Prize of war
A prize of war is a piece of military
A military is an organization authorized by its greater society to use lethal force, usually including use of weapons, in defending its country by combating actual or perceived threats. The military may have additional functions of use to its greater society, such as advancing a political agenda e.g...

 property seized by the victorious party after a war or battle, typically at sea. This term was used nearly exclusively in terms of a captured ship during the 18th and 19th centuries.

Rules defining how prizes were claimed and administered originated before there were organized government navies and were an outgrowth of privateering.

Prizes of war are effectively non-existent in major modern conflicts due to changes in the way wars are fought and financed, international law and oversight, and the possibility of a prize being booby trapped.

One exception in World War II was the German submarine U-505, captured by elements of the United States Navy
United States Navy
The United States Navy is the naval warfare service branch of the United States Armed Forces and one of the seven uniformed services of the United States. The U.S. Navy is the largest in the world; its battle fleet tonnage is greater than that of the next 13 largest navies combined. The U.S...

 in a task force commanded by then-Captain Daniel V. Gallery
Daniel V. Gallery
Rear Admiral Daniel Vincent Gallery was an officer in the United States Navy who saw extensive action during World War II. He fought in the Second Battle of the Atlantic, his most notable achievement was the capture of the German submarine U-505, on June 4, 1944...

. U-505 currently is a museum ship in Chicago.

Although not taken in combat, two Gorch Fock
Gorch Fock (1933)
The Gorch Fock I is a German three-mast barque, the first of a series built as school ships for the German Reichsmarine in 1933. She was taken as war reparations by the USSR after World War II and renamed Tovarishch...

 class barques were confiscated from Germany as reparation prizes at the conclusion of World War II, one of which remains in US service as the USCGC Eagle
USCGC Eagle (WIX-327)
The is a barque used as a training cutter for future officers of the United States Coast Guard. She is one of only two active commissioned sailing vessels in American military service, the other being the USS Constitution....


2 Agusta A109
Agusta A109
The AgustaWestland AW109 is a light-weight, twin-engine, eight-seat multi-purpose helicopter built by the Anglo-Italian manufacturer AgustaWestland...

 helicopters captured by the British Army
British Army
The British Army is the land warfare branch of Her Majesty's Armed Forces in the United Kingdom. It came into being with the unification of the Kingdom of England and Scotland into the Kingdom of Great Britain in 1707. The new British Army incorporated Regiments that had already existed in England...

 from the Argentine Army
Argentine Army
The Argentine Army is the land armed force branch of the Armed Forces of the Argentine Republic and the senior military service of the country.- History :...

 during the Falklands War
Falklands War
The Falklands War , also called the Falklands Conflict or Falklands Crisis, was fought in 1982 between Argentina and the United Kingdom over the disputed Falkland Islands and South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands...

 were used by the Army Air Corps
Army Air Corps
The Army Air Corps is a component of the British Army, first formed in 1942. There are eight regiments of the AAC as well as five Independent Flights and two Independent Squadrons deployed in support of British Army operations across the world. They are located in Britain, Belize, Brunei, Canada,...

until 2007.
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