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The five most powerful warships ever built




Battleships appeared most prominently in the two world wars.

According to the National Interest, battleships are the largest battleships ever built in the world. In addition to shoe armor, they are also equipped with large-caliber cannons with a range of tens of kilometers. A salvo of precision bullets was enough to sink any warship in sight.

However, no matter how powerful a battleship is, it is still just a machine, requiring human operation. It was the sailors and officers aboard the ship who devised tactics, fired weapons to leave a mark on the battleship in history.

It can be said that battleships are an indispensable part of helping to make history. Here are the 5 most powerful battleships according to James Holmes, Professor of Strategy at the US Naval War College.


Battleship Bismarck.

The battleship Bismarck was the pride of the German navy during World War II. This short-lived battleship is the subject of discussion to this day.

Regarded as the most powerful battleship operating in the Atlantic, Bismarck sank the battleship HMS Hood, the iconic battleship of the Royal Navy, with just one salvo.

The ship is by far the largest battleship ever to serve in the German navy. The Bismarck had a greater displacement than any European warship, with the exception of HMS Vanguard, the last battleship built in the world.

Bismarck is equipped with powerful firepower including 8 cannon caliber 380 mm, 12 guns 150 mm and 16 anti-aircraft guns SK-C/33.

In 1939, Nazi naval admiral Erich Raeder predicted that the German fleet would inevitably “die with honor”, and Bismarck was no exception.

During a mere eight-month service and under the command of Captain Ernst Lindemann, Bismarck took part in the only operation, Rheinübung.

After sinking the heavy cruiser HMS Hood, Bismarck was chased by dozens of British aircraft and warships for several days.

On May 27, 1941, British warships fired hundreds of bullets and torpedoes until the pride of the German navy sank into the sea, dragging thousands of sailors.


Battleship Yamato during a test run.

The battleship Yamato was the largest battleship ever to serve in the Japanese navy. Yamato was launched on August 8, 1940. The ship has a greater displacement than any other battleship in history.

Yamato’s design is more about attack and defense power than speed. Japanese battleships are equipped with 9 large guns, caliber up to 460 mm, maximum range 46km. Until 1944, Yamato also owned 6 155mm guns, 24 127mm guns and 162 25mm anti-aircraft guns.

The ship can move at a maximum speed of 50 km / h, lower than the US battleships. Like Bismarck, Yamato is remembered for his relatively short lifespan.

During the largest naval battle in History in 1944, Yamato was part of the Japanese fleet against a large-scale US naval attack in Leyte Gulf. This is also the only time the ship has a chance to engage the enemy surface ship. Yamato hit an escort carrier, a destroyer, and an escort destroyer.

While engaged in battle in the Sibuyan Sea, Yamato was hit by three steel-piercing bombs from the aircraft of the US Navy aircraft carrier Essex. The ship was forced to retreat before pursuit from torpedo planes.

On April 7, 1945, the crew of the Yamato took on a suicide mission, while marching to sea without aircraft support. As a result, the Japanese super battleship was attacked by 280 American aircraft.

The ship was hit by 10 torpedoes, 7 of which caused the magazine to explode. The smoke from the explosion was 6.4 km high. The most fearsome battleship in the world lies forever at the bottom of the ocean.


Battleship Missouri was the flagship of the US Navy during World War II.

USS Missouri is an Iowa-class battleship of the US Navy and also the last battleship built by the US.

The ship participated in artillery support during many American amphibious operations in the Pacific during World War II.

With a powerful fire system, the ship was once considered a sea fortress. Missouri battleship includes 9 406 mm heavy guns, 20 127 mm gunboats, 80 40 mm anti-aircraft guns, 49 20 mm anti-aircraft guns.

USS Missouri was the main battleship of the US Navy during World War 2. The ship participated in the battles of Iwo Jima and Okinawa in the Pacific theater, the Korean War (1950-1953) and the Gulf War.

The ship is remembered primarily for its political significance rather than combat. The Iowa-class battleships were where the Empire of Diaries signed their unconditional surrender to the Allies.

After World War II, the ship continued to act as a diplomatic messenger. Present in Turkey for a long time, the USS Missouri was a strong warning from US President Harry Truman to the Soviet Union. The ship was decommissioned on March 31, 1992.


After many restorations, Mikasa became a floating museum in Yokohama, Japan.

Mikasa was a battleship of the Imperial Japanese Navy built in England in the early 20th century. She participated in the Battle of the Yellow Sea on August 10, 1904, and the Battle of Tsushima on May 27, 1905 during the Russo-Japanese War. It is named after Mount Mikasa in Nara, Japan. Mikasa has a tonnage of 15,140 tons, a length of 131.67 meters and a width of 23.23 meters. The ship is considered the best battleship of the last decades of the 19th century, thanks to the balance between firepower, speed and defense.

The main guns were arranged in a group of armored turrets in a central position, allowing the rest of the ship to be protected by heavy Krupp armor plates.

Thanks to this design, Mikasa was able to withstand a large number of direct hits. In September 1905, the ship was sunk by a fire and magazine explosion. The incident claimed the lives of 339 sailors, three times the number of those killed in combat.

A year later, the ship was salvaged and repaired but did not participate in another battle. Mikasa today has become a floating museum, serving tourists.


HMS Victory is the oldest battleship still in existence today.

HMS Victory is a 104-gun warship of the Royal Navy, launched in the 18th century.

HMS Victory is famous in the great battle against the Franco-Spanish fleet off Trafalgar in 1805 under the command of Admiral Nelson.

The ship fought for 3 decades and experienced many wars such as the French revolution, the battles of Napoleon. In 1922, the Royal Navy moved HMS Victory to a dock in Portsmouth, which served as a museum.

HMS Victory is the world’s oldest surviving naval vessel. Notably, the ship is still in the service of the British Royal Navy.

The sailors and officers were not on board the ship but were assigned other jobs, while still being recognized as members of HMS Victory. The ship attracts about 350,000 tourists to visit each year.