By Gregory Fremont-Barnes, Steve Noon
Immortalized in literature via such characters as C. S. Forester's 'Horatio Hornblower' and Patrick O'Brian's 'Jack Aubrey', the officials and midshipmen of the Royal military in the course of the progressive (1792-1802) and Napoleonic Wars (1799-1815) ran the ships that defended nice Britain opposed to the specter of French invasion. this era observed the Royal army in attaining its so much momentous victories on the Nile, Copenhagen and Trafalgar, victories that laid the root for a interval of British naval and imperial supremacy that might final a century.The males who commanded those ships went via an extended apprenticeship, frequently going to sea on the age of 12 or more youthful. they can serve for as much as 60 years, progressing throughout the ranks in a carrier that rewarded luck in conflict and benefit to a miles greater quantity than the modern British Army.This identify, the better half quantity to Warrior a hundred: Nelson's Sailors, describes the tough realities of existence within the Georgian Royal army for all ranks of officer from the bottom midshipman to the main senior admiral and covers the exploits of fellows reminiscent of Horatio Nelson and Thomas Cochrane who supplied the foundation for the fictitious figures that stay so well known to at the present time.
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Extra resources for Nelson's Officers and Midshipmen (Warrior 131)
All of this business, and much 48 more besides, an admiral was required to report to the Secretary o f the Admiralty, w h o then conveyed this information to the Lords Commissioners. O n his return to Britain, he was personally to report to his superiors in L o n d o n with a written account of his voyage or expedition and a c o p y of his journal for inspection. W h e n battle appeared imminent, an admiral acquainted his second-incommand with what was expected of him and issued general orders to his fleet, as Nelson did in October 1805 o n the eve of Trafalgar, distilling his thoughts into simple written instructions, on the basis that in the smoke and confusion of battle individual ship captains might not be able to see signals hoisted aboard the flagship or those communicated in turn by the frigates: 'The Second in C o m m a n d will in all possible things direct the movements of his Line, by keeping them as compact as the nature of circumstances will admit.
Up to 1808 the proportion of prize money allotted to officers comprised: flag officer, one-eighth, captain, two-eighths and lieutenants, one-eighth. This left one-eighth for warrant officers, one-eighth for petty officers, and two-eighths for the remainder of the crew, including Marines. After 1808, the system was altered, thus: captain, two-eighths, of which the flag officer shared one-third; the share for lieutenants and warrant officers remained unchanged; while petty officers, the remainder of the crew, and Marines received four-eighths.
Made an impression o n me which will never be effaced ... ' 56 If successful in action, an admiral was expected to pursue and destroy the enemy's remaining vessels with as much vigour as circumstances w o u l d permit, or face criticism for failing to d o so, as did Lord H o w e after the battle of the Glorious First of June in 1794.