Russian cruiser Izumrud

Izumrud was a protected cruiser
Protected cruiser
The protected cruiser is a type of naval cruiser of the late 19th century, so known because its armoured deck offered protection for vital machine spaces from shrapnel caused by exploding shells above...

 of the Imperial Russian Navy
Imperial Russian Navy
The Imperial Russian Navy refers to the Tsarist fleets prior to the February Revolution.-First Romanovs:Under Tsar Mikhail Feodorovich, construction of the first three-masted ship, actually built within Russia, was completed in 1636. It was built in Balakhna by Danish shipbuilders from Holstein...

, and the lead ship
Lead ship
The lead ship or class leader is the first of a series or class of ships all constructed according to the same general design. The term is applicable military ships and larger civilian craft.-Overview:...

 in the two-ship class. The Izumrud and her sister ship
Sister ship
A sister ship is a ship of the same class as, or of virtually identical design to, another ship. Such vessels share a near-identical hull and superstructure layout, similar displacement, and roughly comparable features and equipment...

  were based on the German-built .


Izumrud was ordered as part of the Imperial Russian Navy’s plan to expand the Russian Pacific Fleet based at Port Arthur and Vladivostok
The city is located in the southern extremity of Muravyov-Amursky Peninsula, which is about 30 km long and approximately 12 km wide.The highest point is Mount Kholodilnik, the height of which is 257 m...

 to counter the growing threat posed by the Imperial Japanese Navy
Imperial Japanese Navy
The Imperial Japanese Navy was the navy of the Empire of Japan from 1869 until 1947, when it was dissolved following Japan's constitutional renunciation of the use of force as a means of settling international disputes...

 towards Russian hegemony in Manchuria
Manchuria is a historical name given to a large geographic region in northeast Asia. Depending on the definition of its extent, Manchuria usually falls entirely within the People's Republic of China, or is sometimes divided between China and Russia. The region is commonly referred to as Northeast...

 and Korea
Korea ) is an East Asian geographic region that is currently divided into two separate sovereign states — North Korea and South Korea. Located on the Korean Peninsula, Korea is bordered by the People's Republic of China to the northwest, Russia to the northeast, and is separated from Japan to the...


Operational History

Izumrud was laid down at the Nevsky Shipyard
Sredne-Nevskiy Shipyard
The Sredne-Nevsky Shipyard was founded before the end of the 19th century in Saint Petersburg, Russia. In 1917 it employed 17,000 people. It established a branch in Nikolaev in the early years of the 20th century to assemble ships which had been built in St. Petersburg and transported to the Black...

 in Petrograd, Russia
Russia or , officially known as both Russia and the Russian Federation , is a country in northern Eurasia. It is a federal semi-presidential republic, comprising 83 federal subjects...

 on January 1, 1901. However, construction was delayed due to priority given to completion of the . She was launched on October 1, 1903. Construction continued to be plagued by delays, including an ice storm in December. However, with the start of the Russo-Japanese War
Russo-Japanese War
The Russo-Japanese War was "the first great war of the 20th century." It grew out of rival imperial ambitions of the Russian Empire and Japanese Empire over Manchuria and Korea...

 in early 1904, construction efforts were greatly accelerated.

Izumrud was formally commissioned in January 1904 and she was assigned to the Second Pacific Squadron of the Russian Pacific Fleet.

During the Russo-Japanese War

Under the overall command of Admiral Zinovy Rozhestvensky
Zinovy Rozhestvensky
Zinovy Petrovich Rozhestvensky was an admiral of the Imperial Russian Navy. He was in command of the Second Pacific Squadron in the Battle of Tsushima, during the Russo-Japanese War....

, Izumrud was part of the Second Pacific Squadron intended to relieve the Japanese siege of Port Arthur
Battle of Port Arthur
The Battle of Port Arthur was the starting battle of the Russo-Japanese War...

. Captained by Commander Vasili Fersen
Vasili Fersen
Baron Vasili Nikolayevich Fersen was an admiral in the Imperial Russian Navy. Born in the Governorate of Estonia as Wilhelm Fersen, he was of Scottish ancestry, his forebears name being from clan McPherson.-Biography:...

, she participated in the decisive Battle of Tsushima
Battle of Tsushima
The Battle of Tsushima , commonly known as the “Sea of Japan Naval Battle” in Japan and the “Battle of Tsushima Strait”, was the major naval battle fought between Russia and Japan during the Russo-Japanese War...

 from May 27-28, 1905. At the end of the battle, Fersen refused to obey the order of Admiral Nikolai Nebogatov
Nikolai Nebogatov
Nikolai Ivanovich Nebogatov was a Rear-Admiral in the Imperial Russian Navy, noted for his role in the final stages of the Russo-Japanese War of 1904-1905.-Biography:...

 to surrender, and used her speed to escape through the Japanese blockade. However, on the night of May 28, she ran aground in the Gulf of Vladimir in the Russian Maritime Province
Maritime province
Maritime province may refer to:*Maritimes, a region of Canada on the Atlantic coast*Maritime Province, another name for Primorsky Krai, Russia, sometimes used in English language texts...

 and was abandoned. Her crew reached Vladivostok
The city is located in the southern extremity of Muravyov-Amursky Peninsula, which is about 30 km long and approximately 12 km wide.The highest point is Mount Kholodilnik, the height of which is 257 m...

by land.
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