HMS Glory (1899)

For other ships with the same name, see HMS Glory.
HMS Glory between 1910 and 1915.
United Kingdom
Name: HMS Glory
Ordered: 1896 Programme
Builder: Laird Brothers, Birkenhead
Cost: £780,000
Laid down: 1 December 1896
Launched: 11 March 1899
Completed: October 1900
Commissioned: 1 November 1900
Decommissioned: 17 September 1921
Renamed: HMS Crescent April 1920
Fate: Sold for scrapping 19 December 1922
General characteristics
Class and type: Canopus-class pre-dreadnought battleship
Displacement: 12,950 tons
Length: 431 ft (131 m)
Beam: 74 ft (23 m)
Draught: 26 ft (7.9 m)
Installed power: 13,500 I.H.P.
Propulsion: 2 shafts, water tube boilers, vertical triple expansion steam engines by Lairds, 15,400 ihp (11,500 kW). Belleville boilers.
Speed: 18 knots
Complement: 750
  • Belt 6 inches (152 mm)
  • Bulkheads 10-6 inches (254-152 mm)
  • Barbettes 12 inches (305 mm)
  • Gun houses 8 inches (203 mm)
  • Casemates 6 inches (152 mm)
  • Conning tower 12 inches (305 mm)
  • decks 2 inches-1 inch (51 mm-25.4 mm)

HMS Glory was a Royal Navy battleship of the Canopus class. One of six ships in her class, she was commissioned in 1900 and entered service with the China Station. She remained in the Far East until 1905, returning to service with the Channel Fleet. After a refit in 1907, she was assigned to the Mediterranean Fleet for 18 months before returning to England for service with the Home Fleet.

Following the outbreak of World War I, Glory acted as a guard ship at Nova Scotia and conducted operations in support of the North America and West Indies Station. She participated in the Dardanelles Campaign from June 1915 until the end of the campaign in December that year. After another refit in July 1916, she spent the remainder of the war as the Flagship of the British North Russia Squadron, returning to England in September 1919. In 1920, she was renamed HMS Crescent and served as a depot ship before being decommissioned in April 1921 and sold for scrap a year later.

Technical Characteristics

HMS Glory and her five sister ships were designed for service in the Far East, where the new rising power Japan was beginning to build a powerful and dangerous navy, and to be able to transit the Suez Canal. They were designed to be smaller (by about 2,000 tons), lighter, and faster than their predecessors, the Majestic-class battleships, although they were slightly longer at 430 feet (131 m). In order to save weight, Glory carried less armour than the Majestics, although the change from Harvey armour in the Majestics to Krupp armour in the Canopus class meant that the loss in protection was not as great as it might have been, Krupp armour having greater protective value at a given weight than its Harvey equivalent. Still, Glory's armor was light enough to make her almost a second-class battleship. Part of the Canopus class's armour scheme included the use of a special 1-inch (2.54 mm) armoured deck over the belt to defend against plunging fire by howitzers that France reportedly planned to install on its ships, although this report proved to be false.[2]

Glory had four 12-inch (305-mm) 35-calibre guns mounted in twin turrets fore and aft; these guns were mounted in circular barbettes that allowed all-around loading, although at a fixed elevation.[2] The ships also mounted twelve 6-inch (152-mm) 40-calibre guns (sponson mounting allowing some of them to fire fore and aft) in addition to smaller guns, and four 18-inch (457-mm) submerged torpedo tubes.[2][3]

The Canopus class ships were the first British battleships with water-tube boilers, which generated more power at less expense in weight compared with the cylindrical boilers used in previous ships. The new boilers led to the adoption of fore-and-aft funnels, rather than the side-by-side funnel arrangement used in may previous British battleships. The Canopus-class ships proved to be good steamers, consuming 10 tons of coal per hour at full speed,[3] with a high speed for battleships of their time, a full two knots faster than the Majestics.[2]

Operational history

Pre-World War I

HMS Glory was commissioned on 1 November 1900 for service on the China Station, departing the United Kingdom for China on 24 November 1900 under the command of Captain Arthur William Carter. While there, she was in collision with battleship HMS Centurion during a storm at Hong Kong on 17 April 1901, when Centurion drifted across her bows, but Glory suffered no damage. In June 1901, Vice-Admiral Sir Cyprian Bridge, about to succeed as Commander-in-Chief of the China Station, hoisted his flag on the ship.[4] Glory refitted at Hong Kong in 1901–1902.[5]

In 1905, the United Kingdom and Japan ratified a treaty of alliance that reduced the need for a Royal Navy presence on the China Station, and all battleships there were recalled. As a result, Glory was recalled from China in July 1905, departing Hong Kong on 22 July 1905.[5]

Glory paid off at Portsmouth on 2 October 1905. She returned to full commission on 24 October 1905 for service in the Channel Fleet. On 31 October 1906, she transferred to the Portsmouth Reserve Division, which in January 1907 became the Portsmouth Division of the new Home Fleet. She underwent a refit at Portsmouth from March to September 1907,[5] during which she received fire control and magazine cooling and had her machinery and boilers overhauled.[6]

Her refit completed, Glory commissioned at Portsmouth on 18 September 1907 for service in the Mediterranean Fleet. On 20 April 1909, she paid off at Portsmouth and recommissioned for reserve duty with a nucleus crew in the 4th Division, Home Fleet, at the Nore.[7] She became part of the 3rd Fleet at the Nore in May 1912 and transferred to Portsmouth in April 1913.[6]

World War I

When World War I broke out in August 1914, Glory was assigned to the 8th Battle Squadron, Channel Fleet, based at Devonport, but she was detached on 5 August 1914 to serve at Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, as guard ship and to support the North America and West Indies Station cruiser squadron,[5] serving as flagship of the station.[6] She escorted a Canadian troop convoy in October 1914.[8]

Glory transferred to the Mediterranean in May 1915 to participate in Dardanelles campaign, arriving at the Dardanelles in June 1915. At the end of 1915 she left this duty and joined the Suez Canal Patrol in the Mediterranean on 4 January 1916. In April 1916, she returned to the United Kingdom and began a refit at Portsmouth that lasted until July 1916.[5]

HMS Glory at Roadstead of Murmansk

Glory was recommissioned on 1 August 1916 to serve as Flagship for Rear Admiral Kemp, British North Russia Squadron.[9] In this duty, she was based at Archangel to protect supplies that arrived there for the Russian Army.[5]

Decommissioning and disposal

In September 1919, Glory returned to the United Kingdom. She paid off into care and maintenance on 1 November 1919 at Sheerness.[5] She was renamed HMS Crescent in April 1920[6] and transferred to Rosyth on 1 May 1920 to serve as a harbor depot ship.[5]

Crescent paid off and was placed on the disposal list on 17 September 1921. She was sold for scrapping on 19 December 1922.[5]


  1. 1 2 Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships 1860–1905, p. 36
  2. 1 2 3 4 5 6 Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships 1860–1905, p. 35
  3. 1 2 Gibbons, p. 145
  4. "Naval & Military intelligence". The Times (36478). London. 11 June 1901. p. 10.
  5. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Burt, p. 156
  6. 1 2 3 4 Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships 1906–1921, p. 8
  7. Burt, p. 156; Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships 1906–1921, p. 8
  8. Burt, p. 156; Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships 1906–1921, p. 8, provides a somewhat different chronology, in which Glory escorted the Canadian convoy while a Channel Fleet unit in October 1914, then transferred to the North America and West Indies Station.
  9. Clifford Kinvig (November 23, 2007), Churchill's Crusade, Hambledon & London, ISBN 9781847250216, OCLC 747256147, 1847250211


Glory departs Portsmouth for the China Station in December 1900.
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