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French battleship Strasbourg: Wikis


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Battleship Strasbourg
Career (France) French Navy Ensign
Namesake: City of Strasbourg
Laid down: November 1934
Launched: 12 December 1936
Homeport: Toulon

scuttled in 1942

sunk in 1944
Sold for scrap in 1955
General characteristics
Class and type: Dunkerque class battleship
Displacement: 37,160 tonnes
Length: 215.1 m
Beam: 31.1 m
Draught: 8.7 m

6 Indret boilers

4 Rateau geared turbines
Speed: 30.4 knots
Range: 13,900 km
Complement: 1381

8 330mm/50 Modèle 1931 guns in quadruple turrets

3x quadruple and 2x double 130mm AA turrets
5x double 37mm AA turrets
4x double mm AA turrets

283 mm (side belt)

30mm (anti-torpedo bulkheads)
137-127mm (deck)
360mm (turrets)
Aircraft carried:

4 hydroplanes

1 catapult

The Strasbourg was a more heavily armoured Dunkerque-class battleship of the French Navy, labeled as a "fast battleship". Faster than full battleships, but not as heavily armed or armoured as them, they were designed to counter the threat of the German "pocket battleships" - the Deutschland-class cruisers.

The design was very innovative, with the whole main armament forwards, mounted in two quadruple turrets, a feature unique to late French battleships also on the Richelieu and Jean Bart, and, for the first time, a dual-purpose (anti-destroyer and anti-aircraft) secondary battery.

During the Phoney War, she was used, along with her sister-ship Dunkerque, to escort convoys. After the fall of France, she was docked in Mers-El-Kebir, along with Dunkerque. The ships became one of the main objectives of the British attack on the French Fleet at Mers-el-Kebir on 3 July 1940. While the Dunkerque was heavily damaged, the Strasbourg managed to escape to Toulon. She became the flagship of the Navy of Vichy France.

She was still there when the Germans invaded the so-called "Vichy France Free Zone" on 27 November 1942. She was scuttled, along with her sister-ship Dunkerque, in the Scuttling of the French fleet in Toulon on the same day. She was refloated 17 July 1943 by the Italian Navy, but the Italian capitulation in September halted these activities and the ship was taken over by the Germans. On 1 April 1944 they handed her back to the French Navy, but she was sunk by US bombers on 18 Aug 1944. After the liberation of Toulon she was raised for the second time on 1 October 1944, and used as a testbed for underwater explosions until condemned and renamed Q45 on 22 March 1955, to be sold for scrapping on 27 May that year.

A 330mm shell of the type used by the main armament of Dunkerque and Strasbourg.

See also

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