Midshipman Longley: That was wonderful swordsmanship, sir.
Capt. Horatio Hornblower, R.N: Mr. Longley, when I was a midshipman I was bottom of the class in swordsmanship.
Narrator: In the year Eighteen Hundred and Seven, a small ship of the Royal Navy set sail from England for a secret destination. With five million French and Spanish soldiers poised on the Continent under Napolean, nothing could save England from invasion except her 300 ships. HMS Lydia was soon far beyond battle-charged Europe. Under the most secret of sealed orders, she sailed for southern waters, fought her way around the Horn... headed north again into the Pacific. For seven months, she stayed out of sight of land. Becalmed finally, her weary crew toiled at the oars in the vain hope of towing her into a wind. They thirsted and hungered and wondered where she was going, what they would do when they got there... if she got there. These were things known only to one man.
Capt. Horatio Hornblower, R.N: You know why I'm having Hummill flogged, Mr. Gerard?
2nd Lt. Gerard: I reported him for fighting, sir.
Capt. Horatio Hornblower, R.N: I am not having him flogged for fighting, Mr. Gerard. I'm having him flogged because you said in front of the men that you'd flog him. This is a ship of war - as it's captain, I must uphold my lieutenants' authority.
2nd Lt. Gerard: I understand, sir.
Capt. Horatio Hornblower, R.N: Flogging only makes a bad man worse, Mr. Gerard... but it can break a good man's spirit. Is Hummill a bad man?
2nd Lt. Gerard: Aside from his temper, sir, he's a good sailor.
Capt. Horatio Hornblower, R.N: A good sailor, ill-fed and thirsty. Watch the cat as it cuts his back to pieces, Mr. Gerard... and in the future, perhaps you'll think twice before you threaten anyone with a flogging.
Surgeon Gundarson: You'll lose more than Hazlett if you don't put ashore for fresh food and water!
Capt. Horatio Hornblower, R.N: Perhaps you'll dig into your medical kit and get me a breath of fresh wind.
Capt. Horatio Hornblower, R.N: Gentlemen, we will raise our objective within two days. It will be identified by a fortress on a hill overlooking a large bay.
[Hornblower leaves the quarterdeck]
Lt. Crystal: A fortress... and a wind before morning. Huh! Heat's gone to his head.
Lt. William Bush: Well, I think he knows more than he's saying.
Lt. Crystal: Perhaps you'd care to take a wager on it, Mr. Bush?
Lt. William Bush: How much can you afford?
Lt. Crystal: Five shillings that says no wind and ten shillings that we don't sight any fortress.
Lt. William Bush: Done!
Capt. Horatio Hornblower, R.N: This ship is getting slack, Mr. Gerard. It's taking you longer every day to clear for action.
2nd Lt. Gerard: The hands are weak, sir, and...
Capt. Horatio Hornblower, R.N: And what?
2nd Lt. Gerard: Restless, sir. After all, sir, seven months without sighting land.
Capt. Horatio Hornblower, R.N: No excuse. You ought to control them...
Lookout: Land ho! Off the starboard bow!
Capt. Horatio Hornblower, R.N: ...An officer who cannot control his men is not reliable.
2nd Lt. Gerard: Yes, sir. Excuse me, sir, that was "Land ho."
Capt. Horatio Hornblower, R.N: I have ears, Mr. Gerard.
2nd Lt. Gerard: I thought you might be interested, sir.
Capt. Horatio Hornblower, R.N: It took you eleven minutes and twenty seconds to clear for action the other day. I want it done in ten. Now!
2nd Lt. Gerard: Now, sir?
Capt. Horatio Hornblower, R.N: You seem to have your mind on something else - I said, "Now!"
Lt. Crystal: Signal from the lookout, sir. Natividad's gone about - one more tack and she'll be at the harbor mouth.
Capt. Horatio Hornblower, R.N: Very good, Mr. Crystal. Well, gentlemen, that leaves time for a rubber of whist.
Capt. Horatio Hornblower, R.N: You may retain your sword, Captain. Mr. Bush, will you remove these officers to the Lydia and put them in irons?
Spanish captain: B-but we have surrendered! There are rules of war!
Capt. Horatio Hornblower, R.N: Believe me, Captain, if Don Julian so much as sees you during the next day, he'll have you all killed. Those are his rules of war.
Lt. William Bush: Well, I expected to lose my leg, sir, but not all the way up to the neck.
Lt. William Bush: It is the captain's wish, Your Ladyship, that from now on you and your maid remain below.
Lady Barbara Wellesley: [to Hornblower] Can two women really be so distracting, Captain?
Capt. Horatio Hornblower, R.N: May I remind you that my men have been continously at sea for eight months?
Lady Barbara Wellesley: [as Hornblower begins to walk away] Oh, Captain!
[He stops and turns to her]
Lady Barbara Wellesley: And how long have you been at sea?
Capt. Horatio Hornblower, R.N: [Hornblower turns to walk away, stops, and clears his throat] Ha-Hmmm!
[He continues to walk away]
Hernandez: Captain Hornblower?
Hernandez: I am Don Jose Hernandez, Admiral in the service of El Supremo.
Capt. Horatio Hornblower, R.N: El Supremo? That means The Almighty.
Hernandez: El Supremo was formerly known to men as Don Julian Alvarado.
Capt. Horatio Hornblower, R.N: Ha-hmm. Where is this Don Julian Alvarado?
Hernandez: El Supremo is in his fortress.
Capt. Horatio Hornblower, R.N: Mr. Bush, here are the keys to my dispatch box containing the Admiralty's orders. If I'm not back aboard by midnight, you will assume command.
Lt. William Bush: Not back on board, sir? But you said they were on our side!
Capt. Horatio Hornblower, R.N: War breeds strange allies, Mr. Bush
Capt. Horatio Hornblower, R.N: Captain Horatio Hornblower at your service. King George of England charges me with messages of his friendship...
El Supremo: I am not interested in the words of a mere king!
Capt. Horatio Hornblower, R.N: Ha-hmm.
Capt. Horatio Hornblower, R.N: If I am not back aboard the Lydia within one hour, she'll train her guns upon your fort and reduce it to rubble.
El Supremo: With you in it, Captain?
Capt. Horatio Hornblower, R.N: That is my order.
El Supremo: Three months ago, the Spanish viceroy sent a diplomat who warned me to curb my political ambitions. In answer, I sent part of him back to Panama - his head, to be precise.
El Supremo: Make known your needs to Admiral Hernandez.
Capt. Horatio Hornblower, R.N: Aside from water, I shall need 200 bullocks, 500 pigs, 100 quintals of salt, 40 tons of flour, ten tons of sugar, five tons of tobacco, one ton of coffee, the juice of 40,000 limes and, um, are there any wines to be had here?
Hernandez: We drink a spirit distilled from molasses which you probably do not know. We call it rum. Will that do?
Capt. Horatio Hornblower, R.N: Ha-hmm. Well, if there's nothing better that will have to do. One hundred barrels.
[Hornblower informs his officers of the approach of a Spanish ship-of-the-line]
2nd Lt. Gerard: A sixty gunner! What do you suppose he's up to?
Lt. Crystal: We don't clear the bay, I'll wager we're all dead before morning.
Lt. William Bush: How much can you afford this time?
Lt. Crystal: Twenty shillings.
Lt. William Bush: Done! Where shall I send the money if you win?