British History 2:
From the French Revolution to World War II
Topic: "Majesties and Royal Highnesses"

by Laura Cenicola & Mareike Aumann

Glossary: Battle of Trafalgar

Battle of Trafalgar was a historic sea battle between the British Royal Navy fleet of 27 ships of the line which defeated the combined fleets of the French Navy and Spanish Navy of 33 ships of the line. It was fought on 21 October 1805 west of Cape Trafalgar in south-west Spain.

The French and Spanish lost 22 ships, while the British lost none in the most decisive naval engagement of the Napoleonic Wars.

The British victory spectacularly confirmed the naval supremacy that Britain had established during the 18th century. However, by the time it was fought, Napoleon had abandoned his plans to invade southern England and instead was defeating the other two major powers of the time, Austria and Russia in Central Europe.




Back to previous page