Obviously "Enterprise" is pretty much synonymous with "Star Trek", so new shows and movies will continue to have an Enterprise.

However, in-universe, how many times does a ship of a given name need to be blown up before it would be considered unlucky? Alternately, hasn't at least one of the previous Enterprises been destroyed in such a manner as to merit an honorary retirement of the name?

Is there an in-universe reason that Starfleet didn't retire the name "Enterprise" after its predecessors suffered less than ideal fates?


1 Answer 1


Simply put:No. The Enterprise had a storied history in Humanity, even pre-First Contact. They kept honoring the ship's long history by creating a new one whenever there was a new generation of ships. It's almost always been the flagship of Starfleet, and is known by several species outside of the Federation.

Also, can you think of a ship that wasn't destroyed that wasn't rebuilt later on in history? An example of a ship being re-commissioned would be the Missouri. It became a museum for the attack on Pearl Harbor, then in 2010 a submarine was commissioned with the same name. Also, the USS Wasp was sunk in WW2, and later on another ship was commissioned the Wasp.

Out of universe: Keeping the name Enterprise helps make it familiar with fans, and to show off the progression of technology of the federation.

  • 3
    While the USS Enterprise (CV-6) survived WW2, the USS Hornet (CV-8) was sunk and quickly replaced 8 months later with the USS Hornet (CV-12). Other carriers quickly replaced with a new namesake were the USS Wasp (as you mentioned, CV-7 replaced with CV-18), USS Yorktown (CV-5 replaced with CV-10), and USS Lexington (CV-2 replaced with CV-16). This caused much confusion for the Japanese, who thought they had sunk various carriers to find a new one with the same name. Commented Jun 29, 2016 at 16:52
  • Additionally it was mentioned in the films itself that the A Enterprise got its name in honor of the doings of the (non A) Enterprise. It was to honor kirk and thus all later crews
    – Thomas
    Commented Jul 23, 2016 at 16:52

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.