Carol Parry, curator at the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons in Glasgow, Scotland, holds Tuesday April 19 2005 one of the surgical instruments used by William Beatty, who tended to the dying Lord Nelson at the battle of Trafalgar. The knife is part of a collection of medical instruments used by HMS Victory’s surgeon that will go to sea once again for commemorations to mark the bicentenary of the Battle of Trafalgar, Tuesday April 19, 2005. The historic set will be on board the Royal Navy patrol ship HMS Dulverton when it sets sail for Portsmouth from HM Naval Base Clyde at Faslane, Argyll & Bute, in Scotland. (AP Photo / Andrew Milligan, PA)
One of the most important military operations of the 19th century was the Battle of Trafalgar, fought on 21 October 1805. A Royal Navy fleet under the command of Admiral Lord Nelson destroyed a French and Spanish fleets just west of Cape Trafalgar. The British victory permanently insured that Napoleon could never invade England. Nelson died in the battle, while being attended by his faithful surgeon Dr. William Beatty. To get an account of the battle and the role that Dr. Beatty played, go and read the chapter from Tom Pocock’s book Horatio Nelson posted at the Nelson Society: The Battle of Trafalgar, 21st October 1805
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