The Pursuit of Victory: The Life and Achievement of Horatio Nelson by Roger Knight (HC/DJ)
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How did Horatio Nelson achieve such extraordinary success? In this authoritative biography, the eminent scholar Roger Knight places him firmly in the context of the Royal Navy of the time. Nelson was passionate and relentless from the outset of his career; his charisma and his coolness in battle are legendary. But his success depended also on the strength of intelligence available to him, the quality of the ships he commanded, the potency of his guns, and the skill of his seamen. Based on a vast array of new sources, this biography demolishes many of the myths that have for two centuries surrounded Nelson. Knight demonstrates that this great Romantic hero was in his time a shrewd political operator and often a difficult subordinate. He was occasionally naive, often impatient, and only happy when completely in command. Readers will emerge from this biography with a greatly enriched understanding of this singular man-one who was brilliant, severely flawed, and never to be crossed.