On the names of British navy ships

Queen Elizabeth class carrier

In early May 2003, I posted on the proposed new British aircraft carriers, and made some comments relating to how the names of warships today were often based on less-than-inspiring things — cities, towns and counties, for example (or, in the case of the US Navy, Secretaries of the Navy).  The names of British warships were more inspired in the first half of the 20th century.

I wrote:

HMS Dreadnought; the QE class battleships HMS Warspite and HMS Valiant; the Revenge class battleships HMS Revenge and HMS Resolution; the Bellephoron class battleship HMS Superb; the Orion class battleships HMS Conqueror, HMS Monarch and HMS Thunderer; the KGV class battleship HMS Audacious; the Royal Sovereign “R” Class battleships HMS Repulse (and Revenge and Resolution); the Majestic class battleships HMS Magnificent, HMS Majestic, and HMS Victorious; HMS Renown; HMS Venerable; HMS Formidable, HMS Irresistable, and HMS Implacable; HMS Triumph.

Other British Royal Navy ship names: Active, Adamant, Ardent, Blazer, Brilliant, Defiance, Discovery, Excellent, Indefatigable, Invincible, Success, Terror, Venerable, and, of course, Victory.

I dunno ~ I think if I was the captain of an enemy ship and I heard the HMS Revenge or the HMS Terror was heading my way, there might have been some psychological warfare going on there.

My post was responded to by Ghost of a flea who identified his favourite ship name, and extolled the necessity of Britain building her new carriers to the benefit of future world peace and order.

As we see this week, the last piece of the puzzle for Britain’s new Queen Elizabeth class carrier – the aft tower/island for HMS Queen Elizabeth – has been shipped.

Specifications on the new carrier are here.


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