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Vice Admiral Horatio Nelson Tumbler


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Dates Circa 1798 - 1801
Medium Glass
Origin England
Description English Naval history tumbler

12cm high
7cm dia foot
10cm dia bowl

The bowl is engraved with the names of the greatest naval heroes of the late 18th and early 19th century. The date of some of their most famous victories is also engraved with one notable omission that helps to date the glass quite precisely. This is from a time when Britain ruled the waves, the seas. The senior service truly was the master of all it surveyed.

DUNCAN 11th Oct 1797. Adam Duncan, the 1st Viscount Duncan became a national hero after what was considered to be one of the most significant victories in naval history at the battle of Camperdown. Such was the severity of the beating he meted out that two years later the Dutch navy refused to fight an English fleet and surrendered all ships and crew.

HOWE 1st June 1794. Richard Howe, the 1st Earl Howe commanded the British Channel fleet against the French in the Bay of Biscay during the French revolutionary wars. The French fleet was protecting a convoy of grain from the United States. The Glorious 1st of June resulted in the French navy staying in port for the remainder of the war and a complete blockade being imposed by the Royal Navy.

ST VINCENT 14th Feb 1797. John Jervis The first Earl St Vincent aboard his flagship the Victory outnumbered by two to one and together with his protégé Nelson inflicted a heavy defeat on the Spanish. On the day of the battle Jervis was poised to engage and had two of his captains on the quarterdeck of HMS Victory. They were counting the number of masts of enemy ships. He was first told there were eight ships, then twenty, then twenty-five to which he responded "very well Sir". When advised, "there are twenty seven sail of the line Sir John" he made what we can only describe as a "Churchillian" response. "Enough, sir, no more of that; the die is cast, and if there are fifty sail I will go through them". The result of the battle enabled the continued blockade of Cadiz and allowed Jervis to send Nelson to the Mediterranean and to gain another victory at the Nile.

NELSON 1st August 1798. The battle of the Nile and yet another crushing defeat served upon the French. Two evenly matched fleets engaged but the superior tactic and seamanship exhibited by Nelson resulted in the near annihilation of the French.

The absence of the first Battle of Copenhagen in 1801 where the entire Danish fleet surrendered to admiral Hyde Parker and vice admiral Nelson and more importantly the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805 must infer that the glass was engraved after the Nile and before Trafalgar between 1800 and 1805 and most probably in 1800 itself.