Portal:Technology/Selected articles/36

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A battleship firing her main battery

A battleship is a large, heavily armored warship with a main battery consisting of the largest calibre of guns. Battleships were larger, better armed, and better armored than cruisers and destroyers. Battleship design continually evolved to incorporate and adapt technological advances to maintain an edge. The word battleship was coined around 1794 and is a shortened form of line-of-battle ship, the dominant wooden warship during the Age of Sail. The term came into formal use in the late 1880s to describe a type of ironclad warship, now referred to as pre-dreadnought battleships. In 1906, the launch of HMS Dreadnought heralded a revolution in battleship design. Following battleship designs that were influenced by the HMS Dreadnought were referred to as "dreadnoughts". Battleships were a potent symbol of naval dominance and national might, and for decades the battleship was a major factor in both diplomacy and military strategy. The global arms race in battleship construction in the early 20th century was one of the causes of World War I, which saw a clash of huge battle fleets at the Battle of Jutland. The Naval Treaties of the 1920s and 1930s limited the number of battleships but did not end the evolution of design. Both the Allies and the Axis Powers deployed battleships of old construction and new during World War II.