The Fall of Nelson, Battle of Trafalgar, 21 October 1805

This picture by Denis Dighton shows Nelson crumpling at the moment of his greatest triumph. He was hit by a French sharpshooter who was himself shot by midshipman John Pollard. Pollard's own account was that he was standing on the poop deck above the quarterdeck where Nelson was being shot at by French marines. He picked up a musket which was meant for the English Marines and started returning fire with the quartermaster supplying the shot.

In a letter to The Times 58 years after the battle, Lieutenant Pollard wrote: "I was ushered into the ward room where Sir Thomas Hardy and other officers were assembled and complimented by them as the person who avenged Lord Nelson's death."

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by Stephen Luscombe