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The world's most comprchensirrc encyclopedii:orlthe mititirv weaponi oritre.

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The'Duncailsl ArmedForces of the

in Action World: Norway ,

A fully illustfated ':Wide t0 Pfe,Didadnought Battleships

Volume ll Issue l3l
Published by
Orbis Publish n9 Ltd
@ Aerospace Publishing Ltd 1986
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Falklands campaign.

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The battleships with which lapan crashed the Russian fleet
in 1905 were rendered obsolete just nine months later by the
lawrch of HMSDreadnought. Capital ship design was
revolutionized, and, earlier battleships became known as
'pre-Dreadnoughts', but despite their infertority they saw
extensive action during World W ar I.
fo be 'pre-Dreadnought' in August l914 was to be obsolete, but to be
:bsolete was not necessarily to be useless, Smaller, slower and far more
--ghtly armed than 'Dreadnoughts', these shrps had to be retained in the
baitle lines until they could be replaced, This, of course, took time; in the
:,cyal Navy for instance, the famous 'Wobbly Eight' were with Jellicoe's
::ain body untrl the spnng of 1915, but the Germans were obliqed to
keep them in the flrst team for much longer, a squadron actually serving
:: Jutland, At the outbreak of World War I, the newest pre-Dreadnoughts
ere only recently commissroned (e.g the Brrtish'Lord Nelsons' rn IgOB, HMS Majestic rara s the name ship of the largest class of battleships ever built,
and setnew standards inwarship designwhen shewas launched inlanuary
:re German 'Deutschlands 1906-8 and the French 'Dantons' as late as I 89 5. S he was the first of what came to be known after I g0S as,pre-'
-911). They were well-built and some of a transrtional nature wtth'healry' Dreadnoughts' and was torpedoed and sunk bytJ-2l off Gallipoli in l9 jS.
ard 'semi-heavy' batteries rather than the three-tier armament struc-
:rres of earlier examples, Thus they lurnished a valuable and, rn some agarnst enemy colonies, In at least one case, a conversion was made for
3ases, expendable means of establishrng and maintaining sea control mrnelaying,
a-,ruay from the main area of the North Sea, Like their German opposite numbers, responsible for securing the
About 50 pre-Dreadnoughts were available to the Royal Navy, Not atl Baltic and its approaches, they had lrttle chance for combat against their
condition for prolonged active service, and the oldest became
',,!rere in a peers, so the Russo-Japanese and, to a certaln extent, the Spanish-
euard,/training shrps, transports or storeships. Those in the active fleet American wars remain the best examples of their operatronal use,
served worldwide from South America to North Russia, from the Carrb-
bean to Hong Kong, releasing more modern and useful units fcr the Mikasa was ffie Japanese flagship atthe battleof Tsushimawhich shattered
Grand Fleet, No less than 16 were rnvolved wrth the Dardanelles opera- Russian power in the Pacific and established J apan as a world power . The
:;cn, five being sunk, They were particularly useful here (as off the J_apanese navywas trained and heavily influ6niedby theRoyilNavy, and
]apanese battleships were built in Britishyards to British designs. Sfte js
Belgian coasi) in fire support, but were also found leading expeditions presewed today as amuseum.

fE !Hn"rt"*agne' class
Contemporary with the later ships of By 1914 the class was of low combat
the 'Majestrc' class, the three'Charle- value (like the 'Majestics' the ships just
magne' class units were the frrst predated the pre-Dreadnoughts) but
French battleshrps to adopt the 'hvo- were nevertheless useful in low-risk
forward, two-aft' heavy gun layout, areas, On 18 March 1915, the Charle-
favoured for a decade by the British, magne and Gaulois were operating
and a more rational secondary battery with the Bouvef and Sult?en as a bom-
down each broadside, the guns sepa- bardment group under Admiral Gu6p-
lated by splinter-proofscreens, Up to ratte at the Dardanelles in the battle
and including lhe Bouvet that im- with the forts, The Gaulois had been
mediately preceded the 'Charle- heavily damaged forward and was
magnes', French battleships had a having to withdraw, when the Bouvel
character all of their own, with a single was mined, Her magazines went and
Iarge gmn at each end, its muzzles ex- she disappeared in less than three mi-
tending to the extremity of the short nutes, On thrs day the Brltish HMS
upper deck to minimize blast effects, Irresistible and Ocean were also des-
From these points both bows and stem troyed, effectively srgnalling the end of
extended outward to an exaggerated serious attempts to force the strait. The
degree in order to grain sufficient Gaulois had to be grounded and,
buoyancy and length. Though the though later refloated and reparred at
Charlemagnes' were more moderate Toulon, was sunk by submarine torpe-
-n their design they, too, retained a do,
:urther feature in the pronounced
:rmblehome that gave the secondary Specification Armament: two twin 305-mm ( l2-in), 10 Pictured here in J900, Gaulois was
;runs a degrree of axial fire, Launched 'Charlemagme'class 136,8-mm (5,4-in) and eight 100-mm obso/ete as a b attleship by World
-r 1895 and i896, the class comprised Displacement: I i,300 tons fulI load (3,94-in) gmns, andtwo 45O-mm (17,7- W ar I but accompanied Charlemagna
-:e Charlemagne, Gaulois and Sainf Dimensions:length 118.0 m (387, I ft); in) torpedo tubes to the Dardanelles as part ofthe
Louis. beam20,5 m(67,25 ft); draushtB,4m Protection: belt 400 mm (15.75 in) Anglo-French fleet which failed to
As was usual in French practice, the (27 6 ft) taperingto 250 mm (9,84 in); decks 90 force the straits. Gaulois was badly
:rain belt was very nafiow but ran full Propulsion: three sets oftriple- and 40 mm (3,54 and i.57 in)t barbettes mauled byTurkish shore batteries
lenqth. Between its upper edge and expansion steam engnnes delivering 400 mm (15.75 in) maxrmum; on 18 March 1915 andhadto
-ie lower edge of the battery armour 108 10 kW ( 14,500 rhp) to three shafts casemates 75 mm (2,95 in) withdraw. Shewas repaired only to
-:e swell of the tumblehome was with- Speed: 18 ks Complement:725 be sunkbyB-47 in 1916.
: j: protection, At this level was set a
ir:iective deck and, one level below,
: s-ohnter deck, the space between With the'Charlemagne' class, the
:eng closely sub-divided ('cel1ular') French abandoned their quixotic
:: contalri floodrng following damagte Iayouts and followed contemporary
practice with main armament
-- . doubdul if this cellular layer was of I
sj=oient depth to avoid being sub- concentrated in one turret forward
i and one aft.The mainarmoured bei:.
:--:rged by sigmiflcant water ingTress,
tfrus allowing progrressive flood- was narrow but ran the full lengtlt of
-j the hull, which retained the
pronounce d tumble home that
dis tinguis he d F rench w ar s hip

:ii"*o"' class
armaments were very simrlar and, like
the Brltish ships, the class represented
an intermedrate step to the Dread-
nought type then just beinq intro-
duced. Where the 'Lord Nelsons'were
wrsely lermlnated al only one Patr
however, the French stuck stubbornly
to their programme for sx hulis, all of
which were completed rn 1911, when l

other fleets were building Dread-

noughts The ships were the Condor'
cet, Danton, Diderot, Mirabeau, Ver-
guiaud andVoltaire.
The 'Dantons' were, however, the
first French turbine driven class, wtth
Seen here atToulon, Voltaire
demonstrated the soundness of the
'D antons" extensive subdivision
when she took and survived two
torpedoes from the German
su bm ar ine W-48. Danton ft erse/f was
notsolucky, succumbing to a single
hitfromU-64in j,917.
'Danton' class (continued)


French naval poliq in the 1900s was

muddled, wasteful and short- pressive flve funnels batched, 1n typr- and Voltaire enjoyed long lives, the Propulsion: four sets of duec:-ir-;:
sighted. The' D anton' class was cally French fashron, rn two groups, two latter betng scrapped in the late steamturbines delivenng l6l:a k-,',-
rendered obsolete by HMS While not as extreme in design as 1930s and Ihe Condorcel actually (22,500 shp) to four shafts
Dreadnought. W here as th e B ritis h earlier French battleships, the 'Dan- beinq scuttled in Toulon by the retreat- Speed:19kts
only built two'LordNelsons', the tons perpetuated the shallow main inq Germans in 1944. Armament: two twin 305-mr:: i- 2-:-
French obstinately built six belt, backed by a larqe degree ofsub- sxtwin 240-mm (9.4-in) ani -3 l:-::*_
'Dantons'. divrsion. This stood the Danlon herself Specification (2 95-tn) quns and two 450-rrr- . - - -
in grood stead when, in 1917, she was 'Danton'class in) torpedo tubes
Parsons-built units turning four shafts heavily damaqed by two well-spaced Displacement: lB, 320 tons standard Protection: belt 255-200 mr:, . - - -: _-.
wilh a near 30 per cent rncrease in torpedoes from lhe U-64. She eventual- and 19,760 tons fult load decks 75 mm (2.95 in): barbe::=s
power compared with the 'Verrt6' ly succumbed to progrressive floodinqt Dimensions:ienqlh 146.6 m (481,0 ft); 280 mm ( 1 I in); secondary tuze=
class that preceded them. Their 26 but gave her crew plenty of time for beam25.B m (84.6 ft); draughtB,T m 225 mm (8.85 in)
coal-fired borlers exhausted by an im- evacuatron. The Condorcet, Diderot (28 5 ft) Complement: 920

.'tiittorio Emanuele lll' class

The 'speed is protection' concept has marginally smaller displacement than tered. Launched beteen 1904 and
always been a major influence in lta- Brin's ships, they were some 3 m (9,8 ft) 1907, the ships were Ihe Napoli, Reg-
lian desiqn, resulting in many highly longer but 1.5 m (4.9 ft) narrower, the ina Elena, Roma and Vittorio Ema-
origrinal warships. In addition the lta- resulting fine hull achieving 22 kts on nuele III
lians possessed, in Vittorio Cuntberti, the same power. A two{ier main and The ]talians, in efiect, had built
the single most influential figmre in the secondary battery was favoured, anti- something like a small battle-cruiser
movement toward the all-big gun cipating the Bdtish 'l,ord Nelsons' Its ahead of its time. Its immedrate influ-
capital ship, qreat drawback lay in having to accept ence was with the Japanese, whose
At the turn of the century the ltalians' only hvo 305-mm (12-in) gmns, in singrle recent battle experience had demons-
chief designer, Benedetto Brin, pro- mountings forward and aft; such weak trated the uses of a fast armoured
duced the two 'Regina Margheritas' main battery was rnsu{hcient for de- cruiser. As a result they produced the
which, on a 13,200-ton displacement, veloprng a sustained and accurate fire two 'Ibukis' of 1907, slightly longTer than
shipped a conventional armament mtx at any ranqe, This penalty was the re- the ltalian ships and wtth protection
of four 305-mm (12-rn), four 203-mm (B- sult of Cunibertr's success in workingr- reduced to accommodate a four-gmn
in) and 12 152-mm (6-in) quns, roughly in a full-Iength belt, with 250 mm main battery,
comparable to the contemporary Brit- (9.84 in) of steel over the parts that mat-
ish 'King Edward VIIs', What made
them different was their high speed,
the nameship achreving a trial speed t
of 20 2 kts. This comoinatron was ln- j!!
evitably reflected rn poor protection,
the main belt beinq only a widely-cntr
cized 150 mm (6 in) thick. Interestinqly M a ny I t a li an w arsft ,rp desrlras /rad
enougrh, the Britrsh 'Triumph' class was emphasized speed attheexpnse o!
similarly afflicted, and for much the protection, and tfte Regina Elena ano'
same reason her sisters were no exception.
Cumberti produced the next class, Designed by Vittorio Cuni.furti. one
the four 'Vittorio Emanuele III' class of the most important naval
battleships, creating a small transition- architects of the period, they were
al masterpiece in the process. On a able to reach 22 kts. During the war
with Tur key they bombar dd Tlipl:
and he lpe d c apture Rft odes.

'Kniaz Suvorov' class

The flve 'Kniaz Suvorov' class bat- Armament was sensibly lard out, the shallow and backed wrth a cellular
tleships represented a great advance twin 305-mm (12-in) turrets well Ievel, The amidships 152-mm (6-rn)
over the rather larger trio of 'Osliabyas' spread and the 12 152-mm (6-in) guns tufiets were sponsoned to allow erght
that had only recently stemmed from twinned in three turrets per stde, Com- 152-mm (6-in) gmns to fire axially either
Russian yards, They owed their im- pared with earlier Russian designs, the forwards or astern, Launched be-
provemenI primarily to rhe acquisuion ships were shorter, beamter and far tween l90l and 1903, the ships were
of the one-off French-built Tsesare- better subdivided though in keepingt lhe Borodino, Imperator Alexander
uitch, Ihe first real Russian pre-Dread- with the usual French practice, they III, Kniaz Suvorov, Orel and S/ava.
nought, which provided the model, had a full-length belt that was very They had the mosi disastrous hrstory

t: _:

'Kniaz Suvorov' class (continued) {

Tsesarevitchprovided the model for
the'Suvorov' class, but whereas the
'Suvorovs' had an unfortunate
history shewas a born survivor,
escaping in 1 904 by internment in
China and evading two German
Dreadnoughtsin l,917.

seives was due to several reasons.

Long out ofdock, they were slowed on sides, surrendered and was taken tnto
the fatefui day not only by their own the Japanese fleet as the lurami, being
condition but by slower ships in the expended as an aircraft target in 1924,
combined fleet, thus easrly being out- The Siava was sunk in 1917.
manoeuvred. At the battle they were
still qrossly overloaded with coal Specification
problems wrth bunkerinq supp[es en- 'Kniaz Suvorov' class
forcing the stowage of vast quantities Displacement: 13, 520 tons standard
on the upper deckst not only dtd thts Dimensions: lenqth 112.0 m (367,5 ft);
reduce melacentric hergnt to a polnt beam 23, 15 m (76 0 ft); draught 8,0 m
where they rolled heavily and with an (26.2 fr)
ominous deliberation, but also in- Propulsion: lwo seIS of trlple
creased draught to the point where the expansion steam enqtines deliveringt
main beltwas all but rmmersed andthe i 1930 kW (16,000 ihp) to two shafts
casemated 76-mm (3-in) battery was Speed: 18 kts
too close to the sea to be worked prop- Armament: two twin 305-mm (12-in), 12
erly The Kniaz Suvorov sank after five I52-mm (6-in) and 20 76-mm (3-1n)
hours, havrng taken four torpedoes; Erns, and sx 457-mm (18-in) torPedo
'whrle her belt was not pierced, severe tubes
lmpacts caused heavy leaks in the Protection: belt 229-102 mm (9-4 in);
belt's supporting structure Both the transverse bulkheads 229 mm (9 in);
Imperator Alexander III and the Boro protective decks 64-38 mm (2,5-1 5 in); Slava uzas comp leted too late for the debacle atTsushima, and served with the
Crno surived a similar period, suc- barbetres254 mm ( l0 in) maxtmum; Balticfleet inWorldWar L Here shelies after encounteringtheGerman
:umbing finally to both fire and explo- casemates 152 mm (6 in) DreadnoughtKonig in the Gulf of Riga;toobadly damaged to make port, she
sion. The Ore,/, damaqed only top- Complement:775 was scuttled in the Moon Sound, blocking one entrance.


'Mikasa' class t\
lapan s main battle hne during the Shikishima was the first battleship of
the 1896 programme, designed and
Shikishima (1904) cutaway drawing key
,304-5 war with Russia was British- I Sternwalk 14 Capstan 26 Lower edge of g-in Harvey
burlt and Tsushima was the only major built in Britain with the 'Majestics' 2 Waterllne 15 Maln slghting hood nickel stee armoured belt
British-orlgln pre- firmly in mind. A goodly amount of 3 3-in '12-pdr OF 6 Gun ayer's sighting hood 27 6-ln gun magazine
=nQaQemenl when

watertight subdivision was included 4 Cutter 17 Tutret 28 Officers'quarters

Dreadnoughts were fully battle-tested 5 Balanced rudder 1 8 Breech 29 B ast screen
lough completed with Japanese fea- in the class, but this did not prevent 6 Screw 1 I 1 2-ln 40-caL gun 30 Aftbrldge
---res, these capital shrps were heavily tfte /oss of Hatsuse toRussian mines 7 Shaft 20 Turntab e
8 Steerlng compartment 2T Ammunition hoistto l2 in
l:ased on contemporary Royal Naval off Port Arthur in I 904. 9 Steerngengine gu ns
10 Captain'squarters 22 Working chamber
1 T Aft T8-intorpedotube 23 Access tube toworking
'12 Antl-torpedo netboom chamber
13 Antl-torpedo netfolded on 24 1 2 in shell room

shelf 25 1 2 ln gun powder room

.^ L
'Mikasa' class (continued) Pre-Dreadnought Battleships
practice, beingr closely related to the first mine explosion disabled the ship defence shrp and, in October 1926, t I lBB kW (15,000 ihp) to two shatu
'Royal Sovereigns' (Fu7) and Yashima), whtch drifted onto a second, whose was opened as an official naval memo- Speed: 18,5 ks
the'Formidables' (Shiktshima, Halsuse explosron delonated a magazine, rial, Despite a second world war, she Armament: two twin 305-mm (12 In) -=
and Mikasa, and also ,Asa,tri) and the Having survived the thrck ofthe war, remains as such to thIS day 152-mm (6-in) and 20 76-mm (3-1n)
'Ktng Edward VIIs' (Kasiima and the Mjkasa was sunk in Sasebo by an gmns, and four 457-mm ( l8-in) torpeci:
Katori). The last pair still beinq under internal explosion, Raised and re- Specification tubes
construction, lhe Mikasa as the newest paired, she re-entered service in 1908, Mikasa Protection: belt 229-104 mm (9-4 r_n)
took Admiral Togo's flag and became though plans to uprate her armament Displacement: I2, 500 tons standard transverse bulkheads 305 mm (12 .:)
associated with hrm. were not fulfrlled, probably due to the Dimensions: Ienqth 128.3 m (421.0 ft); protective deck 76 mm (3 in);
As often happened, the desrgn imminent delivery of Japan's two first beam 23,2 m (76.0 ft); draught 8.3 m barbetres 356 mm (-4 rn) naxrmur:.
marked a qualified improvement on home-built all-big-gun ships (Salsuma (27.25 fi) casemates 152 mm (6 in)
the Royal Navyversion, The protection andAkr). She escaped the Washington Propulsion: two sels of trrple- Complement:935
was of the same order but differently Treaty axe by being re-rated a coast expanston steam engines deliverrng
disposed, and the speed was a little
higher, The four main batiery guns
could be loaded while trarned on any
bearing and the secondary battery
was increased by hvo barrels to 14
152-mm (6-in) guns, each of them Mikasa r,rras tfie last of four
occupying a separate space in the battleships built under the I896
central battery, separated from its progr amme, and w as be tter
nerghbour by a substantial bulkhead; pr ote cted than ler predecessors as
whrle very secure, the arangement s he carried KC armou rplate. A
did cause problems with fire control. different machinery layout left her
in 1900
The Mikasa was launched with only two funnels, but otherwise
Mikasa took considerable shell she was similar fo Asahi.
damage at the Battles of Round Island
and of Tsushrma, but survled. More
questionable was the class's ability to
suwive mrne damage. The Bntish HMS
Formidable herself was an early victim
on the flrst day of 19i5, but had already
been preceded by the Yashima and
the Halsuse. In the case of the latter, a

i. '.-,,4-

31 Compass platform 52 Funnel uptakes 72 End of armof,-€: c: -- : -

32 Lowered ant -torpedo net 53 Topofarmoureddeck thick)
33 Ma nmast 54 14 inarmouredbarbette 73 Sloping 4 rr a--:--:: :=:,
34 Search ight platform 55 Bridge 74 Watenlghr cc-c:a-:-::
35 Searchlight 56 Chart house 75 Rig forarvn -c
36 Fightlng top 57 Nav gatron bridge 76 Symbol
3l 3-pdt 41 mm (1.8 in) OF 58 Compass/binnac e 77 18-ln bowic'oe:: t-::
gun 59 Foretopmast 78 Castsolid ra-::.,
38 Ventllator 60 Foremast 79 6-ln ammunl: :^ -: ::
39 6-in 40 cal oun 61 Boatdeck B0 l2pdramru^::--:::
40 Funnel 62 Boat handllng derrlck B1 Ventllation s^:':
4'1 Steam pipes 63 Foredeck 82 6 inarmouror:-::,.,
42 Gtg 64 Coal bunkers 83 S'tores
43 Steampicketboat 65 6-ln Harvey nickei armour 84 Doubeboiic-
44 Crewquarters over casements 85 10 ln Harver- ^ .<. '-.- -:
45 Waist/ash chute 66 T 4-in armoured conning IUrrel
46 Ammun tlon passaqe tower 86 B-lnHarvev.a<:
47 Engineroom 67 Armouredaccesstubeto sides
48 2 sets trlpleexpansion lowercommand centre
eng rnes 68 Lowercommandcentre
49 Upperedgeofmainbet 69 Anchordavlt
50 Boilerroom 70 Anchorbeds
51 Bellevllle 14,500 HP 71 ForebroadsidelB n
boilers firted with torpedo tube

'[eteverg mcrn do his utmost'
The battle of Tsushima was the most overwhelming naval victory since Trafalgar
and it set the seal on theJapanese triumph over Russiain the war of 1904-5.Having
defeated the Russian P acific fleet based at Port Arthur, the J apanese navy
annihilated asecondRussianforcewhichhad steamed allthewayfrom theBaltic,
Japanestablishedherself as aworld power, and thescale of the defeatplunged the
Tsarist Empire into crisis.

In the early years of the 20th century Tsarist Mtkasa. After several hours of indecisive man-
Russia was expanding her Far Eastern in- oeuvring, durlng which Mrkasa suffered 305-
terests in total drsregard of a Japan that was still mm (12-in) hits from 13000 m (14,215 yards), the
struggling with the internal problems associ- Russian flagship Tsesarevitch was hit twice.
ated wrth her rapid change from a medieval to Though not particularly damaging to the ship,
a modern soclety. Her protests and efforts at these hits killed the admiral, Vitgeft, and jam-
compromise having utterly farled, Japan sud- med the helm. Temporarily lacking both brain
denly broke off dlplomatic relations in Febru- and rudder, the ship circled out of control With
a-ry 1904 and, wilhout formal declaration, fell no information as to what was happening, the
two days later on the Russran Port Arthur remainder of the squadron also broke line,
squadron as it slumbered at its moorings, The Togo seized his chance and succeeded in vir-
Russo-Japanese War had begmn, tually surrounding his demorallzed enemy but
At the outbreak of war the Russians' full then, instead of pressing home the attack he
Pacrfic Fleet was comparable in slze to that of allowed the majority to escape back to the false
the lapanese but, where the latter had the secunty of Port Arthur. Cruisers had played no
edge in efficiency and organization they could part in the action proper, whlle the Japanese
r11 allord to lose any ships, for, whereas the preponderance in medium-calibre guns had
Russlans could replace losses from elsewhere, been of no use whatsoever, This, the Battle of
-tre the Yellow Sea, had proved the supremacy of
Japanese could not,
The opening attack on Port Arthur was not the big gnrn, The failure of the Japanese to
decisive and a period of attrttion began, exploit therr victory was repeated a few days Admiral Togo had been described by brother
officers as 'a silly old fool' before the war, but he
:narked partrcularly by the effective use of Iater when the Russlan Vladivostok squadron had the measure of his enemies both in Port Arthut
:mnes by both sides, Where the Japanese suf- was intercepted off Ulsan, and atTsushima. Steady and professional rather
iered the loss of two battleships, the Russians It was now Augnrst 1904 and the two Russian than brilliant, Togo kept the Russjans b/ockaded in
icst their admiral, Makarov, rn the sinking of the Pacific squadrons had been separately chas- Port Arthur as much hy moral superiority as by
Petropavlousk. The loss of this able leader and tened. As early as June, their government had physicalpower.
-jre rncreasing aggressiveness of the Japanese announced that the bulk of the Baltic Fleet
ai sea gradualiy demoraiized the Russian would be despatched to their assistance, but it were of variable quality and their crews poor-_;
squadron, which was vrrtually trapped ln Port was not until the October that they finally sailed trained. Ahead lay a voyage of 29000 h"
Arthur, ltself now under siege by land. under the ruthless and abusive Vice-Admiral (18 000 miles): at its end waited an eaqe:
In Augnrst 1904 by the decree of the Tsar Rozhdestvensky, On paper the eight bat- enemy of proven competence.
himself, the force broke out for the safety of tleshlps, seven crulsers, nine destroyers and a On the 99th anniversary of the Battle of TYa-
lfladivostok, where a second squadron was mass of ar-rxlliarles looked formidable, but they falgar, the armada nearly went to war with the
based, The Japanese admiral, Togo, inter- British in the North Sea, SeeingJapanese torpe-
cepted them soon after their departure but, in do boats in every shift of mist they fired heavi-;
re battleship duel of modern
first serious
ru? on flshing craft off Hull, sinking one, With th=
was surprised to find himself under Brrtrsh government deliberating direct acticr
accuate opening Russian salvoes at 18000 m the humihated Rozhdestvensky was escortej
i19685 yards), some 4000m (4375 yards) by the Royal Navy as far as Gibraltar, The
ceyond the extreme range of his flagship, incident was to have far-reaching conseq:-
ences in giving the Russians bunkering prot-
lems throughout their voyage, By the new year
1905, they had rounded Afrrca and reachei
Madagascar, where they received the
crushing news of the fall of Port Arthur and the
loss of its squadron, it would now have to be
Vladrvostok or nothinq.
A.bove: TheJapanese placed great importance on
the work of their destroyers, opening the war with
a surprise torpedo attack on the Russian fleet in
Port Arthur just as they were to attack the USA
without declaring w ar in I 9 4 I . ?ft rs rs Asashio, a
Thornycroft baat of 365 tons which carried two
450-mm ( I f-in) torpedoes.
ilgh f; Osliabya /ed tft e,Secon d
D ivi s io n a t T susfi lma, fi er srlers
Pobieda and Peresviethaving been
destroyed at Port Arthur. She cost
nearly t),000.000 when built in I898;
battleships represented a very
cons ider able inves tm en t. H er
tactical diameter was some 600 m
and she was capable of 19 kts.

For weeks the Baltic Fleet swung at its moor- For Togo, geography was favourable: all he Osliabya ree/s un der a hail of shellfire, her main
rngswhile its governmnt ditheredonwhat to do needed was patlence. Rozhdestvensksy de- armoured belt submerged beneath the waterltne
next. The enervating climate took its toll of cided on the direct southern route through the because ofthe weight of extra coal she was
fitness, and mutinous behaviour became rife. Tsushima Strait, His fleet was in dreadful carrying. To starboard,lkttaz Suvorov, the flagnlt'p.
Told to await reinforcements (in truth the dregs shape, hulls weedgrown, machinery and arma- is onfire and theAdmiralwounded.
of the reserve list), the Russian admiral ignored ment defective, and crews in need of recrea- Tsesarevitchrnterned at Kiao Chau alter the defeat
the instruction, sailing on 16 March 1905. He tion, What he needed was a spell in the dock- of the Russian Pacific fleet off Round Island, Augpst
was, however, finally obhged to stay in French yard, followed by a work-up, What he got was a 1904. Steering by her screws after her rudder was
Indo-Chrna untrl they arrlved, flnally leaving on pitched battie, destroyed in an earlier encounter, she flew the flag
of Admiral Vitgeft, who was killed when the
the last lap on 14 May. At 02 45 on 27 May, the Japanese auxiliary conning tower was struck by a I 2-in shell. The rest
Vladivostok lies withln the Sea of Japan, the cruiser Silnano Maru siqhted an oddlyJit ship of the fleet escaped back to Port Arthur, never to
access to which is by several narrow passages, in the misty moonlight, She kept in contact and, comeoutagain.
:e &
& 2z
P7t €
:k= w
i:rg. tt
r E*
rs *lt'-
;:' ?ft1
* tqt

'€i -,-. a'




jLrst before 05 00 in shtfting vlstbility, was re- yards), infllcted some damaqe, The Japanese A Japanese view of their torpedo-boats in action oft
-warded with the sight of Rozhdestvenskys fulI let the range decrease for another 1000 m Vladivostok, where a small Russian force under
(1,095 yards) before unleashing a crushing fire Skydlov lurked in harbour, occasionally launching
iorce, steaming north east in two columns, Her sneak attacks on fishing boats. Defeating a
radio summoned cruiser ard and Togo's main on the Russian van, concentrating on the lead- 'European' Great Power had a lasting etfect on
fleet sailed from its waiting area on the Korean ers of the lst and 2nd Divisions: the latter, J apane se for eign policy.
side of the strait, the openrng moves in what Osliabya,wore the flag of Rear Admiral Folker-
-ffas to be the greatest fleet encounter between sam, whose death by nahrral causes a few days Kniaz Suvorov, less funnels, a mast and the
T?afalgar and Jutland. before had been kept secret for morale purr after turret, staggered blazing out of line anc
Wrth 12 armoured ships apiece, the two poses, lost way, to become a target for everythrng tha:
fleets were evenly matched on paper, Indeed passed, The severely wounded Rozhdetvens-
Rozhdestvensky's Ist Division consisted of four
Russian line deflected ky was taken off by destroyer and, later, trans-
brand-new battleships, his flag tn Ihe Kniaz Unable to face the bombardment, the Rus- ferred to another, from which the Japanese
Suvorov. sian iine was deflected from a north east head- eventually captured him, As the OsJtabya s
Togo sighted the Russian ships, already dis- ing to south of east. Though moving in a Ionger main belt was effectively submerged by the
crganued in reformrng, at 13.45 Wlth a speed arc, Togo had the speed both to keep up and to weight of extra coal that she was carrying, she
advaniage of at least 4 (possibly as much as 7) dictate range; disciplined and accurate gun- fell prey to 203-mm (8-in) gunfire from Toqto s
kts, he crossed the Russians' bows from right to nery did the rest, armoured cruisers.
-eft and, daringly, turned 12 points in succes- The three'Poltava' class battleships wete all in the Admiral Rozhdestvensky sailed the Baltic fleet
sion towards the Russians, endrng on a parallel RussianPacific fleetbased at Port Arthur in 1904. across the world only to be defeated at Tsushima.
.ourse, This manoeuvre caused Togo's ships to Petropavlovsk, seen here, was mined and sunk, He gained notoriety in Brilain by opening fire on
nask each other's fire whilst turning and the drowning Admiral M akarov, the only senior officer British trawlers in theNorth Sea, thinking them to
Russians, who opened flre at 7000 m (7 655 whowas nota complete incompetent' be J apane s e torpe do boats.
.!ni r*: d-_
.,ii!:).r4,ri.r; :iiri,r..jr.,:... i,.,,...-r'-.,rl

; -' -. r;.,r#r,r. ll,,li. j!t!i]#3]w

l"likasa Jeads Shikishima, Fuji and Asahi and /wo by now many of thelr major ships were in a very decision for whtch he w-as dtsgracec L:

zr:noured cruisers as tl-re/apanese lTeef sfeams poor state. As the dreadful day eased into dusk, land. -.:::
:o:;ra.i'ds Tsusir ima strait" Qnce batUe was joined' Togo pulled his heavy ships back and let loose Only mopping up was ieit tc -h:
.' e s u. pe r ia r effi ciency o f the J apanese fl eef soon his cruisers and torpedo craft TheKnja z Suvor- and finally,onlyonol-gh' I." t' :

'.+qai to teil and Togo's ships began a methodical orl succumbed to three torpedoes, Imperator troyers arrived at Vladivcstok ''',:r .- ..'=
ies'tructian of thetr opPonenfs. Alexander 11l foundered, blazrng, while the annihilation off Tsushima.
Ihe two nev'/ divisional leaders, Imperator Borodtno blew up, Four more were torpedoed For the loss of three destrol/ers -:,: - : -: l
. during the long nrght, lhe Navann and Sessoi had sur.k ergh''a1 sh ps "-. ) .:
=xander III and Sessol Veliky, were equally Of eight cruisers, the Russrals .i: l : -
-.:rshly handled despite a dogged Russian de- I/elky sinking.
.=:ce This criticai phase had lasted only half three sunk one wrecked anC :ire..' :' -
Five ships left Of nine destroyers, three t,'rete ::
:. :rcrlr frorn 14. 15 to 14.45, but the day was terned and one caPtured. Cf et.::
.-r:ady ciecided Nevertheless, at about 15 00 The hopeless dawn of 28 May found just live
:-: Russians again pulled onto a northerly major Russian shrps left led by Nebogatov in flve were sunk and two caplure j
the lmperator Ntcholas 1, They were still wal l17 Japanese deaths and'1 33i :...:.---
-: rrse for Vladivostok, oniy to be paralleled The scale oi the . .c-ory pre I r' . -. .
-: :e again by Togo who used the superlor lowing northward, but their goal was yet
::::ed of his armoured cruisers to pull ahead 480 km (300 miles) distant Wtth the streng olthe war inJapan's favour and lr: -.::-
.:.r again deflect the battered Russian van to thening light, one Japanese squadron after the Russian revolution It signallei .-= :.
,-.: southward another came into view and at 1O 30, after a Japanese sea power and caused Jl:: : r'
.i f,nal attempt to break through to their goal desultory exchanqle of lire Nebogatov surren- tion in the UK which had 'iir:..:,-" : ---

':s made by ihe Russians at about 17.00, but dered rather than chance lurther bloodshed a trained the Japanese navy

:;laz Suvorov was subjecf fo a seiles of accurate

:roadsides from theJapanese battleships and
s:aggered out of line, severely disabled" The
',', cunded Aamiral Rozhdestvensky was taken otf
.:;s slricken flagsh ip by a destroyer, and the
S ::vorov fel/ beft ind, hav ing los t a funne I an d her

:it-or mast. At l7A0 hrs she was attacked by the 4th

'apanese Torpedo Boat Division and, unable to put
;c a successfu/ defence, was torpedoed and sunk


$; --i. w"


ffi 'fr,oyat Sovereigrn' class
At a time when Royal Dockyards Lef t: HMS Royal Sovereigm was built a
generally took over flve years to build deck higher than contemporary
a battleship, HMS Royal Sovereign, battleships, and the increase in
Iead ship ofthe 'Royal Sovereigm' class, freeboard greatly improved her
was built at Portsmouth in only 32 seakeeping. The last ship of the
months. The reason was simply that c/ass, f/MS Hoodwas completed in
Jackie' Fisher, a newly promoted rear the old style to accommodate a
admiral, had been appointed Admiral turreted main armament, butwas
Superintendent lust after her launch in notably inferior.
February 1891 and took a personal in-
terest. The other six ships (HMS
Empress of India, Ramillies, Repulse,
Resolution, Revenge and Royal Oak)
were launched in IB9I-2.
In truth, the 'Royal Sovereigns'were
a class transitional between the low-
freeboard battleship and the true pre-
Dreadnought, Since the abandonment
of full saihng rig in the Royal Navy,
freeboards had been kept low to re-
duce vulnerability to close-range
gmnfire and to reduce the necessary
area of protection. This lack of
freeboard was a great limrtatron in any
sea, and the 'Royal Sovereigns'were
built a full deck higher, While this
placed the armament of four 343-mm
(13,5-in) gn-rns (no satisfactory 305-mm/
l2-in weapon was available) at a more Specification Armament: two twin 343-mm ( 13. S-in),
commanding height, their weight 'Royal Sovereigm' class 10 152-mm (6-in) and 16 6-pdr gnrns,
could be accommodated only in open- Displacement: 14, 150 tons standard and seven 45Z-mm (IB-in) torpedo
topped barbettes where the paired and lS,SB0tonsfullload tubes
guns were mounted on turntables that Dimensions:length 115,8 m (380,0 ft); Protec'tion: belt 457 mm (18 in)
revolved within a low, armoured re- beam 22.9 m (75,0 ft); draught 8.4 m taperingto 356 mm (14 in); transverse
bulkheads 406 mm ( 16 in); splinter --,___=-___
doubt. The two barbettes were sepa- (27.s ft)
rated as widely as possible to allow the Propulsion: two sets of triple- deck 76 mm (3 in); barbette 432 mm
imtailation of a substantial and fully- expansion steam engines delivertng (17 in) maximum; casemates 152 mm
(6 in)
enclosed secondary armament: these 8200 kW ( 1 1,000 ihp) to two sha.fts
10 152-mm (6-in) weapons had to be Speed: 16,5 kts Complement:712 \.\
slted on two levels but were of the new
qurck-firing (QF) type designed to be
effectrve against the growrnq threat
foom torpedo craft.
Extra freeboard of course meant ex-
tra area needing protection and, while
the'Royal Sovereigns' were not essen-
rally superior 1o lheir lorelgn peers in
ihis respect they achieved it at
reasonable penalty by adopting the
new compound steel armour. Seven of
-he class were built, the eighth (HMS -1-
Hood) being completed rn a modrfied
:ashion as the last low-freeboard bat-
leship in order to accommodate the
:xtra weight oi lurreled main arma-
All had been discarded by 1914 ex-
cept the Revenge which, renamed
i{MS Redoubtab/e to release the
lame for a new battleship, was
aitached to the Dover Command. With
1er guns relined to reduce the bore to
3C5mm (12in) and her hull heavily
crlged both to resist torpedoes and to
allcw the ship to be heeled by ballast-
:g to increase elevation and ranqe,
see was used before the availability of
sr]-ltable monitors for bombardment of
e:remy posrtions in Belgium at up to
-4630 m (16,000 yards).

HMS Royal Sovereigm rn fft e

magnificent Victorian livery of the
1890s. Thanks to a superlative effort
by Portsmouth Doclqard she was
completedin just42 months, a
record{or the period. HM^SRoyal Oak
could be distinguished from her six
sisfers asfiersteam pipes were
forward of the funnels, but the others
were practically identical. By the
outbreak of war in I 9 I 4 all had been
dispo s e d of e xcepf I/MS Revenge,
which bombarded German positions
on the Belgian coast.

'Roya-l Sovereign' class (continued) Pre-Dreadnought Battleships
Left: HMS Royal Sovereigm and fter
sisters were built according to the
dictates of the I 8 89 N aval D efence
' ,,t.
Act, which decreed that the strength
.::.1..:.:: of the R oy al N avy should m atch that
of the combined fleets of the second
s and third largest navies. Her
increased size meant increased
]t, expense,butthiswasacceptedas
the price of Empire.

_---J -.-

rl:. \'. \. -'-\
..\ li
Nrfrz :: -
Where the 'Royal Sovereigns' were Withsomuchweightsaved thepre-
offsprrng of tho 1BB9 Naval Defence viously open barbettes could be given
act, tir6 nine 'Majestic' class ships an armoured hood bunkers and
were begat by the'i893 'Naval Scaie' ammunition capacity could be^ in-
where thle coinbined strength of the creased, andtheoutputrequiredofthe
French and Russtan fleets (in hypothe- main machinery could be lo-wered'
tical alliance) were held to pose a Themajorrtyof theclasswerefrttedfor
threat whtch the Royal Navy would find oil to be sprayed over the coal burning
difficult io contain, They were fine in the furnaces, for a raprd boost of
ships. seven coming lrom Royal Dock- oulput
yards, and combin-ed all the features Most of the class saw war duty in
ihat set a new standard sufficiently home commands and the eastern
frigh to qive them the pdm as the firsi Mediterranean, where four were in-
tnie pr5-Dreadnoughis, Launched in volvedwlththeDardanellesoperation.
tggSl6 the class tomprised HMS Of these, lhe -M-ajestic was s-unk
C'esa' Hannibal,lllustiious,Jupiter, (together wrth HMS Triump'h) by Hers-
tutagniicent, Maiestic, Marsi Prince ing's U-21,inMay 1915 Tbrotorpedo-es
George and Victorious. pierced her protective nets without
Superficially they looked rather like hindrance and she capsized in seven
enlarqed 'Royal Sovereiqns', but they mlnutes
benefited greatly from new features.
fLrst was th-e protective deck sloped at Specification
the sides
sides to meet edgeof
meet the lower edqe the
of the 'Malestic'class
belt. lrtile HMS
Previously tried rn the little
belt, Previouslv HMS Displacement: 14,900 tons standard
I4,9UU tc
Renown, this fbature was backed by and 15,900tonsfullload
coaff"nters to give improved protecl
-as Dimensio-ns: lenglh 128 3 m(421 0 ft);
tron to the macLrttery spaces any beam 22 9 m (75 0 ft); draught B 2 m
armour-piercing projectile hitting the (27 0 fD five 457-mm ( 18-in) torpedo tubes IIMS Majestic went into reserve at the
belt at an anqle th-at would permit Propulsion:twosetsoftiple- Protection: belt 229 mm (9 in); Nore in I 906, but was commrssrbned
penetration woirld be deflected-by the gxpqlqlgn s-t:oqm engdnes delivering transverse bulkheads 356-305 mm atDevonport in 19 14 and escorted
glacis behind. Secondly, the armour 8945 kwll2 000 ihp) to two shafts (14-12 in); splinterdeck 102-706 mm the C anadia n troop s hip s. S he w as
iras of 'Harveyized'steel with a face- Speed:]7lcts (4-3 in); barbettes 356 mm ( 14 in) Admiral Nicolson's flagship during
hardcnina so
hardening effpeti\/e
sn effective lo
as to the
enable two hvm
Armament: (12-in), ll
hvin 305-mm (12-m), 12 maximum; casemates 152 mm (6 in) the Dardanelles operations and took
4sz--- it8-in)
457-mm belts of the 'Royal
(]B-in) felts 'RoYal 152-mm(6-in)and 16 12-pdrgnrns, and Complement:670 part in the bombardment of I I
Quds'to be reduced to a combination M arch I 9 I 5, but was sunk by U -2L the
ci223-mm (9-in) belt and 102-mm (4-in) nextday.
The thlrd important feature also :rr

weight, this berng the adoption

:i a new-model 305-mm (12-in) wn.

Iils 3S-calibre weapon was far lighter
-:an the ear[er short 343-mm (13.5-in) The' M aj estic' class was construcfed
arid the smaller werqht of the pro- as partof theAdmiralty's reaction to
1;r the growing naval power of France
_=ctile was offset by 25 per cent grea-
:3r penetrative power. This was due to andRussja. Pro tected by Haweyized
:,e gmri being a high-velocity weapon, plate, their main armour beltwas
:-'mbining new slow-burning ProP- only half the thickness of that of the
to Yield a 'Royal S overeigns' but was j ust as
=:.arts with a lonq barrel effec tive. uch weight- s av ing
::-':zzle veloctty of 732m (2,400ft) per S

::cond compared with the 615m allowed the main armament to be

2 ,116 fD per second quoted for the
given an armoured turret.
::rlier battleships' 343-mm (13.5-in)

Z'IIN 'King Edward VII' class
King hrmself, who had launched lhe
Iead ship and who had directed that
slJsirorito always be a flaqship. The i

flnal lhree ol the class were burlt afler L

the plans for the much improved'Lord

Nelsons' had been drafted and were
obsolescent on completion. The ships,
Iaunched between 1903 and 1905,
were HMS Africa, Britannia, Com-
monwealth, Dominion, Hibernia'
Hindustan, King Edward VI I and JVew

Edward VI I had decreed that HMS

King Edward Vll should always be a
flagship and she j oined the Grand
Fleetin 1914,Ieading the 3rd Battle
Squadron. Here she settles slowly in
thewater after hitting a mine off
CapeWrath. She capsized after l2
Eing Edward VII' class (continued) Pre-Dreadnought Battleships
Tery m anoeuvrable, the' E dwar d
"/IIs' were dubbed the 'Wobbly
Eight' as their quirlq rudders made
steaming in an orderly line a
considerable challenge. Their mixed
arm ament was the resu It of m u d dled
ttltinking and wasnot a.success.


The innovation of the class was in the Thus not enough of the heavier guns sMace of cemented armour, The ly'er,y Propulsion: two sets of Erple-
ixed secondary armament, At this were carried to make their inclusion Zealand was later renamed Ze alandia expansions steam engLrres deL'.'+-_ ;: the armoured cruiser was worthwhile and the smaller-calibre to free the original name for a battle- 13420-kW ( 18,000 ihp; to hvo sr---.-
:eaching the final phase of its design weapons were squeezed into a box crurser, and the Britannia andKing Ed- Speed: IB,5 kts
-rd its 190,5-mm (7.S-in) main battery
:albre was giving way to the new 234-
battery, behind the side armour but ward VII were lost in World War L Armament: rwo hruin305-mm (.2 :.
separated from each other by only a four 234-mm (9,2-rn). l0 I 52-mr---': --.
:m (9,2-in) type. This latter was an thin splinter screen, Their protection, and 14 12-pdr qnrns, and four 45T-i:::-
:xcellent weapon, well capable of redistributed because of the revised Specification ( 1B-in) torpedo tubes
:iercing the averaqe battleship belt at secondary and tertiary battery 'KingEdwardVII'class Protection:belt 229-192 mm(9-1 :.
:ange then considered normal. Four arangements, was also downgraded Displacement: 16, 350 tons standard transverse bulkheads 305-203 nr:- :-
s-nqle weaponswere shipped by each almost immediately by the rntroduc- and 17, l0O tons full load B in): decksSl,5l and64 mm 12 2::-:
:ithe'King Edward VIIs'but, in a case tion of the APC pro.1ectile, an armow- Dimensions:length 138.3 m (453,75 ft); 2,5 in); barbettes 305 mm ( t2 i::l
:: addled thinking, were mtxed with piercing shell with a soft cap that pre- beam 23,8 m (78.0 ft); draught 7,8 m maxrmum; battery 178 mm(7.:l.
-re customary 10 152-in (6-in) Wns, vented it shattering on hitting the hard (25,5 ft) Complement:780

>K iiora Nekon' class

:oqether with her srster HMS ing to be singles, Thrs was in order to warships for many years to come, Both expanslon steam engiles dellel:-;
Agamemnon, HMS .Lord JVeIson was restrict the beam, comparatively arbit- ships performed valuable semce in 12490 kW (16.750 ihp) to rwo s:-a:s
:re last of the British pre-Dread- rarily, to fit certain drydocks. One the eastern Mediterranean, particular- Speed: lBkts
:-cughts. Having been preceded by strenglh of German equrvalents was, of ly the Dardanelles, but were always Armament:two twin 305-mm (-2-:_'
ftigate.Melson of 1876 and followed course, their excellently subdivided overshadowed by their successors. four twin and two single 234-n:n '? z-
=e the battleship ly'elson of 1925, it is
:y hulls and large beams, so that this res- in), and 24 12-pdr grms, and five {: - -
:ct clear why the 'Lord' was added, triction was certainly inhibiting, As it Specification mm (18-in) torpedo tubes
-ne 'Lord Nelson'class was the logical was, the two 'lrord Nelsons'were shor- '[ord Nelson'class Protection: belt 305- 102 mm ( l2-+ :-.
:xtension of the 'King Edward Vils', ter than their predecessors and, being Displacement: 16, 500 tons standard transverse bulkheads 203 mr:. 't :..
iut the ships' construction was com- designed to the maximum beam, and l7,75Otonsfullload decks 38, 102 and 76 mm ( I 5 { =:-:
renced only just before that of HMS proved remarkably handy, Dimensions:lenqth 135.2 ft (443.5 ft); 3 rn): barbettes305 mm (12 m.
-readnought, their gn-rns were pur- By tiqht design, they achieved im- beam24.2 m (79,5 ft); draught 7.9 m maximum; secondary h:rrers . . : ::-:-
-:hed for the latter's swrft completron proved protection at almost no weight (26 0 ft) (7 in)
Id, finally, the two were not com- penalty, the area ofarmouJ being kept Propulsion: two sets of triple- Complement:810
:leted until nearly two years after, to an absolute minimum, One{hird of
.-Jready obsolete. their bunker capacrty was for oil but
An rnteresting point ls that these, the they were the last British battleships
-ast of the old school, cost little more equipped with steam reciprocating Agamemnon adopted this unusual
-:an contemporary armoured crursers engines. Externally, they could im- colour scheme while in the East
a: about t1.54 million each, while the mediately be recogmrzed by their high Mediterranean in I I I 5. Uprating the
:evolutionary newcomer seemed superstructure topped-off by short fun- secondary battery to 9.2-n calibre
:rmparatrvely at S1,78 nels of unequal section. The mainmast was a logicalstepinview of the
:::Ilion, also reintroduced the tripod bracing lessons of flre R usso-J apanese war.
The main lessons of the Russo- that was to remain a featule in Britrsh but arguably the vessels were over-
_:oanese engagements, still in prog- armed for their displacement. The
:ess in 1905, was that the big-calibre real answer was the all- big gun ship.
l'-jn looked set to dominate and dictate
-:e course of an action before secon-
::ry armaments were even in range.
-::e decision to uprate the whole
s:condary battery to 234-mm (9,2-in)
:alibre was, therefore, vrndicated,
::ugh an apparent suggestion to re- '\.
::3 the
-=-..cut ships to an all 305-mm

fell on deal ears, Ten 234-mm

:2-tn) gmns were carried, an unLtsual
-',nber due to the centre turrets hav-
The'Dunccns inAction
From their lonely anchorage at Scapa Flow the mighty Dreadnoughts of the Grand
F leet dominated the naval war, bottling up the German High S eas F leet and slowly ffMS Dnncanrlres a broadside from her I Z-in Mk IX
(305-mm) guns, whichfired a385-kg (850-1b) sheil
strangling the German economy. But Dreadnoughts were too precious to be risked capable of piercing 406 mm ( I 6 in) of armour plate
elsewhere, and somanytasksfell to thenow obsoletepte-Dreadnoughts.TheRoyal at a range of 4500 m (5,000 yards). When firing at a
Navy's'Duncan' class served from the North Atlantic tO the Mediterranean, and target at a range of 9000 m the shell reached a
were viewed as expendable. heightof 370 m(1,200 f0.

It is something of a paradox that whiie for most

of Admiral Sir John Jellicoe's magnificent
squadrons of Dreadnougthts the naval war of
1914-8 was one of much boredom, the older
and obsolete battleships enjoyed for the most
part a iar more varied programme. The reason
was simple, in that lt was the principal role of
the Grand Fleet to contain the German High
Seas Fleet, The Grand Fleet's task was compli-
cated by the fact that the Germans, while not so
inferior in strength, adopted a 'fleet-in-being'
stance, rarely challenging, seldom taking risks
but, because ofthe short distance oftheir bases
from British shores, always threatening. Mount-
ing what was in reality a distant blockade, the
Grand Fleet could never move far from home
waters and occupied itself with interminable
sweeps and exercises, punctuated by brief
periods in bleak northern anchorages,
At the outbreak of World War I the High Seas
Fleet could muster 34 capital ships by includ-
ing in its number 16 pre-Dreadnoughts and the
hybrid SMSBJrjcher To match this Ilne-up, the
Grand Fleet too had initially to include pre-
Dreadnouqhts, the third of lts four battle squad-
rons compristng the 'King Edward VIIs'. While Six'Duncans' had been completed in 1903-4, Gradually, the regular warships were replaced
the newest of these was only seven years old, the numbers soon being reduced by HMS by the better-suited armed merchant cruisers,
the class was 3 kts slower than the Dread- Montagu's wreck off Lundy in 1906, Three of of longer endurance and inflnitely more com-
noughts and each shrp carried only four main the remainder (HMS lJbem arle, Exmouth and fortable in a northern seaway. It is recorded
battery grums compared with 10, disparittes so ftusse11) were available at the outbreak of war that the Albemarle, runntng through the Pent-
marked that the squadron was always and immediately joined the Grand Fleet at Sca- land Firth in the teeth of a winter gale, hit a sea
banished to the taii of the hne to avoid slowing pa, Any thought of instant glory were soon so fierce as to smash the charthouse and carry
deployments. Even when relieved by new queiled by their attachment to the Northern away the bridge, Havrng spent a spell in dock-
shrps in 1915, the eight were retained as a Patrol, where the weary winter months were yard hands as a result, she was rewarded by
coherent force in the Channel Fleet, being spent reinforcing the totally unsuitable old being packed off to northern Russia to cover
based particularly in Nore Command to coun- 'Edgars' of the lOth Cruiser Squadron, Working growing Allied interests in the area, Her pre-
:er any enemy thrust in strength toward the the wild waters of the UK-Faroes-lceland gap decessor, the crutser HMS lphigenia (later to
Thames on the vital cross-channel routes. and its eastern approaches, the l0th CS had the win fame as a blockship at Zeebrugge) was
The next oldest pre-Dreadnought class unenviable task of detecting every merchant- inconvemently small, particularly when it came
-,.rere the 'Duncans', and these were viewed as man in transit to and from the northern North to being required to act as an icebreaker to
a more expendable asset. They were initially Sea and, if not rmmedtately satisfled as to its keep open the port of Archangell
tnouped ln the 6th Battle Squadron, but this content and movement, sending lt into Kirkwall
or Lerwrck for examinatton
arranQlement was soon broken down as the
::eeds of a world war indicated that such ships The work was onerous but of vital import- Exmouth and Russell, meanwhile, had pre-
s'rll had a useful (indeed vital) role to play in ance as one Iine ofthe blockade that denied to ceded the 'King Edward VIis' to join the Chan-
ower-nsk theatres elsewhere. the enemy his raw materials and many staples. nel Fleet. In November 1914, screened by des-
troyers, led at a stately pace by minesweeping
trawlers and hoprng (in varn) for the spotting
services of two airships, the two conducted the
first of many bombardments of the Belgian port
of Zeebrugge, which was targeted as already
housing both UB- and UC{ype German sub-
marines, well-placed to drsrupt cross-channel
trafflc. With their 7.85-m (25.75-ft) draughts, the
battleships were obliged to remain well
offshore, firing at ranges from 5000 m (5,475
yards) up to as much as I 1000 m (12,030 yards).
In an hour they put down about 400 rounds of
305- and 152-mm (12- and 6-in) fire, concentrat-
ing on the harbour installations, the railway and
the lockgates to the Bruges canal. Later bom-
bardments were conducted mainly by special-
ist shallow-draught monitors, but the severity of

The six 'Duncan' class battleships were produced

in response to the three 'Peresviet' class 'fast
b atueship s' I aid d own by Russ ia in I B9 5. I n fact the
Russian lhrpslr ad nothing like the performance
they were credited with. Pobieda, seen h er e' was
suik in Port Arthur together with Peresviet.
Pre-Dreadnought Battleship s

-:.-s cpening round was probably the reason for

:.e Germans shifting their submarine base in-
.r:.d to Bruges,
With the start of the Dardanelles campaign
:arly in 1915, two 'Duncans' went out to the
l.lediterranean, among the first of many. In the
::nse of a great opportunity lost, the Dar-
:anelles couid be termed the pre-Dread-
:.:'irghts' Jutland for, despite the outright hostrl-
,._; of Fisher, leadership of the calibre of Admrr-
= Keyes would have seen the Strait forced,
.'beit with losses, A strong force appearing at
:s time off Constantrnople would have put
--:rkey out of the war before she could be
:lganrzed or buttressed by the Germans,
HMS Comwallis was, lrterally, the flrst rn
=.tlon rn the campaign proper, On 19 February I/MS Duncan wa s serving with the Channel Fleet in Althoughunable to stand in lineof battle aga::s:
--115, as one of a l2-strong Anglo-French bom- 1906when her srslerHMS Montag:uewent hard Dreadnoughts, earlier battleships like the
:ardment group, she was first to fire on the aground on Lundy I sland in lhi'ckfog. Duncan 'Duncans' were still a potent force and, had Je-,-
lardanelles' outer fortifications, a i0000-m endeavoured to assist but grounded herself. She been handled with a moreNelsonic touch ar :!.e
.-0 was eventually floated ofI, but Montaguewas Dardanelles, Turkey might have been knockec c.::
935-yard) ranging shot at Orkanie battery
wrecked and had to be brokenupwhere she lay. thewarin
:r the south srde of the Strart. The Duncan of 1914.
-:volved in almost every other actrvity of note cruisers and monrtors, the oid battleshrp's big
:uring the year of the campaign, being also gmns enfiladed the enemy trenches, the awful
:nong the last to leave in the following Decem- effect of the Lyddiie beating the fight out of the
:er, joining a force tasked with protecting the Turks belbre they even advanced, Attached to
S:ez Canal from Turkish land attack. the group was the destroyer HMS Scorpion
Armyfire support commanded by one Andrew Cunningham
who, a quarter century later, would make his
An almost endless chore following the incep- name in Mediterranean waters as the great of the great Gallipoli stalemate was fire ,ABC
:rpport for the army. There was initrally little to A few months later the i?usse1/ was mined
-:ar from the sea and, despite German sub- and sunkoff Maltawith considerable loss oilife.
:arine successes in the North Sea, there ex- While the old battleshrps could absorb qunfire
-s:ed a measure of complacency. This com- and the odd torpedo, they seemed yulnerable
:-acency was rudely shaken in mrd-May when to mines, The Comwallis was hit by three tor-
-:-e Comwallis accompanied the older HMS pedoes from a U-boat in January iglT but
-:cltath ('Canopus' class) into Morto Bay just stayed afloat for a considerable time before
-::srde Cape Heiles, for the latest in a series of foundering.
:.:cturnal bombardments in support of the The Exmouth's experiences were much the
: lench right wing, Antrcipating their coming, a same as those of the Russell in beinq used to
---:rkish destroyer under temporary German smash the Turkish defences before one more
::mmand had slipped down the Strait, un- weary assault on the seemingly impregnable
--rticed by Brltish standing patrols through peak of Achi Baba. Supportrng her were two
<eeping close aboard the steep-to coastline on cruisers, one French and the other HMS 7a1-
:e European (north) side, This boidness pard bot, late of the 10th CS, the 'Edgars' which had
:J for the destroyer managed to approach to been fltted with bulges to improve their resist-
1000 m (l 095 yards) beiore being chal- ance to torpedo hrts and to allow them to be
.=rged by lhe Goliath, It was too late, for three listed as a means of increasing gun elevation
'',:lpedoes were in the water and all hrt her, and range.
rile the Comwallis was unscathed, her com- Wrth German submarines arriving, bom-
: r:riot foundered with great loss of hfe and her barding shrps now were obliged to keep on the
..sailant escaped in the confusion, The affair move, reducing their effectiveness. Shallow-
-=';ed such aiarm at the Admrralty that the
-:.'. battleship HMS Queen Elizabeth was cal-
.:r rome and her place taken by two iurther
-:e Russell atLJ tupctttat tg were
vvvlg withdrawn
r -:-:he Grand Fleet's 3rd Battle Squadron and
:,= -: rmer was involved in one of the very last
:-.":- support tasks off Gallipol1, In the early
:. :i 1916, the Helles withdrawai was well
j-r=: 'riay when suddenly the Turks came
r,. .= :: :he fact that only 19,000 men remained,
. :-.:;ruard that included a Royal Naval Divr
:. -:- terrible barrage was laid from both
. -:=: :i ihe strait onto the little perrmeter.
- -:,-:lf
.'' to meet the mass assault
- inevitably come when the flre irfted,
. .-:-i-ers were suddenly heartened by the
-,=: ol naval gunflre, Supported by

= - a.:cpus','Formidable','London' and

i - -- --r: c./asse s of battleship were all strikingly

i-- .. :.-- :r: a p p e a r a nc e ; thls is IIMS Duncan a I
- :: : s ',',,ith the armoured crutserHMS Drake
:r:-- =s::in. .lfaval gunfire was invaluable to the
-* . :::::ghout the Dardanelles campaign.
f iwiftsure'class
From time to time in emerqency the whrle Fisher preferred HMS i?enown
British Admiralty approPriated in the Mediterranean, Indeed, with the
warships building to foreign account, high speed of the 'Swiftsures' (the first
but the compulsory purchase of two in the Royal Narry to exceed 20 kts) and
Chilean battleships in 1903 could only their mxture of 254- and 190,5-mm (10-
have been because of a suspicion that and 7.5-rn) quns they very much fol-
the customer might default and ofler lowed the Fisher ideal of the 'smallest
the ships to a rival fleet (that of Russia) ellectlve big gun and the largesl possi-
Certainly they were of little use to the ble secondary qn-rn', On such narrow-
Royal Nalry as they were underarmed gutted ships, the large casemates de-
and too lightly built to take their place manded by the 190,S-mm (7.5-in) gnrns
in the main line TheY had been dominated the amidships layout Cor-
ordered as a counter to the Chilean's ners were cut in overall p-rotection
usual rivals, the neiqhbouring Arqen- which, while permissible with Argen-
tines, which were building the flnal tine 254-mm (10-in) shells in mind,
parr oI a qroup of fast shrps carrylng would have proved vulnerable to an
both 254- and 203-mm (10- and B-in) unlucky hit by a 305-mm (12-in) round
gir-:ris As these were rated armoured This was particularly true of those ment policy, Easily distinguished from other
Cruisers, the Chileans opted for a pair parts of the barbette structure behind British battleships by her gooseneck
ihe maln armoured bulkheads The Specification cranes, HMS Triumph and ft er slsler
of battleships, whose scantltnqs and were being built for Chile bY
armament would be scaled for local, ships' two tall, symmetrical funneis and 'Swiftsure' class
rather than European, disPutes. gooseneck boatcranes gave them a Displacement: I 1 800 tons standard Armstrong, but the Admiralty issued
verv distinctive sllhouette. and l3,BS0tonsfullload a compulsory purchase order after it
The Royal Navy alreadY had three
small 254-mm (10-in) gunned bat- Bbth ships were active m lhe Dar- Dimensions:lenqth 146.2 m (479.75 ft); seemed theywere tobe sold to
tleships, but these were sized espe- danelles campaign, HMS SwrTtsure beam2l 6 m(71.0 ft); drauqhtT,T m RussiabyChile.
craily for foreign flag duties, particular- havtng already seen service in the (25,33 ft)
iy inChina. In the case of the'Swiftswe' Suez area and the Red Sea and HMS Propulsion: two sels of iriple- torpedo tubes
class, the hulls were about 30,5m Triumph commtssioning from resele expansion steam engines delivering Protection: belt 178-76 mm (7-3 in);
(100 ft) longer but of the same beam to in Hong Kong. The latter was torpe- 9230 kW ( 12,500 ihp) to two shafts transverse bulkheads 152 mm (6 in);
achieve the required 20 kts. Interes- doed and sunk whrle assisting with hre Speed: 19 kts decks 76,25 mm (3-1 in); barbettes
tingly, the small battleships in the Far suppofi, Her loss, toqtether with that of Armament:two twin 254-mm (10-in), 14 254-mm (10 rn) maximum; casemates
HMS Majestic, siqnalled the end of the 190, S-mm (7, S-in), L4 14-pdr and two 178 mm (7 in)
East had seen both Jellicoe and Beatty
make their mark in more iuntor ranks, Royal NaW's traditional close invest- 12-pdr gn-rns, and two 457-mm ( l8-in) Complement:800


'Kaiser' class
The immediate result of the accesslon linked across top and bottom by pro- Specification
of the naval-minded Kaiser Wilhelm II tective and splinter decks The reason 'Kaiser'class
Ln 1BBB was the laying down of the first for this economy was the shipping of a Displacementl lO, 970 tons standard
group offour seagoing battleships, the hear,ry secondary armament of 16 150- Dimensions: Ienqth 125.0 m (410, L ft);
'Brandenburg' class. Thougth these mm (5.9-in) guns. Only four of these beam 20,2 m (66.3 ft)i drausht 7.8 m
were mounted in casemates the re- (25 6 ft)
were exactly contemporary with the
British 'Royal Soveretgns', they were marnder beinq qrouped at main deck Propulsion: three sets oftriple-
remarkably dtfferent in layout Of the level tn a superstructure protected expansron steam engines deltvering
same length, they were of less beam only at each end but so shaPed as to 9BB0 kW (13,250 ihp) to three shafts
and, though of less power, were permit a maximum of axial fire, Recon- Speed: 18 kts
reasonably fast. Their major feature structed in 1906 the ships lost their four Armament: two twin 240-mm (9,4-in)
-,'/as a srx-gun main battery of 280-mm casemated weapons, which were of 19 l5O-mm (5.9-in) and 12 BB-mm (3 46-
little use in a seaway but, in doing so in) gmns, and srx 457-mm (18-in)
i1l-in) quns in a twtn mountlng at each torpedo tubes
end and a thrrd in a gap in the super- increased freeboard to the extent that
siructure, the last with barrels of re- the belt was virtually clear of the sur- Protection: belt 300 m (1 LB in);
face. Of low fighting value bY 1914, transverse bulkheads 200 mm (7,9 in); Seen ft ere in J 902, SMS Kaiser
iuced length. Despite this the ships Friedrich III represented a step
::ad a unique srx-gmn broadside at a SMS Kaiser Barbarossa, Kaiser decks 75 and 60 mm (2,95 and 2,36 1n);
-*me when four was the norm, an exam- Friedrich III, Kaiser Karl der Grosse, barbettes 250 mm (9.8 Ln) maximum backwards for German naval
at the cost Kaiser Wilhelnt ll and Kaiser Wilhebn casemates and secondary tufiets architecture after the bold and
cle ofadvanced thinkinQl but innovative' Brandenburg' clas s. The
der Grosse were used for traininQl and 150 mm (5,9 in)
:: rnadequate protection. heavy secondary armamentof 16
To a certain extent, therefore, the accommodation durrng World War I Complement: 670
150-mm (5.9-in) guns could not
::llowing five-ship'Kaiser' class laun- compensate for the weak choice of
:red between 1896 and 1900 was
four 240-mm (9.4-in)weapons as the
i:r:rethlng of a dLsapporntment as, In mainarmament.
::deavourinqt to rectify the earlier
s-rips' deficiencies, their desiqners
pr5duced something little different
l3m contemporartes abroad The in- When commis s io ned, the' K ais er'
::restrng decision was not Io lncrease
class formed the I st Squadron of the
:e calibre of guns to match the 305- Heimatflotte (HomeF\eet), as the
:::n (12-rn) usual in foreign battleships,
.';i G erman navy was then called. By
to reduce it to 240-mm (9.4-in) and
-:3ut the number to four, set in the 1914 they hadbeenplaced in
reserv e, but w er e mobilize d on the
-:al manner, with a twin mountingr
::: foruua-rd and aft. The Penelrative
outbreakofwar toform the Sth
:,:-rrer of these guns was the equal of Squadron of the HighSeas Fleet.
They were withdrawn from the active
r:,:st verticai belts onlY at close list for the second and final time in
:.rges, and the anticrpated com-
p=:sation of a high rate ol fire evident-
-'.- iid not materialize, Again, protec-
::: -ras below par, wtth a verY shallow
::l: ihat extended over onlY the for-
-;,'::i 80 per cent of the length, and

_.:. -:- :

'Wittelsbach' class Pre-Dreadnought Battleship s
---<e the precedtng 'Karsers, there 'Wittelsbach' class battleships in line
r:re five 'Wittelsbach' class bat- ahead, seen from the ZeppelinL.1{.
-:shrps which though of the same They were mobilized in l914 ta form
::rament, had a very different layout. the 4th Battle Squadron but soon left
-he ships were
-=:nched in 1900-1 the fleet as they were too vulnerable
il. S MeckJenburg, Schwaben, Wet- to stand in the line of battle. After the
'in, Wittelsbach and Zahringen. They war, allwere scraped save
::.ained the smail 240-mm (9.4,rn) Zahringen which survived until I 944.
:-arn battery gnrn patred fore and aft,
::i differed in having a flush marn German battleships of thrs period
::ck which effectively raised the after were sttll aimed primarily at North Sea
::ret by one level. The forward turret and Baltrc operations, their dimensions
::nained elevated a further level on a and draught being limited to suit tidal
: ;h barbette, The hull was some 5 m restrictions and sizes of locks to basins
-3 4ft) Ionger and commensurately and the Kiel Canal. The class was too
::amier but, in adopting the more old to play any srgniflcant role rn World
=::clrve Krupp cemented armour rn War I and all survived it For a penod
-:-ace of the earlier shrps' Harvey nick betu'een the lt ars 'he Zah.rngen aper beam 22.8 m (74,8 ft); draught 8.0 m
:- steel, a greater area of thinner plate ated as a radio-controlled target ship. (26,2 ft)
-:;- incorporated for the same degree Propulsion: three sets oftriple-
,- protection, Where the earlier ships Specification expansion steam enqines deliveringr
:aC a narow belt over about 80 per 'Wittelsbach'class I 1 185 kW (15,000 ihp) to three shafts
::irt of the length with only armouted Displacement: I 1, 775 tons standard Speed: lB kts
:-nks to the turrets above, the 'Wit- and 12 790tonsfullload Armament: two twin 240-mm (9. 4-tn),
:.sbachs' could accommodate full- Dimensions: lenqrth 126.8 m (416 0 ft); 1B 150-mm (5,9-rn) and 12 BB-mm (3.46-
-::rgrth protection and surprisingly, re-
.'-rrect the old central battery con- T he I mperial G erman N avy's thi: c
--:-ot, Its weight precluded extendingr class of battleships, the
----s battery to any height, so that the 'Wittelsbachs' were armed like tne
=-;ht 150-mm (5.9-in) guns that it con- 'Kaisers' but adopted a very ciilfere:'-
.,:.ied were carried at a low level TVro layout, featuring a flush main deck
--:tner weapons were sited in pro- and larger hull. Krupp-cemente=
-::red casemates at the same ievel (KC) armour was usedin p/ace o.'::=
-.:.her aft, the height of the forward Hawey nickel steel, allowing fu---
-=l-mm (9 4-in) quns, which must have length protection.
::en greatly afiectedby blast Thus, to
,::ain the exceptionally heavy chase
-i: of two main and erght secondary
:::rels the layout left much to be de-
.::d in a seaway and blast interfer- :\


'Braunschweigr' class
Preussen, seen here in I I I 0, was the
fourth of the 'Braunschweig' class,
which began construction after
Tirpitz's SecondNavy Bill (1900) and
the be ginning of th e Anglo-G e r m a n
navalracewhichwas todo so much
to bring aboutWorldWar I.
Krel (Nordsee-Ostsee) Canal. The
ships launched between 1902 and
1904, were SMS Eraunschweig,
E,lsass, I/essen, Lothringen and
Secondary armament was aiso up-
graded from the preferred 150-mm
(5.9-in) qmn to an unusual 170-mm (6,7-
in) type, with a loss of four barrels. As
the hull was able to accept a qreater
area of armour, the secondary was only a marginal improvement. Propulsion: : '+: j:-: j
weapons were better grouped Boilers were divided between six expansro,-. i-:-:* :' . - i. -_ . ,.
amidships, though the malority were in cylindrical and eight Thornycroft- 1252 k\1- '. : . . .:., .-
a main deck battery that was still too Schulz water tube types, a combina, Speed: 18 - is
low to be fougtht properiy in a seaway tron that required three funnels Up to Armament: .',-: -'.-:, ::
The primary reason for this upgrading I 600 tons ol coal and 200 tons of oil fuel 170-mn.i ---:-
was the growing need to stop torpedo could be carrred. -: --
9U115 c--U:-'--
craft at rangtes that were rapidly in- tubes
creasing with the improved technolo- Specification
gry of the torpedo, To achieve the same 'Braunschweig' class
l8-kt speed as the earlier class instal- Displacement: I 2, 990 tons standard
led power had to be increased by ab- Dimensions: length 127,6 m (486 ft);
out 15 per cent, though the endurance beam 22,5 m (73,8 ft); draught 7.45 m
ofabout 6300 km (3,915 miles) at 16 kts (24.4 ft)
Guns qnd Arnnour
From the launch of the first ironclad to the eclipse'af the
b attleship ars the final arbiter of war,at sea, warship design
was dominated by the strugglebetweenguns andarmour'
Guns steadily grew in'range and power; but engineers
continued to devisenew tSrpes of arrnour plate to defeatthem.

As a term, 'pre-Dreadnought' dates of qourse Jrom'the completion of 'HMS

Dreadnoughi herself and 1-hus invariably bears overtones of obsolescence ln
iheir day, Fowever., such vessels Were the blest capital ships. afloat, bu.t,what ls
cften uncefialn ls the piecise definition oJ that day.
From the transitionai types of capilal ship in the 1860s, Where'steam-driven
nuils still retained a'broa<iiide armarnen! and full rrg, development'took off in a
vafiety of direc,tions, with a literal triai of .strength emerging between the gun
and aimoui plate. As massive $rotection kept out hqavli prolectiles, larger guns
rad to be carried but thele had to be fewer of thern Properly arranged, these
occupied less space and,,therefore, dema.nded a Smaller area of pro-tection
whrch. in turn. cduld be thicker. Slrih arrangements r6pidiy took the gun f rom its
iraditional piVot mountings, which.could be trained through one ot I{MS Conqueror,Iaunched in 1881 , was a product of a misinterpretation of the
several embrasu-res, and.then to the.powered barbette, where the weapons battle'of Lista in I866 which seemed to demonstrate thal the tam was an
,,r'ere sited on a ievolving lurntable, firing over and protected by;,a fixed and effective means ol sinking ironclad battleships. Conqueror s a rmament was
reavy circular redoubt. While the lattei-ailowed guns to be trained rapidly coacentrated {arward ta support the nmminE attack.
in,ough wide arcs, they were of little uge if obstructed by a full-set of.tigging. So
.-rntil frachinery was r6liable enought to make the 'maslless' wilrship accept- tory compounds to improve resrlience and to resist fragmentation. This phase
able, central baitery ships were pop-ular, built around'armoured boies extgnQlng lasted approximately from, 1860 to,1880, by which time it was possible to find
iiten through two ilecks and proiecting beyond the sides to maximize axial fire. two'305-mm (.1 2-in) layers of wrouqht iron, secured backto-back. With neiv
inis latter f"eature was impoitant as powered opponenis could either flee or gu,ns soon abl.e lo pierce even this,. however, the next move was to steel armoui
ccssibly r.nrork themseives into a decisive taking position. which, while showing greater resistance to penetrat on, was liable tc shatter
Adequate protection was so'heavy that when 1he 'mastless' turret ship under'the smashing effect of ldrge shot.
:ecamir a reality, its f reeboard,waS exceedingly low While this keptthe belt From 1BB0 to 1890,, compound armour evolved, This was iron,
afea to a minim'um, it gavd a poor stabillty range and seakeeping was.rapidly faced wlth hardersteel, whlch was either poured mollen or hot-rolled to produce
:egraded byadeteriordting sea state. Attemptstq increasefreeboard resulted a composite slab which, itself, could bre rofled:further. While this combined the
.:ilediately in greater areis of thinner armour and the heavy guns sited so high projectile-shattefing quality of steel with the toughness of iron, the hard face did
:.rat thev naO to Oe mounted ih barbettea rather than turrets Thus mounted,
:clh guns and crews were vulnerable to f ragments, though heavy projectlles A cJos e:up of the op e n b arbette moun ting af the I 3. 5 - in gu ns oIHMS Royal
.:'ere itill f ired at such close ranges that their ttaiectories were f lat, armour being Sovereigm. Abi e to fire one round everlt 2 l/e minutes , which could penetrate
rrrcentrated lnto heaw vertical belts to defeat them. nine inches af KC plate at 5 ,000 yards , they were thri most effective guns ot
Earlv armourwas of wrought.iron, usually sandwiched with teak and proprie- their day. Later British battleships reverted to higher-velocity I Z-in guns.


jd -,r,t
Fre-Sreadnought Battleshlp s

- -aoped drmour.c - . -
ine decade fr"on 'l
E9C .:'-:-,', ..: .-:
.-bo^iser [.e 'a.e
-:ducearreryhard suiia:E ..- .
^e'cy iu SPo i o^ ,rc .

---er the same level c' t'_..=,- :'

eOOo OS (OLlrO Oe , C' '
-re brg gJn. -eai \'. '
: -. : :-e 1E80s, large calibres were
- :oed -or l^o r 'i-ar -: ':.-:: :iai suoerior ranqe. Belts and
-.rpcrtrng slructuies n,e 3 :: :- :-: ..:-:: :: . oSe quariers, W'ih mediUrn
5-e qu^s S Ilr-r'o^-c -l .r'.:. s-Lre:struiture, startinq fires and
'- -'-e'- Q(a'ew.
--tai .i^ga ao'.-ae.-
I e^!lneetS. hO\\e . ::a:.-.-i inat, wnrle the energy of a
..crie -dr.ctlVp._,. '
'..a-ed. ln sl'o...^c . ,- r -
'' i : : - l'OOOr1 O.a :O itS ve OC V
'lreases in calibre, whrci r:: . ---
,l:\. '.\i3re ci far greaier irnport than
::::: . Deira l es ct Ireater weight and
:,..ver rates of fire.
3everal factors combti:sc i. :::..::::r:lls relattonship. 1n aboL;t 1Bg0 Fuji_was f,hertrsl.baffiesftJp ordered {romBritain by theyoungJapar:e := :.:.-
,::C le replaced black pov!/oei :,i : :ftpe a-t. ii piace of a near explostve ,4n i'rnproved'Foyal,Sove:'e:En'desigrn, sAe slr ipped I Z-in 4A-iaitbre :,:.:
-t:,onatlcn on firing, wntcn i',r. -=-' :-, _..J !,.1t enormous StresSes into the wftici:, "because of lleirfirg,herm uzzle velacity-, were mere effec:i.:: ::: ::.

- - r chamber, ihe slowei-1,.; r : t': c t -, =

.: ;.s= i r-ap o y-erpandtng gases that f,han dhe J3.o-rn guns of l"heBrif:sJr yessels.
. --:crhiy accelerated a crr,ect:ii 3 sng iie barrel Far hiqner muzzie-telocities
. c.lossbe.b..o-ir,,. ' to !- 1i- ..:,.- :- odnot orooo.Castw.'apons A sequence oi fundamental imprcvements ihus carre i....--- - = -.
qave way ro a construciion v!, tn oorcentrically shrunk tubes, and this in turn lB90s 'o proouce a new slra n o'capita sn.p se
- ine greatly superior wire-,,r,,ornd r,,ariei'y'. The'length c{ the Laiter could be n cL ng ond le ,o y,r3 p'rnisl-rre^r. In a p". od - B. -- - .. . ,
. -lepted only because a reitable breech mechantsm was produced f nally to the Royal Navy led the waywith HMS Malestrcof 1895 ,::. . . '.' -. ' - .
.rlace muzzle-loading Hydraui.c po\^,/el-was applied to handling, loading bnci
-. ning to increase ftring rates. nextfieet,thatof theRussians,cornpleted tsfirst n 9a2.^=:,,- ::, .
further -17 and built four more for the clrent, Japan
-nus. in the early 1890s, ihe standai'd 305-mm {12-n) Briiish naval qun was T^e'o'c-D'eaonoJort,Jsalvpena.bJpe-e o ..-: ... -
:reaseil from 35 to 40 caitbres ;n length, muzzle velocity rising from 640 m ti:e i:a :^s -.:
that the Americans (1902), the Germans (.1 904), --
--geC0 'i' ro 792 r ,2,60A't ce ,eco^c-. BeLler oe^etrdl "g po*:e. dna tcnge.

French(1906)followedsuit,theyv;erebarelyintimerc:-:,.-::_, . .
: were coupled with moi-e conststent ballistics and a mr)ih-reduced smdke anc J'eate r.r oi-, o-, 'u i-r''odue ',on o' r-e 1.. ,c -:
sance. Ralher than smash an ocponent in a risky ctose-range brawl, rt w,as
lossrSle +o desrro),h m sctentjfically from beyond the range of his secon- 'Iireforecasd/e aflfMsMajestic a t tke turnof thecentury. a per;ai.,'...-.=:.
, batrery. Tlr s possibil ty resulted immediateiy in the beginninq of frre con- naintwoyk andpoJ.isfi seemed rnore importanf fo sorne ftoya j X'a:;.. :..,: _-=.-:
, . the provision of heavierhonzontal and obiique armourtodefeatlhe plungrng than gunnery and manoeuvre. Her ) Z-in guns fired 85a-b's_-te.'.-. :i.., : :.- . .- _
, ': l. and an increase in secondarv armatfient caitbres.
penetu"dte i J t/z in af KC armour at 5,00A yards.

r,'rrl .ii|, lr)rll j:i*llilllf liriiliirrlf


= 'Kearsage' class
Early American battleships were 203-mm (13- and B-in) primary and Launched in lB9B, these were the USS largtest cahbre that could use 'fixed' QF
aimed primarily only at coastal de- secondary batteries respectively, put Kearsage and Kentucky, ammunition) were shipped in two long
fence, but the 1B9B US war against the three 'lndiana class ships (BB-1 to Although lhe lowa had suffered a broadside batteries, the guns sepa-
Spain was rapidly successful because BB-3) of 1893 ahead of European con- reduction in marn battery calibre, she rated by splinter screens, Speed was
of naval power, By virtue of the war and temporaries on paper but, practically, had retained a healry secondary arma- sacrificed for wide beam (for steadi-
following annexations, the USA ac- resulted in great limitations as a result ment of eight 203-mm (B-in) quns set ness) and healry protection, the coffer-
qurred the Philippine Islands, Hawait, of low freeboard and blast effects, The sensibly but werghtily in twin turrets, dams backing the belt (419 mm/16,5 in
Wake Island, Puerto Rico and part of USS lowa (BB-4) of 1896 armed to rec- The 'Kearsages' reverted to the 330- thick amidships) being filled with
Samoa, Anti-imperralist conscr€Iices tify this wrth a hrgher freeboard for mm (13-in) giun at the cost of four of the 'compressed American corn pith cel-
proved elastic enougth to accept these better seakeeping saving weiqht on 203-mm (B-in) weapons but, to save lulose to limit flooding following dam-
new responsibilities and to expand the the more elevated turrets by accept- weight further in the quest for age,
fleet to a level that would not only safe- ing a cut rn calibre to 305 mm (12 in), freeboard, the remainingr four 203-mm
giuard the new teritories but would the European norm, This back{rack- (B-in) weapons were paired on the top Specification
eventually, be second only io that of ing was not at all in favour with the new of the main turrets in houses rigidly 'Kearsagre'class
the UK, nalry, which hmited the class to one fixed to the lower element. Thus the Displacement: I l, 540 tons standard
LLmited size and draught, coupled ship and opted for the innovative but two batteries had to be trained Dimensions:length I14.4 m (375,25 ft);
with a hearry armament of 330- and extraordinary pair of 'Kearsage' class together on a common roller path. beam22.0 m(72,25 ft); draughtT.2 m
ships (BB-5 and 88-6) as follow-ons. Fourteen 127-mm (S-in) quns (the (23 5 ft)
USS Kearsage r,rra toward the
s d step Propulsion: two sets ol lr-ple-
all-bigWn ship as she,like the'Ring expansion steam enqines delivertng
Edwards' in Britain, carried an 8950 kW ( 12,000 ihp) to hvo shafts
intermediate battery. Fourteen 5 -in Speed: 16,5 kts
guns were also shipped in long Armament:two twln 330-mm (13-in),
broadside batteries, separated by two twin 203-mm (B-in) and 14127-mm
splinter screens, the calibre being (5-in) gmns and four 457-mm (l8-in)
closen becauseitwas the largest torpedo tubes
availableinfixedammunitioi. #N\ \:
Protection: belt 419-241 mm (16 5-
9,5 rn); protective decks 127-70 mm (5-
\\ 2,75 in); barbettes 432 mm (17 in)
maximum; secondary guns 229 mm
(9 in)

US Navy has always
the virtues of acquiring the
be- these economies was the pair of 'Mis-
sissipi' class diminutives built in the
rng only sx years before being sold to
the Greeks, Renamed Lemnos and
expansion steam engines delivering
7455 kW (10,000 ihp) to two shafts
-a:gest affordable ships; the curent middle of the 'Connecticut' series, Kilkis, they must have strained the Speed:17kts
'-386) arguments regardrnq future air- which ran i?om the USS Connecticul facilities of the Greek navy to the Armament: two twin305-mm (12-in),
:la-ft-carriers and attack submarines (BB-18) herself to the USSlr'ewHamp- utmost, but K/,hs lasted to be sunk rn four twin 203-mm (B-in), eight l78-mm
jemonstrate a continuinq conviction. s,h.rre (BB-25), the standard 139, 1-m 1941 in a different war. (7-in) and 12 76-mm (3-in) guns, and
-:-e arqument is a powerful one as the (456.3-ft) hull permittinq a powerful two 533-mm (21-in) torpedo tubes
:=sigmer has freedom to make his ship three-tier armament of four 305-mm Specification Protection: belt 229- 102 mm (9-4 in);
r:-trre battleworthy in terms of arma- (12-in) quns, eisht 203-mm (B-in) euns 'Mississippi'class transverse bulkheads l78 mm (7 in);
::ent. speed and protection, while the in paired turets and l2 178-mm (7-in) Displacement: 13, 000 tons standard sphnter deck with 64-mm (2,5-in)
--ger ship can better keep the seas. gTuns in casemates In 1905, however, Dimensions: length 116,4 m (382.0 ft); slopes; barbettes 305 mm (12 in);
Is the US Navy moved toward the Cramp of Philadelphia launched the beam 23,5 m (77,0 ft); draught 7,6 m casemates 152 mm (6 in)
-:ception of the Dreadnougrht era it USS Mrsissippi (BB-23) and USS /da- (25,0 ft) Complement:800
:-ai a very healry building program- fro (BB-24) 'economy versions' cut Propulsion: two sers of tnple-
:::e. Six 15,000-ton 'Virginras' and the down to 1164m (382ft), By actuallY
:i:: two of the enlarged but very simi- increasing the beam very slightlY USS Mississippi and fiersrster Idaho
however, they managed still to econo- were cut-down versions of the
-:r Connecticuts' were launched rn
mize in armament to the extent of only 'Vermont' class, and merely Proved
.:-4 alone. Of these, the lormer again
::3d a trvo-storey tufiet arangement, four casemated 178-mm (7-in) wns. that a smaller huil contains less
-,-;-i both 305-mm (12-in) twin turets The major loss was in power, space than a larger one. TheYwere
rr:-irned by a parred 203-mm (B-in) 12300 kW (16 500 kts being
ihp) for 18 sold to Greece as soon as decentl7
reduced to only 7455 kW (10,000 ihp) possible, and the money was used to
:-:-lolrse. The layout was agaln un- buy another 'New Mexico' class
for 17 kts. Thus the frnal evocation of
=-iactory but gnms
left the conviction that
rnounted on the the American pre-Dreadnought was it,;: Dreadnought instead.
-=:pelmposed '/|i;
-'=:.:relLne were the obvtous way deemed Llnsatrsfactory lne palr serv-
-:aci. With this in mind the plans for
:.r,,o all-big-gnrn 'South Carolinas'
-;.':::: ahead. At thrs point, however,
J":::3rress put on the f,nancial brakes,
.-l:-,',rng the UK to steal the race and
:::::plete HMS Dreadnougil flrst
-l:other unsatisfactory result of
Armed Forces of the World

\orway shares a common border with the USSR,
out in comparison with th s giant has a population of
cnly just over 4 million. Norway has been a member
cf the North Atlantic Treaty Organization for many
,,ears, but does not allow ine permanent basing of
\ATO forces, apart f rom cor:'mand staff, in its coun-
:ry in peace. The NATO Alliei Mobile Force trains in
\orway on a regular bas s ani 'n t rne of war would
Jeploy on the flank of NATO \rvneTe there was the
Jreaterthreat. Some NATO cc-.ii-es, including the
JSA. are now stockpiling ee- or-ent in Norway to
save tlme transporting it by a . cr sea n t:me of war.

The Army
The Norwegian army has a peacet,re strength of
19,500 officers and men, of wnorr abort 12,000 are
conscripts doing 15 montns nar.onal servrce. Re-
serves on f ull mobilization totaL 165.000 officers and
'nen who would form 12 brigades eacn with about
1,000 men, two armoured squadrons, supporr and
:ther units. There are also 72,000 officers and men
^ the home guard. which can be mobilized in just
':ur hours. Each man normally does 50 weekend
^curs or six consecutive training days per year. Nor-
.vay is divided into Northern and Southern Com-
-ands, the former having its HO n Bodo and the
:tter its HO in Oslo.
ln peacetime the Norwegian army is organized towed howitzers, with the FH-70, FH-778 and M48ASs makeup aquarter of the tanksteng:th o!
-to one light brigade group for northern Norway, French TR '1 55 now being consldered as possible the Royal Norwegian army. Obvious differences
::mprising three infantry battallons, one tank com- replacements. There are also about 40 M 1 09 series from theearlier models of M48 include the fr.ttjng a:
:any and a self-propelled artillery battalion, one anti- 155-mm self-propelled howitzers. ln addition to the a 1 05-mm (4. I 3-in) main gan, disfinEruishab/e frc.-::
'craft battery and two border garrison battalions. the 90-mm (3.54-in) weapon of lfte eaiirer veru*ies
= RBS-70 surface-to-air missile systems there are also
by the absence of a prominent muzzle brake-
ln southern Norway there is an all-arms group 20-mm and 40-mm (1.5-in) towed anti-aircraft guns.
-:rnprising one infantry battalion, one light tank There are large numbers of Swedish Bv 202 and Bv craft below manned only in time of war or'.^''--= --
-:Trpany, one self-propelled artillery battalion and 206 tracked all-terrain vehicles which have been ing.
:-e anti-aircraft battery. ln addition there are inde- designed specifically for operating in the snow. The The f leet includes 14'Type 207'class s-b-.'-==
::1dent armoured squadrons, infantry battaltons Nowegian army also operates about 35 Cessna built in West Germany and commiss onec ..'.,'.:-: -
.- : artillery regiments. O-1E and Cessna L-18 light aircraft in the air 1965 and 1967; these have eight 533--- -'--
'rfantry weapons in service include 9-mm (0.35- observation post role. torpedo tubes with Norweg an comra': a-: --.--
- ;Valther Pl and Brownrng M191'1 pistols, 9-mm trol system, Norwegian torpedo f ire-coni': = , = -=-
'r10 sub-machine guns left behind by the Ger- The Navy and West German sonars and torpedoes - -:!:
*.-s, the 7.62-mm (0.3-in)West German Heckler & The Norwegian navy has a total strength of about
Steggr's one of / 4'Hauk' class Fast Attack CraJt
::- G3 rifle built under lcence in Norway by 8,500 officers and men, of whom 5,500 are con-
commissrbned between I 9 7 7 and I 9 8 0. Dlspia cr:g
- -:sberg Vapenfabrikk, the 7.62-mm Rhelnmetall scnpts doing '1 5 months national service and about I55 tons at fuL[ load, they ate armed with six
:: aid the Amerlcan 12.7-m-r.. (0.5-in) M2HB in coastal defences. The main naval bases are Penguin Mk 2 SSMs in single launchers, one 45-n:.n:
--::- 1e-guns, and the British 8i-mm (3.2-int L16 Bergen, Harstad and Tromso. Naval reserves total (1.57-in) and one 20-mm (0.78-in) gun, and carr.t
'-: --ercan 107-mm (4.2-int M30 n'ortars. Anti- about 25,000 off icers and men with a number of the two 533-mm (21-in) torpedo tubes.
: ---: - iveapons rnclude the SweO sn RBS-70 sur-
':----.-z: r ss le systerr ard rne 20-n n t0.7Bt FK
-,-- .'.- :^ s a \Atest Cerr:ar lre n,r etali 20-mn'
r \6r;.;Y.
:---- l^ =-1-^'. CgSg^:O;l:3-':
-^ a^ -^-
-- --.,', .-= a:a':'='a'>S." r'e €&--
- , - '.'-: --,'. a- . - \:-.,'
- '- , -r- - '"'- : ra-- - 2.?a- ' ','2a z',: - Ce-
-- :-- :::'-:S :_l--^::,',:::_
:* - -- : : - -'- l-=::. ..- '-':=-''+=.2':-.,:'

Armed Forces of the World
10 coastal mrnesweepers, all commissioned in the
mid-1 950s and dueto be replaced by a new class of
: eight mine counterrneasures vessels.
Support craft include seven tank landing craft, one
depot ship for both submarines and fast attack craft,
seven coastal transports, two diving tenders, one
torpedo recovery vessel, and the usual research
ships and tugs.

Coastal Defences
These come under the control of the Noruvegian
navy and include 15 coastal defence fortresses
which are to be rebuilt with at least 50 artlllery, mine
and torpedo batteries. Guns used at present include
75-mm (2.95-in), 105-mm. 'l 20-mm (4.1-in), 121-
mm (5-in), and 150-mm (5.9-in) weapons, many of
which were emplaced by the Germans during World
War ll. Bofors of Sweden is now installing new
=.,1...,;,'e=y$1ffi- ''l
20-mm Ersta guns in armoured cupolas, and these
can fire 25 rounds per minute.

The Goast Guard

This was founded in 1977 but operational control
: 1
!e;f;.' :=:' t','
is held by the Norwegian Defence Command. Ves-
sels include seven chartered vessels with a 40-mm
gun and a displacement of between 500 and 1,200
3 s-c rs the nam eship of the five-strong class of tes cornmissioned in 1965-7 and armed with a 76- tons, and three specially built 'Nordkapp' class (out
i:gates built in the mid-1960s wifft U,S assistance. mm gun and a 40-mm Bofors anti-aircraft gun as of seve:, originally intended to be built) which each
l:.e Cesign is based on that of the 'Dealey' class well as ASW weapons. have a Lynx helicopter, one 57-mm (2.24-in) Bofors
:es'royer escorts of the US Navy, butis The main bulk of the Norwegian navy is made up gun and four single 20-mm cannon. There are also
: ::stantially modified for Norwegian service.
of light forces which can be easily hidden and are three other patrol craft each with a 40-mm Bofors
well suited to operations in the fjords around Nor- gun. The six Lynx Mk 86 helicopters are operated by
,=-. 3:rmany and Norway signed an agreement way. All of these have been designed and built in the Noruvegian air force's No. 337 squadron.
,- ri- .^r n ch Thyssen Nordseewerke would build Norway, and many have the Norwegian Penguin
:,,3e210'submarinesbetween 19B9and 1994 anti-ship surface-to-surface missile. There are 14 The Air Force
. . :- :- cpt on on a f urther two. The five 'Oslo' class 'Hauk' class fast attack craft (missile) commis- The Norwegian air force has been undergoing
'" 1.::3 buit ln Norway were commissioned in sioned between 191f and 1980 and armed with six extensive modernization in recent years with the
'::i--. rnese are based on the American 'Dealey' Penguin SSMs, one 40-mm Bofors gun and one older Lockheed F-104G/CF-104 fighters being
.-,. :' destroyer escorts but modified to suit 20-mm Oerlikon gun; 19 'Storm' class craft com phased out of service and replaced by 72 Generai
'.: -.,:9 an requrrements, and now have Norwegian missioned between 1965 and 1968 which have six Dynamics F-1 6s (comprising F-164 single-seaters
= =- I - . surface-to-surface missiles, Sea Sparrow launchers for Penguin SSMs, one 76-mm and one and 1 2 F-1 6B two-seaters). Total personnel strength
:-'.'s 'orr76 mm (3-in) guns, Mk32ASWtorpedo 40-mm Bofors gun; six 'Snogg' class fast attack of the Norwegian air force is about 9,500 officers
-::: :nd the Norwegian Terne ASW system. Half
craft (mlssile) with four 533-mm (2.09-in) torpedo and men, of whom 5.000 are conscripts doinq 15
-:sl oi construction of these ships was met by tubes, four Penguin SSM launchers and one 40-mm months national service. Air force reserves total
'- 'Sleipner' class corvet- Bofors gun; and eight 'Tjeld' class fast attack craft
= - S -. There are also two about 25,000 officers and men, and include many
(torpedo) commissioned in the early '1 960s and airfield defence battalions armed with Bofors 40-
-'i- )B helicopters land troops during a recent armed with one 40-mm Bofors, one 20-mm cannon mm L/60 anti-aircraft guns. The Norwegian air force
AlthoughNorway does not allow and four 533-mm torpedo tubes. These 'Tjeld'class is integrated lnto the NATO air defence system and
.e::nanent stationing of NATO {orces in the
:rtry. the NATO Allied Mobile Force trains there
craft are held in reserve. Royal Air Force fighters often land in Norway to
year. In a conflictwith the USSR, Norway Other vessels include three coastal patrol craft, ref uel after shadowing Soviet aircraft over the North
=';ery two coastal minelayers (each of which can carry and
t'o.,.ild be of great strategicimportance to both Sea.
lay 300 to 400 mines), one controlled minelayer, and The front-line strength now consists of four
squadrons with a total of 72 General Dynamics F-
16s: Nos331 and 334Squadronsarebasedat Bodo,
'-* fi. j
and Nos 332 and 336 squadron are based at Rygge.
- 't ru;,
One operational conversion unit with 35 Northrop
F-SA fighters, one maritime patrol squadron (No.
333) with seven Lockheed P-38 Orion aircraft, one
transport squadron with six Lockheed C-130H trans-
port aircraft and three Dassault-Breguet Falcon 20s,
one transport squadron with four de Havilland Cana-
da DHC-6s and two Bell UH-1 B helicopters, one
search and rescue squadron (No. 330) with '1 0 West
land Sea King Mk 43 helicopters, two utility squad-
rons with 26 UH-1 Bs (Nos 719 and 120) and 21
Saab-Scania Safari training aircraft complete the in-
ventory. Missiles include the Sidewinder air-to-air
missile and the Bullpup surface-to-surface missile.
On order is an air-launched version of the Penguin
missile. which rs already used in the surface-to-
s.-rr'ace role by the Norwegian navy.
Air defence is provided by four batteries of Nike
Hercules surface-to-air missiles and four light anti-
aircraft battallons with 12.7-mm machine-guns and
Bofors 40-mm L/60 and L/70 anti-aircraft guns.
Norway is leasing 54 Raytheon HAWK surface-to-
air missile launchers, 162 missiles and their com-
mand and control system from the USA.