Throughout the long eighteenth century British soldiers, diplomats, merchants and travellers passed through Lisbon describing again and again the daily scenes of that beautiful city. For some reason, the activities of the Royal Navy and its personnel have largely escaped scholarly attention. The Royal Navy began to use Lisbon as a regular base for its operations in the War of the Spanish Succession (1703-13). Thereafter Royal Navy ships were constantly to be found at anchor in the Tagus, with their officers and men forming a distinctive section of the British community in Lisbon.
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