HMS Warrior was the first iron-hulled,
built for the Royal Navy
in response to the first ironclad warship, the French
launched a year earlier. When completed in October 1861,
Warrior was by far the largest, fastest, most heavily-armed
and most heavily-armoured warship the world had ever seen.
She was almost twice the size of La Gloire, and thoroughly
outclassed the French ship in speed, armour, and gunnery.
Warrior did not introduce any radical new technology, but
for the first time combined steam engines,
breech-loading guns, iron construction, iron
armour, and propeller drive all in one ship, and built to unprecedented scale