Successes & Failures Of Lieutenant Hornblower From C S Fores Essay, Research Paper

C.S. Forester’s Lieutenant Hornblower

In the novel Lieutenant Hornblower there were a few scenes were Hornblower

was a success and a few were he was a failure.

In my opinion the first success of Hornblower was when he used all the cannons on

one side of the ship to free them from the mud holding the ship. Another success was when

Hornblower suggested a landing attack on Samana Bay. The commanding officer agreed

with his suggestion, and they put together a landing party. Hornblower had the whole

attack planed and the coordinates marked. His surprise attack on the Spanish at Samana

proved to be a success. Once the fort was taken over he was successful in firing red hot

shot at enemy ships, even without ever using that technique before. Then when the

negotiation with the Spanish took place he had a brilliant idea to mount a nine pound

cannon at the upper end of the peninsula to prevent the Spanish from escaping. This

enabled them to turn down the terms of the proposal that the Spanish wanted and get what

they wanted without giving anything to the Spanish. These achievements made by

Hornblower is what later earned him the command of the Retribution, although his

command of the Retribution did not come until later when the war started again.

Hornblower had also had a few failures that hindered his successes. Among these

was when Hornblower was using the red hot shot to sink enemy ships. This was both a

success and failure. It was a failure because after heating the shot for a considerably long

period of time the shot began to deform. This deformity of the shot wouldn’t allow it to fit

into the cannon. Hornblower realized his mistake after one of the shots wouldn’t fit into the

cannon. This slowed their operation down but didn’t cause a defeat to them. The situation

with Hornblower gambling is mostly in my opinion a success but it could also be a failure.

The way I think it would be a failure is that he lost a lot of his money and couldn’t afford

some necessities. Hornblower also won a considerable amount of money and his playing

Whist with Parry led to the confirming of his command of the Retribution.

I feel these examples show both the success and failure of Lieutenant Hornblower

throughout the novel. His success lead him to commander of Retribution and his failures

were small and didn’t have great effect on his outcome.

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