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Class/Manufacturer History: The Richelieu-class battleships were the last and largest battleships of the French Navy. They left service in the 1960s. They remain the largest French-built warships. They were designed in the 1930s to counter the threat of the Italian Vittorio Veneto-class battleships. Richelieu-class ships were essentially scaled-up versions of the preceding Dunkerque class. They featured a main battery of eight 380 mm (15.0 in) guns in two quadruple turrets in forward superfiring positions.
Four Richelieu-class ships, of three different subclasses, were designed over the course of three construction programs, in 1935, 1936, and 1938. Only three were laid down. Only the first two, Richelieu and Jean Bart, were completed. They saw service during World War II, first under Vichy control in Dakar (1940) and Casablanca (1942), then under Allied control. Richelieu participated in British Home Fleet and Eastern Fleet operations and supported French forces' return to Indochina in late 1945. Jean Bart was not completed until the 1950s and took part in the operations off Port Said (Egypt) during the Suez Crisis in 1956. Richelieu was scrapped in 1968 and Jean Bart in 1970.
In 486, Frankish tribes unified under Merovingian kingship. In 843, Western Francia was established from the division of the Carolingian Empire. In 1789, the French monarchy was overthrown, and in 1792, the First French Republic was founded. In 1958, the Fifth French Republic was established.
Item created by: Lethe on 2015-05-31 17:46:30. Last edited by gdm on 2016-02-02 19:04:45
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