Seems like kind of a broad question. A great navy is based not only on number and strength of its ships but on the captains and commanders of those ships and forces. Which is why I'm choosing the the modern USN. But it's hard to compare, strategies and purposes of the Navy has changed through everyone of those years mentioned.
Flavius Vegetius Renatus De Rei Militari -
Let him who desires peace prepare for war.
Hard work doesn't guarantee success, but without it you don't have a chance. - Alex Rodriguez (Go Yankees!)