NAVY OF AUBREY AND MATURIN’
1st-3rd October 2004
The novels of Patrick O’Brian are now by far the most popular
fictional accounts of Nelson’s Navy, and the new film by
Peter Weir will introduce new fans to these remarkable stories.
The Royal Naval Museum in Portsmouth Historic Dockyard
celebrated O’Brian’s achievement with a special weekend
devoted to his novels and the Royal Navy they depict. Lectures and demonstrations by historical re-enactors showed participants how
O’Brian reflected the latest insights of modern day naval
A concert of music and readings celebrating the
extraordinary friendship of Captain Jack Aubrey and Surgeon Stephen
Maturin started the event off on the Friday evening. The Saturday morning started with a lecture by Dr Colin White. This was followed by a commentated cruise around Portsmouth Harbour - with sights that Aubrey would have known. The day concluded with live demonstrations of life aboard in Aubrey's Navy.
Saturday evening saw the highlight of the weekend - a VIP guided tour
of Nelson’s great flagship HMS Victory, followed by the rare
privilege of dinner on her lower gundeck, at mess tables slung
between the 32-pounder guns.
The next day began with the author, Richard Woodman talking about O'Brian's novels and was followed by Geoff Hunt, marine artist, talking about bringing the novels to life through art.
The weekend concluded with a tour round the Nelson Gallery and a visit through the Trafalgar experience.
(Pictures: Boat trip - courtesy of Stephen Courtney (RNM)
Other PoB Events: Andrew and Barbara Bailey)