Our Ironclad Fleet — the H.M.S. Agincourt

Our Ironclad Fleet — the H.M.S. Agincourt. 1867. Engraving of a painting by B. Walters. Source: Illustrated London News [Click on image to enlarge it.]

The text below, which appeared on the page following the engraving, was created using ABBYY FineReader to render the Hathi Digital Library images into text. — George P. Landow

The armour-plated frigate Agincourt, built at Messrs. Laird Brothers’ works at Birkenhead, was handed over to the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty in August of last year, at which time she was complete, with the exception of masts, rigging, and stores. Her machinery was made by Messrs. Mandalay, Sons, and Field, of London, and was fitted on bioard at Birkenhead ; and she proceeded thence to Devon port Dockyard under her own steam. The following are the dimensions of this ship:—Length over all, 410 ft.; length between perpendiculars, 400 ft.; breadth extreme, 59 ft. 3 in.; tonnage, 6080 ton; draught of water abaft, 26 ft.; draught of water forward, 25 ft.; height of port sills above water, 10 ft.; number of ports on each side, 26, of which two on each side are suited for 12-ton 300-pounder guns, and the remainder for 100-pounder Somerset naval guns, or 110-pounder Armstrongs. The armour-plating is 5 in. of iron, bolted on to 10 in. of teak, extending from 6 ft. below the water line to the gunwale, or a total height of about 21 ft. For about 30 ft. at the extreme ends of the vessel the thickness is slightly reduced, so as to give buoyancy to the vessel. The engines are of 1350-horse power nominal, according to the old rule of the English Admiralty.

The ship has since her arrival at Devonport been completed with masts and stores; and the light-draught trials of speed at the measured mile have proved to be the fastest of the large iron-clad frigates in the Navy. Her lines are almost perfection, and even at full speed she makes scarcely any disturbance at the bow in her progress through the water, differing in this respect from many of the ironclads more recently designed and built, whose long, projecting, submerged bows turn up a wave of broken water running up almost to the level of the hawsepipes. The following are the results of a trial of the Agincourt made Dec. 11. 1835: —Draught of water forward, 23 ft. 2 in.; aft, 25 ft. 2 in.; displacement at ditto 9000 tons. Full power: Speed of ship, 15*433 knots; indicatod horse-power, C867; mean number of revolutions, 61diameter of screw, 23 ft. 6 in.; pitch of screw, 23 ft. 4 in. Half power: Speed of ship,f 13-548 knots; indicated horse-power, 4426; mean number of revolutions, 52J.

The Agincourt, as regards the excellence of the finish of hull and fittings, is unsurpassed by any vessel in her Majesty’s Navy; and the excellence of the machinery has been fully proved by the results obtained from it on the trial-tripe.

We are indebted to Mr. B. Walters, marine-painter, of Liverpool, for the permission to copy the picture from which our Engraving has been made.

You may use this image without prior permission for any scholarly or educational purpose as long as you (1) credit the Hathi Trust Digital Library and The University of Michigan Library and (2) link your document to this URL in a web document or cite the Victorian Web in a print one.


“Our Ironclad Fleet — the H.M.S. Agincourt.” Illustrated London News (13 April 1867): 372. Hathi Trust Digital Library version of a copy in the University of Michigan Library. Web. 15 December 2015.

Last modified 16 January 2013