A bumper pre-Christmas treat for all you Pre-Dreadnoughters out there, in the shape of another instalment in this occasional series of views from my postcard and image collection. Nothing fancy as such, nor with any particular theme this time around, but just some interesting views from either side of 1900.
Above, to kick things off, a nice posed shot of a Royal Marine crew practising with a 6" gun - no clue as to the vessel, I'm afraid....
Next a lovely shot of the French Battleship Charles Martel, with nifty, almost Art-Deco style font for her nameplate on this post-card view:
A slightly smaller vessel now, in this Gale and Polden postcard image entitled 'A piquet boat armed with Whitehead torpedoes' - I love the Heath Robinson nature of this - I don't know if this image actually shows such a practical deployment of weapons like these, or is merely a view of a test firing; certainly the jack tars belaying the torpedo with ropes don't really make for an efficient launcher!
Belching smoke and with a bonkers level of bow wave, (I've heard of 'running awash', but this is ridiculous...), a German postcard shows just why such attacks were often hit-and-miss affairs - "Target, what target - all I can see is spray, Herr Kapitan!"
Talking of belching smoke, a cracking colourised image from a French postcard by A. Bougault, showing the firing of a 27cm gun; don't know on what ship, but likely a fairly early contender:
Following up, another, more posed view of the loading of a piece on the Redoubtable by Edition Giletta of Nice - some notes on this Central Battery ship can be found here, alongside a slightly different angle photo of this same gun:
Continuing with the French, a nicely detailed image of the Jaureguiberry:
followed by the Admiral Aube:
Next, ploughing (literally) her way into the Adriatic no doubt, the Italian Re Umberto class Battleship the Sicilia:
Turning to the East, a nice early image of the HIJMS Mikasa, with a good view of the characteristic identification stripes on the funnels:
She is accompanied by the Chitose; a clear depiction of the Japanese doctrine of lots of Quick-Firing guns, ranged along her broadside:
and finally, that veteran of the China station, flying the flag for the Royal Navy, HMS Barfleur: