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27. The fleet being in column of vessels, in natural

order, to form it into double column.

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The commander-in-chief signals :

Form double column-left oblique.*

Divisional commanders signal: Division-form double column-left oblique.

* The double column may be formed by a right oblique as well, in which case the even-numbered vessels will form to the right of the odd-numbered. Should the commanderin-chief then, however, wish to deploy it into line to the

The odd-numbered vessels continue onward under steerage-way ; the others keep two points to port at full speed. When the latter find their consorts bearing from them on a line perpendicular to the course, they so regulate their speed as to maintain this bearing until they are at the proper distance from them, when they come to the course under steerage-way and hoist the position pennant. So soon as the double column is formed, the fleet resumes its speed.

28. The fleet being in columns of vessels, from the

right of divisions to form it into double columns.

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front, on the leading vessels, he will be forced to do it by a right oblique, and the line will be formed in order reversed—that is, with the van squadron on the left, whereas now he has but to form it by a left oblique, and it will be formed in natural order, as in Fig. 104.

The commander-in-chief signals :

Form double column-left oblique.*

Flag-ships of divisions signal : Division-form double column_left oblique.

In each division, the odd-numbered vessels continue onward under steerage-way, the others keep two points to port at full speed. When the latter find their consorts bearing from them on a line perpendicular to the course, they so regulate their speed as to maintain this bearing until they are at the proper distance from them, when they come to the course under steerage-way, and hoist the position pennant.

So soon as the double columns are formed, the commander-in-chief signals the fleet to resume its speed.

* The necessity of forming the double columns by obliquing to the left is obvious here, for if formed to the right and then deployed into line to the front, eight would be on the right of the line and seventeen on the left, while sixteen would be next to one and twenty-four next to nine ; whereas now the commander-in-chief has but to signal : Forward into line-left oblique, and the line will be formed in natural order.

29. The fleet being in column of vessels, in natural

order, to form it into triple column.

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The commander-in-chief signals :

Form triple column-left oblique.

Flag-ships of divisions signal : Division-form triple column_left oblique.

One, four, seven, ten, thirteen, sixteen, nineteen, and twenty-two continue onward under steerage-way; the other vessels keep two points to port at full speed. When the latter find the former bearing from them on a line perpendicular to the course, they so regulate their speed as to maintain this bearing until they are at the proper distance from them, when they come to the course under steerage-way. To take the leading vessels as an illustration : When two finds one bearing from her on a line perpendicular to the course, she so regulates her speed as to maintain this bearing until she is at the proper distance from her, when she comes to the course under steerage-way, and hoists the position pennant for the guidance of three, which now maneuvres with respect to two, precisely as two has with respect to one.

When the triple column is formed, the commander-in-chief signals the fleet to resume its speed.

It is evident that the fleet can be formed into columns of fours, etc., etc., according to the same principles.

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