Horatio Nelson. By Richard H. Holme. (Walter Scott Publishing Company.
2s. 6d. net,)—This is a satisfactory book as far as the narrative of facts and the appreciation of Nelson's special genius as a naval strategist and commander go. The tone, however, is not quite to our taste. It is somewhat too querulous. After all, Nelson was not so much neglected by his country as the reader of this volume might imagine. A Lieutenant at nineteen, Post-Captain at twenty, and Rear- Admiral at thirty-six is not a discreditable record—as regards the bestowers of promotion. Mr. Holme makes much of the coldness with which the authorities at home treated the victory of Copenhagen. Nelson, it is true, received the title of Viscount, but "no medal was struck." Medals were not as common then as they are now, and it must be remembered that the circum- stances of Copenhagen were such that it would have been in the worst taste to make a great exhibition of joy. Denmark was an old ally, who had joined the anti-British League under force majeure, and the course of attacking her Fleet had been a painful necessity. Generally it may be said that Nelson suffered more from the jealousy of professional superiors than from any other cause. Mr. Holme even makes a grievance of the treatment of Lady Hamilton. Surely this woman is about as unpromising material for the r6le of suffering merit as could be found in history. — A Memorial of Nelson. By S. Baring-Gould, M.A. (Methuen and Co. 2s. 6d.) —This is an excellent piece of work, just what we have the right to expect from Mr. Baring-Gould's pen. His business is to set forth the likeness of a hero, and wherever it is possible he ignores the unheroic. Still, he feels bound to tell the truth, and he has to point out that Nelson had the weakness of an undue love of praise. This was one of the causes of the mischievous influence of Lady Hamilton. She, as Lord Minto put it, "goes on cramming Nelson with trowelfuls of flattery which he goes on taking as quietly as a child does pap." These things have to be said for the truth's sake. But surely in this Trafalgar year it might be agreed to sink everything except the purely naval glories of the first of British seamen. In this capacity Horatio Nelson never lost, or, indeed, failed to make the very utmost of, an opportunity.—With these may be mentioned Nelson's Letters to Lady Hamilton, with Introduction by Douglas Sled= (Library Press, 2s. 6d. net).
SOME BOOKS OF THE WEEK.