I mentioned on D-Day that the Russians got their butt kicked in the Russo-Japanese War of 1905. The Battle of Tsushima was the critical one that cemented a Russian defeat. Early in the war Japan was able to neutralize the Russian Pacific Naval Squadron based in Vladivostock. With great fanfare Russia sent forth it’s Northern Fleet to sail almost exactly half way around the world to ‘teach the natives a lesson’, kind of a Falkland Islands thing.

Admiral Togo sprang an ambush while entering port after the journey and crushed them. Interestingly enough it was the last major clash of pre-Dreadnaught Battleships and influenced Dreadnaught design. The British Admiralty noticed that most of the damage was caused by the larger caliber guns (around 12″ in this case) and that manuvering close enough to employ the Secondary Armaments (6″ and 8″) exposed the ship to counterfire. Thus in the archetypical Dreadnaught the Secondaries were dispensed with entirely and the weight saved went into additional Primary Guns and extra Armor.

The Battle of Tsushima