Conqueror-class ship of the line

Class overview
Name: Conqueror
Operators:  Royal Navy
In service: 1855 - 1925
Completed: 2
Lost: 1
General characteristics
Type: Ship of the line
Tons burthen: 3224
Length: 240 ft (73.2 m) (overall)
Beam: 55 ft 4 in (16.9 m)
Depth of hold: 24 ft 5 in (7.44 m)
  • Sails
  • 2-cylinder (82in diam., 4ft stroke) horizontal single expansion trunk engine
  • Single screw
  • 800 nhp
  • 2,812 ihp
Sail plan: Full rigged
Speed: 10.806 knots (20.013 km/h; 12.435 mph) (machinery)
Complement: 930
  • 101 guns
  • Lower deck: 36 × 8in guns
  • Main deck: 36 × 32-pounders
  • Quarter deck/forecastle: 28 × 32-pounders + 1 × 68-pounder

The Conqueror-class ships of the line were a class of two 101-gun first rate screw propelled ships designed by the Surveyor’s Department for the Royal Navy.


The Conqueror class ships were designed in 1852 as two-decker 101-gun first rates in a period when many under-construction sail ships of the line were being redesigned to use screw propulsion in addition to sail.[1] Two ships were subsequently completed, HMS Conqueror and HMS Donegal.[1]


Both ships saw service in the Channel Squadron, and later in the Crimean War. Both were used to transport troops to Mexico in support of the French intervention there in 1861. HMS Conqueror was wrecked on Rum Cay whilst carrying this out, but without losses, and most of her machinery, guns and stores were subsequently salvaged. The advent of armoured ironclads, such as HMS Warrior in the 1860s made the traditional ships of the line largely obsolete. HMS Donegal continued in service as a guard ship, in which role she took the last surrender of the American Civil War.[2] She was hulked in 1886, and became part of the torpedo training school HMS Vernon.[3] She served until the establishment moved on shore in 1923, and was broken up in 1925.[3]


Builder: Devonport Dockyard
Ordered: 16 November 1852
Laid down: 25 July 1853
Launched: 2 May 1855
Completed: 9 April 1856
Fate: Wrecked at Rum Cay on 13 December 1861[1]
Builder: Devonport Dockyard
Ordered: 27 December 1854
Laid down: 27 September 1855
Launched: 23 September 1858
Completed: 27 August 1859
Fate: Renamed HMS Vernon on 14 January 1886. Sold for breaking up on 18 May 1925[1]


  1. 1 2 3 4 Lyon & Winfield. "5". The Sail and Steam Navy List. pp. 10–11.
  2. Loney. "mid-Victorian RN vessels - Donegal".
  3. 1 2 Colledge. Ships of the Royal Navy. p. 100.


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