Is a Balearic island of strategic importance, with Port Mahon a fine harbour. It was taken by the British in 1708. At the outbreak of the Seven Years War in 1756, Admiral Byng's failure to prevent the French from capturing it brought down Newcastle's ministry and led to his own execution. It was returned to Britain again in 1763 by the treaty of Paris. Lost to a combined French and Spanish force in 1782 it was ceded to Spain in 1783, and though the British once more took the island in 1798, it was given back to Spain at the peace of Amiens in 1802.
Subjects: British History.