Ordered for the Orient Line (Anderson, Anderson & Co.), Aberdeen, Hesperus was built by Robert Steele & Co. of Greenock and launched in 1873. Registered at 1,859 tons gross (1,777 net), she measured 262 feet in length with a 40 foot beam. Employed in the Australian trade, her most notable passage was London to Adelaide in 80 days in 1876. Sold to Devitt & Moore of London in 1890, she continued to turn in good runs to and from Australia, until sold to Russian owners in Odessa in 1899 and renamed Grand Duchess Maria Nikolaevna. Refitted in 1913 at Swan & Hunter, she was sold to the London Steamship & Trading Corporation in 1921, who renamed her Silvana and kept her until she was broken up in Genoa in 1924.