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Class: Richelieu
  (All ships of this class are listed in our pages)

Category: BattleShip

Nation: France
Main statistics: Displacement: 47 550 tons
Length:  248 meters
Speed:  32 knots
3 planes
8 x 15'' guns

Additional information on the web : [DAubigny]

The Richelieu with camouflage painting for the war in the Indian Ocean in 1944
The battleships of this class should have allowed France to accede in the club of the major naval powers. They replaced the older units built during World War I. None of those units were ready when France signed the armistice with the German in June of 1940. Forced to take refuge in African harbors, they were not really operational and saw their role confined to floating battery. Only the Richelieu took part in combats during World War 2 after she had joined the Free French and had a complete refit in the USA.
The two big turrets with all the main artillery in front of the ship distinguish those ships from all other battleships. The secondary artillery is grouped in the rear.
1939January 17th Laid down. Battleship, named Clemenceau.

Bay of Biscay
1940June 18th Cancelled.
about June 25thEvacuation Captured Evacuation of the French harbors. Fell in the hands of the Germans in Brest: Germany .
1943June Launched. Launched by the Germans to recuperate the dry dock space.
1944August 27thSunk Sunk in an allied air raid.
1951August 1stStricken Scrapped.

1940- Cancelled. Not build. Should have been built in Saint Nazaire. She was built on a blueprint from the other ships of the same class, with half of her artillery on the rear. Her guns were used after the war to complete the Jean Bart: battleship, named Gascogne.

Bay of Biscay

Jean Bart
1936December 12th Laid down.

Bay of Biscay
1940March 6th Launched. Battleship, named Jean Bart.
June 19thEvacuation Light damages Evacuation of the French harbors. Left Saint Nazaire when 79% completed, to escape the German advance: slightly damaged by German airplanes.
June 22ndArrival in a new area Arrived in Casablanca.

North Atlantic
June 25thRemained faithful to Marshall Pétain's governement: France (Vichy) .
1942November 8thLanding and land campaign Damaged Landing at Casablanca.
November 10thLanding and land campaign Damaged Damaged by US planes.
November 13thCaptured Rallying to the Free French: France (Free) .
1946-Building works resumed in Brest to complete the battleship.

Bay of Biscay
1955May 1st Commissioned.
1970-Stricken Scrapped.


1935October 22nd Laid down. Battleship, named Richelieu.

Bay of Biscay
1939January 17th Launched.
1940June 18th Commissioned. Leaves Brest in a hurry to flee the advancing German panzers. She is 95% completed.
June 23rdArrival in a new area Arrive at Dakar.

North Atlantic
June 25thRemained faithful to Marshall Pétain's governement: France (Vichy) .
July 8thCarrier battle Damaged Dakar: British carrier attack: damaged by the Hermes.
September 23rdGun battle Dakar: operation "Menace".
1942November 23rdCaptured Rallying to the Free French: France (Free) .
1943January 30thArrival in a new area Leaves Dakar for a extensive modernization in the USA.

US East Coast
October 19thArrival in a new area Arrived in Algier, back from the refit in the United States.

Western Mediteranean Sea
November 20thArrival in a new area Arrival in a new area.

North Sea
1944April 12thArrival in a new area Arrived at Trincomalee, coming from Europe.

Indian Ocean
April 19thCarrier or air raid Sabang: first carrier raid.

July 25thCarrier or air raid Second carrier raid against Sabang.
October 31stArrival in a new area Back in Toulon from her first campaign in the Indian Ocean.

South of France
1945April 15thArrival in a new area Arrived in Colombo for its second tour in the Indian Ocean.

Indian Ocean
April 30thLanding and land campaign Landing at Rangoon.
May 12thNaval move Tracking the Haguro.
1961-Stricken Scrapped.


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