destroyer

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destroyer,

class of warship very fast relative to its length, generally equipped with torpedos, antisubmarine equipment, and medium-caliber and antiaircraft guns. The newest destroyers are equipped with guided missiles as their chief offensive weapon. The destroyer, originally called the torpedo-boat destroyer, was introduced in 1892 as an answer to the torpedo boattorpedo boat,
small fast warship built specially for using the torpedo as a means of attack. The first modern torpedo boat was the Lightning, built for the British navy in 1877 by the shipyards of Sir John Isaac Thornycroft.
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, but it rapidly replaced that type by taking over its functions. Later, its role as a torpedo launcher declined, and today destroyers have a mainly defensive role; they are used for convoying merchant ships and as escort vessels in a battle fleet. Destroyers were of great importance in World War II; equipped with new electronic devices, they proved highly effective as antisubmarine weapons and, hence, as escorts for convoys. Specialized types include the radar picket destroyer, designed for detection of enemy aircraft and control of friendly combat air patrol, and the minelaying destroyer. The USS Truxtun (launched in 1964) was the first of a class of nuclear-powered destroyer-type ships, officially categorized as frigates.

Bibliography

See E. Brookes, Destroyer (1962); E. J. March, British Destroyers: A History of Development 1892–1953 (1966); Jane's Fighting Ships (pub. annually since 1897).

Destroyer

 

a class of surface warships first used on the eve of World War I and designed to fight torpedo boats, conduct reconnaissance, defend battleships and cruisers, and carry out torpedo attacks on large ships. The first destroyers had displacements of 1,000–1,500 tons and maximum speeds of 35–36 knots (64–66 km/hr). They were armed with 8–12 torpedo launchers and three or four artillery guns with calibers ranging from 100 mm to 120 mm. During the war, the role of the destroyers was expanded, and they were fitted with additional artillery guns and with mechanisms for releasing antisubmarine depth charges.

In World War II, destroyers were used to protect transport convoys and tactical units of large naval vessels from attack by aircraft and light surface ships. They were also used to destroy submarines and to lay minefields. After the war, with the development of missiles and atomic weapons, the destroyer class of vessels evolved into separate classes of medium-tonnage, narrow-purpose warships with antiaircraft and antisubmarine capabilities. Vessels of the US Navy’s Coontz class are representative of the modern destroyer. Such vessels have a displacement of 5,800 tons and travel at speeds of up to 34 knots. They are equipped with one 127-mm gun, two triple torpedo launchers, and one 8-tube rocket launcher.

destroyer

[di′strȯi·ər]
(naval architecture)
A small, fast, lightly armored warship capable of a variety of functions, usually armed with 5-inch (127-millimeter) guns, torpedoes, depth charges, and mines, and sometimes with guided missiles.
References in classic literature ?
And because we think right to destroy you, do you think that you have any right to destroy us in return, and your country as far as in you lies?
But if you go forth, returning evil for evil, and injury for injury, breaking the covenants and agreements which you have made with us, and wronging those whom you ought least of all to wrong, that is to say, yourself, your friends, your country, and us, we shall be angry with you while you live, and our brethren, the laws in the world below, will receive you as an enemy; for they will know that you have done your best to destroy us.
And then she called a dozen of her slaves, who were the Winkies, and gave them sharp spears, telling them to go to the strangers and destroy them.
She could not understand how all her plans to destroy these strangers had failed; but she was a powerful Witch, as well as a wicked one, and she soon made up her mind how to act.
Make me your General and I'll promise to conquer and destroy the Oz people.
There are a good many evil creatures who have magic powers sufficient to destroy and conquer the Land of Oz.
He was warmly followed by a number of the others, and the cry of all was to destroy the trusts.
Consider, I said, Glaucon, that even the badness of food, whether staleness, decomposition, or any other bad quality, when confined to the actual food, is not supposed to destroy the body; although, if the badness of food communicates corruption to the body, then we should say that the body has been destroyed by a corruption of itself, which is disease, brought on by this; but that the body, being one thing, can be destroyed by the badness of food, which is another, and which does not engender any natural infection-- this we shall absolutely deny?
30 and 5 o'clock, something has occurred to occasion a complete revolution of feeling, since she is now as anxious to destroy the will, as she was before to make it.
We only try to destroy them, because we're spiritually provided for.
I determined to go without a guide, for I was well acquainted with the path, and the presence of another would destroy the solitary grandeur of the scene.
This necessarily led them over the place where the fight had been, and where they found several of the poor creatures not quite dead, and yet past recovering life; a sight disagreeable enough to generous minds, for a truly great man though obliged by the law of battle to destroy his enemy, takes no delight in his misery.