Thursday, December 01, 2005

Dutch Captain: Paulus Coole

Paulus Coole (or Coolen) served the Admiralty of the Noorderkwartier. He was active in the blockade of Dunkirk in the early 1640's. Witte de With had accused captain Jan Gijsen, his lieutenant Jan Lucaszoon, and Paulus Coole of not doing their duty in a fight on 8 and 9 June 1640. Jan Gijsen and his lieutenant were cleared, but Paulus Coole was fined 6 months pay and all booty that he would have received. In January 1643, he was involved in an operation to transport Mary Stuart. On 31 January, they were 14 miles from Flamborough Head. Mary had been married to the 14 year old Willem II when she was just nine years old. The captains involved in the operation included Tromp, Paulus Coole, Govert Voorens, and Matthijs Gilliszoon. Govert Vooren's ship lost its mainmast in a storm. In 1648, Paulus Coole (or Coolen) commanded the Eendracht (41 guns) in Witte de With's fleet sent to Brazil. He was one of those who were late in leaving the Netherlands, having met the squadron commanded by Vice-Admiral Gillissen on 12 December in the Texel roads. On 11 January, a violent storm hit and ships lost their masts (or cut them down as a safety measure). His ship stranded on the Wadden, as did a fluit loaded with 150 soldiers, the Witte Lelie. Due to the damage, he did not arrive in Brazil until about June 1648. It was only in September that De With could say that he had all the ship in Brazil under his flag. He got into trouble for his acts with his cabin boy. He was tortured, along with the cabin boy. He was courtmartialed by Witte de With and was replaced as captain of the Eendracht by Gijsbert Malcontent. His sentence was to be keelhauled three times and exiled on the island of Fernando Noronha for life. Sources:
  1. Dr. M.G. De Boer, Tromp en de Duinkerkers, 1949.
  2. W. J. van Hoboken, Witte de With in Braziliƫ, 1955.

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