Horatio Nelson (1758 - 1805) Great Britain!

#1
With these words Nelson successfully inspired his squadron before the Battle of Trafalgar, in 1805, during which he died. At his death, Britain lost a complex leader who balanced a personal longing for honour and glory with a compassion and respect for his men.
Born in Burnham Thorpe, Norfolk, the sixth of 11 children, he joined the Navy at age 12. He became a captain at age 20, and saw service in the West Indies, Baltic and Canada. He married Frances Nisbet in 1787 in Nevis, and returned to England with his bride to spend the next five years on half-pay, frustrated at not being at sea.
When Britain entered the French Revolutionary Wars in 1793, Nelson was given command of the Agamemnon. He served in the Mediterranean, helped capture Corsica and saw battle at Calvi (where he lost the sight in his right eye). He would later lose his right arm at the Battle of Santa Cruz de Tenerife (1797).
As a commander he was known for bold action, and the occasional disregard of orders from his seniors. This defiance brought him victories against the Spanish off Cape Vincent in 1797, and at the Battle of Copenhagen four years later, where he ignored orders to cease action by putting his telescope to his blind eye and claiming he couldn't see the signal.

At the Battle of the Nile (1798), he successfully destroyed Napoleon's fleet and bid for an overland trade route to India. His next posting took him to Naples, where he fell in love with Emma, Lady Hamilton. Although they remained married to others, they considered each other soul-mates and together had a child, Horatia, in 1801. Earlier that same year, Nelson was promoted to Vice-Admiral.

Over the period 1794 to 1805, under Nelson's leadership, the British Navy proved its supremacy over the French. His most famous engagement, at Cape Trafalgar, saved Britain from threat of invasion by Napoleon, but it would be his last. Struck by a French sniper's bullet he died on the first day of battle, October 21, 1805. His ship still stands today though, and the result of most of his battles were victory.
 

Belisarius

Forum Staff
Jun 2006
10,359
U.K.
#8
Nelson was arguably the best naval commander in British history, except possibly Blake, but his actions sometimes bordered on the insane. It's that genius/insanity thing.
 
#9
lol, okay it sounds weird why i copied parts of the BBC history part of there site, but i have the knowledge, i just wanted to post something straight-away so it looks like im not a spamer or waste of time member...
 

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