18th Century Celebrities: Horatio Nelson and Lady Emma Hamilton

27 Feb
The famous war hero and subsequent lover of the infamous Lady Emma Hamilton, was a name that almost everyone would know during the later part of the 18th century into the beginning of the 19th. He was a noted Navy commander who really made a name for himself during the Napoleonic Wars.
Below is an image of Nelson (note that he has lost is right arm, this was due to an injury in battle)
In 1787 Nelson married widow Frances Nisbet (also known as Fanny) during his post in the Caribbean. Nelson’s love affair with Emma Hamilton began in September of 1798 in Naples when he returned from war in poor condition. Emma Hamilton and her husband Lord Hamilton welcomed Nelson into their home where Emma nursed him back to health. Thus began their legendary love affair, under the noses of both of their spouses. However, because Nelson was such a beloved hero and Lady Hamilton’s husband nearly twice her age, there is evidence that suggests that Lord Hamilton knew of the affair and did not disapprove of it.
[Lady Emma Hamilton and Horatio Nelson]
[Emma picture above in a painting by Romney; she was his muse and appeared as the subjects of numerous paintings by him]
Several years later, Nelson and Lord and Lady Hamilton took up residence together in London where Emma had two children by Horatio.
Nelson was killed at the Battle of Trafalger in 1805, leaving Emma alone as her husband Lord Hamilton, had died only a few years earlier in 1803.
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