HNoMS Thor (1872)

HNoMS Thor was a monitor built for the Royal Norwegian Navy in 1871. She was decommissioned in 1918, long after her heavy guns were outdated. She was considered an improvement on the Skorpionen class of monitors, with heavier armour and a wider beam.

Plans for Thor circa 1870
Name: Thor
Namesake: Norse god of thunder Thor
Builder: Horten Navy Yard
Laid down: 1 January 1871
Launched: 1872
Decommissioned: 1918
Fate: Wrecked 1919
General characteristics
Displacement: 1,975 tons
Length: 62.33m
Beam: 14.48m
Draught: 3.81m
Propulsion: 600hp reciprocating steam engines
Speed: 8.0 knop
Complement: 95
Armament: 2 x 10.5 inch RML guns

The name was a reference to the Norse god Thor. The earlier monitor Mjølner was named after Thor's hammer.


Thor was armed with two heavy rifled muzzleloaders in a revolving turret. She had 7 inches of iron armour on her deck, and her turret was protected by 14 inches of iron armour.


After decommissioning, Thor was intended for scrapping. On 7 March 1919, while being towed to the scrapyard, the ship was caught in a storm that broke the towing cable, stranding Thor on an island outside Verdens Ende in Vestfold. Two crew members were killed in the accident. Thor later sank in shallow water. A salvage operation removed parts of the ship, but the wreck remains largely intact and now lies at a depth of 8 to 14 meters southwest of Verdens Ende.[1]

Thor is one of only three accessible monitor vessels in the world, the others being USS Monitor, which lies at about 60 meters some 42 kilometers southeast of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina and the other being HMVS Cerberus, in 5 metres of water in Victoria, Australia.[1]

Notable crew


  1. database entry on Thor Archived 2007-09-27 at the Wayback Machine, access date 2 January 2007

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