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Lord Nelson returned to work 30 minutes after losing arm

Half an hour after his arm was amputated, Lord Horatio Nelson was issuing orders to his men.

It is claimed that within 30 minutes of having his right arm cut off, Nelson was again issuing orders to his men. He had been hit in the right arm by a musket ball shortly after stepping ashore on the Spanish island of Tenerife in July 1797.

Lord Nelson was taken to HMS Theseus for treatment, where he was bleeding heavily. On 25 July the ship’s surgeon, James Farquhar, wrote in his journal: “Compound fracture of the right arm by a musket ball passing thro a little above the elbow; an artery divided; the arm was immediately amputated.”

On 1 August Farquhar noted: “Admiral Nelson; amputated arm; continued getting well very fast. Stump looked well; no bad symptoms whatever occurred… The sore reduced to the size of a shilling in perfect good health, one of the ligatures not come away.”

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