Battle of St. Lucia
Admiral Barrington was alerted to the presence of the French fleet by the frigate Ariadne.
He organized his line of battle such that Isis and his three frigates (Venus, Aurora, and Ariadne) were close to shore guarding the windward approach, and he placed his flagship, Prince of Wales, toward the leeward. Barrington placed his transports inside the bay but behind his battle line. Barrington’s defensive strategy took him the entire night of 14 December, and by 1100 hours 15 December, most of the transports had been safely tucked behind his line.
At 1100 hours 15 December Admiral d’Estaing approached St. Lucia with ten ships of the line, and was fired on by one of the shore batteries. D’Estaing then moved to engage Barrington from the rear, and a “warm conflict” raged between the two fleets, with the British supported by two shore batteries. D’Estaing was repulsed but succeeded in reforming his line of battle. At 1600 hours d’Estaing renewed his assault by attacking Barrington’s center with twelve ships of the line. Again, heavy fire was exchanged and the French were eventually repulsed for a second time.