This work shows the English ship Stanhope towed by a frigate commanded by Blas de Lezo (1689–1741), following the battle between the 2 vessels in 1710. The Spanish ship flies a white flag with the royal coat of arms, raised above the British flag (the White Ensign), customary at the time. The ships depicted here are typical early 18th-century ships.
During the War of the Spanish Succession, Lezo commanded a Spanish Royal Navy frigate, captured 11 enemy ships from 1710 onwards, amongst them the Stanhope. Lezo was injured several times during the conflict. This British ship may have been a 20-gun privateer ship, authorized by a “letter of marque” (government license) in November 1710, and commanded by John Combs (letter from researcher Rich Merritt to the author, dated June 27, 1995).
The work is by an unknown painter from the Spanish School. It was painted circa 1820.