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Austrian Navy Origins of the Austro-Hungarian Navy VideoAustro-Hungarian Battleships in World of Warships - Historical Overview and Speculation - Gregor From until , the Kaiserlich und Königlich (K.u.K.) Austro-Hungarian Navy fought naval battles against the Danes, French, Italians, and British on European seas, and deployed as far as the South China Sea. Geographically, Austria was a land power, with little maritime trade and many continental enemies. The Austro-Hungarian Navy can easily find its origin in the will of Emperor Franz Joseph 1, ascended the throne in , to strengthen the Nordic influences in his navy, so far influenced by the Italian shipbuilding (in particular Trieste). Rear Admiral Von Dahlerup, a Danish formed the Columbia school, was appointed Chief of Staff of the Navy. Apart from one major fleet sortie on the declaration of war between Austria and Italy on the 23rd May , and an aborted one in June when dreadnought 'Szent Istvan' was lost, the Austrian heavy ships spent the entire war as a fleet-in-being within the Adriatic Sea, holding down a large portion of the Italian and French battle fleets as well as units of the Royal Navy. The Austro-Hungarian Navy was the naval force of Austria-Hungary. Its official name in German was kaiserliche und königliche Kriegsmarine (Imperial and Royal War Navy), abbreviated as k.u.k. Kriegsmarine. But back before the captain became paterfamilias to a troop of singing moppets, he was a famous World War I submarine captain in the navy of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. The empire controlled the.
The empire has no previous experience of turbines, so they were ordered directly from UK, a batch of six Parsons turbines. Two were coupled with 16 Yarrow water tube boilers, mater to four propellers.
The long hull guaranteed excellent hydrodynamics. But the Admiral Spaun, launched in and completed in was considered a prototype.
The beginning of her career was shaky as she was often immobilized for adjustments and structural problems and propulsion fixes.
Her propellers configuration was not retained on the following Novara class. Only the Saida was accepted in service before the war in August 1st, Helgoland was commissioned on 29 August and Novara in January They were reinforced, used German AEG turbines or local Mems-Pfenniger turbines, and received two additional mm guns.
In , they received a 66 mm AA gun, and three twin banks of in mm TTs, one of which was at the stern.
All were very active, participating in many operations where their speed was an advantage. Saida and Helgoland were awarded to the Italians, and were appreciated enough they served until under the name of Venezia and Brindisi.
Austro-Hungarian Marines in Beijing, circa Four more planned, never started. Dreadnought Battleship Szent Istvan. Italian MAS boat.
These became the nightmare of the Austro-Hungarians, to the point of blocking any attempt of a raid in full force in the Adriatic.
When military aviation was just beginning in this conflict, The Austro-Hungarian Navy already had its own aviation corps: the K.
The K. Naval officers who received their initial pilot training at the airfields of Wiener Neustadt in Lower Austria became the first enlisted pilots.
First assigned for tours aboard the Tegetthoff-class battleships but also at the Berat, Kavaja, Tirana, Scutari and Igalo airfield in Albania and southern Dalmatia, and later Podgorica in Montenegro.
Albatros D. Marine-Akademie was located in Fiume now Rijeka , Croatia. Trieste was also the headquarters of the merchant line Österreichischer Lloyd founded in and, later, Lloyd Triestino; now Italia Marittima , whose headquarters stood at the corner of the Piazza Grande and Sanita.
By , Österreichischer Lloyd had a fleet of 62 ships comprising a total of , tons. Seeflugwesen was established.
In it was rechristened the k. Its first aviators were naval officers who received their initial pilot training at the airfields of Wiener Neustadt in Lower Austria , where the Theresian Military Academy is also located.
They were first assigned for tours aboard the Tegetthoff -class battleships. Later, the k. They also had airfields at Podgorica in Montenegro.
The following Austrian squadrons served at Feltre also:. Feltre was captured by Austrian forces on 12 November after the Battle of Caporetto.
There were two other military airfields nearby, at Arsie and Fonzaso. It was the main station for the Austrian naval aviators in that area.
Seeflugwesen used mostly modified German aircraft, but produced several variations of its own. Notable aircraft for the service were the following:.
When it came to its financial and political position within the Empire, the Austrian and later Austro-Hungarian Navy was a bit of an afterthought for most of the time it existed.
One reason was that sea power was never a priority of the Austrian foreign policy and that the Navy itself was relatively little known and supported by the public.
Activities such as open days and naval clubs were unable to change the sentiment that the Navy was just something " expensive but far away ". Another point was that naval expenditures were for most of the time overseen by the Austrian War Ministry, which was largely controlled by the Army , the only exception being the period before the Battle of Lissa.
The Navy was only able to draw significant public attention and funds during the three short periods it was actively supported by a member of the Imperial Family.
The Archdukes Friedrich — , Ferdinand Maximilian — , and Franz Ferdinand — , each with a keen private interest in the fleet, held senior naval ranks and were energetic campaigners for naval matters.
However, none lasted long, as Archduke Friedrich died early, Ferdinand Maximilian left Austria to become Emperor of Mexico and Franz Ferdinand was assassinated before he acceeded the throne.
Officers had to speak at least four of the languages found in the Empire. Germans and Czechs generally were in signals and engine room duties, Hungarians became gunners, while Croats and Italians were seamen or stokers.
The Austro-Hungarian Compromise of aimed to calm political dissatisfaction by creating the Dual Monarchy , in which the Emperor of Austria was also the King of Hungary.
This constitutional change was also reflected in the navy's title, which changed to "Imperial and Royal Navy" kaiserlich und königliche Kriegsmarine, short form K.
Besides problems stemming from the difficulty of communicating efficiently within such a multilingual military, the Empire's battleship designs were generally of a smaller tonnage than those of other European powers.
From March the incumbents of this position were styled Marinekommandant. Until Emperor Joseph II authorized a naval ensign on 20 March , Austrian naval vessels used the yellow and black imperial flag.
The flag, formally adopted as Marineflagge naval ensign was based on the colours of the Archduchy of Austria. It served as the official flag also after the Ausgleich in , when the Austrian navy became the Austro-Hungarian Navy.
This flag, officially instituted in , was however little used, and ships continued displaying the old Ensign until the end of the war.
Photographs of Austro-Hungarian ships flying the post form of the Naval Ensign are therefore relatively rare. British author John Biggins wrote a series of four serio-comic historical novels concerning the Austro-Hungarian Navy and a fictional hero named Ottokar Prohaska, although genuinely historical individuals, such as Georg Ludwig von Trapp and Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria make appearances.
Published by McBooks Press, the novels are:. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Not to be confused with Kriegsmarine Main article: Ostend Company.
Main article: Austrian East India Company. Main article: Oriental Crisis of Main article: Revolutions of in the Austrian Empire. Main article: First War of Italian Independence.
See also: Maximilian I of Mexico. Main article: Austro-Italian ironclad arms race. Main article: SMS Novara Main article: Battle of Lissa Main article: Greco-Turkish War Main article: Boxer Rebellion.
Main article: First Balkan War. Main article: Austro-Hungarian U-boats. See also: Raid on Ruse. Main article: Battle of Durazzo Main article: Battle of the Strait of Otranto Main article: Cattaro Mutiny.
Main article: Ranks in the Austro-Hungarian Navy. Lieutenants Josef and Franz von Uchatius suggested that the Austrian Navy employ hot air balloons carrying bombs which would be dropped on the city.
The Russian fleet, London: Ian Allan. Austro-Hungarian Naval Policy London: Frank Cass. Submarines: an illustrated history of their impact.
Old News. Retrieved 23 April Vienna, , pp. Anderson, M. The War of the Austrian Succession 1st ed. London: Longman. Bolts, Guillaume Butel, Paul Talence: Presses Universitaires de Bordeaux.
Donko, Wilhelm M. Berlin: E-publi Verlag. Warship International. XXXV 1 : 94— Frey, Marsha Frey, Linda ed. Westport, CT: Greenwood.
Die Flugzeuge der k. The Austrian boat was scuttled and all 15 crew saved. One source gives the date as the 10th May.
Commissioned as German U. Wartime Additions Most sources presume she was lost on mines on or around the 11th or 12th trying to penetrate the harbour defences of Venice.
Kemp's 'U-Boats Destroyed' is more specific - 'U. Two days later an explosion was observed in a defensive minefield and divers sent down.
The wreck of 'U. Transported from Germany to Pola in sections, 'U. Heavily damaged by a mine, 'U. She was salvaged and towed to Trieste, but not repaired before the end of the war; all her crew of 13 were saved.
During a convoy attack, 'U. She may have been rammed and badly damaged by one of the convoyed ships, Italian steamer 'Borminda' or 'Bermida' , and scuttled.
Or otherwise sunk by the exploding depth charges of 'Nembo' which had not been set to 'safe' before she went down; 11 of 'U. Ex-French 'Curie', sunk off Pola in December , raised and repaired.
The attack on 'U. Other sources give the date as the 6th or 9th July ; all her crew were lost. Once submerged the destroyer sunk her with a towed explosive paravane.
Sources differ on 'U. Some sources suggest she disappeared around the 1st or 2nd, cause unknown, but possibly mined in the Otranto Barrage or an accident off Cape Otranto.
She might also have gone down in the Mediterranean, one of the few U-boats lost in the area in ; all her crew were lost.
Over time, the Austrian government learned to wield their increasingly effective navy. By the time of the Great War, Austria managed to hold her own against a combined Franco-Italian fleet.
Between August and February , Austria sank three Italian battleships, two Italian cruisers and a French cruiser, at the cost of one cruiser, an exchange of 85, tons for 2, While the bulk of the Mediterranean submarine patrols were performed by the German Navy because their submarines were bigger and had more endurance , the Germans had loaned three of their larger submarines to the Austrian Navy.
Austria was also a pioneer of naval aviation. Austria was the first nation to develop naval aviation in Early adoption of this capability allowed Austria to control the skies over the Adriatic for the bulk of the war.
At the start of the war Austria had 22 seaplanes, and by the time Italy entered the war, Austria had 47 seaplanes. These planes were used for scouting enemy fleet movements as well as attacks on naval bases and vessels at sea.
Despite the early success of the Austrian Navy, Austria and her allies ultimately lost that war. The Austro-Hungarian Empire was dismembered and new nations based on nationality arose.
In Hungary, Admiral Horthy rose to prominent political office during the post-war years, becoming a right wing dictator who was later assassinated by the Nazis.
After the fall of the empire, Austria retained the naval ensign as her own national flag, a subtle reminder of a glorious past. Today, the old red and white Austrian ensign flies over Schönbrunn and the Hofburg.
A total of 30 new Landwehrstammregimenter were to be raised. On 6 October , the Austrian government enacted the "Heeresgliederung ", which instructed the armed forces to stop the growth of the militia at , Afterwards only the militia's infantry grew, making the timeframe Austria's armed forces reached their maximum strength.
On 29 May the "Wehrgesetz " was cancelled and the army began to shrink, which accelerated with the Gesamte Rechtsvorschrift für Wehrgesetz , Fassung vom The arrival of Warsaw Pact forces in southern Bavaria within the first six days after the start of hostilities would have prompted NATO to use tactical nuclear weapons to block the enemy approach routes through Upper Austria.
The expected crossing of the Danube was expected to occur between Tulln and Krems , from where the enemy forces would have turned West to reach the Sankt Pölten area.
After taking Sankt Pölten the Austrian armed forces expected the combined Warsaw Pact forces to strike West to take possession of the Linz - Steyr - Wels , supported by an advance of two Czechoslovak People's Army divisions through the Mühlviertel to the North of Linz.
After taking possession of the Linz basin the Warsaw Pact attack would have continued into Bavaria. In the Austrian Armed Forces enacted its new concept of Raumverteidigung.
Key zones were set up in those areas of the national territory, which an aggressor had to take possession of in order to achieve his military goals.
Area security zones were set up to deny an aggressor the possibility to bypass key zones and prevent the massing, movement, supply, and maintenance of enemy units.
Operationally the aim was to block the direct march lines through layered defenses in the key zones and to prevent an aggressor from freely using the space in the area security zones through mobile warfare.
Both types of zones were to be defended by militia formations. The four subzones formed the Central Area in Austria's mountainous interior, which was outside of the anticipated main axis of a Warsaw Pact advance.
In the event of an attack and an occupation of most of Austria, one or more the sub zones would form the national territory, which would justify the continuation of Austria as a subject of international law.
The central area was therefore of essential importance and had to be defended at its entrances. The Army Command and Austrian government would have retreat to a bunker complex in St Johann im Pongau in the central area.
The capital Vienna would not have been defended and was therefore excluded from defense preparations. Each key zone and area security zone, and Block Zone 33 were overseen during peacetime by a Landwehrstammregiment, which were tasked with training the militia forces needed for the defense of their assigned zone.
Some of the Landwehrstammregiment also trained and fielded an active Jäger battalion. In case of war the Landwehrstammregiments would have reformed as Landwehr Regiments with various types of militia battalions and companies, allowing the regiments to fight delaying actions from fortified positions as well has hit and run attacks on enemy formations trying to pass through their zone.
The Landwehr regiments formed the area-bound Landwehr and fielded the following types of Landwehr units:  . Operationally the country was divided initially into three operational areas Operationsraum , which were commanded by the Army Command.
The Air Division and army's support troops were under direct Army Command. In wartime the operational commands would command nine brigades, which formed the mobile Landwehr.
The mobile Landwehr was the Austrian armed forces reserve, which once the intentions of the opponent were determined, could be used to counterattack enemy formations.
The mobile Landwehr consisted of six light Jäger brigades, which would only be fully manned during wartime, and three Panzergrenadier brigades, equipped with main battle tanks and infantry fighting vehicles , which were fully manned at all times.
The staffs of the six Jäger brigades would have been formed upon war by the armed forces military commands, which in peacetime had territorial functions in the states.
The three Panzergrenadier brigades were assigned to the 1st Panzergrenadier Division and based along the Danube valley from Vienna to Linz. Each Austrian military command was numbered from 1 to 9, with all zones and units assigned to the command or part of the command starting with the same number.
The only exception was the 9th Panzergrenadier Brigade, which carried the number of the Vorarlberg Military Command in the extreme West of the country, but was based near Vienna in the East of the country and manned by conscripts from Vienna.
The Austrian military commands of the Raumverteidigung concept, their assigned number, zones and main units during peacetime were: .
Under the area defence strategy, which determined the army's structure until , the army was divided into three principal elements: the standing alert force Bereitschaftstruppe of active units, including the 1st Panzergrenadier Division and the air division; the mobile militia Mobile Landwehr , organized as eight mechanized reserve brigades to be deployed to key danger spots in the event of mobilization; and the stationary militia Raumgebundene Landwehr of twenty-six reserve infantry regiments organized for territorial defence.
Both the mobile militia and the stationary militia were brought up to strength only in times of mobilization or during periods allotted for refresher training, usually three weeks in June.
Training of conscripts was conducted by twenty-eight training and equipment-holding regiments Landwehrstammregimenter. On mobilization, these regiments would disband, with their cadre reassigned to lead reserve units or form replacement regiments and battalions.
At the army level were a headquarters, guard, and special forces battalions and an artillery battalion at cadre strength.
Two corps headquarters, one in the east at Graz and one in the west at Salzburg, would, on mobilization, command the provincially organized units in their respective zones.
Each corps included artillery, antitank, antiaircraft, and engineering battalions, and a logistics regiment, all on a cadre basis.
Each of the nine provincial military commands supervised the training and maintenance activities of their training and equipment-holding regiments.
On mobilization, these nine commands would convert to a divisional headquarters commanding mobile militia, stationary militia, and other independent units.
The only active units immediately available in an emergency were those of the standing alert force of some 15, career soldiers supplemented by eight-month conscripts.
The force was organized as a mechanized division consisting of three armored infantry brigades. Each brigade was composed of one tank battalion, one mechanized infantry battalion, and one self-propelled artillery battalion.
Two of the brigades had antitank battalions equipped with self-propelled weapons. The divisional headquarters was at Baden bei Wien near Vienna; the 3rd, 4th, and 9th Bigades were based in separate locations, also in the northeast of the country.