A cased mahogany pocket surveying compass relating to HMS Bounty English, 18th century,
Lot 115
A cased mahogany pocket surveying compass relating to HMS Bounty English, 18th century,
Sold for £7,500 (US$ 12,478) inc. premium
Lot Details
A cased mahogany pocket surveying compass relating to HMS Bounty English, 18th century,
The 3ins.(7.5cm) diam. dry compass with blued steel needle marked "N" & "S" and printed card, marked in cardinal points and degrees by quarter, fitted with a brass locking ring, the mahogany case with hinged lid, bearing inside a paper label inscribed in ink "Mutiny of the Bounty This compass given to me by the daughter of Admiral Bligh was used by the Admiral in finding his way to land, when he was turned adrift in the Pacific Ocean by the mutinous crew of the Bounty J.B.Toogood" 3.5x3.5x1ins. (9x9x2.5cm)

Footnotes

  • Provenance:
    Jack.B.Toogood and family by direct descent.

    William Bligh(1754-1817)RN married Elizabeth Betham on the Isle of Man in February 1781 and had by her six daughters. On the 28th April 1789, when cast adrift by the mutineers in Bounty's launch, Bligh managed to secure, mostly by the actions of his Clerk, John Samuel, the basic means of navigation to guide the vessel safely to land; a quadrant, a compass, nautical tables and his pocket watch. No description of the compass employed is recorded, but it is likely to have been readily portable in the confusion of the mutiny. The pocket watch stopped on the 2nd June, but Bligh successfully navigated the 3618 nautical miles to Timor in 47 days, with the loss of only one crew member.
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