SMS Iltis (1878)

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War Ensign of Germany (1867-1892) .svg
Construction data
Ship type Gunboat
Ship class Wolf- class
Construction designation: Replacement tiger
Builder: Imperial shipyard in Gdansk
Keel laying : 1877
Launch : September 18, 1878
Completion: 1880
Building-costs: 550,000 marks
Ship dimensions
Measurement: 295 BRT
121 NRT
Displacement : Construction: 490 t
Maximum: 570 t
Length: KWL : 44.5 m
over all: 47.2 m
Width: 7.66 m
Draft : 3.10 - 3.40 m
Side height : 2.92 m
Technical specifications
Boiler system : 2 suitcase kettles
Machinery: 2 horizontal 1-cylinder
single expansion steam engines
Number of propellers: 1 double-leaf 2.53 m
Shaft speed: 140 / min
Drive power: 340 PSi
Speed: 8.5 kn
Driving range: 1,640 nm at 9 kn
Fuel supply: 112 tons of coal
Crew: 5 officers and 101 men
Sea target guns: 2 rows - 12.5 cm L / 23
(52 hm , 270 shots)
2 rows - 8.7 cm L / 24
(200 shots)
3 rev - 3.7 cm
Torpedo tubes : no
Sank on July 23, 1896 in the Yellow Sea at position 36 ° 54 '  N , 122 ° 30'  E in the typhoon; 76 dead

SMS Iltis was a gunboat of the Imperial Navy . Like its sister ships SMS Hyäne and SMS Wolf , it was designed for use in overseas colonies .


The ships were each equipped with two steam engines that had been removed from the decommissioned gunboats Blitz , Basilisk , Delphin and Meteor and enabled them to travel at speeds of up to 9.5 knots. In order to save coal on long journeys, they were rigged as 3-masted barquentines with a sail area of ​​541 m². The armament consisted of two 12.5 cm L / 23 ring cannons and two 8.7 cm L / 24 ring cannons as well as three 3.7 cm revolver cannons . At 47 m in length, 7.7 m in width and 3.5 m in draft, the Iltis displaced 412 tons (standard) and up to 570 tons (maximum). The crew consisted of five officers and 80 men.


The polecat was launched on September 18, 1878 at the Imperial Shipyard in Danzig . She was assigned to the East Asia Squadron and provided station service in the Pacific region, especially in the German island colonies .

The ship was lost on July 23, 1896 in a typhoon near Cape Shantung ( Shandong ) near Rongcheng by stranding. Three men were able to save themselves on land, 11 survivors were rescued from the wreck two days later. 71 men were killed. The deceased were buried at the Moyedao lighthouse (Chinese 镆 铘 岛). The ship's bell is now exhibited in the Rastatt Military History Museum.

The Imperial Navy named a new gunboat launched in 1898 as the SMS Iltis .

In 1938, the Navy named one of their test boats Otto Braun in honor of the captain of the Iltis , Kapitänleutnant Otto Braun.


The Berlin sculptor August Kraus created the memorial for the drowned sailors, which was erected and inaugurated in Shanghai in 1898 .

Picture gallery


  • Winfried monk myth gunboat SMS Iltis - Faithful unto death ... . In: Schiff Classic , magazine for shipping and marine history eV of the DGSM , issue: 3/2020, pp. 56–61.

Web links

Commons : Iltis memorial Shanghai  - Collection of pictures, videos and audio files