Nuestra Señora de la Santísima Trinidad (1769)

Painting of Santísima Trinidad, date and author unknown. Original believed to be in the public domain.

Nation
Ship Class
Ship Type
Laid Down
1768
Launched
1769
Commissioned
1769
Decommissioned
1805
AD/BC
AD
History

Nuestra Señora de la Santísima Trinidad was laid down in 1768. Launched 3 March, 1769, at Havana, Cuba, she entered Spanish service later that year. Built as a 112 gun three-decker, the ship-of-the-line was later rebuilt with a fourth gun deck, giving her an arsenal of 140 guns. Santísima Trinidad was employed in Franco-Spanish operations during the American War of Independence, enjoying some success in the English Channel against convoys, and participating in the second siege of Gibraltar. She underwent her reconstruction in 1795, and was the flagship of the Spanish Squadron at the Battle of Cape St. Vincent, 14 February, 1797. Santísima Trinidad was completely dismasted (including damage from Lord Nelson's HMS Captain), but managed to escape with the help of two other Spanish ships-of-the-line. Eight and a half years later, Santísima Trinidad was again in action against Nelson, this time as the flagship of the Spanish squadron at the Battle of Trafalgar, 21 October, 1805. Again dismasted, Santísima Trinidad surrendered, and was taken as a prize by HMS Neptune, but was scuttled due to the oncoming storm. Santísima Trinidad's wreck may have been accidentally located by the Spanish Navy while testing a new side-scanning sonar in 2009.

Bonus Information

Fun Fact: Santísima Trinidad was the first four-deck ship of the line, and carried the largest number of guns of any age of sail warship.