ちなみに HMS = Her / His Majesty’s Shipです。
HMS Birkenhead (1845)
HMS Birkenhead, also referred to as HM Troopship Birkenhead or steam frigate Birkenhead,
was one of the first iron-hulled ships (which was) built for the Royal Navy.
She was designed as a frigate, but was converted to a troopship before being commissioned.
＊ 外皮が鉄で出来た初期の船の1つ / be converted to : ~に転換された (用途変更)
On 26 February 1852, while transporting troops to Algoa Bay,
she was wrecked at Danger Point near Gansbaai, 140 kilometres from Cape Town, South Africa.
＊座礁日と場所が出ます。 / 副詞節の接続詞 while が残された分詞構文です。
There were not enough serviceable lifeboats for all the passengers,
and the soldiers famously stood firm,
thereby allowing the women and children to board the boats safely. ＊有名に
Only 193 of the 643 people on board survived, and the soldiers´ chivalry
gave rise to the "women and children first" protocol when abandoning ship,
while the "Birkenhead drill" of Rudyard Kipling´s poem came to describe courage
in face of hopeless circumstances.
＊the soldiers’ chivalry – 兵士の騎士道 / in face of - ~に直面して
drill – 地面を掘るドリルじゃなくて、退避訓練とかの練習が要るのを drill と言います。
英文法の原書でも exerciseという chapter の代わりに drill を使ったりします。
キップリングの詩によって絶望的な状況で勇気の代名詞が Birkenhead drill になりましたね。
Description and history
The Birkenhead was laid down at John Laird´s shipyard at Birkenhead as the frigate HMS Vulcan,
but renamed soon after to Birkenhead after the town where she was built.
＊was laid down: 進水される / 後ろの after は ~によって
She had two 564 horsepower (421 kW) steam engines from Forrester & Co that drove
a pair of 6-metre (20 ft) paddle wheels, and two masts rigged as a brig.
＊帆船 / mast – マスト、つまりこの船は2つのスチームエンジンと2つのマストを持つ船です。
The Birkenhead was launched on 30 December 1845 by the Marchioness of Westminster.
She undertook her maiden voyage to Plymouth in 1846,
averaging 12 knots (22 km/h) to 13 knots (24 km/h) for the journey.
＊ maiden voyage – 処女航海 / 進水は12月30日/ 処女航海は1846年
The Birkenhead was never commissioned as a frigate,
as two factors came into play while she was still under construction,
that resulted in her being converted into a troopship.
＊ come into play – 作用する、活動する / 前で使われた be converted to と同じ意味
Firstly, the Royal Navy´s warships were switched from paddle wheels
to more efficient propeller propulsion, following an experiment organised by the Admiralty
in 1845 in which the benefits of the propeller over the paddle wheel were dramatically demonstrated.
Secondly, the Admiralty had doubts about the effects of cannon shot against iron hulls —
in a number of trials carried out at Royal Arsenal in 1845,
at lower velocities shot made a jagged hole that was hard to plug.
＊ 推進(力) : 船の横でパドル(初期の蒸気船) 推進から現代のプロペラ推進に代わる時点が1つの理由。
jagged hole : 整えていない穴、凸凹のホール / 防ぎづらい
As part of her conversion to a troopship in 1851,
a forecastle and poop deck were added to the Birkenhead to increase her accommodation,
and a third mast added, to change her sail plan to a barquentine.
＊ poop deck – 甲板 / forecastle – 上甲板、または船員船室
barquentine – マストが3つある帆船
Although she never served as a warship,
she was faster and more comfortable than any of the wooden sail-driven troopships of the time,
making the trip from the Cape in 37 days in October 1850. ＊木造の輸送帆船
Final Voyage – 最後の航海
In January 1852, under the command of Captain Robert Salmond RN,
the Birkenhead left Portsmouth conveying troops from ten different regiments,
including the 74th Regiment of Foot and Queen´s Royal Regiment,
to the 8th Xhosa War (then called the "Kaffir War") against the Xhosa in South Africa.
＊連隊 / royal regiment - イギリスの砲兵連隊 / ホサ族との戦争
On 5 January, she picked up more soldiers at Queenstown (now Cobh), Ireland,
and conveyed some officers´ wives and families.
On 23 February 1852, Birkenhead docked briefly at Simonstown, near Cape Town.
Most of the women and children disembarked along with a number of sick soldiers.
Nine cavalry horses, several bales of hay and 35 tons of coal were loaded for the last leg
of the voyage to Algoa Bay. ＊最後の区間
She sailed from Simon´s Bay at 06:00 on 25 February 1852 with between 630 and 643 men,
women and children aboard, the exact number being in some doubt. ＊多少は疑わしい
In order to make the best possible speed,
Captain Salmond decided to hug the South African coast,
setting a course that was generally within 3 miles (4.8 km) of the shore.
Using her paddle wheels, she maintained a steady speed of 8.5 knots (15.7 km/h).
The sea was calm and the night was clear as she left False Bay and headed east.
＊ここでは when も使えます。
Shortly before 02:00 on 26 February, while Birkenhead was travelling at a speed of 8 knots (15 km/h),
the leadsman made soundings of 12 fathoms (22 m).
＊ 測深員 – 水の深さを測る人
fathom – 深さの単位 / 警報を発令したみたいです。
The rock lies near Danger Point (today near Gansbaai, Western Cape).
Barely submerged, it is clearly visible in rough seas, but it is not immediately apparent in calmer conditions.
＊ 水の中に隠された/ rough sea でははっきり見えるが、もっと静かな場合
Captain Salmond rushed on deck and ordered the anchor to be dropped,
the quarter-boats to be lowered, and a turn astern to be given by the engines.
＊船尾の救命艇 / 船尾が向きを変える
However, as the ship backed off the rock,
the sea rushed into the large hole made by the collision and the ship struck again,
buckling the plates of the forward bilge and ripping open the bulkheads.
＊forward bilge – 前方の湾曲部 / ripping – 裂く、破る
bulkhead – 仕切り、壁 / buckling – 押し潰す
Shortly, the forward compartments and the engine rooms were flooded,
and over 100 soldiers were drowned in their berths.
The surviving soldiers mustered and awaited their officers´ orders. ＊ 召集される
Salmond ordered Colonel Seton to send men to the chain pumps;
sixty were directed to this task, sixty more were assigned to the tackles of the lifeboats,
and the rest were assembled on the poop deck in order to raise the forward part of the ship.
chain pumps はポンプの1つですが、今回はポンプ室と解釈してください。
The women and children were placed in the ship´s cutter, which lay alongside.
＊柱 (マストみたいな) でもここでは救命艇を固定させる装置を意味します。
Two other boats were manned, but one was immediately swamped and the other could not be launched
due to poor maintenance and paint on the winches, leaving only three boats available.
＊be manned – 作動される / 二艘の救命艇を使えない理由が出ます。
The two large boats, with capacities of 150 men each, were not among them.
The surviving officers and men assembled on deck,
where Lieutenant-Colonel Seton of the 74th Foot took charge of all military personnel and
stressed the necessity of maintaining order and discipline to his officers.
＊軍人たちの状況説明 ： 階級は陸軍中佐
As a survivor later recounted: "Almost everybody kept silent, indeed nothing was heard,
but the kicking of the horses and the orders of Salmond, all given in a clear firm voice."
Ten minutes after the first impact, the engines still turning astern,
the ship struck again beneath the engine room, tearing open her bottom.
She instantly broke in two just aft of the mainmast.
＊aft ~の後ろ/ 真っ二つになりました。メインマストの後ろで
The funnel went over the side and the forepart of the ship sank at once.
The stern section, now crowded with men, floated for a few minutes before sinking.
Just before she sank, Salmond called out that "all those [who can swim] jump overboard,
and make for the boats".
＊作る、準備する、~に向かう / 船が沈む時に退船命令を下す。
Colonel Seton, however, recognising that rushing the lifeboats would risk swamping them
and endangering the women and children, ordered the men to stand fast,
and only three men made the attempt.
The cavalry horses were freed and driven into the sea in the hope that they might be able to swim ashore.
The soldiers did not move, even as the ship broke up barely 20 minutes after striking the rock.
Some of the soldiers managed to swim the 2 miles (3.2 km) to shore over the next 12 hours,
often hanging on to pieces of the wreck to stay afloat, but most drowned,
died of exposure or were taken by sharks.
＊ manage to do - 難しい事をやってのける
The next morning, the schooner Lioness discovered one of the cutters,
and after saving the occupants of the second boat made her way to the scene of the disaster.
＊災難現場に赴いた船が次の日に救助した内容。ここで cutter はマストや柱。
Arriving in the afternoon, she found 40 people still clinging to the rigging.
It was reported that of the approximately 643 people aboard, only 193 were saved.
The number of personnel aboard is in some doubt, but an estimate of 638 was published in The Times.
It is generally thought that the survivors comprised 113 soldiers (all ranks), 6 Royal Marines,
54 seamen (all ranks), 7 women, 13 children and at least one male civilian,
but these numbers cannot be substantiated, as muster rolls and books were lost with the ship.
＊ 立証できない / 登録部
Of the horses, eight made it safely to land, while the ninth had its leg broken while being pushed into the sea.
After Math - 余波
A number of sailors were court martialled as a result of the accident. ＊軍事裁判
The court was held on 8 May 1852 on board HMS Victory in Portsmouth, and attracted a great deal of interest.
However as none of the senior naval officers of the Birkenhead survived, no-one was found to be to blame.
Captain Edward WC Wright of the 91st Argyllshire Regiment told the court martial:
The order and regularity [that prevailed on board, from the moment the ship struck till
she totally disappeared,] far exceeded anything [that I had thought] could be affected by the best discipline;
and it is the more to be wondered at seeing that most of the soldiers were but a short time in the service.
Everyone did as he was directed and there was not a murmur or cry amongst them until the ship made her final plunge
– all received their orders and carried them out as if they were embarking instead of going to the bottom –
I never saw any embarkation conducted with so little noise or confusion.
＊最後の沈没(船体が真っ二つになって、前の部分が先に沈没、後ろのが後に沈没) / embarkation – 乗船、搭乗
Legacy – 遺産
The sinking of the Birkenhead is the earliest maritime disaster evacuation during which the concept of "women and children first" is known to have been applied.
"Women and children first" subsequently became a standard meme in relation to the evacuation of sinking ships, both in fiction and in real life. ＊標準
The synonymous "Birkenhead drill" became an exemplar of courageous behaviour in hopeless circumstances,
and appeared in Rudyard Kipling´s 1893 tribute to the Royal Marines, "Soldier an´ Sailor Too":