The Thorvaldsens Museum Archives

Comment on 24.10.1800

As representatives of a neutral state, Danish ships had difficult conditions during the Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars. English men-of-war insisted on searching Danish merchant vessels, which were therefore often escorted by Danish men-of-war. For instance, a convoy of six merchant ships escorted by the Danish Frigate Freja was seized by English ships in the summer of 1800. England demanded that Denmark not enter a league of armed neutrality in order to secure her ships, while the neutral states asserted their right to trade and sail under the motto: Free ship, free cargo.
It was this conflict that led to the English attack on Denmark in the Battle of Copenhagen in 1801.

Last updated 19.02.2015