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Type: Torpedo Ram. Steel Armour plated. ;
BM: tons ; Displacement: 2640 tons
Propulsion: Double Screw
Machinery notes: 5500 hpi
1 Apr 1886 Arrived at Devonport from Portsmouth about 10 days ago to carry out experiments on night light signals.
1 Apr 1886 Experiments cancelled and it is reported that the ship will sail for the Mediterranean this morning as instructed by the Admiralty .
8 May 1886 Serving in Greek Waters. See Temeraire for more detail.
19 Jun 1886 Malta. HMS Ships Alexandra, Temeraire, Superb, torpedo ram Polyphemus, and 2 torpedo boats, all from Suda, have arrived.
1 Oct 1887 Re-commissioned at Cattaro
A newspaper report (WDP) of 13 May 1900. The torpedo ram Polyphemus has returned to Chatham to be put out of commission after an absence of 18 years on foreign service. She was built at Chatham from the designs of the late Admiral of the Fleet Sir GR Sartorious, and was first commissioned in February 1882, for service on the Mediterranean Station. She served for five consecutive commissions, and proved a very useful ship, although it was currently believed when she first sailed that she would never live to reach her destination. She was a very peculiarly constructed vessel, somewhat resembling a cigar in shape.
Her displacement is 2,640 tons, and she is fitted with engines capable of developing 5,500 horse power. After being paid off her officers and crew will be transferred to the Pyramus, which will replace her on the Mediterranean Station. The Polyphemus is the only vessel of her type in the British Navy and having seen considerable service is almost obsolete.