HMS NEPTUNE 1797
HMS was a 98-gun second rate ship of the line of the
Royal Navy. She served on a number of stations
during the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars and
was present at the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805.
Battle of Trafalgar, under Nelson's plan, the most
powerful ships in the fleet would head up the two
columns. There are two reasons for this. First, the lead
ships would be better placed to absorb the punishment.
Second, the initial strike had to be powerful to
demoralize the enemy. Thus the giant
three-decked ships should be in the front.
Neptune was placed at the third place in Nelson's
Column, together with her sister ships HMS Temeraire and
going into action, Captain Fremantle had written in his
personal log, complaining about being placed in third
despite of HMS Neptune's lack of speed. The ship
had a reputation as a slow sailer. However, at the
battle, he set the ship's studding sails and by 10am,
Neptune was about to overtake HMS Victory's lead.
Nelson ordered a signal to be hoisted "Neptune, take in
your studding sails and drop astern, I shall break the
Neptune endured the long, drawn out approach to the
enemy line with her band playing. Everyone on deck
except the officers and the Marine band lay down to
protect them from the hail of incoming fire. At
1:45pm, HMS Neptune passed the stern of the French
flagship Bucentaure, firing a double-shotted broadside
from her port guns from a mere 30 yards. This
caused carnage on the enemy's open gundecks and brought
down the ship's main and mizzen masts.
Fremantle then had the helm swung hard to starboard,
bringing his ship abeam of the Bucentaure. He
fired two more triple-shotted broadsides from nearly 50
guns at a range of less than 100 yards into the
beleaguered French ship.
then spotted the towering mass of the Spanish four-decker
sailing away. The gigantic Spanish
ship Santissima Trinidad which was the largest and most
powerful ship in the world at that time, mounting 140
guns on four gundecks, did not intimidate Fremantle.
He steered Neptune towards her starboard quarter in
hopes of raking her stern. Opening fire with his
larboard battery, he positioned Neptune off the Spanish
vessel's starboard beam and the two exchanged heavy fire
for the next hour.
took fire from other ships of the combined fleet as they
sailed past. Santísima Trinidad, heavily battered by
Neptune's guns, as well as those from the 74-gun ships
HMS Leviathan and HMS Conqueror, became completely
dismasted and covered in debris. She bravely fought on
until 5.30pm, when she struck her colors, having
sustained casualties of 205 dead and 103 wounded!
battle HMS Neptune suffered considerable damage to her
masts, although they did not fall. Most of her
rigging was cut to pieces. The ship suffered nine shot
holes around her waterline. Miracuously, she sustained only ten
casualties and 34 wounded.
battle Collingwood transferred his flag from the damaged
HMS Royal Sovereign to the frigate HMS Euryalus, and on
October 22nd Neptune took the Royal Sovereign in tow.
weather by now was beginning to deteriorate, so HMS
Neptune sent her boats to assist in the evacuation of
the prize ship Santissima Trinidad before she foundered.
After riding out the storm, HMS Neptune took the badly
damaged HMS Victory in tow on 26th October and towed her
into Gibraltar, arriving on 28th.
This Neptune model is being
built for a
distinguished Trafalgar collector. Dimensions:
42" x 31" x 13". Work
commenced in Sept. 2014 and ended in March, 2015. To
commission a similar one or any tall ship model, please email us an inquiry.