Gangut


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Gangut

 

Russian name of the Hangö (Hanko) Peninsula in Finland. The Battle of Hangö took place nearby in 1714.


Gangut

 

a battleship of the Baltic Fleet, launched on Oct. 7, 1911. It had an armament of 32 guns, a water displacement of 23,000 tons, a speed of 23 knots (42.6 km/hr), and a crew of 32 officers and 1,094 sailors. On Oct. 19, 1915, an uprising of the sailors broke out spontaneously on the Gangut. The action arose as a protest against bad food and the overbearing behavior of the officers. The Bolshevik underground organization that existed on the ship tried unsuccessfully to restrain the sailors from acting prematurely. The sailors refused to obey the officers and attacked some of them. On October 20 an appeal was circulated on the ship, beginning with the words “Finish the job that has been started.” The news about the events on the Gangut spread to sailors of other ships of the Baltic Fleet. Many of them sympathized with the rebels, and some tried to organize similar actions, for instance, on the ship Pavel I. On October 20, upon order of the commander of the fleet, the Gangut was surrounded by torpedo boats and submarines, the commanders of which were ordered in case of a mutiny to sink not only the Gangut but any other ship. On October 21, 95 sailors were arrested; 34 of them were tried, and 26 were sentenced to various terms of forced labor.

The command of the Baltic Fleet declared that the cause of the disturbances was “unreasonable patriotic manifestations by ignorant masses” (several officers of the Gangut had German names). However, the real cause was the growth of revolutionary antiwar sentiment among the army and in the fleet during World War I (1914-18).

REFERENCE

Naida, S. F. Revoliutsionnoe dvizhenie v tsarskom flote 1825-1917. Moscow-Leningrad, 1948. Pages 511-20.

A. E. IVANOV

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