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History, Reference, Research, and GrogTalk => Military (and other) History => Topic started by: steve58 on February 13, 2021, 08:12:36 AM

Title: HMS Victory's 200 year old Figurehead was cut up by a chainsaw
Post by: steve58 on February 13, 2021, 08:12:36 AM

One of the most important art works in British naval history has been rediscovered by scientists.

The spectacular ten foot tall early 19th-century wooden figurehead is from the historic Royal Navy warship HMS Victory, the vessel which had been commanded by Admiral Nelson at the Battle of Trafalgar, and was thought to have been destroyed or lost in the mid-to-late 20th century but scientific and historical investigations have now led to its 'rediscovery'.

Investigations over the past year have revealed that the figurehead - an exact copy (made in 1815) of the one borne by Victory at Trafalgar has in fact survived.

In 2009 contractors working on behalf of the Royal Navy incorrectly thought that the giant 1815 sculpture had been destroyed in the second half of 20th century and that the figurehead, adorning the ship's prow in the early 21 century, was therefore a modern replica. Because it was showing signs of decay, they therefore decided to remove it.

What was believed to be a 'modern replica' sculpture was consequently cut into six pieces with a chainsaw and put into storage and in 2012, responsibility for HMS Victory (and all related material in storage) passed from the Ministry of Defence to the National Museum of the Royal Navy.

Then in 2019, the museum decided to investigate the sawn-up sculpture and discovered that it was not a 'modern replica', but was in fact the 206-year-old 1815 replacement for the figurehead, damaged at the time Nelson had been killed on board that warship at Trafalgar a decade earlier.

More here:
Title: Re: HMS Victory's 200 year old Figurehead was cut up by a chainsaw
Post by: Staggerwing on February 13, 2021, 12:10:22 PM
A few licks of Elmer's yellow wood glue and then good as new!