SMS Kaiserin Elizabeth (1890)

Kaiserin Elizabeth c.1906. Original photo believed to be in the public domain.

Laid Down

SMS Kaiserin Elizabeth was a Kaiser Franz Joseph I-class protected cruiser of the Austro-Hungarian Navy. Launched on 25 September, 1890, she was armed with a pair of 24cm (9.4") guns, and six 15cm (5.9") guns, with four 360mm (14") torpedo tubes, and a dozen smaller guns. Designed for service abroad, she was designed for 18 knots, but made 20 on trials. Kaiserin Elizabeth underwent a refit in 1905-06 where her guns were upgraded to new models, and she received two pairs of 450mm (17.7") torpedo tubes. Stationed at the German colony of Tsingtao, China, at the outbreak of World War I, she helped defend it from the Japanese, and was part of the first air-sea battle, when she was unsuccessfully attacked by a Japanese floatplane on 6 September. Despite an inconclusive sortie against the Japanese, her light guns were placed ashore, and she was scuttled on 2 November, 1914, five days before the port surrendered.