Ring Admiral Lord Nelson gave to mistress will go on show for Valentine’s Day

The betrothal ring Vice Admiral Lord Nelson gave to his mistress Emma Hamilton
The betrothal ring Vice Admiral Lord Nelson gave to his mistress Emma Hamilton
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A RING Admiral Lord Nelson gave to his mistress on the night before he left for the Battle of Trafalgar will be on display for an hour tomorrow.

The jewellery will be outside its case on Valentine’s Day in the Nelson Gallery at the National Museum Of The Royal Navy, in Portsmouth.

Admiral Lord Nelson scandalised the early 19th century with his affair with Emma Hamilton. And just before the Battle of Trafalgar, in which he lost his life, he gave her the ring during an imitation marriage ceremony.

The fede gold ring is one of two exchanged by the couple at the service held in Merton parish church on September 13, 1805.

He shortly afterwards returned to active duty and led the British fleet to victory at Trafalgar, where he was killed on board HMS Victory on October 21.

Visitors to the National Museum Of The Royal Navy will be able to have a detailed look at the ring outside its display case between 1.30pm and 2.30pm.

Rebecca Drummond, curator at the museum, said: ‘Nelson was still married to Lady Nelson, so it was a private ceremony in Merton, close to where they lived, openly, together. He wrote a passionate love letter to her from on board HMS Victory just before the battle.

‘The ring is usually displayed behind glass so we can’t think of a better way to mark Valentine’s Day than by letting visitors get up close and personal to it for one day only.’