SMS Wien (1896)

Wien c.1898. She is painted in the black/white/ocher scheme favored by most navies at the time. Photo obtained by US Office of Naval Intelligence, now in the collection of the US Navy History & Heritage Command.

Ship Class
Ship Type
Laid Down

SMS Wien was a Monarch-class battleship, commissioned 13 May, 1897. Soon after, Wien was part of the Austro-Hungarian contingent that joined the international blockade of Crete during the Greco-Turkish War of 1897. For being designed for the coast defense role, Wien had an active early career, making training cruises and port calls across the Mediterranean. However, by 1906 the design was beginning to show its age, and Wien and her sisters were placed in reserve. They were only brought out for training exercises until some minor incident in 1914 saw the whole class recommissioned. However, apart from a few shore bombardment missions, Wien sat around in the port of Cattaro. While on one of her rare deployments, Wien was torpedoed by MAS boats while at anchor near Trieste on the night of 10 December, 1917. Two torpedoes hit, sinking Wien in five minutes, but only killing forty-six crew. Salvage was ordered immediately, but halted in June, 1918. The wreck was raised and scrapped by the Italians in the 1920s, and a section of the stern is preserved in the Museo Storico Navale, Venice.

Bonus Photos

Section of Wien's stern on display at the Museo Storico Navale. Uploaded to Wikipedia by user Bonty.