Difference between revisions of "H.M.S. Majestic (1895)"

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<div name=fredbot:career>{{ShipCareer|fullname=H.M.S. ''Majestic'' (1895)|fate2=by {{DE-U21}} off Helles
|align="center" colspan="2"|'''H.M.S. ''Majestic'''''
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|comp=Dec, 1895{{BurtBritishBattleships1889|p. 147}}
|-
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|comm=12 Dec, 1895<ref>"Naval & Military Intelligence" (Official Appointments and Notices).  ''The Times''.  Friday, 13 December, 1895.  Issue '''34759''', col B, p. 7.</ref>
!style="color: white; height: 30px; background: crimson;"| Career
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|fatedate=27 May, 1915{{DittColl|p. 29}}
!style="color: white; height: 30px; background: crimson;"| Details
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|order=1893{{Conways1860|p. 34}}
|-
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|name=Majestic
|Pendant Number:
+
|launch=31 Jan, 1895{{DittColl|p. 29}}
|D.04 (August, 1914)<ref>Dittmar; Colledge.  ''British Warships: 1914-1919''.  p. 29.</ref>
+
|builder=[[Portsmouth Royal Dockyard]]{{DittColl|p. 29}}
|-
+
|laid=5 Feb, 1894{{BurtBritishBattleships1889|p. 147}}
|Builder:
+
|fate=Torpedoed
|[[Portsmouth Royal Dockyard]]
+
|pend=D.04 (1914){{DittColl|p. 29}}
|-
+
|fg=white|bg=crimson}}</div name=fredbot:career>
|Ordered:
+
'''H.M.S. ''Majestic''''' was a battleship of the [[Royal Navy]], and the lead ship of the [[Majestic Class Battleship (1894)|''Majestic'' class]].  She served as the flagship of the [[Channel Squadron (Royal Navy)|Channel Squadron]] from commissioning for eight years whence she went in and out of reserve until the [[First World War|Great War]].  She was relegated to secondary duties when recommissioned and for the Dardanelles Campaign she was despatched as a mine clearer.  She was struck by two torpedoes while anchored off Gaba Tepe on 27 May, 1915, and capsized with the loss of forty crew.
|1893
+
|-
+
|Laid down:
+
|[[5 February]], [[1894]]
+
|-
+
|Launched:
+
|[[31 January]], [[1895]]
+
|-
+
|Commissioned:
+
|[[11 December]], [[1895]]
+
|-
+
|Sunk:
+
|[[27 May]], [[1915]]
+
|-
+
|Cause:
+
|Torpedoed by U.21
+
|-
+
!colspan="2" align="center" style="color: white; height: 30px; background: crimson no-repeat scroll top left;"|General Characteristics
+
|-
+
|Displacement:
+
|14,560 - 14,890 tons (normal)<br>15,730 - 16,060 tons (fully loaded)
+
|-
+
|Length:
+
|390 feet
+
|-
+
|Beam:
+
|75 feet
+
|-
+
|Draught:
+
|26 feet 4 inches - 27 feet 6 inches
+
|-
+
|Propulsion:
+
|2 Shaft Triple Expansion, 4,000 shp. 4 Yarrow boilers
+
|-
+
|Speed:
+
|16.1 knots
+
|-
+
|Range:
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|4,700 miles at 10 knots
+
|-
+
|Complement:
+
|673
+
|-
+
|Armament:
+
|
+
*2 × BL 9.2"/50 Elswick Pattern 'E' guns in single Mark IX mountings
+
*6 × BL 6"/49 Mark XVIII guns in single Mark IV mountings
+
|}
+
  
'''H.M.S. ''Majestic''''' was a pre-dreadnought of the [[Royal Navy]], and the lead ship of the [[Majestic Class (1894)|''Majestic'' Class]] which along with the ''Royal Sovereign'' Class was to be the basis for all armoured ships until the construction of [[HMS Dreadnought (1906)|HMS ''Dreadnought'']].  She served as the Flagship of the Channel Squadron from commissioning for eight years whence she went in and out of reserve until the [[First World War|Great War]].  She was relegated to secondary duties when recommissioned and for the [[Dardanelles Campaign]] she was despatched as a mine clearer.  She was struck by two torpedoes while anchored off [[Gaba Tepe]] on 27 May, 1915 and capsized with the loss of forty crew.
+
==Service==
  
==Early Career==
+
===Early Career===
''Majestic's'' keel plate was laid down in 13 dock in the [[Portsmouth Royal Dockyard]] on [[5 February]], [[1894]].  She was named by the Princess Louise and floated out of her dock on [[31 January]], [[1895]].  She was commissioned as Flagship of the [[British Channel Squadron]] at Portsmouth on [[12 December]] of that year under {{CaptRN}} [[Arthur Barrow]], with a crew transferred from [[HMS Royal Sovereign (1891)|H.M.S. ''Royal Sovereign'']].  Her construction was rumoured to have been delayed by armour plate being diverted to the construction of [[HMS Magnificent (1894)|HMS ''Magnificent'']] at the [[HM Dockyard, Chatham]].  She was commissioned as the Flagship of the Channel Squadron and served as such until 1904.  In February of that year she paid off at Portsmouth before being recommissioned in July into the renamed Channel Fleet.  On 14 December she suffered a coal gas explosion which left one sailor dead and two injured.
+
''Majestic's'' keel plate was laid down in No. 13 dock in the [[Portsmouth Royal Dockyard]] on 5 February, 1894.  She was named by the Princess Louise and floated out of her dock on 31 January, 1895.  Her construction was rumoured to have been delayed by armour plate being diverted to the construction of {{UK-Magnificent|f=p}} at [[Chatham Royal Dockyard]].   
  
In August, 1906 she joined the Atlantic Fleet and in October was commissioned into the ReserveIn February, 1907 she was attached to the Nore Division of the Home Fleet before undergoing a refit at HM Dockyard, Chatham which lasted until January, 1908There she was refitted with Fire Control devices (which necessitated alteration to her fighting tops) and wireless equipment. ''Majestic'' then commissioned back into the Home Fleet before temporarily joining the Nore Division from February until June.  From then until August, 1909 she was placed in the Devonport Division of the Home Fleet (with a nucleus crew, effectively in reserve).
+
She completed her two days torpedo trials at Spithead on the evening of 24 September, 1895.  Firing from a standstill and from full speed at static targets provided satisfactory resultsShe underwent gun trials on the following days.{{NMI|Wednesday, Sep 25, 1895; pg. 4; Issue 34691}} Although she suffered a grounding at Spithead, by October she had only one trial left to complete: a thirty-hour half speed trial to test her fuel consumption.{{NMI|Tuesday, Oct 01, 1895; pg. 7; Issue 34696}}
  
In June, 1910 ''Majestic'' participated in manœuvres where in heavy fog she collided with [[HMS Victorious (1895)|HMS ''Victorious'']].  ''Majestic'' suffered no damage but ''Victorious'' had her stern-walk damaged and her starboard engine temporarily disabled.  No blame was afterwards placed.  From August, 1910 to May, 1912 she acted as a parent ship for other battleships in Devonport.  With the reorganisation of the fleet on 1 May, 1912 she became part of the Third Fleet (of the Home Fleet), manned by a care and maintenance crew.  She remained in reserve as part of the 4th Division in Devonport until the mobilisation at the outbreak of war.
+
''Majestic'' was commissioned as flagship of the [[Channel Squadron (Royal Navy)|Channel Squadron]] at Portsmouth on 12 December 1895 under {{CaptRN}} [[Arthur Barrow]] with a crew transferred from [[H.M.S. Royal Sovereign (1891)|H.M.S. ''Royal Sovereign'']].{{NMI|Friday, 13 December, 1895Issue '''34759''', col B, p. 7}} She served as fleet flagship until 1904.
  
==War Years==
+
In February of 1904, she paid off at Portsmouth before being recommissioned in July into the renamed Channel Fleet.  On 14 December she suffered a coal gas explosion which left one sailor dead and two injured.
  
On the outbreak of war ''Majestic'' was commissioned into the [[British 7th Battle Squadron|7th Battle Squadron]] of the Channel Fleet.  In between 3&ndash;14 October, 1914 she formed part of the escort to the convoy bringing the first contingent of Canadian soldiers across the Atlantic Ocean for service in FranceUntil early 1915 she was engaged in patrolling the [[English Channel]] and had occasion to bombard the Belgian village of LombardsijdeShe was fitted as a "mine-bumper" and sent to participate in the first major naval assault on the Dardanelles on 18 March, under the command of Captain H.F.G. Talbot.  She lent supporting gunfire in the Dardanelles until 26 May, 1915, when she became the Flagship of Rear-Admiral [[Stuart Nicholson]] at Gaba Tepe.
+
In late November 1904, while operating with the Channel Fleet, she suffered a fracture of the "A" tube near the muzzle in two of her Mark VIII 12-in guns.  This mishap prompted an inspection of the same weapons in eleven other vesselsThe initial response from the D.N.O. was to surmise that the guns had been fired with tampeons in place.  However, fourteen of the forty-four guns inspected were found to be defective and were withdrawn from their shipsIt was deemed that the sleeves were contracting near the muzzle, generally after about fifty full charge firings.{{PQDNO1905|pp. 393-6, 580-7}}
  
On 27 May ''Majestic'' was anchored inshore amongst transports and esorts when a periscope was sighted 400 yards away and a torpedo wake streaming through a gap in the nearby ships.  Despite her anti-torpedo nets being out, the torpedo from the German submersible U.21 passed straight through the heavy mesh and hit her amidships.  It was followed by another one and within seven minutes ''Majestic'', betraying the lack of internal torpedo protection common to her generation, capsized.  Forty men were killed, mostly by the exploding torpedoes, and the upturned ship rested on the remains of her masts for months, her keel protruding above the water, until at the end of 1915 they collapsed and she sank beneath the waves.
+
In August, 1906 she joined the Atlantic Fleet and in October was commissioned into the Reserve.  In February, 1907 she was attached to the Nore Division of the Home Fleet before undergoing a refit at H.M. Dockyard, Chatham which lasted until January, 1908.  There she was refitted with Fire Control devices (which necessitated alteration to her fighting tops) and wireless equipment.  ''Majestic'' then commissioned back into the Home Fleet before temporarily joining the Nore Division from February until June.  From then until August, 1909 she was placed in the Devonport Division of the Home Fleet (with a nucleus crew, effectively in reserve).
 +
 
 +
In June, 1910 ''Majestic'' participated in manœuvres where in heavy fog she collided with {{UK-Victorious|f=p}}.  ''Majestic'' suffered no damage but ''Victorious'' had her stern-walk damaged and her starboard engine temporarily disabled.  No blame was afterwards placed.  From August, 1910 to May, 1912 she acted as a parent ship for other battleships in Devonport.  With the reorganisation of the fleet on 1 May, 1912 she became part of the Third Fleet (of the Home Fleet), manned by a care and maintenance crew.  She remained in reserve as part of the 4th Division in Devonport until the mobilisation at the outbreak of war.
 +
 
 +
In mid-July, 1914, the ship was ordered to take up station in the Humber as part of a force of four [[Majestic Class Battleship (1894)|''Majestic'' class battleships]] and two [[Cressy Class Cruiser (1899)|''Cressy'' class cruisers]] being sent there to be demobilised on the 25th.  Her crew was to be transferred to {{UK-Ocean}}.{{AWO1914|140 of 17 July 1914}}
 +
 
 +
===Great War===
 +
On the outbreak of war ''Majestic'' was commissioned into the {{UK-BS|7}} of the Channel Fleet.  In between 3&ndash;14 October, 1914 she formed part of the escort to the convoy bringing the first contingent of Canadian soldiers across the Atlantic Ocean for service in France.  Until early 1915 she was engaged in patrolling the [[English Channel]] and had occasion to bombard the Belgian village of Lombardsijde.  She was fitted as a "mine-bumper" and sent to participate in the first major naval assault on the Dardanelles on 18 March, under the command of Captain [[Henry FitzRoy George Talbot|H. F. G. Talbot]].  She lent supporting gunfire in the Dardanelles until 26 May, 1915, when she became the flagship of Rear-Admiral [[Stuart Nicholson]] at Gaba Tepe.
 +
 
 +
On 27 May ''Majestic'' was anchored inshore amongst transports and esorts when a periscope was sighted 400 yards away and a torpedo wake streaming through a gap in the nearby ships.  Despite her anti-torpedo nets being out, the torpedo fired by U.21 passed straight through the heavy mesh and hit her amidships.  It was followed by another one and within seven minutes ''Majestic'', betraying the lack of internal torpedo protection common to her generation, capsized.  Forty men were killed, mostly by the exploding torpedoes, and the upturned ship rested on the remains of her masts for months, her keel protruding above the water, until at the end of 1915 they collapsed and she sank beneath the waves.
  
 
==Funnel Bands==
 
==Funnel Bands==
 +
Majestic class ships had a pair of funnels abreast each other with idiosyncratic numbers of slender steam vent pipes afore and abaft each (in all cases somewhat shorter than the funnel).  In Majestic's case, her port funnel had 2 vents abaft, and her starboard funnel a single vent abaft.
  
 +
Majestic's funnels wore 2 red bands as of 1914.<ref>Jane.  ''Jane's Fighting Ships 1914''.  p. 54.</ref>
 +
 +
==Radio==
 +
By the end of 1901, she was fitted or due to receive a Marconi W/T set.{{ARTS1901|p. 111}}
 +
 +
==Semaphore==
 +
''Majestic'' was supplied with a masthead semaphore upon her completion.  Its 13-foot arms required her topmast to be removed to permit longer spars to be substituted.{{NMI|Monday, Oct 14, 1895; pg. 7; Issue 34707}}
 +
 +
==Torpedoes==
 +
Though it was initially planned that she would carry twenty-four torpedoes,{{NMI|Wednesday, Sep 25, 1895; pg. 4; Issue 34691}} in 1895, ''Majestic'' and {{UK-Magnificent}} were the first ships provided the newest torpedoes, each being given seventeen {{Torp|18-in Mark IX|UK}}es and five {{Torp|14-in Mark IV|UK}}es for use with their boats.{{ARTS1895|p. viii}}
 +
 +
In June 1898, the {{UK-Illustrious}} and ''Majestic'' became the second and third ships in the [[Royal Navy]] to receive torpedoes fitted for gyroscopes (but only two gyroscopes were provided), drawn from the Portsmouth Depot:{{ARTS1898|p. 42}}
 +
* two {{Torp|18-in Mark IV|UK}}es, manufactured by Whitehead, with Side Lugs
 +
* two {{Torp|14-in Mark IX|UK}}es fitted with Side Lugs
 +
 +
==Captains==
 +
Dates of appointment are provided when known.
 +
<div name=fredbot:officeCapt otitle="Captain of H.M.S. ''Majestic''">
 +
{{Tenure|rank={{CaptRN}}|name=Arthur Barrow|nick=Arthur Barrow|appt=12 December, 1895<ref>Barrow Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/38/72.|D7578772}} f. 65.</ref>|end=7 June, 1897<ref>Barrow Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/38/72.|D7578772}} f. 65.</ref>|precBy=New Command}}
 +
{{Tenure|rank=Captain|name=Louis Alexander Mountbatten, First Marquess of Milford Haven|nick=H.S.H. Prince Louis of Battenberg|appt=7 June, 1897{{NLOct98|p. 269}}<ref>Milford Haven Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/38.}}  f. 59.</ref>|end=27 June, 1899<ref>Milford Haven Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/19.}}  f. 391.</ref>|note=in command for the [[Annual Manoeuvres of 1897]]}}
 +
{{Tenure|rank=Captain|name=George Le Clerc Egerton|nick=George Le C. Egerton|appt=28 June, 1899<ref>Egerton Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/38.}}  f. 396.</ref>|end=17 April, 1901<ref>Egerton Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/38.}}  f. 396.</ref>|ass=28 August, 1899<ref>Egerton Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/38.}}  f. 396.</ref>|note=and as Flag Captain to Vice-Admiral Rawson of the [[Channel Squadron]]}}
 +
{{Tenure|rank=Captain|name=Edward Eden Bradford|nick=Edward E. Bradford|appt=17 April, 1901<ref>Bradford Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/20.}}  f. 335.</ref>|end=17 April, 1903<ref>Bradford Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/20.}}  f. 335.</ref>|note=and as Flag Captain}}
 +
{{Tenure|rank=Captain|name=Hugh Evan-Thomas|nick=Hugh Evan-Thomas|appt=17 April, 1903<ref>Evan-Thomas Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/42.}}  f. 105.</ref>|end=2 February, 1904<ref>Evan-Thomas Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/42.}}  f. 105.</ref>|note=and as Flag Captain to Vice-Admiral Beresford in [[Channel Squadron]]}}
 +
{{Tenure|rank={{CaptRN}}|name=Frederick Livington Campbell|nick=Frederick L. Campbell|appt=15 July, 1904<ref>Campbell Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/38/221.|D7578797}} ff. 195, 199.</ref>{{NLOct04|p. 343}}|end=27 December, 1904<ref>Campbell Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/38/221.|D7578797}} ff. 195, 199.</ref>{{NLOct04|p. 343}}}}
 +
{{Tenure|rank=Captain|name=Charles Edward Madden, First Baronet|nick=Charles E. Madden|appt=26 December, 1904<ref>Madden Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/42.}}  f. 83.</ref>|end=9 January, 1905<ref>Madden Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/42.}}  f. 83.</ref>}}
 +
{{Tenure|rank=Captain|name=Charles Edmund Kingsmill|nick=Charles E. Kingsmill|appt=9 January, 1905<ref>Kingsmill Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/38.}}  f. 755.</ref>|ass=9 January, 1905<ref>Kingsmill Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/38.}}  f. 755.</ref>|end=14 March, 1906<ref>Kingsmill Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/38.}}  f. 755.</ref>}}
 +
{{Tenure|rank=Captain|name=Robert Grant Fraser|nick=Robert G. Fraser|appt=17 March, 1906<ref>Fraser Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/20.}}  f. 5.</ref>|end=30 September, 1907<ref>Fraser Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/20.}}  f. 5.</ref>}}
 +
{{Tenure|rank=Captain|name=Harry Hampson Stileman|nick=Harry H. Stileman|appt=1 October, 1907<ref>Stileman Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/39/503.}} f. 1228.</ref>|end=9 January, 1908<ref>Stileman Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/39/503.}} f. 1228.</ref>}}
 +
{{Tenure|rank=Captain|name=Ernest Frederick Augustus Gaunt|nick=Ernest F. A. Gaunt|appt=7 January, 1908<ref>Gaunt Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/42.}}  f. 276.</ref>|end=2 January, 1910<ref>Gaunt Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/20.}}  f. 575.</ref>|ass=9 January, 1908<ref>Predecessor's tenure ended that day.  Stileman Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/39/503.}} f. 1228.</ref>{{NLJul09|p. 343}}}}
 +
{{Tenure|rank=Captain|name=Rowland Nugent|nick=Rowland Nugent|appt=4 January, 1910<ref>Nugent Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/42.}}  f. 469.</ref>|end=8 February, 1910<ref>Nugent Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/42.}}  f. 469.</ref>}}
 +
{{Tenure|rank=Captain|name=Herbert Arthur Stevenson Fyler|nick=Herbert A. S. Fyler|appt=8 February, 1910<ref>Fyler Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/42/155.|D7602098}}  f. 182.</ref>|end=1 August, 1910<ref>Fyler Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/42/155.|D7602098}}  f. 182.</ref>}}
 +
{{Tenure|rank=Captain|name=Bertram Mordaunt Chambers|nick=Bertram M. Chambers|appt=2 August, 1910<ref>Chambers Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/42.}} f. 407.</ref>|end=24 February, 1911<ref>Chambers Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/42.}} f. 407.</ref>}}
 +
{{Tenure|rank=Captain|name=George Holmes Borrett|nick=George H. Borrett|appt=24 February, 1911<ref>Borrett Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/42.}}  f. 505.</ref>{{NLApr11|p. 342}}|end=20 September, 1912<ref>Borrett Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/42.}}  f. 505.</ref>|note=and for charge of a group of ships in Fourth Division, Home Fleet}}
 +
{{Tenure|rank=Captain|name=Guy Reginald Archer Gaunt|nick=Guy R. A. Gaunt|appt=16 October, 1912{{NLJul13|p. 343}}|end=14 August, 1913<ref>Gaunt Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/49.}}  f. 161.</ref>}}
 +
{{Tenure|rank=Captain|name=Edwin Veale Underhill|nick=Edwin V. Underhill|appt=14 August, 1913{{NLApr14|p. 343}}|end=9 June, 1914<ref>Underhill Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/42.}}  f. 480.</ref>}}
 +
{{Tenure|rank=Captain|name=Henry FitzRoy George Talbot|nick=Henry F. G. Talbot|appt=30 July, 1914<ref>Talbot Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/43/421.|D7576566}} f. 421.</ref>{{NLDec14|p. 353}}|end=27 May, 1915<ref>Talbot Service Record.  {{TNA|ADM 196/43/421.|D7576566}} f. 421.</ref>{{UKNavalOpsII|index}}|succBy=Vessel Lost|note=in command at time of her loss}}
 +
</div name=fredbot:officeCapt>
 +
 +
==See Also==
 +
{{refbegin}}
 +
{{WP|https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_Majestic_(1895)}}
 +
{{refend}}
  
 
==Footnotes==
 
==Footnotes==
<small>
+
{{reflist}}
<references/>
+
</small>
+
  
 
==Bibliography==
 
==Bibliography==
<small>
+
{{refbegin}}
*{{DittmarColledge}}
+
*{{DittColl}}
</small>
+
*{{Janes1914}}
 +
*{{Parkes}}
 +
{{refend}}
 +
 
 +
{{Footer Majestic Class Battleship (1894)}}
 +
 
 +
{{DEFAULTSORT:Majestic}}
  
{{Template:Majestic Class (1894)}}
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{{CatShipPreDreadnought|UK}}
[[Category:Majestic Class (1894) Battleship|Majestic]]
+
{{CatShipLostTorpedo|UK}}
[[Category:Ship|Majestic]]
+
[[Category:Ship of the Royal Navy|Majestic]]
+

Latest revision as of 10:22, 5 September 2019

H.M.S. Majestic (1895)
Pendant Number: D.04 (1914)[1]
Builder: Portsmouth Royal Dockyard[2]
Ordered: 1893[3]
Laid down: 5 Feb, 1894[4]
Launched: 31 Jan, 1895[5]
Completed: Dec, 1895[6]
Commissioned: 12 Dec, 1895[7]
Torpedoed: 27 May, 1915[8]
Fate: by U 21 off Helles

H.M.S. Majestic was a battleship of the Royal Navy, and the lead ship of the Majestic class. She served as the flagship of the Channel Squadron from commissioning for eight years whence she went in and out of reserve until the Great War. She was relegated to secondary duties when recommissioned and for the Dardanelles Campaign she was despatched as a mine clearer. She was struck by two torpedoes while anchored off Gaba Tepe on 27 May, 1915, and capsized with the loss of forty crew.

Service

Early Career

Majestic's keel plate was laid down in No. 13 dock in the Portsmouth Royal Dockyard on 5 February, 1894. She was named by the Princess Louise and floated out of her dock on 31 January, 1895. Her construction was rumoured to have been delayed by armour plate being diverted to the construction of H.M.S. Magnificent at Chatham Royal Dockyard.

She completed her two days torpedo trials at Spithead on the evening of 24 September, 1895. Firing from a standstill and from full speed at static targets provided satisfactory results. She underwent gun trials on the following days.[9] Although she suffered a grounding at Spithead, by October she had only one trial left to complete: a thirty-hour half speed trial to test her fuel consumption.[10]

Majestic was commissioned as flagship of the Channel Squadron at Portsmouth on 12 December 1895 under Captain Arthur Barrow with a crew transferred from H.M.S. Royal Sovereign.[11] She served as fleet flagship until 1904.

In February of 1904, she paid off at Portsmouth before being recommissioned in July into the renamed Channel Fleet. On 14 December she suffered a coal gas explosion which left one sailor dead and two injured.

In late November 1904, while operating with the Channel Fleet, she suffered a fracture of the "A" tube near the muzzle in two of her Mark VIII 12-in guns. This mishap prompted an inspection of the same weapons in eleven other vessels. The initial response from the D.N.O. was to surmise that the guns had been fired with tampeons in place. However, fourteen of the forty-four guns inspected were found to be defective and were withdrawn from their ships. It was deemed that the sleeves were contracting near the muzzle, generally after about fifty full charge firings.[12]

In August, 1906 she joined the Atlantic Fleet and in October was commissioned into the Reserve. In February, 1907 she was attached to the Nore Division of the Home Fleet before undergoing a refit at H.M. Dockyard, Chatham which lasted until January, 1908. There she was refitted with Fire Control devices (which necessitated alteration to her fighting tops) and wireless equipment. Majestic then commissioned back into the Home Fleet before temporarily joining the Nore Division from February until June. From then until August, 1909 she was placed in the Devonport Division of the Home Fleet (with a nucleus crew, effectively in reserve).

In June, 1910 Majestic participated in manœuvres where in heavy fog she collided with H.M.S. Victorious. Majestic suffered no damage but Victorious had her stern-walk damaged and her starboard engine temporarily disabled. No blame was afterwards placed. From August, 1910 to May, 1912 she acted as a parent ship for other battleships in Devonport. With the reorganisation of the fleet on 1 May, 1912 she became part of the Third Fleet (of the Home Fleet), manned by a care and maintenance crew. She remained in reserve as part of the 4th Division in Devonport until the mobilisation at the outbreak of war.

In mid-July, 1914, the ship was ordered to take up station in the Humber as part of a force of four Majestic class battleships and two Cressy class cruisers being sent there to be demobilised on the 25th. Her crew was to be transferred to Ocean.[13]

Great War

On the outbreak of war Majestic was commissioned into the Seventh Battle Squadron of the Channel Fleet. In between 3–14 October, 1914 she formed part of the escort to the convoy bringing the first contingent of Canadian soldiers across the Atlantic Ocean for service in France. Until early 1915 she was engaged in patrolling the English Channel and had occasion to bombard the Belgian village of Lombardsijde. She was fitted as a "mine-bumper" and sent to participate in the first major naval assault on the Dardanelles on 18 March, under the command of Captain H. F. G. Talbot. She lent supporting gunfire in the Dardanelles until 26 May, 1915, when she became the flagship of Rear-Admiral Stuart Nicholson at Gaba Tepe.

On 27 May Majestic was anchored inshore amongst transports and esorts when a periscope was sighted 400 yards away and a torpedo wake streaming through a gap in the nearby ships. Despite her anti-torpedo nets being out, the torpedo fired by U.21 passed straight through the heavy mesh and hit her amidships. It was followed by another one and within seven minutes Majestic, betraying the lack of internal torpedo protection common to her generation, capsized. Forty men were killed, mostly by the exploding torpedoes, and the upturned ship rested on the remains of her masts for months, her keel protruding above the water, until at the end of 1915 they collapsed and she sank beneath the waves.

Funnel Bands

Majestic class ships had a pair of funnels abreast each other with idiosyncratic numbers of slender steam vent pipes afore and abaft each (in all cases somewhat shorter than the funnel). In Majestic's case, her port funnel had 2 vents abaft, and her starboard funnel a single vent abaft.

Majestic's funnels wore 2 red bands as of 1914.[14]

Radio

By the end of 1901, she was fitted or due to receive a Marconi W/T set.[15]

Semaphore

Majestic was supplied with a masthead semaphore upon her completion. Its 13-foot arms required her topmast to be removed to permit longer spars to be substituted.[16]

Torpedoes

Though it was initially planned that she would carry twenty-four torpedoes,[17] in 1895, Majestic and Magnificent were the first ships provided the newest torpedoes, each being given seventeen 18-in Mark IX torpedoes and five 14-in Mark IV torpedoes for use with their boats.[18]

In June 1898, the Illustrious and Majestic became the second and third ships in the Royal Navy to receive torpedoes fitted for gyroscopes (but only two gyroscopes were provided), drawn from the Portsmouth Depot:[19]

Captains

Dates of appointment are provided when known.

See Also

Footnotes

  1. Dittmar; Colledge. British Warships 1914–1919. p. 29.
  2. Dittmar; Colledge. British Warships 1914–1919. p. 29.
  3. Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships 1860–1905. p. 34.
  4. Burt. British Battleships: 1889-1904. p. 147.
  5. Dittmar; Colledge. British Warships 1914–1919. p. 29.
  6. Burt. British Battleships: 1889-1904. p. 147.
  7. "Naval & Military Intelligence" (Official Appointments and Notices). The Times. Friday, 13 December, 1895. Issue 34759, col B, p. 7.
  8. Dittmar; Colledge. British Warships 1914–1919. p. 29.
  9. "Naval & Military Intelligence." The Times (London, England), Wednesday, Sep 25, 1895; pg. 4; Issue 34691.
  10. "Naval & Military Intelligence." The Times (London, England), Tuesday, Oct 01, 1895; pg. 7; Issue 34696.
  11. "Naval & Military Intelligence." The Times (London, England), Friday, 13 December, 1895. Issue 34759, col B, p. 7.
  12. Principal Questions Dealt with by the Director of Naval Ordnance, 1905. pp. 393-6, 580-7.
  13. Admiralty Weekly Order No. 140 of 17 July 1914.
  14. Jane. Jane's Fighting Ships 1914. p. 54.
  15. Annual Report of the Torpedo School, 1901. p. 111.
  16. "Naval & Military Intelligence." The Times (London, England), Monday, Oct 14, 1895; pg. 7; Issue 34707.
  17. "Naval & Military Intelligence." The Times (London, England), Wednesday, Sep 25, 1895; pg. 4; Issue 34691.
  18. Annual Report of the Torpedo School, 1895. p. viii.
  19. Annual Report of the Torpedo School, 1898. p. 42.
  20. Barrow Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/38/72. f. 65.
  21. Barrow Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/38/72. f. 65.
  22. The Navy List. (October, 1898). p. 269.
  23. Milford Haven Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/38. f. 59.
  24. Milford Haven Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/19. f. 391.
  25. Egerton Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/38. f. 396.
  26. Egerton Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/38. f. 396.
  27. Bradford Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/20. f. 335.
  28. Bradford Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/20. f. 335.
  29. Evan-Thomas Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 105.
  30. Evan-Thomas Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 105.
  31. Campbell Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/38/221. ff. 195, 199.
  32. The Navy List. (October, 1904). p. 343.
  33. Campbell Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/38/221. ff. 195, 199.
  34. The Navy List. (October, 1904). p. 343.
  35. Madden Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 83.
  36. Madden Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 83.
  37. Kingsmill Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/38. f. 755.
  38. Kingsmill Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/38. f. 755.
  39. Fraser Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/20. f. 5.
  40. Fraser Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/20. f. 5.
  41. Stileman Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/39/503. f. 1228.
  42. Stileman Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/39/503. f. 1228.
  43. Gaunt Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 276.
  44. Gaunt Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/20. f. 575.
  45. Nugent Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 469.
  46. Nugent Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 469.
  47. Fyler Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42/155. f. 182.
  48. Fyler Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42/155. f. 182.
  49. Chambers Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 407.
  50. Chambers Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 407.
  51. Borrett Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 505.
  52. The Navy List. (April, 1911). p. 342.
  53. Borrett Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 505.
  54. The Navy List. (July, 1913). p. 343.
  55. Gaunt Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/49. f. 161.
  56. The Navy List. (April, 1914). p. 343.
  57. Underhill Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/42. f. 480.
  58. Talbot Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/43/421. f. 421.
  59. The Navy List. (December, 1914). p. 353.
  60. Talbot Service Record. The National Archives. ADM 196/43/421. f. 421.
  61. Naval Operations. Volume II. index.

Bibliography

  • Dittmar, F.J.; Colledge, J.J. (1972). British Warships 1914–1919. London: Ian Allan.
  • Jane, Fred T. (editor) (1914, 1969). Jane's Fighting Ships 1914. Published 1914 by Sampson Low Marston, reprinted 1969 by Arco Publishing Company, New York.
  • Parkes, O.B.E., Ass.I.N.A., Dr. Oscar (1990). British Battleships 1860–1950. London: Pen & Sword Ltd. ISBN 0850526043. (on Bookfinder.com).


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