Daybreak at Trafalgar


This is the third painting in Maarten Platje’s monumental “The Hero” series, depicting HMS Victory and Nelson in the year 1805.
The painter has captured an extraordinary moment, almost of calm and contemplation, as dawn breaks on the morning of one of the world’s greatest battles.
This painting has beautiful effects of light, both from the rising sun and the yellow lamplight visible in the stern windows of the British ships. In the Great Cabin of the central ship in this painting, HMS Victory, Lord Nelson has been writing his famous prayer before battle and the painting captures the mood of self-examination and introspection felt by all men about to enter such an extreme ordeal.
Victory is flying the signal “Form two columns”, ordering the British into their battle formation.
At the right of the picture two ships-of-the-line may be seen starting to take up their positions, HMS Conqueror, 74 guns, and HMS Neptune of 98 guns.
On the left is the famous frigate Euryalus, which had been out all night keeping in contact with the enemy fleet. The first rays of the morning sun catch her bow. And in the centre, in line with the rising sun, we see the tiny schooner Pickle which later became celebrated for bringing the news of the great naval victory back to Britain. Just visible beyond Pickle against the dawn light are the ships of the French and Spanish fleet, seen as small dark shapes on the horizon.


Limited, hand-signed art prints. These reproductions will be delivered to you in a shipping tube by parcel post.

Art prints

Art is the product of skill and craft. It stands for originality, inspiration, authenticity & uniqueness. As an artist, Platje values the original characteristics of his work for good reason. Reproductions of this work deserve the same respect.
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