way the Navy expected its men, many of whom were conscripts impressed for the ongoing Revolutionary War with France, to serve under the flag. The unrest spread rapidly, and the Admiralty's refusal to concede led to a short-lived blockade of London by the rebel fleet, whose leaders' aims had become more widely revolutionary. Throttling supply to the mutineers resulted in their surrender in the face of starvation, and 29 men were hanged and many transported to Australia.
In the midst of the Mutiny one ship which did not join the uprising was the ex-French HMS Ville de Paris, then flagship of Admiral Edward Jervis, Earl St Vincent. In testimony to this loyalty, the Earl had this medal struck for the Petty Officers, seaman and marines of his vessel; it was issued in 1800.
The silver issue which is concerned here was that made to the Petty Officers; beyond this, however, the identity of the recipient is unknown. Lester Watson bought this medal from the London dealers Seaby in 1933.