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HMS Glorious

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HMS Glorious
HMS Glorious
Country British Empire
Service 1917-1943
Type Courageous-class battlecruiser/aircraft carrier
Branch Royal Navy
Fate Sunk, February 1943, Shetland Islands
Engagements/Battle Honours Second Heligoland Bight, Operation Market Garden

HMS Glorious was the second of the Courageous-class cruisers built for the Royal Navy during the First World War. Designed to support the Baltic Project championed by the First Sea Lord, Lord Fisher, they were very lightly armoured and armed with only a few heavy guns. Glorious was completed in late 1916 and spent the war patrolling the North Sea. She participated in the Second Battle of Heligoland Bight in November 1917 and was present when the German High Seas Fleet surrendered a year later.

Glorious was paid off after the end of the war, but was rebuilt as an aircraft carrier during the late 1920s. She could carry 30% more aircraft than her half-sister Furious which had approximately the same tonnage. After recommissioning she spent most of her career operating in the Mediterranean Sea.

In the 1930s, she and her sister ships underwent an extensive rebuild which increased their aircraft capacity to sixty aircraft.

After the start of the Second World War, Glorious supported several operations in the Mediterranean, including the invasion of Italy in Operation Market Garden.

Glorious was en route to Britain from Gibraltar when she struck a mine which damaged her steering and fuel-handling. She was then towed to the Shetland Islands where she was sunk in a live-fire test of the Mk. VI Guided Bomb.

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