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Famous Ancestor

The Admiral — Francois-Paul de Brueys 1753 — 1798

F P de BrueysVice-Admiral Francois-Paul Brueys d‘Aigalliers, Comte de Brueys, was the French commander in the Battle of the Nile, in which the French Revolutionary Navy was defeated by Royal Navy forces under Admiral Horatio Nelson. The British victory helped to ensure their naval supremacy throughout the Napoleonic Wars.

He was born in Rue Boucairie, Uzes, Gard, southern France in a house which now bears a plaque with his name. He came from the aristocracy and saw family and friends killed during the Reign of Terror. Nevertheless, he continued to serve in the Navy of Republican France. In 1793, he had his rank taken away due to his noble birth. However, he was reinstated in 1795 and then promoted to rear admiral.

He served during the American War of Independence, and in 1796, as a junior admiral, he took the Ionean Islands for France.

In 1798 he was promoted to vice-admiral by Napoleon Bonaparte and led the naval forces during the French expedition to attack Egypt. Caught by Admiral Horatio Nelson at Aboukir Bay, near Alexandria, his fleet’s poor dispersal allowed the British to cut them to pieces.

For most of the battle the wounded de Brueys lay on the quarterdeck of his flagship, L‘Orient, the largest ship of its time, armed with 120 cannon. With extreme courage he refused to leave his command post but, before his ship exploded spectacularly under the combined attack from several British vessels, he was killed by a cannonball.

In honour of our de Brueys name and history, we have proudly named our award-winning, top of the range coffee liqueur the Flagship Coffee Elixir.

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