HMS Hannibal

HMS Hannibal was a Majestic class pre-dreadnought battleship that served as an east coast guardship before being disarmed in 1915. She had been paid off from active service in 1905, and joined the Channel Fleet reserve in 1906 (Home Fleet from 1907). In the 1914 mobilisation plans it had been intended to place all of the Majestic class ships into the 7th Battle Squadron of the Channel Fleet, but in August 1914 four of them were detached to form a new 9th Battle Squadron, based on the Humber. HMS Hannibal was to be the flagship of this new squadron, under Rear-Admiral F. S. Miller.

Plans of Majestic Class Battleships
Plans of
Majestic Class Battleships

This squadron was broken up before it ever formed. On 7 August Admiral Jellicoe requested Admiral Miller as commander for the naval base at Scapa Flow. He took HMS Hannibal and her sister-ship HMS Magnificent with him to Scapa.

The Hannibal remained in commission as a guardship at Scapa until February 1915. In that month her 12in guns were removed to be used in the Lord Clive class monitors Prince Eugene and Sir John Moore. She was then used as a troop ship. One of her early duties was to take troops to the Mediterranean in September 1915, in company with Mars and Magnificent. She remained service as a troopship until 1919.

Displacement (loaded)


Top Speed

16kts natural draught
17kts forced draught

Armour – belt


 - bulkheads


 - barbettes


 - gun houses


 - casemates


 - conning tower


 - deck





Four 12in guns
Twelve 6in quick firing guns
Sixteen 12pdr quick firing guns
Twelve 2pdr quick firing guns
Five 18in torpedo tubes, four submerged

Crew complement



28 April 1896


April 1898

Sold for break up



J. F. Grant-Dalton (1914)
Captain Streatfeild

British Battleships 1889-1904 New Revised Edition, R A Burt. Magnificent study of the Royal Navy's pre-dreadnought battleships, amongst the most powerful ships in the world when built, but seen as obsolete by the outbreak of war in 1914. Traces the development of the 'classic' pre-dreadnought design and the slow increase in the power of the secondary armament, leading up to the all-big gun ships that followed. [read full review]
cover cover cover

Books on the First World War | Subject Index: First World War

How to cite this article: Rickard, J (29 October 2007), HMS Hannibal,

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