SMS Admiral Spaun

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Admiral Spaun.jpg
Name: Admiral Spaun
Namesake: Hermann von Spaun
Builder: Pola
Laid down: 30 May 1908
Launched: 30 October 1909
Commissioned: 15 November 1910
Fate: Scrapped 1920
General characteristics
Type: Light cruiser
  • 3,383 tonnes (designed)
  • 3,943 tonnes (full load)
Length: 130.64 m (428.6 ft)
Beam: 12.79 m (42.0 ft)
Draught: 5 m (16 ft)
  • 4 shafts
  • 16 × Yarrow boilers, 6 × Parsons steam turbines
  • 25,130 shp (18,740 kW)
Speed: 27 knots (50 km/h)
Complement: 327

SMS Admiral Spaun was a unique light cruiser of the Austro-Hungarian Navy. Three other ships were built to similar specifications as Admiral Spaun, but with different propulsion, and increased armament.


Around the turn of the 20th century, major navies had started to build fast scout cruisers (like the British Pelorus class or the Italian Quarto, 1909-11).

Design of the new Austro-Hungarian ship started in 1906 and it was commissioned in 1910. The ship displaced 3,500 tons and was turbine driven with light belt armour.

Wartime experience showed the 100 mm (3.9 in) guns were inferior but the plans to re-equip the ship were turned down because of war troubles. In 1915 number of torpedo firing tubes was increased to 8.

Admiral Spaun saw active service during First World War. After the war the ship was transferred by Italy to Venice and participated in the Italian V-Day fleet parade on 25 March 1919. Later, it was given to the Great Britain as a part of reparations and sold to an Italian company for scrapping in 1922.


The ship was named after Hermann von Spaun (1833-1919), since 1897 commander of both the Austro-Hungarian Navy and the navy section of the K.u.K. Ministry of War. Spaun stepped down in 1904 as a protest against redirecting large part of Navy funds to the army, the position was taken by Rudolf Montecuccoli. It was the first time that an Austro-Hungarian Navy ship was named after a living person outside the Habsburg family. Spaun was present at the naming ceremony.

See also[edit]


  • Greger, René (1976). Austro-Hungarian Warships of World War I. London: Ian Allan. ISBN 0-7110-0623-7. 

External links[edit]