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Jan 17, 12:53 PM EST

Scrap of flag from Nelson's HMS Victory sells for $408,000

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Scrap of flag from Nelson's HMS Victory sells for $408,000

LONDON (AP) -- Sotheby's auction house says a fragment of the red, white and blue "Victory Jack" flag that flew from Adm. Horatio Nelson's flagship during the Battle of Trafalgar has sold for 297,000 pounds (around $408,000).

The fragment, which measures several feet (about a meter) on each side, had been expected to fetch between 80,000 pounds and 100,000 pounds.

The British naval hero was fatally shot aboard HMS Victory as he led the British fleet against France and Spain in the 1805 battle. Sailors at Nelson's funeral reportedly tore scraps from the flag to keep as mementoes.

The fragment was part of an auction Wednesday that also included Nelson's grog chest and decanters, along with several love letters to his mistress, Lady Emma Hamilton.

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