Portal:Battleships

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The Battleships Portal

The firepower of a battleship demonstrated by USS Iowa (1984). The muzzle blasts distort the ocean surface.

A battleship is a large armored warship with a main battery consisting of large caliber guns. It dominated naval warfare in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

The term battleship came into use in the late 1880s to describe a type of ironclad warship, now referred to by historians as pre-dreadnought battleships. In 1906, the commissioning of HMS Dreadnought into the United Kingdom's Royal Navy heralded a revolution in the field of battleship design. Subsequent battleship designs, influenced by HMS Dreadnought, were referred to as "dreadnoughts", though the term eventually became obsolete as dreadnoughts became the only type of battleship in common use.

Battleships were a symbol of naval dominance and national might, and for decades the battleship was a major factor in both diplomacy and military strategy. A global arms race in battleship construction began in Europe in the 1890s and culminated at the decisive Battle of Tsushima in 1905, the outcome of which significantly influenced the design of HMS Dreadnought. The launch of Dreadnought in 1906 commenced a new naval arms race. Three major fleet actions between steel battleships took place: the long-range gunnery duel at the Battle of the Yellow Sea in 1904, the decisive Battle of Tsushima in 1905 (both during the Russo-Japanese War) and the inconclusive Battle of Jutland in 1916, during the First World War. Jutland was the largest naval battle and the only full-scale clash of dreadnoughts of the war, and it was the last major battle in naval history fought primarily by battleships.

The Naval Treaties of the 1920s and 1930s limited the number of battleships, though technical innovation in battleship design continued. Both the Allied and Axis powers built battleships during World War II, though the increasing importance of the aircraft carrier meant that the battleship played a less important role than had been expected in that conflict. (Full article...)

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Von der Tann at rest at an unknown date

SMS Von der Tann was the first battlecruiser built for the German Kaiserliche Marine, as well as Germany's first major turbine-powered warship. At the time of her construction, Von der Tann was the fastest dreadnought-type warship afloat, capable of reaching speeds of more than 27 knots (50 km/h). Built by Blohm + Voss in Hamburg, Von der Tann was designed in response to the British Invincible class. While the German design had slightly lighter guns—28 cm (11 in), compared to the 30.5 cm (12 in) Mark X mounted on the British ships—Von der Tann was faster and significantly better-armoured. She set the precedent of German battlecruisers carrying much heavier armour than their British equivalents, albeit at the cost of smaller guns. The ship participated in a number of fleet actions during the First World War, including the Battle of Jutland, where she destroyed the British battlecruiser HMS Indefatigable. Von der Tann was hit several times by large-calibre shells, but the damage was quickly repaired and the ship returned to the fleet in two months. Following the end of the war in 1918, Von der Tann, along with most of the High Seas Fleet, was interned at Scapa Flow pending a decision by the Allies as to the fate of the fleet. The ship met her end when the fleet was scuttled in 1919 to prevent them falling into British hands. The wreck of Von der Tann was raised in 1930, and scrapped at Rosyth from 1931 to 1934.

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Lütjens aboard a ship as a Vizeadmiral in April 1940

Günther Lütjens (25 May 1889 - 27 May 1941) was a German admiral whose military service spanned almost three decades, most well known for his actions during World War II, especially his command of the Operation Rheinübung sortie. Joining the Kaiserliche Marine in 1907, he served aboard the SMS Freya, Elsass, and König Wilhelm, then commanded several torpedo boats until the end of World War I, earning the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross. In 1921, he joined the Reichsmarine, serving in and eventually commanding the 3rd Torpedo Boat Flotilla and Karlsruhe. In 1936, Lütjens was appointed Chief of Personnel of the Kriegsmarine, then assigned as Führer der Torpedoboote the next year.

When World War II erupted, he was Commander of Scouting Forces in Operation Weserübung, notably the Scharnhorst and Gneisenau (using the latter as his flagship), then promoted to Commander of Battleships and third Flottenchef. Rheinübung originally planned for all four battleships (Bismarck, Scharnhorst, Gneisenau, and Tirpitz) to make a raid into the Atlantic, but ultimately sailed with only Bismarck and Prinz Eugen on 19 May, 1941. On 24 May, his ships were intercepted by HMS Hood and HMS Prince of Wales at the Battle of the Denmark Strait, in which Hood was famously sunk. Furious at the loss of their most powerful ship, the Royal Navy began a dogged pursuit that ultimately sunk the Bismarck and killed Lütjens on 27 May. The German destroyer Lütjens (D185), lead ship of the Lütjens-class destroyers of the modern German Navy, would be named for him.

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An aerial view of the USS Arizona Memorial at Pearl Harbor in 2002. During the attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, a bomb from a Japanese Nakajima B5N struck Arizona between the first and second gun turrets, causing a catastrophic explosion that sunk the ship, where she remains today, with 1,102 of her crew still entombed inside.
Credit: PH3 (AW/SW) Jayme Pastoric, DoD archive

An aerial view of the USS Arizona Memorial at Pearl Harbor in 2002. During the attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, a bomb from a Japanese Nakajima B5N struck Arizona between the first and second gun turrets, causing a catastrophic explosion that sunk the ship, where she remains today, with 1,102 of her crew still entombed inside.

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Battlecruisers of GermanyBayern-class battleshipsIndefatigable-class battlecruisersIowa-class battleshipsKönig-class battleshipsRivadavia-class battleshipsTosa-class battleshipsYamato-class battleships

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Almirante Latorre-class battleshipAmagi-class battlecruiserAlaska-class cruiserARA MorenoARA RivadaviaArmament of the Iowa-class battleshipBattle of MidwayBattle of the Eastern SolomonsBattle of the Santa Cruz IslandsBattleshipBayern-class battleshipBrazilian battleship Minas GeraesBrazilian battleship São PauloChilean battleship Almirante LatorreCourageous-class battlecruiserDerfflinger-class battlecruiserDesign 1047 battlecruiserDreadnoughtDutch 1913 battleship proposalErnst LindemannFred MoosallyHMAS Australia (1911)HMS Eagle (1918)HMS Indefatigable (1909)HMS Lion (1910)HMS Royal Oak (08)Helgoland-class battleshipIndiana-class battleshipJapanese aircraft carrier AkagiJapanese aircraft carrier KagaJapanese battleship HarunaJapanese battleship TosaJapanese battleship YamatoKaiser-class battleshipKönig-class battleshipMinas Geraes-class battleshipMoltke-class battlecruiserMontana-class battleshipNassau-class battleshipNaval Battle of GuadalcanalNorth Carolina-class battleshipOperation Ten-GoPre-dreadnought battleshipRivadavia-class battleshipRussian battleship SlavaSMS Baden (1915)SMS Bayern (1915)SMS DerfflingerSMS Erzherzog Franz FerdinandSMS Friedrich der Grosse (1911)SMS GoebenSMS Grosser Kurfürst (1913)SMS HelgolandSMS HindenburgSMS KönigSMS Kronprinz (1914)SMS LützowSMS MarkgrafSMS Moltke (1910)SMS RheinlandSMS SeydlitzSMS Von der TannSMS WestfalenSovetsky Soyuz-class battleshipSouth American dreadnought raceUSS Connecticut (BB-18)USS Illinois (BB-65)USS Indiana (BB-1)USS Iowa (BB-61)USS Iowa turret explosionUSS Kentucky (BB-66)USS Massachusetts (BB-2)USS Missouri (BB-63)USS Nevada (BB-36)USS New Jersey (BB-62)USS Wisconsin (BB-64)Yamato-class battleship

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List of battlecruisersList of battlecruisers of GermanyList of battlecruisers of JapanList of battlecruisers of RussiaList of battlecruisers of the Royal NavyList of battleships of Austria-HungaryList of battleships of GermanyList of battleships of ItalyList of battleships of the Ottoman EmpireList of battlecruisers of the United StatesList of sunken battlecruisers

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28 cm SK L/40 gun30.5 cm SK L/50 gunAdmiral-class battlecruiserBL 18 inch Mk I naval gunBismarck-class battleshipBrandenburg-class battleshipBraunschweig-class battleshipBretagne-class battleshipColorado-class battleshipCourbet-class battleshipDelaware-class battleshipDesign B-65 cruiserEkaterina II-class battleshipErsatz Monarch-class battleshipErsatz Yorck-class battlecruiserErzherzog Karl-class battleshipEvstafi-class battleshipFranz von HipperFrench battleship Courbet (1911)French battleship DunkerqueFrench battleship FranceFrench battleship Iéna (1898)French battleship JauréguiberryFrench battleship Jean Bart (1911)French battleship ParisFrench battleship SuffrenG3 battlecruiserGangut-class battleshipGerman battleship GneisenauGerman battleship ScharnhorstGreek battleship KilkisGreek battleship LemnosGreek battleship SalamisH-class battleship proposalsHabsburg-class battleshipHigh Seas FleetHMS Agamemnon (1906)HMS Agincourt (1913)HMS Anson (79)HMS Dreadnought (1906)HMS Eagle (1918)HMS Furious (47)HMS GloriousHMS Howe (32)HMS Indomitable (1907)HMS Inflexible (1907)HMS Invincible (1907)HMS King George V (41)HMS Lord Nelson (1906)HMS Renown (1916)HMS Repulse (1916)HMS Royal Sovereign (05)HMS Swiftsure (1903)HMS Tiger (1913)HMS Triumph (1903)HMS Vanguard (23)Imperator Aleksandr II-class battleshipImperatritsa Mariya-class battleshipIndefatigable-class battlecruiserInvincible-class battlecruiserIowa-class battleshipIron Duke-class battleshipItalian battleship Roma (1940)Japanese aircraft carrier ShinanoKaiser Friedrich III-class battleshipKronshtadt-class battlecruiserL 20 α-class battleshipLion-class battlecruiserLion-class battleshipLittorio-class battleshipMackensen-class battlecruiserMississippi-class battleshipO-class battlecruiserOperation KitaRadetzky-class battleshipReinhard ScheerRenown-class battlecruiserRussian battleship Andrei PervozvannyRussian battleship Chesma (1886)Russian battleship Dvenadsat ApostolovRussian battleship Ekaterina IIRussian battleship EvstafiRussian battleship Gangut (1911)Russian battleship Georgii PobedonosetsRussian battleship Imperator Aleksandr IIRussian battleship Imperator Aleksandr IIIRussian battleship Imperator Nikolai IRussian battleship Imperator Nikolai I (1916)Russian battleship Imperator Pavel IRussian battleship Imperatritsa Ekaterina VelikayaRussian battleship Imperatritsa MariyaRussian battleship Ioann ZlatoustRussian battleship Petropavlovsk (1897)Russian battleship Petropavlovsk (1911)Russian battleship Poltava (1894)Russian battleship Poltava (1911)Russian battleship RetvizanRussian battleship Sevastopol (1911)Russian battleship SinopRussian battleship Tri SviatiteliaScharnhorst-class battleshipSMS ÁrpádSMS BabenburgSMS BrandenburgSMS BraunschweigSMS ElsassSMS Erzherzog Ferdinand MaxSMS Erzherzog FriedrichSMS Erzherzog KarlSMS HabsburgSMS HessenSMS Kaiser BarbarossaSMS Kaiser Friedrich IIISMS Kaiser Karl der GrosseSMS Kaiser Wilhelm der GrosseSMS Kaiser Wilhelm IISMS LothringenSMS MecklenburgSMS Oldenburg (1910)SMS PommernSMS Preussen (1903)SMS Prinz EugenSMS Prinzregent LuitpoldSMS RadetzkySMS SchlesienSMS Schleswig-HolsteinSMS SchwabenSMS Szent IstvánSMS TegetthoffSMS ThüringenTreaty battleshipSMS Viribus UnitisSMS WeissenburgSMS WettinSMS WittelsbachSMS WörthSMS ZähringenSMS ZrínyiScuttling of the German fleet in Scapa FlowSouth Dakota-class battleship (1939)Stalingrad-class battlecruiserSwiftsure-class battleshipTegetthoff-class battleshipUnited States Battleship Division Nine (World War I)USS Alaska (CB-1)USS Guam (CB-2)USS Lexington (CV-2)USS Massachusetts (BB-59)USS Texas (1892)USS Missouri grounding incidentWittelsbach-class battleship

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Operation Majestic Titan is the code name for a long-term Wikipedian project with two primary objectives, the first of which is to create the single largest featured topic on Wikipedia, centered around the battleships considered, planned, built, operated, canceled, or otherwise recorded. There are probably a few hundred articles of this nature which will be included, from the earliest pre-dreadnoughts to the last of the dreadnoughts. Once all articles are featured this project will reorient to ensuring that the articles remain up to standard. If you're interested, please view the project page to familiarize yourself with the guidelines, and simply pick an article to improve! There is also ongoing discussion you can participate in.

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