“The Loss of the Amphitrite”


The Amphitrite leaves port, bound for Australia. Two days out she runs aground and sinks, killing all the passengers and most of the crew. The singer and two others survive by clinging to a spar (though one of them dies later)


For an account of the accident see broadside NLScotland, F.3.a.13(126), "Horrible Shipwreck !," Menzies (Lawnmarket), 1833 ("Taken from this day's Observer. Boulogne-sur-Mer, 1st Sep. 1833"). - BS

Cox also gives a contemporary description of the storm in which the _Amphitrite_ sank.

According to Hudson and Nicholls, _Tragedy on the High Seas_, much of the fault belongs to the captain. Undermanned, and overcrowded with 136 people aboard, she ran into a severe storm, and the captain ran her aground but would not let anyone take to the boats; she had convicts aboard and he didn't want them getting loose. The ship eventually broke up, and only three survived. - RBW

Historical references

  • 1833 - The Amphitrite, carrying female convicts to Australia, runs aground near Boulogne; only three sailors are saved

Cross references


  • Bodleian, Johnson Ballads 1947, "Loss of the Amphitrite," W & T Fordice (New astle), c. 1840; also Firth c.12(78), H. Such (London), 1863-1885; Firth c.13(277), J. Forth (Pocklington), no date; Johnson Ballads 1947, "Loss of the Amphitrite"


  1. Laws K4, "The Loss of the Amphitrite"
  2. JHCox 87, "The Anford-Wright" (1 text)
  3. DT 740, AMPHITRI
  4. Roud #301
  5. BI, LK04


Author: unknown
Earliest date: 1917 (Cox; there are older, undated broadsides)
Keywords: ship wreck
Found in: US(Ap)