3 December 2003
NELSON, Horatio, Viscount (1758-1805). Autograph letter signed ('Nelson & Bronte' and postscript subscribed and signed 'God bless you and Sir W[illia]m N & B') to 'My Dear Lady' [Emma Hamilton], San Josef, 8 February 1801, 4 pages, 4to.
Praise for Lady Hamilton's patriotism, shortly after the birth of Horatia.
My dear friend I know you are so true and loyal an English woman that you would hate those who would not stand forth in defence of our King Laws & Religion ... It is your sex that makes us go forth and seems to tell us, none but the Brave deserve the fair, and if we fall, we still live in the hearts of those females you [sic] are dear to us ... and You my ever honored friend are believe me the best of your sex, I have been the world around and in every corner of it and never yet saw your equal or even one which could be put in comparison with you'. The letter also refers to sending a print by the mail coach, and enquires if she has received his picture. The long postscript (1½ pages) mentions his new ship, the St George, Mr. Davison's kindness in travelling 200 miles to see him, also his law suit with Lord St Vincent, and the delay in gazetting his honour.
The letter is dated just over a week after Nelson received news of the birth of Horatia, and was apparently intended to be seen by Sir William, and perhaps others. A violently jealous letter of the same date by Nelson is published in Morrison, II (p.113). Alexander Davison was his friend and man of business.
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