To use examples from Star Trek, the original series and The Next Generation called their ships "The Enterprise", Enterprise varied between "Enterprise" and "The Enterprise", Deep Space Nine always had "The Defiant", and Voyager always called the ship "Voyager" rather than "The Voyager".

"The Voyager" certainly does sound wrong to my ears, but I can't identify a reason for that.

Is there a rule (or combination of rules) for this?

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Wikipedia's naming convention suggests that the definite article be omitted. The AP Stylebook manages to be internally inconsistent on this question! Moreover Wiki's list of Starfleet vessels ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Starfleet_starships_ordered_by_class ) also manages to achieve both internal inconsistence and, thus, intermittent compliance with Wiki's own naming convention. I suppose it is a question of style. My opinion, do whatever sounds best to you.

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