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Royal Naval uniform: pattern 1795-1812 (Nelson's Trafalgar coat)


Object connections:

Collection Textiles, Uniforms
ExhibitionsSeduction and Celebrity: The Spectacular Life of Emma Hamilton
Gallery locationNelson, Navy, Nation Gallery (Floor plans)
PeopleProvenance: Nelson, Horatio
Provenance: Prince Albert, Consort of Queen Victoria
Provenance: Greenwich Hospital Collection
EventsNapoleonic Wars: Battle of Trafalgar, 1805
Publication(s)The National Maritime Museum - The Collections
View this book in the library
Treasures of the National Maritime Museum
Gloria Clifton and Nigel Rigby
View this book in the library

Object details:

Object ID UNI0024
Description Vice-admiral's undress coat worn by Nelson (1758-1805) at the Battle of Trafalgar. There is a bullet hole on the left shoulder, close to the epaulette. The damage to the epaulette itself is also apparent. There are blood stains on tails and left sleeve, which is probably that of Nelson's secretary, John Scott, killed earlier in the action. The coat is of blue wool cloth with a stand-up collar and button-back lapels. On the left side, Nelson's four orders of chilvary - Knight of the Bath, Order of the Crescent, Order of Ferdinand & Merit and Order of St Joachim - are sewn to the front of the coat and over the edge of the lapel so that it could not be unbuttoned. The sleeves terminate in an extremely narrow round cuff with two rows of gold distinction lace and three flag officers buttons. The left sleeve is line with black silk twill, but the right is lined with the same fabric only as far as the elbow. At the end of the right sleeve is a small black silk loop which would have secured the sleeve to a lapel button. The tails and breast are lined with white silk twill and the shoulders are quilted with running stitch.
Date made Before 1805

Artist/Maker Unknown
Place made England
Credit National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, London, Greenwich Hospital Collection
Materials brass; gold alloy; metal thread; silk; wool
Measurements Overall: 1160 mm x 560 mm x 530 mm
  • Royal Naval uniform: pattern 1795-1812 (Nelson's Trafalgar coat) (UNI0024)
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