Built by Joh. C. Tecklenborg of Geestemünde, Germany for Det Bergenske Dampskibsselskab, delivered in June 1890. Shipyard number, 101. Cost, probably around 400,000 kroner.


959 gross, 597 nett, and around 500 deadweight tonnes. Registered length 198.3 feet, beam 30.3 feet, depth 20.5 feet. 218 nom. HP, 1,040 IHP, H. Pauksch triple expansion engine, 12 knots.


Designed, like Kong Harald, for kombinerte services and cruising.


Rebuilt and lengthened at Bergens M/V in 1904. 1,113 gross, 673 nett tonnes. Overall length 218.9 feet.


On Hurtigrute from July 1919 to October 1921. Possibly also other relief duties. Otherwise employed on coastal kombinerte routes and on cruising.


Sold in March 1928 for breaking up in Stavanger.


Eagle-eyed readers will spot that this profile does not date from the mid-1980s, but is a digitally-retouched version (funnel and star on bows) of Kong Harald. The two ships have consecutive yard numbers, were ordered at the same time, for exactly the same purposes, often cruised together (on trips to Svalbard), and were originally more or less identical!


It is somewhat surprising that, unlike her quasi-sister, Neptun did not become a regular performer on the Hurtigrute. The same goes for the attractive North Sea steamer Venus  of 1,095 gross tonnes (built by Swan, Hunter of Wallsend on Tyne in 1893), which was renamed Sylvia in 1930 and scrapped in 1933. Nordenfjeldske’s Ragnvald Jarl of 1890, built by Wigham Richardson of Newcastle for North Sea services, was also of 1,095 gross tonnes, and of similar appearance. One would have thought that she would have made a suitable candidate for the Hurtigrute after the First World War – but instead she was sold to Spain!