Kotaka was a torpedo boat of the Imperial Japanese Navy. She was ordered in 1885 from the shipbuilder Yarrows in London, Great Britain, where she was built in parts along Japanese specifications, and then assembled in Yokosuka Naval Arsenal, Japan.
She participated in the First Sino-Japanese War (1894–1895) and the Russo-Japanese War (1904–1905). She was decommissioned on 1 April 1908, to become a training ship. She was retired on 1 March 1916, but again reactivated in 1917, ending her career in January 1927.
When launched in 1888, the Kotaka, at 203 tons, was the largest torpedo boat in the world, and "was the forerunner of torpedo-boat destroyers that appeared a decade later" (Kaigun, David C. Evans). She was armed with four 1-pounder (37 mm) quick-firing guns and six torpedo tubes. In the following years, the Imperial Japanese Navy equipped herself with much smaller torpedo boats of French design ...read more