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Corsair, Unicorn, Walrus, Cutlass, Paddle, Caiman, Narwhal, Nautilus, Bang, Barb, Permit

Kudos for going through the list, but Corsair, Unicorn, Cutlass, Paddle, Barb, and Permit are all types of fish. The US Navy certainly did dig up a heck of a lot of fish names, including some weird ones. Who knew a Sea Robin was a fish? There are probably more non-fish names in the Tenches than in the Gatos, and of course the S class only had alpha-numeric designators.

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I haven't a list of all the US subs, S-class to Tench-class, but off the top of my head:

The S subs (wasn't there also another lettered class? I can't recall what it was just now) were all pre-war built and named though some saw action during the first year of the war and several were used as training boats.

But I was referring to boats built during the war.

Harder, Walrus, Sea Lion, Kraken. They were certainly more.

The harder is a fish of the mullet family. The others are not fish (neither is the Nautilus or the Narwhal for that matter), but all are aquatic animals, which is, I suppose the distinction I should have made in the first place.

Michael

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Kudos for going through the list, but Corsair, Unicorn, Cutlass, Paddle, Barb, and Permit are all types of fish. The US Navy certainly did dig up a heck of a lot of fish names, including some weird ones. Who knew a Sea Robin was a fish? There are probably more non-fish names in the Tenches than in the Gatos, and of course the S class only had alpha-numeric designators.

Fark. I think we should actually be criticising the people who name fish. It seems to be their imaginations that are limited if they are stealing so many names.

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The S subs (wasn't there also another lettered class? I can't recall what it was just now) were all pre-war built and named though some saw action during the first year of the war and several were used as training boats.

But I was referring to boats built during the war.

Not every letter of the alphabet before 'S' was used, but a majority were. So it depends on how far back you want to go. In terms of WWII, only 'S' and 'R' boats conducted patrols, though the R's only patrolled in the Atlantic, I believe. As soon as larger boats slipped off the ways, they were relegated for training. However, the only 'S' and 'R' class subs to be named would have been those that were transfered to other navies.

The harder is a fish of the mullet family. The others are not fish (neither is the Nautilus or the Narwhal for that matter), but all are aquatic animals, which is, I suppose the distinction I should have made in the first place.

Michael

The distinction isn't all that pertinent , as it turns out that some of the names I thought to be non-fish-related are infact the names of fish. So it could be said that all subs after the 'S' class were named after aquatic creatures, real or imaginary, with the vast majority being fish.

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Fark. I think we should actually be criticising the people who name fish. It seems to be their imaginations that are limited if they are stealing so many names.

I agree. But when you have to name 238 Gatos, Balaos, and Tenches, with a fair number of fish names already having been used, you have to dig deep. I'm impressed that they stuck with the system instead of naming some after battles or mountains or notable actors or somefink.

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True. On the other hand, it could be evidence of a spectacular failure of imagination. Some poor Ensign was given the job, in 1940, of naming subs, and the only rule he was given was "they have to be fish names". So, dilligently, Ensign Snooks produced increasingly obscure lists of fish names for the next 5 yeas, never once thinking to ask if the rule could be relaxed or changed. Meanwhile Snooks' boss had been posted, his replacement inadequately briefed, resulting in no one really knowing what Snooks was up to all day, down in Room 101 of the Pentagon. He retired in 1964 - still an Ensign - to start a fruitful second career as a Taxonomist. Actually, he didn't retire, as such. Snooks just stopped turning up for work, but no one noticed.

Coincidentally, it was about this time that traditional USN naming conventions started falling apart.

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Sunk by the Pansy! Humility or ignominy for the sub crew?

Spanker is a type of sail : )

A sea-goddess. Doris was the daughter of Oceanus and Tethys. Doris was mostly known as mother of the fifty sea-nymphs called the Nereïds (Nereids, mermaids?), and married to the ancient sea-god, Nereus.

She has no myth of her own; she was possibly just personification of the sea.

The use of first letters to identify classes was handy when there were a lot of them - V class . But towns/cities/regions etc is great when there are comparatively few. Which applies to most navies now.

BTW thanks for the quoted passage Mikko.

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Michael Emrys,

Two famous S-class boats: Squalus and the the Sculpin. Predecessor class was R-class.

One such boat, the U.S.S. Roncador, used to be tied to the inner pier at Redondo Beach, California back in the early 1970s. Saw her there a few times. One of our campus policemen, with whom I worked first on student patrol and later as radio dispatcher, served on her and let me borrow and read the Theodore Roscoe tome on WW II U.S. sub ops.

stoat,

Clearly my education was deficient, seeing as how I know only a few of those and thought the Tennessee Volunteers formed a Confederate Army unit.

Regards,

John Kettler

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Southern gentlemen don't necessarily agree about that, Elmar, whether with a wildly bolding stature or not.

I'm sure I've posted this before, but AIUI the guide to usage of "Yankee" is:

Outside the United states, "Yankee" means an inhabitant of the USA.

Inside the United States, "Yankee" means an inhabitant of the Northern states.

Inside the Northern states, "Yankee" means an inhabitant of New England.

Inside New England, "Yankee" means an inhabitant of Vermont.

Inside Vermont, "Yankee" means somebody who eats apple pie for breakfast.

All the best,

John.

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I'm sure I've posted this before, but AIUI the guide to usage of "Yankee" is:

Outside the United states, "Yankee" means an inhabitant of the USA.

Inside the United States, "Yankee" means an inhabitant of the Northern states.

Inside the Northern states, "Yankee" means an inhabitant of New England.

Inside New England, "Yankee" means an inhabitant of Vermont.

Inside Vermont, "Yankee" means somebody who eats apple pie for breakfast.

All the best,

John.

The first two sure..

the last three...methinks you've kissed el Blarney Stone a few too many times.

I've never in my 44 years as a US citizen (Many spent growing up in New Jersey and New York) heard of those. I'm also pretty sure the New York Yankees and their fans would take issue with the "New England" (Boston Red Sox home turf) bit.

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Dang.

I thought that we could practically circumvent those "Yankee, go home" protests by reactivating the "Hell On Wheels" as an occupation force! :confused:

About the outside of the United States part: In many countries with somewhat lesser popular cultural exhibits, like those situated in Scandinavia, most people "know" more about the States than they actually know about their own countries, if a little bit of exaggeration is allowed. So distinction between the Northeners and the Southeners is a part of common narrative even this close of the European Arctic Regions.

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Mark Twain definately heard of number three, e.g., A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court.

Yankees by most standards are the upstate/inland farmers, or shopkeepers or otherwise small businessmen, in New England. According to the classic definition Yankees are cheap as all get out, sharp for business opportunities, clever mechanics, they keep their yards whistle-clean and their animals well-fed, their women are modest and hard-working, but not famed for beauty, and most importantly Yankees must decide everything with a town meeting.

I can speak on Yankees from personal experience as in my youth I attended universities in Vermont and later Connecticut, and in the process summered in Maine and had friends in New Hampshire and upstate New York. (I had friends in NYC too, but obviously that doesn't count as New England, by most standards NYC doesn't count as the US.)

Anyway, from what I could tell the particular state wasn't so important to Yankeeness, as long as it was New England and not urban. Therefore, you couldn't be from Boston or Hartford or something, and be a true Yankee.

A good insight into the Yankee psychology can be seen, and heard, in the classic sentence delivered by a Yankee to a flatlander, which goes, as was explained to me, thusly: "Nope, you can't get there from here." For proper effect the vowels are flattened and the constanants clipped, so it sound roughly like this: "Noop, yeh cen't get they-ah from hey-ah."

If any of you are familiar with the classic cartoon Rocky and Bullwinkle, there was a periodic gag where two dour men remark in dour terms on the doings of the moose and squirrel with the catch exchange "There's something you don't see every day Edgar", countered with "What's that Chauncy", followed by the punch line which could be anything, a moose on fire, a squirrel in a tutu, an art director being nice to children, etc. I bring this up because the Chauncy and Edgar characters made their comments with the classic Yankee twang, it was about the only time I ever heard it in the media.

Come to think of it, there might well be more Yankees in Vermont and Maine because there were always more small farmers out that way. And since Maine really is pretty poor for farming, so maybe there is some basis to the "The Yankees are in Vermont" line. Probably concentration-wise there were a relatively large number of Vermont small farmer.

Wikipedia attributes John Salt's five-point guide to the author E.B. White.

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Mark Twain definately heard of number three, e.g., A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court.

Per'aps lad, but Mark Twain weren't from the North were he?

Salty's point three was that "Inside the Northern states, "Yankee" means an inhabitant of New England." i.e. That people in New York and New Jersey and Pennsylvania and Delaware referred to New Englanders as Yankees, but not themselves as such. That's just not accurate. Plenty of New Yorkers and New Jersians and Pennsylvanians refer to themselves as Yankees too.

That's also sort of where the New York Yankee reference comes in to play.

As for the reference to the great EB White...I believe that was meant in jest..which may have been the effect Salty was striving to achieve. dunno.

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Two famous S-class boats: Squalus and the the Sculpin. Predecessor class was R-class.

One such boat, the U.S.S. Roncador, used to be tied to the inner pier at Redondo Beach, California back in the early 1970s.

Squalus and Sculpin were Sargo class submarines, not 'S' class boats. Likewise, Roncador was a Balao class boat, not an 'R' class sub. Having a name starting with an 'S' or 'R' does not put a boat into the 'S' or 'R' class. Those two classes were distinguished with the class letter and then the numeric identifier of each sub. The only named 'R's and 'S's were those that were named after being transfered to foreign navies.

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