Naval Battles

A motto well-known by all naval academies around the world: Who dominates the seas rules the world. Something of the kind was allegedly said by Herodote, at a time maps only showed the Mediterranean, and a few unknown seas plus a circular ocean, circling the globe; It was not apparent then that water covered 70% of the planet surface. Take an earth globe. Most of the time, the atlantic view is chosen, revealing the two large landmasses of Europe and Africa one one side and the Americas on the other. The huge stretch of water seems at least manageable. Now swap it to the opposite side. The pacific literraly covers the planet, with thin stretches of land apparent in the north, and an immense watery desert. The blue planet not only allowed to move populations, trade, but also became a place of conflict when the first advantages were negated. In human societies, attacking trade and blockading always has been useful tactics. In a land campaign, a landing in a non-guarded spot turned the tables. Whatever the case, the sea became a battlefield soon in human history.

Naval battles changed over time of course with advancing technology. In the bronze age, properly naval tactics were still in their infancy. Naval combat was a transposition of land combat at sea. Archers and javelineers soften the enemy until boarding allowed melee combat. During the Greek age, between asia minor, the aegean, and greece, the interlocking network of city states between the sea and mountain saw the first maritime empire. The Mediterranean, closed sea, seemed more hospitable and were used as ways to travel from Europe to Africa, and to the Middle east. After the Phoenicians, the Greeks built the first maritime empire, based on trade and war. In the Hellenistic ages, tactics were refines and ships became larger, pushing to the limit the concept of the triere and all derivatives.

In Medieval times, coastal navigation was still the norm, but the scandinavians on one side, and the Byzantines in the other, kept the flame of technology alight, until they mixed. Ship technology improved, sailing plans became more complicated and the ships much taller, with sometimes not clear distinction between civilian and military. Until the first guns were introduced in the XVth Century, naval combat did not differed that much since a millenia.



Gunpowder indeed completely turned the tables of naval combat. Confuse melee now turned into more refined tactics, to bear and use firepower the best way. Up to the XIX century, through the Renaissance and Enlightenment age, battle lines became the norm, reflecting infantry lines and volley fire on land. The old galley had its last gasp in the Baltic. Fleets became more professionnal, Navies are institutionalized by the state, rationalized, as well as ship building. Mathematics and the latest sciences are called upon to bring wooden sailing ships to the highest form of development possible.

Of course the XIXth century, the industrial age, brought not one, but a serie of groundbreaking innovations that constantly reshaped naval warfare, up to the XXth Century. For more on this topic, see the industrial era tech page.

Naval Battles of the Antiquity



The oldest ancient naval battle is that of Kadesh, which was held between the Egyptian Ramses II and the "peoples of the sea" (mostly Assyrians, Phoenicians and other free peoples of the coast) in the Nile Delta. It is known to us both by famous and detailed bas-reliefs and a brief description of the battle dated with precision.

An Hellenistic example: Chios, 201 BC

In -201 a battle took place between the Macedonian fleet of Philip V and the coalition fleets of Rhodes and Pergamos. This battle of Chios is well known to us thanks to a detailed description of Polybius (Book XVI-I, the affairs of Macedonia, 2.1 to 7.6.):

2.1 - 2.10: "Seeing that the siege operations were unsuccessful and that the enemy was watching the coast with a large fleet of cataphracting ships, Philip was perplexed and worried about the sequel, as circumstances left him no choice He resumed the sea, contrary to the expectation of his enemies, and had expected that he would persevere in his mine-works, and the Macedonian sought above all to sail suddenly, for he was sure of winning the enemy And when he went along the coast, he arrived safely in Samos, but he was completely mistaken in his calculations, when Attalus and Theophiliscos (the navarch of the Rhodian fleet) saw him sail, and they immediately reacted.

Because, as I have said, they were convinced that Philip would stick to his original plan, but by oars they succeeded in starting the battle, To the right wing of the enemy, who went forward, and Theophiliscos to the left wing. Philip, having no longer time to flee, gave his right wing the signal of the combat by ordering him to face the enemy and to engage the action energetically. He himself, with some Lemboi, retired to the islets in the middle of the strait, to await the outcome of the battle there. The fleet which he put in line consisted of fifty-three cataphract vessels, Vessels, and two hundred small ships, Lemboi and Pristseis. He had not been able to equip the ships which were in Samos. The enemy (an Egyptian squadron disarmed). The enemy, on the other hand, had sixty-five cataphract vessels, including those of Byzantium, nine trihemolies, and three triremes.

* Or Pristis, type of unidentified vessel, near Lemboï. ** The fact that trihemolies are classified in the "non-cataphract" and less numerous than the trire seems to attest a type of "half-trire".

3.1 - 3.14: "The ship of Attalus having engaged the combat, all those who were in the neighborhood immediately threw themselves, without waiting for the orders, one on the other." Attalus came to give against an octere to which he carried a blow After a long battle sustained by the soldiers stationed on the deck of the enemy's ship, he finally sank it, and Philippe's flagship, a deer, A trihemolia having crossed its course, he struck a violent blow in the middle of the hull and remained fixed under the bench of the thranites because the pilot officer had not been able to moderate The dekere, completely paralyzed, could no longer maneuver at all, and two enemy penteris arriched on her, fastened her on both sides at the same time, and sank her with it His crew. On board was Democrates, the navarque of Philip. Towards the same moment, supernatural misadventures arrived at Dionysodoros and Deinocrates, two brothers, both of whom were navarks in the fleet of Attalus. They had rushed against the enemy, one against a heptere, the other against an octere. Deinocrates came up against the octere and his ship received a blow above the waterline, for the prow of the enemy's ship was very high, reaching the Macedonian ship above the water.

He could not at first disengage himself, in spite of all the efforts he made to retreat, and as the Macedonians fought with his heart, he found himself in a most perilous position. Attalus then came to his assistance, and separated the two ships by spurring that of the enemy. Deinocrates was thus saved unexpectedly, while the naval soldiers, enemies after a valiant resistance, were all massacred that the ship itself, abandoned by its crew, fell into the hands of Attalus. When Dionysodorus, having dashed on the enemy's ship to spur it, missed his goal, and spinning alongside his opponent, lost his row of oars to starboard, while the wooden pieces supporting the towers were also broken. As a result of this, the enemy ships surrounded him on all sides, and in the clamor and tumult, the ship of Dionysodoros was sunk with almost all its crew. The navarch himself, with two companions, succeeded in joining by swimming a trihemiolia which came to the rescue.





4.1 - 4.15: "Everywhere else the battle remained undecided, for if Philip outweighed the Lemboi, Attale had more cataphratic vessels, and the situation in the Macedonian right wing was such that , The outcome of the combat being still suspended, the confidence was much greater on the side of Attalus, and the Rhodians, as I have said above, were at first at the moment when they had Paired, far behind the enemy, but as their ships were much faster, they had succeeded in rejoining Philip's rearguard, and taking first the enemy ships which were retreating, they broke their oars.

As the other Macedonian ships began to turn to help their comrades in danger, and that the last Rhodian ships, which had reached the open sea with some delay on the others, had now caught up with Theophiliscos, the two fleets lined up To face and bravely engaged the struggle, the men encouraging each other with loud cries as the trumpets sounded. If the Macedonians had not intercalated their Lemboi, between the Cataphract ships, the decision would ultimately have been obtained after a brief battle. But the lembi of Philip embarrassed the Rhodian ships in their movements, and this in several ways.

As soon as, after the first shock, their order of battle was disturbed, all the ships were caught in a confused melee. As a result, the Rhodians found themselves in a good position to make inroads through the opposing lines, then tack and, in general, to take advantage of their advantages. Indeed, the Lembi sometimes rode on their oars, which they put out of service, sometimes on their prows, and sometimes also on their stern, thus appearing the pilot officers and the rowers.

For the frontal attacks, the Rhodians had devised an ingenious process. They had their ships stung in front of them, as they were hit above the waterline, while they touched their opponents beneath, thus opening up irreparable breaches in their hulls. But in this case they seldom resorted to this procedure, as they generally endeavored to avoid collisions because of the valor displayed by the Macedonian soldiers stationed on the bridges in the fighting at the corps- To-body.

They generally preferred to sink into the enemy lines in such a way as to put the enemy vessels out of service. Then, turning back, they would return to these ships and hit them either at the stern or flank, while they were still turning. Thus they disemboweled the hull of some, or broke some of the others indispensable to the service of the vessel. They put off a great number of Macedonian ships.

5.1 - 5.9: "Three Rhodian pentères behaved in a particularly brilliant manner during the battle: The flagship bearing Theophiliscos, then the ship commanded by Philistratos, and finally the ship on which Autolycos served as pilot officer and where Nicostratos, who had gone against a Macedonian ship, left his spur planted in his hull, and sent it at the bottom with all his crew, but the ship of Autolycos was now watering by the prow, The men on board fought valiantly, but finally Autolycos, wounded, fell into the sea with his arms, and the brave soldiers of the navy again killed themselves. However, Theophiliscos had tried to bring them relief with three pentres , But as their ship was invaded by water, he did not succeed in rescuing them, but he spurred their enemy ships, whose naval soldiers were thrown overboard.

He soon found himself surrounded by a great number of enemy ships, emblems, or cataphract vessels, and in the course of a heteric struggle, lost almost all his naval soldiers, and himself received three wounds, accomplishing prodigies of audacity. He barely saved his ship with the help of Philostratos, who, having come to his assistance, had played his part in this engagement.

After rejoining his own, Theophiliscos rushed again against the enemy, for if he were physically very weakened by his wounds his valiant soul was more ardently and resolute than ever. There were now two naval battles that took place at a good distance from one another. Philippe's right wing, continuing to advance in the direction originally fixed, was no farther from the Asiatic coast, while the left wing, which had tacked to support the rear guard, was fighting against the Rhodians Not far from Chios.

6.1 - 6.13: "Attalus, however, largely dominated the enemy's right wing and was now approaching the islets in front of which Philippe was at anchor, awaiting the outcome of the battle. Who was on the point of sinking, after having been spurred by an enemy ship, he rushed with his two tents to assist him, and as the enemy's ship drew back and went towards the coast, he pursued it with ardor Hoping to catch him, and observing that Attalus had diverged a great deal from his own, he threw himself in his turn with four pentères, three hemiolies, and the few lemboi he had with him. Flew, and could only throw himself on the coast in this perilous danger, and then went with the crew to take refuge at Erythrai, while Philip seized his ships and all the Royal luggage.

Had in fact had recourse to a stratagem and had all his precious stuff displayed on the bridges. So the Macedonians who first approached them with their Lemboi, seeing these heaped cuts, these purple cloaks, and all the rest to the end, abandoned the pursuit of the old men to take possession of the booty.

This enabled Attalus to arrive safe and sound in Eritrea. As for Philip, who had hitherto had everywhere and greatly undermined him, his ardor was stimulated by the mishap of Attalus. He went back to the sea and gladly opened his window to try to rally his ships, encouraging his men and assuring them that they were victors.


And these were quite tempted to believe him, seeing him thus arrive with the Royal ship of Attale in tow, they could think that the latter had perished. But Dionysodorus suspected what had happened to the King, and, hailing a signal, he rallied his ships. Thus the Pergamon fleet, rapidly regrouped, was able to gain, without being disturbed, the ports of the Asiatic coast. In this time the Macedonian ships which fought against the Rhodians, and who had long suffered, withdrew from the struggle in small groups, by appearing to go and rescue theirs. Thereupon the Rhodian ships took in tow or spilled the enemy's boats, and then retired to Chios."

Naval Battles list

salamis

Battle of Lade (494 BC)

In the Vth century, one of the first recorded naval battles in the aegean took place between Ionia and the Persian Empire. The fleet was commanded by Dionysius of Phocaea with 353 ships (according to Herodotus), and Datis with 600 ships. Casualties and losses included 246 ships on the Ionian Greek side, 57 on the Persian side. The background was the Ionian Revolt in 494 BC. The alliance of Ionian cities and the Persian Empire under Darius the Great proved a decisive victory for the Persians.

After three years of Persian campaigning across Asia Minor without much result, a combined army navy operation was mounted and headed for the epicentre of the rebellion, at Miletus. The Ionians tried to defend Miletus by sea and the Ionian fleet gathered off Lade. The Persians at first tried to persuade some of Ionian contingents to defect, which failed until they launched the assault, at which point, the Samian fleet accepted. The latter sailed away from the battle, and being one of the major components of the fleet, this trigerred the collapse of the entire Ionian battle line. Honor was saved by a Chian contingent, that fought to the last. This was a decisive defeat which also put an end to the Ionian revolt for good. Darius later vowed to punish Athens and Eretria for their support which led to the first of the numerous campaigns against Greece.

Battle of Artemisium (480 BC)



Before Salamis, this was a major naval Battle, in fact a series of naval engagements over three days at the occasion of the second Persian invasion of Greece. On land took place the battle of Thermopylae while the naval battle took place off the coast of Euboea between an alliance of Greek city-states (Sparta, Athens, Corinth...) and the Persian Empire (Xerxes I). Following its defeat at the Battle of Marathon, the Persian King amassed a huge army and navy, famously opposed by the Athenian general Themistocles. The coalition was to famously block the pass of Thermopylae while simultaneously the fleet was to block the Straits of Artemisium with 271 triremes. More on the post about Salamis. The Persian navy was caught in a gale off the Magnesia loosing about 1/3 of its mighty fleet of 1200 ships. After arriving at Artemisium, they sent a detachment of 200 ships around the coast of Euboea in order to trap the Greeks, caught and dispersed in another storm. For what left, a serie of actions were fought over two days and both sides lost about the same number. After the defeat at Thermopylae, the Greek fleet retreated to Salamis for another last stand.

Battle of Cumae (474 BC)

A rather foggy naval battle of lesser importance, fought between Cumae (southern Etruscan border) and the Etruscans. For the context, in 524 BC a composite army of Umbrians, Daunians, and Etruscans were defeated by the Cumae Greeks, a rice city-state in the south of Italy, called the "great greece". This naval battle combined a fleet of Syracuse and another of Cumae, pitted against the Etruscans. Hiero I of Syracuse was called for help by Cumae as the Etruscan fleet was considerable. Other cities of southern Italy also sent contingents to help against the Etruscan expansion into southern Italy. The Etruscan fleet was defeated in the Bay of Naples but details are not known. It was decisive enough for what the Etruscans ceased their expansion and gradually lost much of their political influence in Italy. Later the Gauls, coming from the north west, pushed back the Etruscans into a shrinking territory.




Ancient Chinese naval warfare



An Eastern Han (25–220 AD) Chinese pottery boat fit for riverine and maritime sea travel, with an anchor at the bow, a steering rudder at the stern, roofed compartments with windows and doors, and miniature sailors. In ancient China, the first known naval battles took place during the Warring States period (481–221 BC) when vassal lords battled one another. Chinese naval warfare in this period featured grapple-and-hook, as well as ramming tactics with ships called "stomach strikers" and "colliding swoopers". It was written in the Han dynasty that the people of the Warring States era had employed chuan ge ships (dagger-axe ships, or halberd ships), thought to be a simple description of ships manned by marines carrying dagger-axe halberds as personal weapons.

The 3rd-century writer Zhang Yan asserted that the people of the Warring States period named the boats this way because halberd blades were actually fixed and attached to the hull of the ship in order to rip into the hull of another ship while ramming, to stab enemies in the water that had fallen overboard and were swimming, or simply to clear any possible dangerous marine animals in the path of the ship (since the ancient Chinese did believe in sea monsters; see Xu Fu for more info).

Qin Shi Huang, the first emperor of the Qin dynasty (221–207 BC), owed much of his success in unifying southern China to naval power, although an official navy was not yet established (see Medieval Asia section below). The people of the Zhou dynasty were known to use temporary pontoon bridges for general means of transportation, but it was during the Qin and Han dynasties that large permanent pontoon bridges were assembled and used in warfare (first written account of a pontoon bridge in the West being the oversight of the Greek Mandrocles of Samos in aiding a military campaign of Persian emperor Darius I over the Bosporus).

During the Han Dynasty (202 BC–220 AD), the Chinese began using the stern-mounted steering rudder, and they also designed a new ship type, the junk. From the late Han dynasty to the Three Kingdoms period (220–280 AD), large naval battles such as the Battle of Red Cliffs marked the advancement of naval warfare in the East. In the latter engagement, the allied forces of Sun Quan and Liu Bei destroyed a large fleet commanded by Cao Cao in a fire-based naval attack.

In terms of seafaring abroad, arguably one of the first Chinese to sail into the Indian Ocean and to reach Sri Lanka and India by sea was the Buddhist monk Faxian in the early 5th century, although diplomatic ties and land trade to Persia and India were established during the earlier Han dynasty. However, Chinese naval maritime influence would penetrate into the Indian Ocean until the medieval period.

Naval Battles of the Medieval Era



The late Middle Ages saw the development of the cogs, caravels and carracks ships capable of surviving the tough conditions of the open ocean, with enough backup systems and crew expertise to make long voyages routine. In addition, they grew from 100 tons to 300 tons displacement, enough to carry cannon as armament and still have space for cargo. One of the largest ships of the time, the Great Harry, displaced over 1,500 tons.

The voyages of discovery were fundamentally commercial rather than military in nature, although the line was sometimes blurry in that a country's ruler was not above funding exploration for personal profit, nor was it a problem to use military power to enhance that profit. Later the lines gradually separated, in that the ruler's motivation in using the navy was to protect private enterprise so that they could pay more taxes.

Like the Egyptian Shia-Fatimids and Mamluks, the Sunni-Islamic Ottoman Empire centered in modern-day Turkey dominated the eastern Mediterranean Sea. The Ottomans built a powerful navy, rivaling the Italian city-state of Venice during the Ottoman–Venetian War (1499–1503).

While the barbarian invasions of the 4th century and later mostly occurred by land, some notable examples of naval conflicts are known. In the late 3rd century, in the reign of Emperor Gallienus, a large raiding party composed by Goths, Gepids and Heruli, launched itself in the Black Sea, raiding the coasts of Anatolia and Thrace, and crossing into the Aegean Sea, plundering mainland Greece (including Athens and Sparta) and going as far as Crete and Rhodes. In the twilight of the Roman Empire in the late 4th century, examples include that of Emperor Majorian, who, with the help of Constantinople, mustered a large fleet in a failed effort to expel the Germanic invaders from their recently conquered African territories, and a defeat of an Ostrogothic fleet at Sena Gallica in the Adriatic Sea.

During the Muslim conquests of the 7th century, Arab fleets first appeared, raiding Sicily in 652 (see History of Islam in southern Italy and Emirate of Sicily), and defeating the Byzantine Navy in 655. Constantinople was saved from a prolonged Arab siege in 678 by the invention of Greek fire, an early form of flamethrower that was devastating to the ships in the besieging fleet. These were the first of many encounters during the Byzantine-Arab Wars.

The Islamic Caliphate, or Arab Empire, became the dominant naval power in the Mediterranean Sea from the 7th to 13th centuries, during what is known as the Islamic Golden Age. One of the most significant inventions in medieval naval warfare was the torpedo, invented in Syria by the Arab inventor Hasan al-Rammah in 1275. His torpedo ran on water with a rocket system filled with explosive gunpowder materials and had three firing points. It was an effective weapon against ships.

In the 8th century the Vikings appeared, although their usual style was to appear quickly, plunder, and disappear, preferably attacking undefended locations. The Vikings raided places along the coastline of England and France, with the greatest threats being in England. They would raid monasteries for their wealth and lack of formidable defenders. They also utilized rivers and other auxiliary waterways to work their way inland in the eventual invasion of Britain. They wreaked havoc in Northumbria and Mercia and the rest of Anglia before being halted by Wessex. King Alfred the Great of England was able to stay the Viking invasions with a pivotal victory at the Battle of Edington. Alfred defeated Guthrum, establishing the boundaries of Danelaw in an 884 treaty. The effectiveness of Alfred's 'fleet' has been debated; Dr. Kenneth Harl has pointed out that as few as eleven ships were sent to combat the Vikings, only two of which were not beaten back or captured.

The Vikings also fought several sea battles among themselves. This was normally done by binding the ships on each side together, thus essentially fighting a land battle on the sea.[8] However the fact that the losing side could not easily escape meant that battles tended to be hard and bloody. The Battle of Svolder is perhaps the most famous of these battles.

As Arab power in the Mediterranean began to wane, the Italian trading towns of Genoa, Pisa, and Venice stepped in to seize the opportunity, setting up commercial networks and building navies to protect them. At first the navies fought with the Arabs (off Bari in 1004, at Messina in 1005), but then they found themselves contending with Normans moving into Sicily, and finally with each other. The Genoese and Venetians fought four naval wars, in 1253–1284, 1293–1299, 1350–1355, and 1378–1381. The last ended with a decisive Venetian victory, giving it almost a century to enjoy Mediterranean trade domination before other European countries began expanding into the south and west.

In the north of Europe, the near-continuous conflict between England and France was characterised by raids on coastal towns and ports along the coastlines and the securing of sea lanes to protect troop–carrying transports. The Battle of Dover in 1217, between a French fleet of 80 ships under Eustace the Monk and an English fleet of 40 under Hubert de Burgh, is notable as the first recorded battle using sailing ship tactics. The battle of Arnemuiden (23 September 1338), which resulted in a French victory, marked the opening of the Hundred Years War and was the first battle involving artillery.[9] However the battle of Sluys, fought two years later, saw the destruction of the French fleet in a decisive action which allowed the English effective control of the sea lanes and the strategic initiative for much of the war.

Overview of naval Medieval battles



5th century AD

6th century

7th century

8th century

9th century

10th century

11th century

13th century

14th century

Naval Battles in Asia



The Sui (581–618) and Tang (618–907) dynasties of China were involved in several naval affairs over the triple set of polities ruling medieval Korea (Three Kingdoms of Korea), along with engaging naval bombardments on the peninsula from Asuka period Yamato Kingdom (Japan).

The Tang dynasty aided the Korean kingdom of Silla (see also Unified Silla) and expelled the Korean kingdom of Baekje with the aid of Japanese naval forces from the Korean peninsula (see Battle of Baekgang) and conquered Silla's Korean rivals, Baekje and Goguryeo by 668. In addition, the Tang had maritime trading, tributary, and diplomatic ties as far as modern Sri Lanka, India, Islamic Iran and Arabia, as well as Somalia in East Africa.

Indian Ocean naval warfare



From the Axumite Kingdom in modern-day Ethiopia, the Arab traveller Sa'd ibn Abi-Waqqas sailed from there to Tang China during the reign of Emperor Gaozong. Two decades later, he returned with a copy of the Quran, establishing the first Islamic mosque in China, the Mosque of Remembrance in Guangzhou. A rising rivalry followed between the Arabs and Chinese for control of trade in the Indian Ocean. In his book Cultural Flow Between China and the Outside World, Shen Fuwei notes that maritime Chinese merchants in the 9th century were landing regularly at Sufala in East Africa to cut out Arab middle-men traders.

The Chola dynasty of medieval India was a dominant seapower in the Indian Ocean, an avid maritime trader and diplomatic entity with Song China. Rajaraja Chola I (reigned 985 to 1014) and his son Rajendra Chola I (reigned 1014–42), sent a great naval expedition that occupied parts of Myanmar, Malaya, and Sumatra. The Cholas were the first rulers noted to have a naval fleet in the Indian subcontinent; there are at least two evidences to cite use of navies. Narasimhavarman Pallava I transported his troops to Sri Lanka to help Manavarman to reclaim the throne. Shatavahanahas was known to possess a navy that was widely deployed to influence Southeast Asia, however the extent of their use is not known.

Some argue that there is no evidence to support naval warfare in a contemporary sense. Others say that ships routinely carried bands of soldiers to keep pirates at bay. However, since the Arabs were known to use catapults, naptha, and devices attached to ships to prevent boarding parties, one may conclude that Chola navies not only transported troops but also provided support, protection, and attack capabilities against enemy targets.
Full size replica of Borobudur ship of the 8th century AD. This one had gone to expedition to Ghana in 2003–2004, reenacting the Srivijayan and Medang navigation and exploration.

In Nusantara archipelago, large ocean going ships of more than 50 m in length and 4–7 m freeboard are already used at least since the 1st century AD, contacting West Africa to China. Srivijaya empire since the 7th century AD controlled the sea of the western part of the archipelago. The Kedukan Bukit inscription is the oldest record of Indonesian military history, and noted a 7th-century Srivijayan siddhayatra expedition led by Dapunta Hyang Sri Jayanasa. He was said to have brought 20,000 troops, including 200 seamen and 1,312 foot soldiers. The 10th century Arab account Ajayeb al-Hind (Marvels of India) gives an account of invasion in Africa by people called Wakwak or Waqwaq, probably the Malay people of Srivijaya or Javanese people of Medang in 945-946 CE.

They arrived in the coast of Tanganyika and Mozambique with 1000 boats and attempted to take the citadel of Qanbaloh, though eventually failed. The reason of the attack is because that place had goods suitable for their country and for China, such as ivory, tortoise shells, panther skins, and ambergris, and also because they wanted black slaves from Bantu people (called Zeng or Zenj by Arabs, Jenggi by Javanese) who were strong and make good slaves.Srivijaya remained a formidable sea power until the 13th century. It is theorized that the main warship of the Srivijaya was an outrigger ship called akin to Borobudur ship.

Mongol naval sea power



In 1293, Mongol Yuan Dynasty launched an invasion to Java. The Yuan sent 1000 ships and 20,000-30,000 soldiers, but ultimately defeated in the land by surprise attack, forcing the army to fall back to the beach. In the coast, Javanese junk ships already attacked Mongol ships. After all of the troops had boarded the ships on the coast, the Yuan army battled the Javanese fleet. After repelling it, they sailed back to Quanzhou. Gunung Butak inscription from 1294 mentioned that naval commander Aria Adikara intercepting a further Mongol invasion and successfully defeating it before landing in Java. Although with only scarce information, travellers passing the region, such as Ibn Battuta and Odoric of Pordenone, however noted that Java had been attacked by the Mongols several times, always ending in failure. After those failed invasions, Majapahit empire quickly grew and became the dominant naval power in the 14-15th century.

The usage of cannons in the Mongol invasion of Java, led to deployment of cetbang cannons by Majapahit fleet in 1300s and subsequent near universal use of the swivel-gun and cannons in the Nusantara archipelago. The main warship of Majapahit navy was the jong. Jong were large transport ships which could carry 500-800 tons of cargo and 200-1000 people, 70-180 meter in length. The exact number of jong fielded by Majapahit is unknown, but the largest number of jong deployed in an expedition is about 400 jongs, when Majapahit attacked Pasai, in 1350. In this era, even to the 17th century, the Nusantaran naval soldiers fought on a platform on their ships called Balai and performed boarding actions. Majapahit navy used breech-loading cannon called cetbang to counter this type of fighting, firing scattershots against the enemy personnel.

In the 12th century, China's first permanent standing navy was established by the Southern Song dynasty, the headquarters of the Admiralty stationed at Dinghai. This came about after the conquest of northern China by the Jurchen people (see Jin dynasty) in 1127, while the Song imperial court fled south from Kaifeng to Hangzhou. Equipped with the magnetic compass and knowledge of Shen Kuo's famous treatise (on the concept of true north), the Chinese became proficient experts of navigation in their day. They raised their naval strength from a mere 11 squadrons of 3,000 marines to 20 squadrons of 52,000 marines in a century's time.

Employing paddle wheel crafts and trebuchets throwing gunpowder bombs from the decks of their ships, the Southern Song dynasty became a formidable foe to the Jin dynasty during the 12th–13th centuries during the Jin–Song Wars. There were naval engagements at the Battle of Caishi and Battle of Tangdao. With a powerful navy, China dominated maritime trade throughout South East Asia as well. Until 1279, the Song were able to use their naval power to defend against the Jin to the north, until the Mongols finally conquered all of China. After the Song dynasty, the Mongol-led Yuan dynasty of China was a powerful maritime force in the Indian Ocean.

The Yuan emperor Kublai Khan attempted to invade Japan twice with large fleets (of both Mongols and Chinese), in 1274 and again in 1281, both attempts being unsuccessful (see Mongol invasions of Japan). Building upon the technological achievements of the earlier Song dynasty, the Mongols also employed early cannons upon the decks of their ships.

While Song China built its naval strength, the Japanese also had considerable naval prowess. The strength of Japanese naval forces could be seen in the Genpei War, in the large-scale Battle of Dan-no-ura on 25 April 1185. The forces of Minamoto no Yoshitsune were 850 ships strong, while Taira no Munemori had 500 ships.

In the mid-14th century, the rebel leader Zhu Yuanzhang (1328–1398) seized power in the south amongst many other rebel groups. His early success was due to capable officials such as Liu Bowen and Jiao Yu, and their gunpowder weapons (see Huolongjing). Yet the decisive battle that cemented his success and his founding of the Ming dynasty (1368–1644) was the Battle of Lake Poyang, considered one of the largest naval battles in history.

In the 15th century, the Chinese admiral Zheng He was assigned to assemble a massive fleet for several diplomatic missions abroad, sailing throughout the waters of the South East Pacific and the Indian Ocean. During his maritime missions, on several occasions Zheng's fleet came into conflict with pirates. Zheng's fleet also became involved in a conflict in Sri Lanka, where the King of Ceylon traveled back to Ming China afterwards to make a formal apology to the Yongle Emperor.

The Ming imperial navy defeated a Portuguese navy led by Martim Affonso in 1522. The Chinese destroyed one vessel by targeting its gunpowder magazine, and captured another Portuguese ship.[26][27] A Ming army and navy led by Koxinga defeated a western power, the Dutch East India Company, at the Siege of Fort Zeelandia, the first time China had defeated a western power. The Chinese used cannons and ships to bombard the Dutch into surrendering.

In the Sengoku period of Japan, Oda Nobunaga unified the country by military power. However, he was defeated by the Mōri clan's navy. Nobunaga invented the Tekkosen (large Atakebune equipped with iron plates) and defeated 600 ships of the Mōri navy with six armored warships (Battle of Kizugawaguchi). The navy of Nobunaga and his successor Toyotomi Hideyoshi employed clever close-range tactics on land with arquebus rifles, but also relied upon close-range firing of muskets in grapple-and-board style naval engagements. When Nobunaga died in the Honnō-ji incident, Hideyoshi succeeded him and completed the unification of the whole country. In 1592, Hideyoshi ordered the daimyōs to dispatch troops to Joseon Korea to conquer Ming China.

The Japanese army which landed at Pusan on 12 April 1502 occupied Seoul within a month. The Korean king escaped to the northern region of the Korean peninsula and Japan completed occupation of Pyongyang in June. The Korean navy then led by Admiral Yi Sun-sin defeated the Japanese navy in consecutive naval battles, namely Okpo, Sacheon, Tangpo and Tanghangpo. The Battle of Hansando on 14 August 1592 resulted in a decisive victory for Korea over the japanese navy. In this battle, 47 japanese warships were sunk and other 12 ships were captured whilst no Korean warship was lost. The defeats in the sea prevent the Japanese navy from providing the Japanese army with appropriate supply.

Yi Sun-sin was later replaced with Admiral Won Gyun, whose fleets faced a defeat. The Japanese army, based near Busan, overwhelmed the Korean navy in the Battle of Chilcheollyang on 28 August 1597 and began advancing toward China. This attempt was stopped when the reappointed Admiral Yi, won the battle of Myeongnyang.

The Wanli Emperor of Ming China sent military forces to the Korean peninsula. Yi Sun-sin and Chen Lin continued to successfully engage the Japanese navy with 500 Chinese warships and the strengthened Korean fleet. In 1598, the planned conquest in China was canceled by the death of Toyotomi Hideyoshi, and the Japanese military retreated from the Korean Peninsula. On their way back to Japan, Yi Sun-sin and Chen Lin attacked the Japanese navy at the Battle of Noryang inflicting a heavy damages, but Chinese top official Deng Zilong and the Korean commander Yi Sun-sin were killed in a Japanese army counterattack. The rest of the Japanese army returned to Japan by the end of December. In 1609, the Tokugawa shogunate ordered the abandonment of warships to the feudal lord. The Japanese navy remained stagnant until the Meiji period.

In Korea, the greater range of Korean cannons, along with the brilliant naval strategies of the Korean admiral Yi Sun-sin, were the main factors in the ultimate Japanese defeat. Yi Sun-sin is credited for improving the Geobukseon (turtle ship), which were used mostly to spearhead attacks. They were best used in tight areas and around islands rather than the open sea. Yi Sun-sin effectively cut off the possible Japanese supply line that would have run through the Yellow Sea to China, and severely weakened the Japanese strength and fighting morale in several heated engagements (many regard the critical Japanese defeat to be the Battle of Hansan Island). The Japanese faced diminishing hopes of further supplies due to repeated losses in naval battles in the hands of Yi Sun-sin. As the Japanese army was about to return to Japan, Yi Sun-sin decisively defeated a Japanese navy at the Battle of Noryang.

Naval Battles of the Renaissance



Although they were sorely defeated in the Battle of Lepanto (1571) by the Holy League, the Ottomans soon rebuilt their naval strength, and afterwards successfully defended the island of Cyprus so that it would stay in Ottoman hands. However, with the concurrent Age of Discovery, Europe had far surpassed the Ottoman Empire, and successfully bypassed their reliance on land-trade by discovering maritime routes around Africa and towards the Americas.

The first naval action in defense of the new colonies was just ten years after Vasco da Gama's epochal landing in India. In March 1508, a combined Gujarati/Egyptian force surprised a Portuguese squadron at Chaul, and only two Portuguese ships escaped. The following February, the Portuguese viceroy destroyed the allied fleet at Diu, confirming Portuguese domination of the Indian Ocean.

In 1582, the Battle of Ponta Delgada in the Azores, in which a Spanish-Portuguese fleet defeated a combined French and Portuguese force, with some English direct support, thus ending the Portuguese succession crisis, was the first battle fought in mid-Atlantic.

In 1588, Spanish King Philip II sent his Armada to subdue the English fleet of Elizabeth, but Admiral Sir Charles Howard defeated the Armada, marking the rise to prominence of the English Royal Navy. However it was unable to follow up with a decisive blow against the Spanish navy, which remained the most important for another half century. After the war's end in 1604 the English fleet went through a time of relative neglect and decline.
The Battle of the Saintes fought on 12 April 1782 near Guadeloupe

In the 16th century, the Barbary states of North Africa rose to power, becoming a dominant naval power in the Mediterranean Sea due to the Barbary pirates. The coastal villages and towns of Italy, Spain and Mediterranean islands were frequently attacked, and long stretches of the Italian and Spanish coasts were almost completely abandoned by their inhabitants; after 1600 Barbary pirates occasionally entered the Atlantic and struck as far north as Iceland.

According to Robert Davis as many as 1.25 million Europeans were captured by Barbary pirates and sold as slaves in North Africa and the Ottoman Empire between the 16th and 19th centuries. These slaves were captured mainly from seaside villages in Italy, Spain and Portugal, and from farther places like France, England, the Netherlands, Ireland and even Iceland and North America. The Barbary pirates were also able to successfully defeat and capture many European ships, largely due to advances in sailing technology by the Barbary states. The earliest naval trawler, xebec and windward ships were employed by the Barbary pirates from the 16th century.

From the middle of the 17th century competition between the expanding English and Dutch commercial fleets came to a head in the Anglo-Dutch Wars, the first wars to be conducted entirely at sea. Most memorable of these battles was the raid on the Medway, in which the Dutch admiral Michiel de Ruyter sailed up the river Thames, and destroyed most of the British fleet. This remains to date the greatest English naval defeat, and established Dutch supremacy at sea for over half a century. The English and Dutch wars were also known for very few ships being sunk, as it was difficult to hit ships below the water level; the water surface deflected cannonballs, and the few holes produced could be patched quickly. Naval cannonades caused more damage by casualties to the men and damage to the sails than sinking of ships.

Later age of sale - Battles list

Early 14th Cent.



Northern Seven Years War (1563–70)

17th century Naval battles



Naval Battles of the Enlightenment era



The 18th century developed into a period of seemingly continuous international wars, each larger than the last. At sea, the British and French were bitter rivals; the French aided the fledgling United States in the American Revolutionary War, but their strategic purpose was to capture territory in India and the West Indies – which they did not achieve. In the Baltic Sea, the final attempt to revive the Swedish Empire led to Gustav III's Russian War, with its grande finale at the Second Battle of Svensksund. The battle, unrivaled in size until the 20th century, was a decisive Swedish tactical victory, but it resulted in little strategical result, due to poor army performance and previous lack of initiative from the Swedes, and the war ended with no territorial changes.

Even the change of government due to the French Revolution seemed to intensify rather than diminish the rivalry, and the Napoleonic Wars included a series of legendary naval battles, culminating in the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805, by which Admiral Horatio Nelson broke the power of the French and Spanish fleets, but lost his own life in so doing.

Battles list

Danish-Swedish War (1643–45)



Cretan War (1645–69)

Anglo-Dutch Wars (1652–74)



Later 17th century



18th century Naval Battles

Great Northern War (1700–21)

War of the Austrian Succession (1740–48)

Seven Years War (1756–63)

Russo-Turkish War (1768–74)

American War of Independence (1776–83)

Russo-Turkish War (1787–92)

Russo-Swedish War (1788–90)

French Revolutionary War (1793–1802)

Naval Battles of the Industrial era



Trafalgar ushered in the Pax Britannica of the 19th century, marked by general peace in the world's oceans, under the ensigns of the Royal Navy. But the period was one of intensive experimentation with new technology; steam power for ships appeared in the 1810s, improved metallurgy and machining technique produced larger and deadlier guns, and the development of explosive shells, capable of demolishing a wooden ship at a single blow, in turn required the addition of iron armour.

Although naval power during the Song, Yuan, and Ming dynasties established China as a major world seapower in the East, the Qing dynasty lacked an official standing navy. They were more interested in pouring funds into military ventures closer to home (China proper), such as Mongolia, Tibet, and Central Asia (modern Xinjiang). However, there were some considerable naval conflicts involving the Qing navy before the First Opium War (such as the Battle of Penghu, and the capture of Formosa from Ming loyalists).

The Qing navy proved woefully undermatched during the First and Second Opium Wars, leaving China open to de facto foreign domination; portions of the Chinese coastline were placed under Western and Japanese spheres of influence. The Qing government responded to its defeat in the Opium Wars by attempting to modernize the Chinese navy; placing several contracts in European shipyards for modern warships. The result of these developments was the Beiyang Fleet, which was dealt a severe blow by the Imperial Japanese Navy in the First Sino-Japanese War (1894–1895).

The battle between CSS Virginia and USS Monitor in the American Civil War was a duel of ironclads that symbolized the changing times. The first fleet action between ironclad ships was fought in 1866 at the Battle of Lissa between the navies of Austria and Italy. Because the decisive moment of the battle occurred when the Austrian flagship Erzherzog Ferdinand Max successfully sank the Italian flagship Re d'Italia by ramming, in subsequent decade every navy in the world largely focused on ramming as the main tactic. The last known use of ramming in a naval battle was in 1915, when HMS Dreadnought rammed the (surfaced) German submarine, U-29. The last surface ship sunk by ramming happened in 1879 when the Peruvian ship Huáscar rammed the Chilean ship Esmeralda. The last known warship equipped with a ram was launched in 1908, the German light cruiser SMS Emden.

With the advent of the steamship, it became possible to create massive gun platforms and to provide them with heavy armor resulting in the first modern battleships. The Battles of Santiago de Cuba and Tsushima demonstrated the power of these ships.

Naval History

⚑ 1870 Fleets
Spanish Navy 1870 Armada Espanola Austro-Hungarian Navy 1870 K.u.K. Kriegsmarine
Danish Navy 1870 Dansk Marine
Hellenic Navy 1870 Nautoko Hellenon
Haitian Navy 1914Haiti Koninklije Marine 1870 Koninklije Marine
Dutch Screw Frigates & corvettes
De Ruyter Bd Ironclad (1863)
Prins H. der Neth. Turret ship (1866)
Buffel class turret rams (1868)
Skorpioen class turret rams (1868)
Heiligerlee class Monitors (1868)
Bloedhond class Monitors (1869)
Adder class Monitors (1870)
A.H.Van Nassau Frigate (1861)
A.Paulowna Frigate (1867)
Djambi class corvettes (1860)
Amstel class Gunboats (1860)

Marine Française 1870 Marine Nationale
Screw 3-deckers (1850-58)
Screw 2-deckers (1852-59)
Screw Frigates (1849-59)
Screw Corvettes (1846-59)
Screw Fl. Batteries (1855)
Paddle Frigates
Paddle Corvettes
screw sloops
screw gunboats
Sailing ships of the line
Sailing frigates
Sailing corvettes
Sailing bricks

Gloire class Bd. Ironclads (1859)
Couronne Bd. Ironclad (1861)
Magenta class Bd. Ironclads (1861)
Palestro class Flt. Batteries (1862)
Arrogante class Flt. Batteries (1864)
Provence class Bd. Ironclads (1864) Embuscade class Flt. Batteries (1865)
Taureau arm. ram (1865)
Belliqueuse Bd. Ironclad (1865)
Alma Cent. Bat. Ironclads (1867)
Ocean class CT Battery ship (1868)
French converted sailing frigates (1860)
Cosmao class cruisers (1861)
Talisman cruisers (1862)
Resolue cruisers (1863)
Venus class cruisers (1864)
Decres cruiser (1866)
Desaix cruiser (1866)
Limier class cruisers (1867)
Linois cruiser (1867)
Chateaurenault cruiser (1868)
Infernet class Cruisers (1869)
Bourayne class Cruisers (1869)
Cruiser Hirondelle (1869)

Curieux class sloops (1860)
Adonis class sloops (1863)
Guichen class sloops (1865)
Sloop Renard (1866)
Bruix class sloops (1867)
Pique class gunboats (1862)
Hache class gunboats (1862)
Arbalete class gunboats (1866)
Etendard class gunboats (1868)
Revolver class gunboats (1869)

Marinha do Brasil 1870 Marinha do Brasil
Barrozo class (1864)
Brasil (1864)
Tamandare (1865)
Lima Barros (1865)
Rio de Janeiro (1865)
Silvado (1866)
Mariz E Barros class (1866)
Carbal class (1866)

Turkish Ottoman navy 1870 Osmanlı Donanması
Osmanieh class Bd.Ironclads (1864) Assari Tewfik (1868) Assari Shevket class Ct. Ironclads (1868)
Lufti Djelil class CDS (1868)
Avni Illah class cas.ironclads (1869)
Fethi Bulend class cas.ironclads (1870)
Barbette ironclad Idjalleh (1870)
Messudieh class Ct.Bat.ships (1874)
Hamidieh Ct.Bat.Ironclads (1885)
Abdul Kadir Batleships (project)

Ertrogul Frigate (1863)
Selimieh (1865)
Rehberi Tewkik (1875)
Mehmet Selim (1876)
Sloops & despatch vessels

Marina do Peru Marina Do Peru
Monitor Atahualpa (1865)
CT. Bat Independencia (1865)
Turret ship Huascar (1865)
Frigate Apurimac (1855)
Corvette America (1865)
Corvette Union (1865)

Regia Marina 1870 Regia Marina 1870 Imperial Japanese navy 1870 Nihhon Kaigun Prussian Navy 1870 Preußische Marine Russian mperial Navy 1870 Russkiy Flot Swedish Navy 1870 Svenska marinen
Norwegian Navy 1870 Søværnet
⚑ 1898 Fleets
Argentinian Navy 1898 Armada de Argentina
Parana class Gunboats (1873)
La Plata class Coast Battleships (1875)
Pilcomayo class Gunboats (1875)
Ferre class Gunboats (1880)

Austro-Hungarian Navy 1898 K.u.K. Kriegsmarine

Chinese Imperial Navy 1898 Imperial Chinese Navy
Danish Navy 1898 Dansk Marine

Hellenic Navy 1898 Nautiko Hellenon
Haitian Navy 1914Marine Haitienne
Koninklije Marine 1898 Koninklije Marine
Konigin der Netherland (1874)
Draak, monitor (1877)
Matador, monitor (1878)
R. Claeszen, monitor (1891)
Evertsen class CDS (1894)
Atjeh class cruisers (1876)
Cruiser Sumatra (1890)
Cruiser K.W. Der. Neth (1892)
Banda class Gunboats (1872)
Pontania class Gunboats (1873)
Gunboat Aruba (1873)
Hydra Gunboat class (1873)
Batavia class Gunboats (1877)
Wodan Gunboat class (1877)
Ceram class Gunboats (1887)
Combok class Gunboats (1891)
Borneo Gunboat (1892)
Nias class Gunboats (1895)
Koetei class Gunboats (1898)
Dutch sloops (1864-85)

Marine Française 1898 Marine Nationale
Friedland CT Battery ship (1873)
Richelieu CT Battery ship (1873)
Colbert class CT Battery ships (1875)
Redoutable CT Battery ship (1876)
Courbet class CT Battery ships (1879)
Amiral Duperre barbette ship (1879)
Terrible class barbette ships (1883)
Amiral Baudin class barbette ships (1883)
Barbette ship Hoche (1886)
Marceau class barbette ships (1888)
Cerbere class arm. rams (1870)
Tonnerre class Br. Monitors (1875)
Tempete class Br. Monitors (1876)
Tonnant Barbette ship (1880)
Furieux Barbette ship (1883)
Fusee class Arm. Gunboats (1885)
Acheron class Arm. Gunboats (1885)
Jemmapes class C.Defense ships (1890)

La Galissonière Cent. Bat. Ironclads (1872)
Bayard class barbette ships (1879)
Vauban class barbette ships (1882)
Prot. Cruiser Sfax (1884)
Prot. Cruiser Tage (1886)
Prot. Cruiser Amiral Cécille (1888)
Prot. Cruiser Davout (1889)
Forbin class Cruisers (1888)
Troude class Cruisers (1888)
Alger class Cruisers (1891)
Friant class Cruisers (1893)
Prot. Cruiser Suchet (1893)
Descartes class Cruisers (1893)
Linois class Cruisers (1896)
D'Assas class Cruisers (1896)
Catinat class Cruisers (1896)

R. de Genouilly class Cruisers (1876)
Cruiser Duquesne (1876)
Cruiser Tourville (1876)
Cruiser Duguay-Trouin (1877)
Laperouse class Cruisers (1877)
Villars class Cruisers (1879)
Cruiser Iphigenie (1881)
Cruiser Naiade (1881)
Cruiser Arethuse (1882)
Cruiser Dubourdieu (1884)
Cruiser Milan (1884)

Parseval class sloops (1876)
Bisson class sloops (1874)
Epee class gunboats (1873)
Crocodile class gunboats (1874)
Tromblon class gunboats (1875)
Condor class Torpedo Cruisers (1885)
G. Charmes class gunboats (1886)
Inconstant class sloops (1887)
Bombe class Torpedo Cruisers (1887)
Wattignies class Torpedo Cruisers (1891)
Levrier class Torpedo Cruisers (1891)

Marinha do Brasil 1898 Marinha do Brasil
Siete de Setembro class (1874)
Riachuleo class (1883)
Aquidaban class (1885)

Marina de Mexico 1898 Mexico
GB Indipendencia (1874)
GB Democrata (1875)

Turkish Ottoman navy 1898 Osmanlı Donanması
Cruiser Heibtnuma (1890)
Cruiser Lufti Humayun (1892)
Cruiser Hadevendighar (1892)
Shadieh class cruisers (1893)
Turkish TBs (1885-94)

Regia Marina 1898 Regia Marina Pr. Amadeo class (1871)
Caio Duilio class (1879)
Italia class (1885)
Ruggero di Lauria class (1884)
Carracciolo (1869)
Vettor Pisani (1869)
Cristoforo Colombo (1875)
Flavio Goia (1881)
Amerigo Vespucci (1882)
C. Colombo (ii) (1892)
Pietro Micca (1876)
Tripoli (1886)
Goito class (1887)
Folgore class (1887)
Partenope class (1889)
Giovanni Bausan (1883)
Etna class (1885)
Dogali (1885)
Piemonte (1888)
Staffeta (1876)
Rapido (1876)
Barbarigo class (1879)
Messagero (1885)
Archimede class (1887)
Guardiano class GB (1874)
Scilla class GB (1874)
Provana class GB (1884)
Curtatone class GB (1887)
Castore class GB (1888)

Imperial Japanese navy 1898 Nihhon Kaigun German Navy 1898 Kaiserliches Marine
Russian Imperial Navy 1898 Russkiy Flot
Marina do Peru Marina Do Peru

Swedish Navy 1898 Svenska Marinen Norwegian Navy 1898 Søværnet
Royal Navy 1898 Royal Navy
HMS Hotspur (1870)
HMS Glatton (1871)
Devastation classs (1871)
Cyclops class (1871)
HMS Rupert (1874)
Neptune class (1874)
HMS Dreadnought (1875)
HMS Inflexible (1876)
Agamemnon class (1879)
Conqueror class (1881)
Colossus class (1882)
Admiral class (1882)
Trafalgar class (1887)
Victoria class (1890)
Royal Sovereign class (1891)
Centurion class (1892)
HMS Renown (1895)

HMS Shannon (1875)
Nelson class (1876)
Iris class (1877)
Leander class (1882)
Imperieuse class (1883)
Mersey class (1885)
Surprise class (1885)
Scout class (1885)
Archer class (1885)
Orlando class (1886)
Medea class (1888)
Barracouta class (1889)
Barham class (1889)
Pearl class (1889)

Spanish Navy 1898 Armada 1898
Ironclad Pelayo (1887)

Infanta Maria Teresa class (1890)
Emperador Carlos V (1895)
Cristobal Colon (1897)
Princesa de Asturias (1896)
Aragon class (1879)
Velasco class (1881)
Isla de Luzon (1886)
Alfonso XII class (1887)
Reina Regentes class (1887)

Destructor class (1886)
Temerario class (1891)
TGunboat Filipinas (1892)
De Molina class (1896)
Furor class (1896)
Audaz class (1897)
Spanish TBs (1878-87)
Fernando class gunboats (1875)
Concha class gunboats (1883)

US Navy 1898 1898 US Navy
USS Maine (1889)
USS Texas (1892)
Indiana class (1893)
USS Iowa (1896)

Amphitrite class (1876)
USS Puritan (1882)
USS Monterey (1891)

Atlanta class (1884)
USS Chicago (1885)
USS Charleston (1888)
USS Baltimore (1888)
USS Philadelphia (1889)
USS San Francisco (1889)
USS Newark (1890)
USS New York (1891)
USS Olympia (1892)
Cincinatti class (1892)
Montgomery class (1893)
Columbia class (1893)
USS Brooklyn (1895)

USS Vesuvius (1888)
USS Katahdin (1893)
USN Torpedo Boats (1886-1901)
GB USS Dolphin (1884)
Yorktown class GB (1888)
GB USS Petrel (1888)
GB USS Bancroft (1892)
Machias class GB (1891)
GB USS Nashville (1895)
Wilmington class GB (1895)
Annapolis class GB (1896)
Wheeling class GB (1897)
Small gunboats (1886-95)
St Louis class AMC (1894)
Harvard class AMC (1888)
USN Armoured Merchant Cruisers
USN Armed Yachts

WW1

☉ Entente Fleets

British ww1 Royal Navy
WW1 British Battleships
Majestic class (1894)
Canopus class (1897)
Formidable class (1898)
London class (1899)
Duncan class (1901)
King Edward VII class (1903)
Swiftsure class (1903)
Lord Nelson class (1906)
HMS Dreadnought (1906)
Bellorophon class (1907)
St Vincent class (1908)
HMS Neptune (1909)
Colossus class (1910)
Orion class (1911)
King George V class (1911)
Iron Duke class (1912)
Queen Elizabeth class (1913)
HMS Canada (1913)
HMS Agincourt (1913)
HMS Erin (1915)
Revenge class (1915)
B3 class (1918)

WW1 British Battlecruisers
Invincible class (1907)
Indefatigable class (1909)
Lion class (1910)
HMS Tiger (1913)
Renown class (1916)
Courageous class (1916)
G3 class (1918)

ww1 British cruisers
Blake class (1889)
Edgar class (1890)
Powerful class (1895)
Diadem class (1896)
Cressy class (1900)
Drake class (1901)
Monmouth class (1901)
Devonshire class (1903)
Duke of Edinburgh class (1904)
Warrior class (1905)
Minotaur class (1906)
Hawkins class (1917)

Apollo class (1890)
Astraea class (1893)
Eclipse class (1894)
Arrogant class (1896)
Pelorus class (1896)
Highflyer class (1898)
Gem class (1903)
Adventure class (1904)
Forward class (1904)
Pathfinder class (1904)
Sentinel class (1904)
Boadicea class (1908)
Blonde class (1910)
Active class (1911)
'Town' class (1909-1913)
Arethusa class (1913)
'C' class series (1914-1922)
'D' class (1918)
'E' class (1918)

WW1 British Seaplane Carriers
HMS Ark Royal (1914)
HMS Campania (1893)
HMS Argus (1917)
HMS Furious (1917)
HMS Vindictive (1918)
HMS Hermes (1919)

WW1 British Destroyers
River class (1903)
Cricket class (1906)
Tribal class (1907)
HMS Swift (1907)
Beagle class (1909)
Acorn class (1910)
Acheron class (1911)
Acasta class (1912)
Laforey class (1913)
M/repeat M class (1914)
Faulknor class FL (1914)
T class (1915)
Parker class FL (1916)
R/mod R class (1916)
V class (1917)
V class FL (1917)
Shakespeare class FL (1917)
Scott class FL (1917)
W/mod W class (1917)
S class (1918)

WW1 British Torpedo Boats
125ft series (1885)
140ft series (1892)
160ft series (1901)
27-knotters (1894)
30-knotters (1896)
33-knotters (1896)

WW1 British Submarines
Nordenfelt Submarines (1885)
Flower class sloops
British Gunboats of WWI
British P-Boats (1915)
Kil class (1917)
British ww1 Minesweepers
Z-Whaler class patrol crafts
British ww1 CMB
British ww1 Auxiliaries

✠ Central Empires

⚑ Neutral Countries

Europe
Bulgarian Navy Bulgaria
Danish Navy 1914 Denmark
Greek Royal Navy Greece

Dutch Empire Navy 1914 Netherlands
Norwegian Navy 1914 Norway

Portuguese navy 1914 Portugal

Romanian Navy 1914 Romania
Spanish Armada Spain Swedish Navy 1914 Sweden


WW2

✪ Allied ww2 Fleets

US ww2 US Navy
WW2 American Battleships
Wyoming class (1911)
New York class (1912)
Nevada class (1914)
Pennsylvania class (1915)
New Mexico class (1917)
Tennessee Class (1919)
Colorado class (1921)
North Carolina class (1940)
South Dakota class (1941)
Iowa class (1942)
Montana class (cancelled)

WW2 American Cruisers
Omaha class cruisers (1920)
Northampton class heavy cruisers (1929)
Pensacola class heavy Cruisers (1928)
Portland class heavy cruisers (1931)
New Orleans class cruisers (1933)
Brooklyn class cruisers (1936)
USS Wichita (1937)
Atlanta class light cruisers (1941)
Cleveland class light Cruisers (1942)
Baltimore class heavy cruisers (1942)
Alaska class heavy cruisers (1944)

WW2 USN Aircraft Carriers
USS Langley (1920)
Lexington class CVs (1927)
USS Ranger (CV-4)
USS Wasp (CV-7)
Yorktown class aircraft carriers (1936)
Long Island class (1940)
Independence class CVs (1942)
Essex class CVs (1942)
Bogue class CVEs (1942)
Sangamon class CVEs (1942)
Casablanca class CVEs (1943)
Commencement Bay class CVEs (1944)
Midway class CVs (1945)
Saipan class CVs (1945)

WW2 American destroyers
Wickes class (1918)
Clemson class (1920)
Farragut class (1934)
Porter class (1935)
Mahan class (1935)
Gridley class (1936)
Bagley class (1936)
Somers class (1937)
Benham class (1938)
Sims class (1938)
Benson class (1939)
Fletcher class (1942)
Sumner class (1943)
Gearing class (1945)

GMT Evarts class (1942)
TE Buckley class (1943)
TEV/WGT Rudderow classs (1943)
DET/FMR Cannon class
Asheville/Tacoma class

WW2 American Submarines
Barracuda class
USS Argonaut
Narwhal class
USS Dolphin
Cachalot class
Porpoise class
Shark class
Perch class
Salmon class
Sargo class
Tambor class
Mackerel class
Gato Class

USS Terror (1941)
Raven class Mnsp (1940)
Admirable class Mnsp (1942)
Eagle class sub chasers (1918)
PC class sub chasers
SC class sub chasers
PCS class sub chasers
YMS class Mot. Mnsp
PT-Boats
ww2 US gunboats
ww2 US seaplane tenders
USS Curtiss ST (1940)
Currituck class ST
Tangier class ST
Barnegat class ST

US Coat Guardships
Lake class
Northland class
Treasury class
Owasco class
Wind class
Algonquin class
Thetis class
Active class

US Amphibious ships & crafts
US Amphibious Operations
Doyen class AT
Harris class AT
Dickman class AT
Bayfield class AT
Windsor class AT
Ormsby class AT
Funston class AT
Sumter class AT
Haskell class AT
Andromeda class AT
Gilliam class AT
APD-1 class LT
APD-37 class LT
LSV class LS
LSD class LS
Landing Ship Tank
LSM class LS
LSM(R) class SS
LCI(L) LC
LCT(6) LC
LCV class LC
LCVP class LC
LCM(3) class LC
LCP(L) class LC
LCP(R) class SC
LCL(L)(3) class FSC
LCS(S) class FSC
British ww2 Royal Navy

WW2 British Battleships
Queen Elisabeth class (1913)
Revenge class (1915)
Nelson class (1925)
King Georges V class (1939)
Lion class (Started)
HMS Vanguard (1944)
Renown class (1916)
HMS Hood (1920)

WW2 British Cruisers
British C class cruisers (1914-1922)
Hawkins class cruisers (1917)
British D class cruisers (1918)
Enterprise class cruisers (1919)
HMS Adventure (1924)
County class cruisers (1926)
York class cruisers (1929)
Surrey class cruisers (project)
Leander class cruisers (1931)
Arethusa class cruisers (1934)
Perth class cruisers (1934)
Town class cruisers (1936)
Dido class cruisers (1939)
Abdiel class cruisers (1939)
Fiji class cruisers (1941)
Bellona class cruisers (1942)
Swiftsure class cruisers (1943)
Tiger class cruisers (1944)

WW2 British Aircraft Carriers
Courageous class aircraft carriers (1928)
HMS Ark Royal (1937)
HMS Eagle (1918)
HMS Furious (1917)
HMS Hermes (1919)
Illustrious class (1939)
HMS Indomitable (1940)
Implacable class (1942)
Malta class (project)
HMS Unicorn (1941)
Colossus class (1943)
Majestic class (1944)
Centaur class (started 1944)

HMS Archer (1939)
HMS Argus (1917)
Avenger class (1940)
Attacker class (1941)
HMS Audacity (1941)
HMS Activity (1941)
HMS Pretoria Castle (1941)
Ameer class (1942)
Merchant Aircraft Carriers (1942)
Vindex class (1943)

WW2 British Destroyers
Shakespeare class (1917)
Scott class (1818)
V class (1917)
S class (1918)
W class (1918)
A/B class (1926)
C/D class (1931)
G/H/I class (1935)
Tribal class (1937)
J/K/N class (1938)
Hunt class DE (1939)
L/M class (1940)
O/P class (1942)
Q/R class (1942)
S/T/U//V/W class (1942)
Z/ca class (1943)
Ch/Co/Cr class (1944)
Battle class (1945)
Weapon class (1945)

WW2 British submarines
L9 class (1918)
HMS X1 (1923)
Oberon class (1926)
Parthian class (1929)
Rainbow class (1930)
Thames class (1932)
Swordfish class (1932)
HMS Porpoise (1932)
Grampus class (1935)
Shark class (1934)
Triton class (1937)
Undine class (1937)
U class (1940)
S class (1941)
T class (1941)
X-Craft midget (1942)
A class (1944)

WW2 British Amphibious Ships and Landing Crafts
LSI(L) class
LSI(M/S) class
LSI(H) class
LSS class
LSG class
LSC class
Boxer class LST

LST(2) class
LST(3) class
LSH(L) class
LSF classes (all)
LCI(S) class
LCS(L2) class
LCT(I) class
LCT(2) class
LCT(R) class
LCT(3) class
LCT(4) class
LCT(8) class
LCT(4) class
LCG(L)(4) class
LCG(M)(1) class

British ww2 Landing Crafts
LCA
LCP
LCM

WW2 British MTB/gunboats.
WW2 British MTBs
MTB-1 class (1936)
MTB-24 class (1939)
MTB-41 class (1940)
MTB-424 class (1944)
MTB-601 class (1942)
MA/SB class (1938)
MTB-412 class (1942)
MGB 6 class (1939)
MGB-47 class (1940)
MGB 321 (1941)
MGB 501 class (1942)
MGB 511 class (1944)
MGB 601 class (1942)
MGB 2001 class (1943)

WW2 British Gunboats

Denny class (1941)
Fairmile A (1940)
Fairmile B (1940)
HDML class (1940)

WW2 British Sloops
Bridgewater class (2090)
Hastings class (1930)
Shoreham class (1930)
Grimsby class (1934)
Bittern class (1937)
Egret class (1938)
Black Swan class (1939)

WW2 British Frigates
River class (1943)
Loch class (1944)
Bay class (1944)

WW2 British Corvettes
Kingfisher class (1935)
Shearwater class (1939)
Flower class (1940)
Mod. Flower class (1942)
Castle class (1943)

WW2 British Misc.
WW2 British Monitors
Roberts class monitors (1941)
Halcyon class minesweepers (1933)
Bangor class minesweepers (1940)
Bathurst class minesweepers (1940)
Algerine class minesweepers (1941)
Motor Minesweepers (1937)
ww2 British ASW trawlers
Basset class trawlers (1935)
Tree class trawlers (1939)
HMS Albatross seaplane carrier
WW2 British river gunboats

HMS Guardian netlayer
HMS Protector netlayer
HMS Plover coastal mines.
Medway class sub depot ships
HMS Resource fleet repair
HMS Woolwhich DD depot ship
HMS Tyne DD depot ship
Maidstone class sub depot ships
HmS Adamant sub depot ship

Athene class aircraft transport
British ww2 AMCs
British ww2 OBVs
British ww2 ABVs
British ww2 Convoy Escorts
British ww2 APVs
British ww2 SSVs
British ww2 SGAVs
British ww2 Auxiliary Mines.
British ww2 CAAAVs
British ww2 Paddle Mines.
British ww2 MDVs
British ww2 Auxiliary Minelayers
British ww2 armed yachts

✙ Axis ww2 Fleets

Japan ww2 Imperial Japanese Navy
WW2 Japanese Battleships
Kongō class Fast Battleships (1912)
Fuso class battleships (1915)
Ise class battleships (1917)
Nagato class Battleships (1919)
Yamato class Battleships (1941)
B41 class Battleships (project)

WW2 Japanese cruisers
Tenryū class cruisers (1918)
Kuma class cruisers (1919)
Nagara class (1920)
Sendai class Cruisers (1923)
IJN Yūbari (1923)
Furutaka class Cruisers (1925)
Aoba class heavy cruisers (1926)
Nachi class Cruisers (1927)
Takao class cruisers (1930)
Mogami class cruisers (1932)
Tone class cruisers (1937)
Katori class cruisers (1939)
Agano class cruisers (1941)
Oyodo (1943)

Seaplane & Aircraft Carriers
Hōshō (1921)
IJN Akagi (1925)
IJN Kaga (1927)
IJN Ryujo (1931)
IJN Soryu (1935)
IJN Hiryu (1937)
Shokaku class (1937)
Zuiho class (1936) comp.40
Ruyho (1933) comp.42
Junyo class (1941)
IJN Taiho (1943)
Chitose class (comp. 1943)
IJN Shinano (1944)
Unryu class (1944)
IJN Ibuki (1942)

Taiyo class (1940)
IJN Kaiyo (1938)
IJN Shinyo (1934)

Notoro (1920)
Kamoi (1922)
Chitose class (1936)
Mizuho (1938)
Nisshin (1939)

IJN Aux. Seaplane tenders
Akistushima (1941)
Shimane Maru class (1944)
Yamashiro Maru class (1944)

Imperial Japanese Navy Aviation

WW2 Japanese Destroyers
Mutsuki class (1925)
Fubuki class (1927)
Akatsuki class (1932)
Hatsuharu class (1932)
Shiratsuyu class (1935)
Asashio class (1936)
Kagero class (1938)
Yugumo class (1941)
Akitsuki class (1941)
IJN Shimakaze (1942)

WW2 Japanese Submarines
KD1 class (1921)
Koryu class
Kaiten class
Kairyu class
IJN Midget subs

WW2 Japanese Amphibious ships/Crafts
Shinshu Maru class (1935)
Akistu Maru class (1941)
Kumano Maru class (1944)
SS class LS (1942)
T1 class LS (1944)
T101 class LS (1944)
T103 class LS (1944)
Shohatsu class LC (1941)
Chuhatsu class LC (1942)
Moku Daihatsu class (1942)
Toku Daihatsu class (1944)

WW2 Japanese minelayers
IJN Armed Merchant Cruisers
WW2 Japanese Escorts
Tomozuru class (1933)
Otori class (1935)
Matsu class (1944)
Tachibana class (1944)

WW2 Japanese Sub-chasers
WW2 Japanese MLs
Shinyo class SB
⚑ Neutral

Armada de Argentina Argentinian Navy

Rivadavia class Battleships
Cruiser La Argentina
Veinticinco de Mayo class cruisers
Argentinian Destroyers
Santa Fe class sub. Bouchard class minesweepers King class patrol vessels

Marinha do Brasil Brazilian Navy

Minas Gerais class Battleships (1912)
Cruiser Bahia
Brazilian Destroyers
Humaita class sub.
Tupi class sub.

Armada de Chile Armada de Chile

Almirante Latorre class battleships
Cruiser Esmeralda (1896)
Cruiser Chacabuco (1911)
Chilean DDs
Fresia class subs
Capitan O’Brien class subs

Søværnet Danish Navy

Niels Juel
Danish ww2 Torpedo-Boats Danish ww2 submarines Danish ww2 minelayer/sweepers

Merivoimat Finnish Navy

Coastal BB Ilmarinen
Finnish ww2 submarines
Finnish ww2 minelayers

Nautiko Hellenon Hellenic Navy

Greek ww2 Destroyers
Greek ww2 submarines
Greek ww2 minelayers

Marynarka Vojenna Polish Navy

Polish ww2 Destroyers
Polish ww2 cruisers
Polish ww2 minelayer/sweepers

Portuguese navy ww2 Portuguese Navy

Douro class DDs
Delfim class sub
Velho class gb
Albuquerque class gb
Nunes class sloops

Romanian Navy Romanian Navy

Romanian ww2 Destroyers
Romanian ww2 Submarines

Royal Norwegian Navy Sjøforsvaret

Norwegian ww2 Torpedo-Boats

Spanish Armada Spanish Armada

España class Battleships
Blas de Lezo class cruisers
Canarias class cruisers
Cervera class cruisers
Cruiser Navarra
Spanish Destroyers
Spanish Submarines
Dedalo seaplane tender
Spanish Gunboats
Spanish Minelayers

Svenska Marinen Svenska Marinen

Gustav V class BBs (1918)
Interwar swedish BB projects

Tre Kronor class (1943)
Gotland (1933)
Fylgia (1905)

Ehrernskjold class DDs (1926)
Psilander class DDs (1926)
Klas Horn class DDs (1931)
Romulus class DDs (1934)
Göteborg class DDs (1935)
Mode class DDs (1942)
Visby class DDs (1942)
Öland class DDs (1945)

Swedish ww2 TBs
Swedish ww2 Submarines
Swedish ww2 Minelayers
Swedish ww2 MTBs
Swedish ww2 Patrol Vessels
Swedish ww2 Minesweepers

Türk Donanmasi Turkish Navy

Turkish ww2 Destroyers
Turkish ww2 submarines

Royal Yugoslav Navy Royal Yugoslav Navy

Dubrovnik class DDs
Beograd class DDs
Hrabi class subs

Royal Thai Navy Royal Thai Navy

Taksin class
Ratanakosindra class
Sri Ayuthia class
Puket class
Tachin class
Sinsamudar class sub

minor navies Minor Navies


The Cold War

Royal Navy Royal Navy
Sovietskaya Flota Sovietskiy flot
US Navy USN (1990)


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