Lord Nelson mourning ring sells for 18,000 pounds

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Fifty-eight of the rings were made for Nelson's friends, relatives and pallbearers after his death aboard HMS Victory at the Battle of Trafalgar in October 1805.

The sale price was some 50 per cent higher than the pre-sale estimate.

The George III gold and enamel rings were made by John Salter, a jeweller of the Strand in London, and distributed by the executors of his will. Three examples are held in the National Maritime Museum, Greenwich.

It was one of a selection of Nelson items assembled for the auction to mark the 250th anniversary of his birth.

A small silver mounted commemorative oak box, believed to have been made from wood from the brandy-filled barrel used to hold Nelson's body on the voyage back to England, also sold at the Bonhams auction in London for £8,160. It was only expected to fetch up to £1,200. The box bore the inscription "Lost to his Country 21st Oct 1805".

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