HMS Victor Emmanuel | Gwulo: Old Hong Kong

HMS Victor Emmanuel

HMS Victor Emmanuel

Note the flag with the cross on the front mast, possibly an Admiral's Flag or a Commodore's Broad Pennant, see

In its fighting days, it was propelled by steam and sail. Here in Hong Kong it was a hulk.

Key dates for the ship, extracted from

  • 1855: Launched as Repulse at Pembroke Dockyard, then later in the year renamed to Victor Emmanuel after he visited the ship.
  • 1874: Arrived in Hong Kong on 11th December to replace Princess Charlotte as the receiving ship.
  • 1897: Replaced by Tamar.

HMS Victor Emmanuel

"The flag with the cross on the front mast" may I think refer to the White Ensign flying from the jackstaff at the stern of the ship. This is worn by all RN ships in commission and is flown in this position when in harbour. If anybody can identify the two large ships in the background I would be very interested.


You have misunderstood David's comment - we all know what a White Ensign is. Zoom in and look at the top of the foremost mast. There is a small flag/pennant bearing a cross on a white background, perhaps with a symbol in its lower right quadrant.

Aplologies for misunderstanding David's comment! My eyesight is perhaps not what it was. Hard to tell whether that is a flag or a pennant, but the Commodore of HK would fly his pennant on the base ship.

HMS Victor Emmanuel's predecessor. See here

HMS Princess Charlotte.jpg

HMS Princess Charlotte.jpg, by Herostratus

That flag on the foremast could be a Rear Admirals flag.  Rectangular with Red cross and two red balls in bottom and top quadrant.  Just a guess really, as it isnt very distinct.  Hope this helps.