The Bucentaure is a 2nd Rate ship of the Line. She is the only ship to have a deckhouse on her quarter deck.
The Bucentaure is the most heavily armed 2nd rate in game having a total of 88 broadside guns consisting of 32x 42pd cannons, 32x 24pd cannons, 24x 12pd cannons or 42pd carronades. She can also only carry stern chasers just like the St. Pavel
|Deck||Cannon Count||Cannon Size||Carronade Size|
|Lower Gun Deck||32||42pd||N/A|
|Middle Gun Deck||32||24pd||N/A|
The Bucentaure was an 80 gun 3rd rate ship of the line (historically this was her rating, in the game however she is rated a 2nd rate) of the French navy and she was the lead ship of the Tonnant class of ships. On the 6th of November 1804 Vice-Admirale Villeneuve hoisted his flag on the Bucentaure. The Bucentaure hosted the Franco-Spanish war council while sheltered from the British fleet at Cadiz. The boat was to remain in safe waters (this decision was later overruled by Villeneuve). During the council Spanish general Escano complained that the atmospheric pressure was descending (a sign of an approaching storm). French Vice-Admiral Magon famously reported “the thing descending here is braveness”. This offended Admiral Gravina and other Spanish officers who did not oppose later the imprudent order of taking to sea. At the Battle of Trafalgar on the 21st of October 1805 she was commanded by Captain Jean-Jacques Magendie and she was the flagship of the Franco-Spanish fleet. The British flagship, the Victory broke through the Franco-Spanish line just astern of the Bucentaure and just ahead of the Redoutable. Victory raked the Bucentaure and the vessel lost 197 men and 85 were wounded (including the captain), Admiral Villeneuve however survived. The racking did however effectively put the Bucentaure out of the fight and after three hours of fighting she struck her colours and surrendered to Captain James Atcherly of the Marines from HMS Conqueror. Villeneuve supposedly asked whom he was surrendering to, on being told it was Captain Pellew, he replied “there is no shame in surrendering to the gallant Sir Edward Pellew”. When he was informed the Conqueror’s captain was Sir Edward's brother, Israel Pellew, he said “England is fortunate to have two such brothers”
In the following days Bucentaure's crew rose up against the British prize crew and recaptured the ship, however the ship was wrecked in the gale-force storm of the 23rd of October 1805.
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