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San Felipe  

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San Felipe

The San Felipe Launched in 1690, was one of the most beautiful Spanish ships of the 17th century. She was the lead ship of the Spanish Armada and displaced more than 1000 tons and was armed with 96 cannons, enabling her to take on the most formidable ships in the French and British navies. San Felipe's role in the war against the British and French was to help protect Spanish settlements and harbors, to transport treasures, and to safeguard the long and hazardous passage back to Spanish ports. In 1705, she participated in a furious and heroic battle between 12 Spanish ships and 35 British ships. After 24 hours of battle, she was captured by an English ship, but was so badly damaged that she could not be salvaged as a prize. She went to the bottom with several tons of gold.