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Fine old color example of Raspe's Plan of the area round Belfast and Carrickfergus Lough, from his Schauplatz des Gegenwaertigen Kriegs . . .

This scarce map of Belfast Lough and view of Carrickfergus Castle illustrates the attack of the French privateer Captain Thurot in 1760.

Captain François Thurot (1727-70) was in times of peace a smuggler and in wartime a privateer. In both the War of the Austrian Succession (1740-8) and the Seven Years' War (1756-63) he terrorized British shipping.

Between May and September 1756, Thurot captured or sunk sixty vessels. In 1759, with France planning to invade south west England, Thurot was sent out at the head of a fleet on a diversionary attack on Scotland and Ireland. Bad weather split the group but Thurot continued around the coast of Scotland to attack Carrickfergus Castle, more in search of food and winter clothing than for any strategic reason. He held the town for five days, threatened nearby Belfast and demanded ransoms and supplies. After leaving Carrickfergus Lough, the British Royal Navy tracked Thurot to the Mull of Galloway and in the ensuing battle Thurot was killed.