Battleship is a generic term for any of the larger warships. The term is a truncation of the ancient waterborne naval phrase "line-of-battle ship," which described a warship considered powerful enough to fight in a general fleet action ("join the line of battle") with a reasonable chance of inflicting significant damage on the enemy. It is sometimes used interchangeably with the term 'capital ship', although the latter also includes Carriers. Traditionally, battleships are primarily equipped with direct-fire weapons and missiles, as contrasted with Carriers, which employ shipborne fighters as their major weapon systems.
- See also: Wikipedia article on actual battleships