In September 1696, she was captained by Thomas Cleasby, who led her in Bay Bulls Harbor, where she was cornered by French ships. Fearing for her capture, the English crew abandoned HMS Sapphire and fled to land.
Trapped in the ice, the ship slowly fell apart. In the mid-18th century, the shipwreck site was explored by the Templar Shay Cormac, who discovered Templar armor from the 11th century that had been sealed away within one of HMS Sapphire's rooms. After collecting twenty-four Templar relics, he was able to acquire the armor.