10th Earl of Dundonald
of the most colourful characters of the era, Thomas Cochrane
was courageous, forward-thinking and adventurous.
an infantry officer, Cochrane joined the Royal Navy and
took command of a small brig, with which he harassed enemy
shipping in the Mediterranean.
the Sea Wolf, Cochrane's audacity knew almost no bounds.
one occasion his small ship, the Speedy, took on and boarded
a Spanish frigate - that had at least six times as many
men - and forced its surrender.
As his naval reputation grew, Cochrane found himself more
and more at-odds with the political chiefs of his time.
He was a Member of Parliament from 1807 and his outspoken
criticism of naval corruption infuriated his commanders.
his uncle was charged with being part of the great Stock
Exchange Fraud in 1814, Cochrane's enemies ensured he would
be implicated and the innocent Sea Wolf found himself languishing
after a year, Cochrane then gave his services to the navies
of Brazil, Chile and Greece.
His name was officially cleared in 1832 and he rejoined
the Royal Navy, serving in North America and the West Indies.
was a firm believer in steamships and one of his pet projects
was the idea of using toxic gas in combat.