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Admiral of the Fleet Horatio Hornblower, GCB, 1st Baron Hornblower, was the fictional protagonist of a series of novels by English novelist C. S. Forester, and later the subject of films and television programs based on the books.
The original Hornblower tales began with the appearance of a reserved, even withdrawn, Captain on independent duty on a secret mission to the Pacific coast of Central America. As counterpoint to complex naval discussions, the novel featured a love interest with Lady Barbara Wellesley, who gradually teased Hornblower into a less stiff and reserved character. Sequels explored the relationship that they developed. Hornblower aged gracefully and, with a touch of humor now and again, performed acts of human kindness against what duty would dictate, in the end creating a triumphant figure who has risen above and surpassed his early training.