List of sunken battleships

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Approximate map of sunken battleships.

Sunken battleships are the wrecks of large capital ships built from the 1880s to the mid 20th century that were either destroyed in battle, mined, deliberately destroyed in a weapons test, or scuttled. The battleship, as the might of a nation personified in a warship, played a vital role in the prestige, diplomacy, and military strategies of 20th century nations. The importance placed on battleships also meant massive arms races between the great powers of the 20th century such as the United Kingdom, the German Empire, Japan, the United States, France, Italy, Nazi Germany, Russia, and Spain.

Although the term "battleship" appears to have been coined in 1794,[1] the term first began to see wide usage to describe certain types of ironclad warships in the 1880s,[2] now referred to as pre-dreadnoughts. The commissioning and putting to sea of HMS Dreadnought, in part inspired by the results of the Battle of Tsushima in May 1905,[3] marked the dawn of a new era in naval warfare and defining an entire generation of warships: the battleships. This first generation, known as the "Dreadnoughts" (and later Super dreadnoughts), came to be built in rapid succession in Europe, the Americas, and Japan with ever more tension growing between the major naval powers. However, despite the enormous sums of money and resources dedicated to the construction and maintenance of the increasing number of battleships in the world, they typically saw little combat. With the exception of the naval battles of the Russo-Japanese War and Jutland, which would be one of the last large-scale battles between capital ships,[4] no decisive naval battles between battleships were fought. Although only one battleship, SMS Pommern, sank at Jutland, the faith placed in decisive naval battles evaporated in Germany in favor of continued warfare by attrition via submarines. When the First World War ended in 1918, much of the German High Seas Fleet was escorted to Scapa Flow, where almost all of the fleet under Ludwig von Reuter was scuttled to prevent its capture by the British. This was a fate shared by numerous other battleships.

Between the wars, the Washington Naval Treaty and the subsequent London Naval Treaty limited the tonnage and firepower of capital ships permitted to the navies of the world. The United Kingdom and the United States scrapped many of their aging dreadnoughts, while the Japanese began converting cruisers into fast battleships in the 1930s. In 1936, Italy and Japan refused to sign the Second London Naval Treaty and withdrew from the earlier treaties, prompting the United States and the United Kingdom to invoke an escalator clause in the treaty that allowed them to increase the displacement and armament of planned ships. The naval combat of World War Two saw many battleships belonging to the various nations destroyed as air power began to be realized as being crucial to naval warfare, rather than massive capital ships. As the battleship began to fall out of favor, some captured capital ships were decommissioned, stripped, and deliberately sunk in nuclear weapons tests.

The greatest loss of life in the sinking of a battleship was the 3,055 deaths aboard Yamato near Okinawa in 1945.

Losses[edit]

Much like with battlecruisers, battleships typically sank with large loss of life if and when they were destroyed in battle. The first battleship to be sunk by gunfire alone,[5] the Russian battleship Oslyabya, sank with half of her crew at the Battle of Tsushima when the ship was pummeled by a seemingly endless stream of Japanese shells striking the ship repeatedly, killing crew with direct hits to several guns, the conning tower, and the water line or below it, which became the cause of the ship's sinking.[6][7][8] Battleships also proved to be very vulnerable to mines, as was evidenced in the Russo-Japanese War and both World Wars. After the Battle of Port Arthur,[9] a number of Russian and Japanese vessels were struck by mines and either sank or were scuttled to prevent their capture. A decade later, the Marine Nationale and Royal Navy lost three battleships, HMS Irresistible, HMS Ocean, and Bouvet, to Turkish mines in the waters of the Dardanelles. Torpedoes proved to be very capable at sinking the mighty battleship: on November 21, 1942, USS Sealion sank Kongō with over 1200 casualties.[10] HMS Barham, another of the only two British battleships sunk by a submarine during the Second World War,[a] was struck by three torpedoes fired from German submarine U-331.[b] Barham could not make an attempt to dodge the incoming torpedoes and sank with 862 fatalities as a result of several magazine explosions that occurred after she had initially been hit by U-331's torpedoes.[13]

Although mines and torpedoes threatened the battleship's dominance, it was the advance of aerial technology and tactics that see the replacement of the battleship with the aircraft carrier as the most vital naval vessel. The large scale use of aircraft in naval combat was underrated[14] and the idea that they could destroy battleships was dismissed.[c] Still, the United States and Empire of Japan experimented with offensive roles for aircraft carriers in their fleets.[14] The belief that the aircraft carrier was junior to the battleship began to evaporate when the Imperial Japanese Navy, in a surprise attack, destroyed nearly the entire United States Pacific fleet at anchor at Pearl Harbor on 7 December 1941 solely by air power.[16] The captain of Bismarck, Ernst Lindemann, had almost dodged the Royal Navy until he was undone by British reconnaissance aircraft. Although almost every battle in World War Two involved gunfire between surface warships to some degree,[d] their time as the senior ship of a nation's fleet had run its course.

Those battleships belonging to the Central Powers that survived World War I often did not survive its aftermath. The most infamous example of the scuttling of capital ships after the First World War was the incident at Scapa Flow, where German admiral Ludwig von Reuter successfully scuttled 52 of the 74 ships of the High Seas Fleet.[17] The Austrians too disliked the idea of surrendering their fleet to their enemies, the Italians. On 1 November 1918, as the ship was being transferred to the State of Slovenes, Croats and Serbs, Austrian battleship Viribus Unitis was mined and sunk at Pola by two Italian frogmen, Raffaele Paolucci and Raffaele Rossetti, unaware of the transfer.[18][19][e] Similarly on 27 November 1942, the Vichy French government scuttled the majority of the French fleet at Toulon. Scuttling a battleship was, repeatedly through history, a last act of defiance against an enemy.

By tradition and maritime law, sunken warships remain the property of the government of the nation that owned them, and many are treated as war graves.

Sunk in combat[edit]

The following ships were destroyed in battle and most are considered war graves.

Name Navy Casualties Date sunk Location Condition Notes Image
Petropavlovsk  Russian Navy 679 killed[21] 13 April 1904[22] Yellow Sea[23] Unknown.
Destruction battleship Petropavlosk.jpg
Hatsuse  Imperial Japanese Navy 496 killed[24] 15 May 1904[25] 38°37′0″N 121°20′0″E / 38.61667°N 121.33333°E / 38.61667; 121.33333 (Japanese battleship Hatsuse) Yellow Sea[26] Unknown.
Hatsuse-Main-Mast-Falls.jpg
Yashima  Imperial Japanese Navy None 15 May 1904[27] 38°34′0″N 121°40′0″E / 38.56667°N 121.66667°E / 38.56667; 121.66667 (Japanese battleship Yashima) Yellow Sea[27] Unknown.
IJN Yashima at Jarrow, c1897.jpg
Oslyabya  Russian Navy 470 Killed[28] 27 May 1905[29] Tsushima Strait[30] Unknown
Oslybya23.jpg
Imperator Aleksandr III  Russian Navy 778 killed,[31] All hands[32] 27 May 1905[33] Tsushima Strait[34] Unknown A granite obelisk stands in St. Petersburg in memory of the crew of Imperator Aleksandr III.[35] Imperator Aleksandr III (1901) 01.JPG
Navarin  Russian Navy 687 killed[36] 28 May 1905[37] Tsushima Strait[38] Unknown
Battleship Navarin.jpg
Borodino  Russian Navy 854 killed[34] 27 May 1905[39] Tsushima Strait[33] Unknown
Borodino1904Kronshtadt-ispytanie.jpg
Knyaz Suvorov  Russian Navy 908 killed, 20 captured[32] 27 May 1905[40] Tsushima Strait[33] Unknown
Knyaz Suvorov 01.jpg
Sissoi Veliky  Russian Navy 47 killed[41] 28 May 1905[42] Tsushima Strait[33] Unknown
Sisoy Veliky Mediterranean 1897.jpg
HMS Formidable  Royal Navy 547 killed[43] 1 January 1915[44] 50°13′0″N 3°4′0″W / 50.21667°N 3.06667°W / 50.21667; -3.06667 (HMS Formidable (1898)) off Portland Bill, English Channel[44] Upside down and nearly blown in half.[45] Lies at a depth of 55 metres (180 ft).[46]
HMS Formidable 1898.jpg
HMS Irresistible  Royal Navy 150 killed[47] 18 March 1915[48] Dardanelles[14] Unknown A flag from HMS Irresistible, recovered from the ship by Ottoman forces, now adorns a wall at the Istanbul Military Museum. HMS Irresistible abandoned 18 March 1915.jpg
HMS Goliath  Royal Navy 570 killed[49] 13 May 1915[49] Dardanelles[49] Unknown
HMS Goliath during the First World War IWM Q21299.jpg
HMS Triumph  Royal Navy 78 killed[50] 25 May 1915[50] Near Gaba Tepe, Gallipoli Peninsula[51] Unknown
HMS Triumph (1903) as completed January 1904.jpg
HMS Majestic  Royal Navy 49 killed[52][f] 27 May 1915[53] 40°02′30″N 26°11′02″E / 40.04167°N 26.18389°E / 40.04167; 26.18389 (HMS Majestic (1895)) Cape Helles, Gallipoli Peninsula[53] Unknown
HMS Majestic sinking 27 May 1915.jpg
Barbaros Hayreddin
(ex-SMS Kurfürst Friedrich Wilhelm)
 Ottoman Navy
(ex- Kaiserliche Marine
258 killed[54] 8 August 1915[55] Dardanelles[56] Unknown
SMS Kurfuerst Friedrich Wilhelm 1900-2.jpg
SMS Pommern  Kaiserliche Marine All hands.[57] 1 June 1916[58] North Sea[58] Unknown The bow ornament is now in the Laboe Naval Memorial.[59] SMS Pommern 1916.jpg
Regina Margherita  Regia Marina 674 killed 11 December 1916 Off Valona, Albania Capsized, laying on her starboard side at a depth of 68 metres (223 ft).[60]
Italian battleship Regina Margherita ca. 1908.jpg
HMS Cornwallis  Royal Navy 15 killed[61] 9 January 1917[62] Off Malta, Mediterranean Sea[63] Unknown
HMS Cornwallis broadside Suvla December 1915.jpg
Danton  Marine Nationale 296 killed[64] 19 March 1917[64] 38°45′35″N 8°3′30″E / 38.75972°N 8.05833°E / 38.75972; 8.05833 (French battleship Danton) Mediterranean Sea[64] Upright under 1,000 metres (3,300 ft) of water.[64]
Danton.jpg
SMS Viribus Unitis  Austro-Hungarian Navy 300 killed[65] 1 November 1918[65] 44°52′9″N 13°49′9″E / 44.86917°N 13.81917°E / 44.86917; 13.81917 (SMS Viribus Unitis) Pula, Croatia[65] Unknown
Viribus unitis sunk.jpg
SMS Szent István  Austro-Hungarian Navy 89 killed[66][67] 10 June 1918[66] 44°12′07″N 14°27′05″E / 44.20194°N 14.45139°E / 44.20194; 14.45139 (SMS Szent István) Premuda, Adriatic Sea Capsized under 66 metres (217 ft) of water.[68]
Bundesarchiv Bild 134-C2280, Szent István, Sinkendes Linienschiff.jpg
HMS Britannia  Royal Navy 50 killed, 80 injured[69] 9 November 1918[70] 35°43′0″N 5°53′0″W / 35.71667°N 5.88333°W / 35.71667; -5.88333 (HMS Britannia (1904)) off Cape Trafalgar, Strait of Gibraltar[70] Unknown
HMS Britannia (1904) sinking on 9 November 1918.jpg
HMS Royal Oak  Royal Navy 833 killed[71] 14 October 1939[72] 58°55′1″N 2°59′0″W / 58.91694°N 2.98333°W / 58.91694; -2.98333 (HMS Royal Oak (08)) Scapa Flow[73] Capsized under 33 metres (108 ft) of water.[74] Royal Oak sank with about 3,000 gallons of fuel, which became such an ecological concern that the Ministry made plans to remove the oil or even raise the ship and salvage it.[75] However, after years of work by Briggs Marine, some 16,000 gallons of fuel were removed from the wreck, and the Ministry of Defence declared it to be no longer actively leaking fuel.[76] It remains to be seen how the thousands of pounds of live munitions on board Royal Oak[77] will be addressed. The ship's bell is the centerpiece to a memorial to those who died aboard Royal Oak at St Magnus' Cathedral in Kirkwall. HMS Royal Oak (08).jpg
Bismarck  Kriegsmarine 2086 killed, 114 captured.[78] 27 May 1941[79] 48°10′0″N 16°12′0″W / 48.16667°N 16.20000°W / 48.16667; -16.20000 (German battleship Bismarck) 650 kilometres (400 mi) from Brest, North Atlantic[80] Upright and in good condition under 4,791 metres (15,719 ft) of water.[81]
Bundesarchiv Bild 146-1989-012-03, Schlachtschiff Bismarck in der Ostsee.jpg
HMS Barham  Royal Navy 862 killed[82][83] 25 November 1941[84] 32°34′0″N 26°24′0″E / 32.56667°N 26.40000°E / 32.56667; 26.40000 (HMS Barham (04)) off Egypt, Mediterranean[84] Unknown
HMS Barham explodes.jpg
USS Arizona  United States Navy 1177 killed[85] 7 December 1941[86] 21°21′53.19″N 157°57′0.4″W / 21.3647750°N 157.950111°W / 21.3647750; -157.950111 (USS Arizona (BB-39)) Pearl Harbor[85] Heavily damaged as a result of the attack on Pearl Harbor. After being struck off the Naval Vessel Register on 1 December 1942, Arizona was deemed to be in such terrible condition that, unlike most of the other ships around her, she could not be made serviceable again even after salvaging.[87] Arizona's surviving superstructure was removed and scrapped in 1942, and her main armament followed in the next year and a half.[88] Several guns were salvaged from Arizona and later used aboard USS Nevada.[89] This amidships section had served as a ceremonial platform on the wreck but was cut away to make room for the overlying memorial. One of the ship's bells is at the University of Arizona,[90] and its anchor and a restored gun barrel is located at the Wesley Bolin Memorial Plaza.[91][92] Other artifacts from the ship, such as items from the ship's silver service, are on permanent exhibit in the Arizona State Capitol Museum.[93] USS Arizona 2.png
USS Utah  United States Navy 64 killed[94] 7 December 1941[94] 21°22′7.47″N 157°57′44.41″W / 21.3687417°N 157.9623361°W / 21.3687417; -157.9623361 (USS Utah (BB-36)) Pearl Harbor Utah capsized during the attack, and was partially salvaged but not recovered. The wreck was later partially righted and pulled closer to shore and away from the channel.[95] The wreck is almost completely submerged, with a small amount of highly corroded superstructure visible above the surface.[94]
USS Utah BB-31 in 2010.jpg
HMS Prince of Wales  Royal Navy 327 killed[96] 10 December 1941[97] 3°33′36″N 104°28′42″E / 3.56000°N 104.47833°E / 3.56000; 104.47833 (HMS Prince of Wales (53)) South China Sea[98] Capsized under 71 metres (233 ft) of water. Reported to have been heavily salvaged.[98] The ship's bell was recovered, restored, and displayed in the Merseyside Maritime Museum in Liverpool.[98] HMS Prince Of Wales in Singapore.jpg
Asahi  Imperial Japanese Navy 16 killed[99] 25 May 1942[100] 10°0′0″N 110°0′0″E / 10.00000°N 110.00000°E / 10.00000; 110.00000 (Japanese battleships Asahi) 100 miles (160 km) from Cape Paderan, Vietnam[100][g] Unknown
The Royal Navy (1907) (14775946872).jpg
Roma  Regia Marina 1393 killed[101] 9 September 1943[102] 41°9′28″N 8°17′35″E / 41.15778°N 8.29306°E / 41.15778; 8.29306 (Italian battleship Roma (1940)) 30 kilometres (19 mi) north of Sardinia Capsized, blown in half underneath 1,000 metres (3,300 ft) of water.[103]
Italian battleship Roma (1940) starboard quarter view.jpg
Hiei  Imperial Japanese Navy 212 killed[104][105] 14 November 1942[106] 9°0′0″N 158°59′59″E / 9.00000°N 158.99972°E / 9.00000; 158.99972 (Japanese battleship Hiei) off Guadalcanal[107] Unknown
Hiei Yokosuka departure 1914.jpg
Kirishima  Imperial Japanese Navy 212 killed[104] 15 November 1942[104] Off Guadalcanal[107] Located in 1992 by Robert Ballard, Kirishima lies upside down in 1,100 metres (3,600 ft) of water.[108]
Kirishima Kure 1940.jpg
Scharnhorst  Kriegsmarine 1968 killed, 36 captured[109] 26 December 1943[110] 72°16′0″N 28°41′0″E / 72.26667°N 28.68333°E / 72.26667; 28.68333 (German battleship Scharnhorst) near the Norwegian North Cape[111] Scharnhorst, heavily damaged by the action of Battle of the North Cape, lies upside down in 290 metres (950 ft) of water.[112]
Bundesarchiv DVM 10 Bild-23-63-12, Schlachtschiff "Scharnhorst".jpg
Musashi  Imperial Japanese Navy 1023 killed[113] 24 October 1944[114] 13°7′0″N 122°32′0″E / 13.11667°N 122.53333°E / 13.11667; 122.53333 (Japanese battleship Musashi) Sibuyan Sea[115] Heavily damaged by the action of the Battle of Leyte Gulf. Located under 1,000 metres (3,300 ft) of water in several pieces.[116][117]
Japanese battleship Musashi cropped.jpg
Fusō  Imperial Japanese Navy 1620 killed[118] 25 October 1944[119] Surigao Strait[119] Heavily damaged by the action of the Battle of Surigao Strait.[120]
Fuso Reconstruction.jpg
Yamashiro  Imperial Japanese Navy 1626 killed[121] 25 October 1944[122] Surigao Strait[122] Unknown
Yamashiro torpedo net.jpg
Tirpitz  Kriegsmarine Disputed[h] 12 November 1944[111] 69°38′50″N 18°48′30″E / 69.64722°N 18.80833°E / 69.64722; 18.80833 (German battleship Tirpitz) Håkøybotn Bay, Norway[129] Somewhat salvaged after the Second World War.[125] A large chunk of the armor plating is held at the Royal Naval museum in Gosport, Hampshire.[130] Tirpitz (AWM SUK14095).jpg
Kongō  Imperial Japanese Navy 1250 killed[104] 21 November 1944[131] 26°9′0″N 121°23′0″E / 26.15000°N 121.38333°E / 26.15000; 121.38333 (Japanese battleship Kongō) Taiwan Strait[131] Unknown
金剛ポストカード.JPG
Yamato  Imperial Japanese Navy 3055[132] 7 April 1945[133] 30°22′0″N 128°4′0″E / 30.36667°N 128.06667°E / 30.36667; 128.06667 (Japanese battleship Yamato) East China Sea[134] Broken in half at a depth of 340 metres (1,120 ft) of water. Bow section is upright, while the main section of Yamato is upside down.[134] Though no piece of the ship has been recovered from the wreckage, a nine minute video of the 2015 survey that identified the ship is shown at the Yamato Museum at Kure,[135][136] itself founded a decade prior in 2005 near the shipyards that built Yamato.[137] The museum also features a titanic 26.3-metre (86 ft) long, 1:10 scale model of the Yamato as its centerpiece.[138] Yamato during Trial Service.jpg

Converted battleships[edit]

Two battleships were converted into aircraft carriers either during construction or after entering service; both ships were sunk by combat action during World War II.

Name Navy Casualties Date sunk Location Condition Notes Image
HMS Eagle  Royal Navy 131 killed[139] 11 August 1942[140] 38°3′0″N 3°1′12″E / 38.05000°N 3.02000°E / 38.05000; 3.02000 (HMS Eagle (1918)) near Majorca[140] Unknown
EagleSinkingA 011302.jpg
Shinano  Imperial Japanese Navy 1435 killed[141] 29 November 1944[142] 32°7′0″N 137°4′0″E / 32.11667°N 137.06667°E / 32.11667; 137.06667 (Japanese aircraft carrier) 105 kilometres (65 mi) south of mainland Japan under 4,000 metres (13,000 ft) of water.[142] Unknown
Japanese aircraft carrier Shinano.jpg

Lost at sea[edit]

The following battleships were lost at sea for reasons other than combat.

Name Navy Casualties Date sunk Location Condition Notes Image
HMS Victoria  Royal Navy 358 killed[143] 22 June 1893[143] Near Tripoli, Lebanon[143] According to the dive team that discovered Victoria, the ship lies vertically upright under 140 metres (460 ft) of water,[144] likening it to a tombstone.[145] Due to Victoria's weight and propulsion, she became deeply embedded in the soft sea floor. Today, only about 103 metres (338 ft) of the ship is visible above the sea floor.[144] According to diver Mark Ellyatt, the sword of Lord Horatio Nelson is on board the wreck of the ship.[146] HMSVictoriasinking1893.jpg
Gangut  Russian Navy None 12 June 1897[147] Near Vyborg, Russia[147] Unknown
Gangut1889-1897.jpg
HMS Montagu  Royal Navy None 30 May 1906[148] Lundy Island, Ireland[148] Almost entirely salvaged.[149]
HMS Montagu (1901) Aground Lundy Island 1906.jpg
Liberté  Marine Nationale 250 killed[150] 25 September 1911[150] Toulon, France[151] Unknown
Battleship Liberté1.png
HMS Audacious  Royal Navy One killed[152] 27 October 1914[152] 55°32′16″N 7°24′33″W / 55.53778°N 7.40917°W / 55.53778; -7.40917 (HMS Audacious (1912)) 39 kilometres (24 mi) of Tory Island[153] Capsized under 64 metres (210 ft) of water.[154][153]
HMS Audacious crew take to lifeboats.jpg
HMS Bulwark  Royal Navy 736 killed[155] 26 November 1914[156] 51°25′0″N 0°39′0″E / 51.41667°N 0.65000°E / 51.41667; 0.65000 (HMS Bulwark (1899)) off Sheerness, England[155] Unknown
HMS Bulwark explodes.jpg
HMS Ocean  United Kingdom Unknown 18 March 1915[157] Dardanelles[157] Unknown
HMS Ocean (Canopus-class battleship).jpg
Bouvet  Marine Nationale 639 killed[158] 18 March 1915[159] 40°01′15″N 26°16′30″E / 40.02083°N 26.27500°E / 40.02083; 26.27500 (French battleship Bouvet) Dardanelles[159] Unknown
Bouvet capsizing March 18 1915.jpg
HMS King Edward VII  Royal Navy None 6 January 1916.[160] Off Cape Wrath, Scotland.[160] Capsized[161] under 108 metres (354 ft) of water.[162]
HMS King Edward VII (1903) sinking on 6 January 1916.jpg
HMS Russell  Royal Navy 125 killed[163] 27 April 1916[164] 35°54′0″N 14°36′0″E / 35.90000°N 14.60000°E / 35.90000; 14.60000 (HMS Russell (1901)) off Valletta, Malta[165] Capsized under 110 metres (360 ft) of water.[165]
HMS Russel stern Quebec Tercentenary 1908 LAC 3393695.jpg
Suffren  Marine Nationale All hands[166] 26 November 1916[167] 39°10′0″N 10°48′0″W / 39.16667°N 10.80000°W / 39.16667; -10.80000 (French battleship Suffren) off Lisbon, Portugal[166] Unknown
Suffren shelling Turkish positions at Gallipoli.png
Gaulois  Marine Nationale Four killed[168] 27 December 1916[158] 36°15′0″N 23°42′0″E / 36.25000°N 23.70000°E / 36.25000; 23.70000 (French battleship Gaulois) off Cape Maleas, Aegean Sea[168] Unknown
Naufrage du cuirassé le Gaulois en 1916.jpg
Peresvet  Russian Navy Disputed[i] 4 January 1917[170] Off Port Said, Egypt[170] Unknown
Battleship Peresvet.jpg
HMS Vanguard  Royal Navy 843 killed[171] 9 July 1917[172] 58°51′23.76″N 3°6′22.32″W / 58.8566000°N 3.1062000°W / 58.8566000; -3.1062000 (HMS Vanguard (1909)) Scapa Flow[172] Unknown, rests under 14.2 metres (47 ft) of water.[172]
British Battleships of the First World War Q40389.jpg
HMS Prince George  Royal Navy None 30 December 1921[173] 52°44′5″N 4°38′23″E / 52.73472°N 4.63972°E / 52.73472; 4.63972 (HMS Prince George (1856)) off Camperduin, the Netherlands[173] Upright and visible from shore[174]
Majestic Class Battleships- HMS Prince George Q39852.jpg
France  Marine Nationale Three killed[175] 26 August 1922[175] 47°27′6″N 3°2′0″W / 47.45167°N 3.03333°W / 47.45167; -3.03333 (French battleship France) Quiberon Bay, France[176] Unknown
France in Toulon-Agence Rol-1.jpeg
España  Flota Nacionalista None 26 August 1923[177] Cape Tres Forcas, Morocco[177] Somewhat salvaged, mostly destroyed by severe storms[177] A 305 mm and a 102 mm gun were salvaged and reused in coastal batteries until 1999.[177] Acorazado España (01).jpg
Alfonso XIII  Flota Nacionalista Five killed[178] 30 April 1937[178] 43°31′26″N 3°40′44″W / 43.52389°N 3.67889°W / 43.52389; -3.67889 (Spanish battleship Alfonso XIII) off Santander, Spain[178] Unknown
Acorazado España.jpg
Mutsu  Imperial Japanese Navy 1121 killed[179] 8 June 1943[180] 33°58′0″N 132°24′0″E / 33.96667°N 132.40000°E / 33.96667; 132.40000 (Japanese battleship Mutsu) Seto Inland Sea[181] Due to salvaging efforts that ceased in the 1990s,[181] the only major piece of the wreckage that remains is a 35-metre (115 ft) stretch of the hull from the bridge to turret No. 1 at a depth of about 12 metres (39 ft).[182] Relics recovered from the wreck of Mutsu are many in number. In addition to a collection of items held at the Mutsu Memorial Museum in Tōwa-Cho,[183] several of Mutsu's guns were salvaged. They include a 140 mm gun is on display at the Yūshūkan and the No. 4 turret at the Etaijima Imperial Japanese Naval Academy.[184] Mutsu33903u.tif
USS Oklahoma  United States Navy None 17 May 1947[185] Unknown, northeast of Hawaii.[185] Unknown
NASPH ^118506- 19 March 1943. USS Oklahoma- Salvage. Aerial view toward shore with ship in 90 degree position. - NARA - 296975.jpg
São Paulo  Brazilian Navy None November 1951[j] Unknown Unknown
Battleship sao paulo.jpg

Scuttled[edit]

The following battleships were intentionally sunk while not engaged in battle.

Name Navy Casualties Date sunk Location Condition Notes Image
Sevastopol  Russian Navy 11 killed[189] 2 January 1905[190] Port Arthur[189] Unknown
Poltava&Sevastopol1900Kronshtadt.jpg
Admiral Ushakov  Russian Navy 94 killed, 328 captured[36] 28 May 1905[36] Tsushima Strait[36] Unknown
AdmiralUshakov&ImperatorAleksandrII1902.jpg
HMS Hood  Royal Navy None 4 November 1914[191] 50°34′9″N 2°25′16″W / 50.56917°N 2.42111°W / 50.56917; -2.42111 (HMS Hood (1891)) Portland Harbour[191] Unknown
Portland harbour south.JPG
Masséna  Marine Nationale None 9 November 1915[192] Cape Helles, Gallipoli[192] Unknown
French battleship Massena as breakwater.png
Imperatritsa Ekaterina Velikaya  Russian Navy None 18 June 1918[193] 44°42′23″N 47°48′43″E / 44.70639°N 47.81194°E / 44.70639; 47.81194 (Russian battleship Imperatritsa Ekaterina Velikaya) Novorossiysk, Russia[193] Unknown
RU068-16.jpg
Kawachi  Imperial Japanese Navy Disputed[k] 2 July 1918[194] 34°0′0″N 131°36′0″E / 34.00000°N 131.60000°E / 34.00000; 131.60000 (Japanese battleship Kawachi) Partially salvaged.
Japanese battleship Kawachi in early postcard.jpg
SMS König  Kaiserliche Marine None[l] 21 June 1919[200] Gutter Sound, Scapa Flow[200] Capsized under about 35 metres (115 ft) of water.[200] Somewhat damaged by metal scavenging.[201]
SMS Konig illustration.jpg
SMS Kronprinz Wilhelm  Kaiserliche Marine One killed[202] 21 June 1919[203] Gutter Sound, Scapa Flow[203] Capsized under about 45 metres (148 ft) of water.[203]
SMS Kronprinz Wilhelm in Scapa Flow.jpg
SMS Markgraf  Kaiserliche Marine Two killed[204][205] 21 June 1919[206] Gutter Sound, Scapa Flow[206] Capsized under about 45 metres (148 ft) of water.[206]
SMS Konig.jpg
Rostislav  Russian Navy None November 1920[207] 45°25′0″N 36°37′43″E / 45.41667°N 36.62861°E / 45.41667; 36.62861 (Russian battleship Rostislav) Strait of Kerch[208] Partially salvaged, reported to be extant albeit sinking into silt.[207]
Rostislav1910sSevastopol-1.jpg
HMS Centurion  Royal Navy None 7 June 1944[209] Off Normandy[209] Unknown HMS Centurion's badge is on display at Shugborough Hall.[210] HMS Centurion as breakwater during storm off Omaha Beach in June 1944.jpg
SMS Schleswig-Holstein  Kriegsmarine None 21 March 1945[211] Marienburg (Malbork), Poland[212] Reported to be submerged and in poor condition.[213] Schleswig-Holstein's bell is on display Military History Museum of the Bundeswehr in Dresden as of 1990.[214] Bundesarchiv Bild 102-11521, Linienschiff "Schleswig-Holstein".jpg

Sunk and later salvaged[edit]

The following battleships were sunk, but were later salvaged and scrapped.

Name Navy Date sunk Date scrapped Location Notes Image
Pobeda  Russian Navy 7 December 1904[215] Disputed[m] Port Arthur
Porthartur (26).jpg
Poltava  Russian Navy January 1905[217] 1924[218] Archangelsk[218]
Porthartur (41).jpg
Benedetto Brin  Regia Marina 27 September 1915 Unknown Brindisi, Italy
BenedettoBrin.jpg
Leonardo da Vinci  Regia Marina 2 August 1916[219] 22 March 1923[219] Taranto, Italy[219]
Upside-down Leonardo da Vinci.jpg
Imperatritsa Mariya  Russian Navy 20 October 1916[220] 1926[193] Sevastopol, Ukraine[193]
Линейный корабль Императрица Мария после постановки в док и откачки воды, 1919 год.jpg
Slava  Russian Navy 17 October 1917[221] 1935[222] Moon Sound, Estonia[223]
Russian liner sunk.jpg
Potemkin  Russian Navy Abandoned 1920[224] 1923[224] Sevastopol, Ukraine[224]
Panteleimon1911Sevastopol-2.jpg
SMS Kaiser  Kaiserliche Marine 21 June 1919[225] 1930[225] Gutter Sound, Scapa Flow[225]
SMS Kaiser firing salute.jpg
SMS Friedrich der Grosse  Kaiserliche Marine 21 June 1919[225] 29 April 1937[225] Gutter Sound, Scapa Flow[225] The bell of Friedrich der Grosse was returned to the Federal Republic of Germany and today is on display at the German Navy sea base at Glücksburg.[225] SMS Friedrich der Grosse en route to Scapa Flow.jpg
SMS Kaiserin  Kaiserliche Marine 21 June 1919[225] 1936[225] Gutter Sound, Scapa Flow[225]
SMS Kaiserillustration.jpg
SMS Prinzregent Luitpold  Kaiserliche Marine 21 June 1919[225] 1933[225] Gutter Sound, Scapa Flow[225]
Bundesarchiv DVM 10 Bild-23-61-53, Großlinienschiff "SMS Prinzregent Luitpold".jpg
SMS König Albert  Kaiserliche Marine 21 June 1919[225] 1936[225] Gutter Sound, Scapa Flow[225]
Linienschiff SMS KÖNIG ALBERT.jpg
SMS Grosser Kurfürst  Kaiserliche Marine 21 June 1919[226] 1938[226] Gutter Sound, Scapa Flow[226] The bell of Grosser Kurfürst, which survived the scrapping of the ship at Rosyth in 1938,[226] was purchased at auction by the National Museum of the Royal Navy, Portsmouth, Hampshire.[227] SMS Konig.jpg
SMS Bayern  Kaiserliche Marine 21 June 1919[228] 1935[228] Gutter Sound, Scapa Flow[228] Bayern's bell is on display at the Kiel Fördeklub.[228] SMS Bayern sinking.jpg
USS Indiana  United States Navy 1 November 1920[229] 1924[229] Chesapeake Bay[229]
Indiana bombing 1920.jpg
USS Alabama  United States Navy 27 September 1921[230] 1924[231] Chesapeake Bay[230]
Ex-USS Alabama (BB-8) - NH 52583.jpg
HMS Emperor of India  Royal Navy 6 June 1931[232] 1932[233] Owers Bank[233]
HMS Emperor of India LOC 00192u.jpg
Bretagne  Marine Nationale 3 July 1940[234] 1952[235] Mers-el-Kébir, Algeria[234]
Cuirassé Bretagne 03-07-1940 jpg.jpg
Kilkis  Hellenic Navy 23 April 1941[236] c. 1950[237] Salamis Naval Base, near Salamis[236]
USS Idaho sunk with USS Mississippi in background.jpg
Lemnos  Hellenic Navy 23 April 1941[236] c. 1950[238] Salamis Naval Base, near Salamis[236]
Greek ships under air attack in April 1942.jpg
Petropavlovsk  Soviet Navy 23 September 1941[239] September 1953[240] Leningrad[239]
Damaged Marat.jpg
Dunkerque  Marine Nationale 27 November 1942[241] 1958[241] Toulon, France[241]
Dunkerque-1.jpg
Provence  Marine Nationale 27 November 1942[242] 1949[242] Toulon, France[242]
Provence-3.jpg
Jean Bart  Marine Nationale 1944[243] 1945[244] Toulon, France[244]
French training ship Océan at Toulon c1939.jpg
Courbet  Marine Nationale 9 June 1944[245] After World War Two[245] Off Sword Beach, Normandy[245]
Courbet-Marius Bar-img 3152.jpg
Strasbourg  Marine Nationale August 18, 1944[246] 1955[246] Bay of Lazaret[246]
Battleship Strasbourg after bomb attack, 1944.jpg
Conte di Cavour  Regia Marina 23 February 1945[247] 1946[248] Taranto, Italy[247]
Altrefoto (2).jpg
Gneisenau  Kriegsmarine 23 March 1945[249] 1951[250] Gotenhafen (Gdynia), Poland[251] One of Gneisenau's guns, dubbed "Caesar," was removed and placed at Austrått Fort, near Trondheim as the coastal gun "Orlandert."[251] It is today maintained as a museum.[252] Gdynia Gneisenau.jpg
SMS Zähringen  Kriegsmarine 26 March 1945[253] 1950[253] Gotenhafen (Gdynia), Poland[253]
SMS Zahringen.jpg
Impero  Regia Marina 20 February 1945[254] 1950[255] Trieste, Italy[255]
Italian battleship Impero.jpg
SMS Schlesien  Kriegsmarine 3 May 1945[256] 1956,[257] 1970s[214] Near Swinemünde[214]
Schlesien Panama.jpg
Settsu  Imperial Japanese Navy 24 July 1945[258] August 1947[258] Etajima, Japan[259]
Settsu.jpg
Ise  Imperial Japanese Navy 28 July 1945[260] 4 July 1947[260] 34°15′20″N 132°30′58″E / 34.25556°N 132.51611°E / 34.25556; 132.51611 (Japanese battleship Ise) Kure, Japan[260]
BattleshipIse.jpg
Hyūga  Imperial Japanese Navy 28 July 1945[261] 4 July 1947[262] 34°10′0″N 132°32′59″E / 34.16667°N 132.54972°E / 34.16667; 132.54972 (Japanese battleship Hyūga) Kure, Japan[262]
Backus, This was Hyuga.jpg
Haruna  Imperial Japanese Navy 28 July 1945[263] 1946[104] Kure, Japan[263]
Japanese battleship Haruna sunk.jpg
Novorossiysk  Soviet Navy 29 October 1955[264] 1957[265] 44°37′7″N 33°32′8″E / 44.61861°N 33.53556°E / 44.61861; 33.53556 (Italian battleship Giulio Cesare) Sevastopol Bay, Black Sea[266]
Novorosiysk-1950-Sevastopol-2.jpg

Expended as targets[edit]

The following battleships were intentionally sunk as targets. While cheaper disposable targets were conventionally used to maintain crew proficiencies, actual ships were sometimes used to test theories about armor, ammunition, or tactics in real circumstances.

Name Navy Date sunk Location Condition Image
USS Texas  United States Navy 22 March 1912[267] 37°43′10″N 76°05′0″W / 37.71944°N 76.08333°W / 37.71944; -76.08333 (USS Texas (1892)) Tangier Sound, Chesapeake Bay[267] Remains demolished and buried.[268] U. S. Protected Cruiser Texas.jpg
HMS Empress of India  Royal Navy 4 November 1913[269] Lyme Bay[269] Capsized under about 32 metres (105 ft) of water.[270] Ships of the Royal Navy Q38789.jpg
Imperator Nikolai I  Russian Navy 3 October 1915[271] Unknown Unknown Iki1906Yokosuka.jpg
USS Massachusetts  United States Navy January 1921[272] Off Pensacola, Florida[272] Today an artificial sea reef[272] USS Massachusetts (BB-2) sinking 1921.jpg
SMS Ostfriesland  Kaiserliche Marine 24 July 1921[273] 37°9′8″N 74°34′3″W / 37.15222°N 74.56750°W / 37.15222; -74.56750 (SMS Ostfriesland) Chesapeake Bay[274] Unknown SMS Ostfriesland sinking close.jpg
SMS Baden  Kaiserliche Marine 16 August 1921[275] 49°49′42″N 2°23′21″W / 49.82833°N 2.38917°W / 49.82833; -2.38917 (SMS Baden) Hurd Deep, English Channel[276] Unknown, under 180 metres (590 ft) of water.[275] Salvage at Scapa Flow.jpg
SMS Prinz Eugen  Austro-Hungarian Navy June 1922[277] Near Toulon[278] Unknown Prinz-eug.jpg
USS Iowa  United States Navy 23 March 1923[279] Gulf of Panama[280] Unknown Radio-controlled USS Coast Battleship No. 4 (ex-Iowa) underway c1922.jpg
USS New Jersey  United States Navy 5 September 1923[281] Diamond Shoals, Cape Hatteras[281] Unknown USS New Jersey in 1919.tiff
USS Virginia  United States Navy 5 September 1923[282] Diamond Shoals, Cape Hatteras[282] Unknown USS Virginia (BB-13) after aireal bombing test.jpg
Retvizan  Russian Navy 25 July 1924[283] Bungo Channel[284] Unknown Battleship Retvisan.jpg
Oryol  Russian Navy 10 July 1924[285] Off Jōgashima, Tokyo Bay[285] Unknown OryolDamaged03.jpg
Aki  Imperial Japanese Navy 2 September 1924[195] 35°1′30″N 139°51′21.6″E / 35.02500°N 139.856000°E / 35.02500; 139.856000 (Japanese battleship Aki) Tokyo Bay[195] Unknown Japanese battleship Aki 2.jpg
Satsuma  Imperial Japanese Navy 7 September 1924[286] Bōsō Peninsula, Tokyo Bay[286] Unknown Japanese battleship Satsuma.jpg
HMS Monarch  Royal Navy 21 January 1925[287] Hurd's Deep[288] Unknown HMS Monarch LOC ggbain 16828.jpg
USS Arkansas  United States Navy 25 July 1946[289] Bikini Atoll[289] Capsized under 180 feet (55 m) of water.[289] USS Arkansas (BB-33) in November 1944.jpg
Nagato  Imperial Japanese Navy 30 July 1946[290] Bikini Atoll[291] Capsized under 33.5 metres (110 ft) of water.[292] NagatoPainting.jpg
USS Pennsylvania  United States Navy 10 February 1948[293] Off Kwajalein Atoll[293] Unknown USS Pennsylvania (BB-38) sinking off Kwajalein03 1948.jpg
USS New York  United States Navy 8 July 1948[294] Pacific Ocean[294] Unknown USS New York-7.jpg
USS Nevada  United States Navy 31 July 1948[295] About 60–65 miles (97–105 km) off Pearl Harbor[296] Unknown Nevada (BB-36) aground and burning off Waipio Point, after the end of the Japanese air raid..jpg

See also[edit]

External links[edit]

Notes[edit]

Footnotes[edit]

  1. ^ There is a case for the number to be three rather than two British built battleships sunk by submarines, but it is a flimsy one; Kongō was a battlecruiser reconstructed as a fast battleship.
  2. ^ U-331's captain, Oberleutnant zur See Hans-Diedrich von Tiesenhausen, believed that only one of his torpedoes struck Barham.[11] von Tiesenhausen was awarded the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross for this action.[12]
  3. ^ One notable early military science pioneer of aviation in naval role: US Army General Billy Mitchell. He commandeered SMS Ostfriesland for testing of his theory, which, though it did not impress his contemporaries, forced the navy to begin diverting some of its budget towards researching the matter further.[15]
  4. ^ R.G Grant's work, Battle at Sea: 3,000 Years of Naval Warfare, Grant says that some naval actions were entirely made up of surface ships shelling each other and that big gun warships attacking one another composed a large amount of the action in other battles.[14]
  5. ^ There is some debate over whether or not the two men knew the Austrian ships were being given to the new Slovene, Croat, and Serb state; Italian sources state that they were unaware of this, as the transfer had taken place only a few hours before.[20]
  6. ^ However, according to Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships, 1906–1921, Majestic capsized in seven minutes and only 40 men were killed.[53]
  7. ^ Now Mũi Dinh 11°22′0″N 109°1′0″E / 11.36667°N 109.01667°E / 11.36667; 109.01667, Vietnam
  8. ^ John Sweetman states that 1,000 out of a crew of 1,900 were killed,[123] while Niklas Zetterling and Michael Tamelander estimated nearly 1,000 deaths.[124] Siegfried Breyer and Erich Gröner agree on 1,204 deaths,[125][126] and Gordon Williamson gives the death toll at 971.[127] William Dulin and Robert Dulin place the number of deaths at "about 950."[128]
  9. ^ Anthony Preston gives the death toll of the ship's second (and final) sinking at 167[169] while McLaughlin, in Russian & Soviet Battleships, gives a more modest 116 fatalities.[170]
  10. ^ Whitley and the Brazilian official histories give 6 November,[186] but contemporary newspaper accounts of the sinking use 4 November.[187][188]
  11. ^ Though casualties resulting from the magazine explosion that sank Kawachi were high, the sources provided here disagree on an exact number. Gardiner and Gray and Jentschura, and Jung and Mickel agree on 700,[194][195] Hans Lengerer says 600,[196] and Kingsepp gives 618 killed from a crew of 960.[197]
  12. ^ While none of König's crew were killed in the scuttling of the German fleet at Scapa Flow, nine German sailors were shot and killed,[198] 16 more were injured,[198] and 1,860 were captured and imprisoned.[199]
  13. ^ Though 1922–23 is the most likely date of Pobeda's scrapping, there is some discussion over whether or not she served in the Japanese Imperial Navy as Suwo until being broken up in 1946.[216][215] This is unlikely because this is not mentioned once in the authoritative work, "Japanese Naval Vessels at the End of World War II" by Fukui Shinzo.

Citations[edit]

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