Trafalgar: Nelson, Navy, Nation. New Exhibition at the National Maritime Museum

Of course a new exhibition with that title had to open on Trafalgar Day.

nnn_exhibition

Hours: Open daily, 10.00-17.00 (last entry 16.30)

Location: National Maritime Museum, floor two

Admission: FREE

I’m curious to see if/what new aspects of “Nelson’s Navy” will be presented. And I’m looking forward to the “weird and wonderful” Nelson memorabilia; it will be difficult to top some of my past finds…

Nelson in a jar

There are various activities and events hosted in connection with this exhibition, so have a look around the NMM.

And later on I’ll do the usually Collingcount (it’s a drinking game – have one every time Collingwood should be mentioned and isn’t.)

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21 October, 2013 at 7:51 pm Leave a comment

Happy birthday to that noble fellow Collingwood!

I admit, the Great British Bake-Off it ain’t, but I can assure you that the cake tastes much better than the icing looks.

Here’s to the noble fellow Collingwood, our dear Old Cuddy. May there be many more cakes we can eat and glasses we can empty in his honour.

2013_birthday

Pilfered from Old Cuddy. Because Admiral Collingwood deserves two blog entries in his honour!

26 September, 2013 at 10:56 pm Leave a comment

You have the Breeches, you have the Cravat – but do you have the Condom?

Probably not, but you could have bought this outstanding – stop chuckling! – piece twelve years ago from Christie’s.

18thcenturycondom
Thanks to The Chirurgeon’s Apprentice for finding this one.

You couldn’t get more authentic than this, come next Austen Ball! The little English riding coat is made from sheep guts, sold for £764 and measures 21 cm – oh, and you can tie it with a ribbon!

(And just in case none of you are in the mood, you could look at the picture for inspiration!)

I’m not fully convinced this is 18th century, though… judging from the fashion sported by the coupling couple, I’d dated this to the 19th century. But then again, you can never be 100% sure with condoms.

This here is a 17th century condom, made from red silk and also fitted with a ribbon:

17thcenturycondom

Condoms were first used in brothels, and often soaked in contraceptive herbal decoctions, washed after use and then reused. Aren’t we all happy we made some progress there!

velociraptorcondom

1 August, 2013 at 6:20 pm 1 comment

I captured Captain Jack Sparrow’s Ship.

And it may well be as whacky as a pink tank, but it will make me one of the coolest oul biddies at the retirement home one day. Arrr!

Image

Needless to say, I’d have preferred a Royal Navy one. But unlike pirates, Royal Navy officers never went shopping with a trolley. Interesting historic fact!

25 June, 2013 at 9:34 pm 2 comments

Shake it, Baby! For the 18th Century Bairn who has Everything

I admit I find this item as exciting as a ceremonial sword, and depending on the previous owner, it might have been just as dangerous…!

whistle02

Here we have a very rare  – as it’s still intact! – 18th century baby rattle/teether!

whistle05

This little piece of art is made from red coral (the teether-part) and silver.

whistle07

whistle04

Fitted with a whistle, it offers many opportunities for an adventurous child to drive mum and dad up the wall.

whistle03

Made in 1793, according to the Antiques Roadshow expert buying this for your baby would set you back £ 1’500 – with all bells and whistles!

whistle06

24 May, 2013 at 9:34 pm 2 comments

Extraordinary 18th Century Sewing Box. Sew Cute!

I have two left hands and ten thumbs, so I admire this item for the art it represents rather than the art you could create with it. And art it is; without a doubt one of the cutest sewing boxes I’ve ever seen! Without further ado: Sewing Cottage!

sew01

It’s made of engraved ivory; lined in sandalwood, and was created in Visakhapatnam, India.

sew02

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The expert of the Antiques Roadshow dated it to the second half of the 18th century and estimated its worth to at least between £ 5’000 and £ 8’000. You’d have to sew and sell quite a few handkerchiefs for that!

sew04

19 May, 2013 at 11:38 pm 1 comment

Horatio Nelson got a Make-Over

After the finding-royals-under-the-car-park fad, we now have the give-history-a-make-over craze.

Historical hipsters: Shakespeare and Elizabeth I get makeovers from modern artists

I admit, seeing “Elizabeth I” and “hipster” in one sentence is painful; Shakespeare, however…

For Yesterday’s series “Secret Life of…”, historian Dr Suzannah Lipscom and a team of digital artists have given a number of historical portraits a modern make-over. Maybe nothing for purists, but I think it’s a fascinating idea, though the execution is a bit hit and miss. Marie Antoinette looks like Lindsey Lohan. Maria Theresia is nicht amüsiert.

But this – this, dear friends, is priceless:

nelson_modern

In case the title of this post wasn’t a give-away:

nelson_oldandmodern

Genius! I absolutely love the robotic hand! Now I’d like to see modern!Collingwood, wearing dungarees and battling snails in his cabbage patch in Morpeth.

Well, I have a contribution as well. Beat that!

wellington

wiggins

Well, and then there’s this, of course – yes, we’ve had it before, but it’s so amazing, it deserves an encore. Plus, you can never have too much of a good thing.

garrowextras39 Young Mr. Garrow with a Squirrel (1765) or Andrew Buchan, re-incarnated

2 May, 2013 at 11:16 pm 1 comment

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