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Incomplete sentences, repetition, poor grammar and incomplete descriptions of events were present throughout. Good overview of the key naval engagements of the early campaign in the Med. Useful context in terms of the psychological blow of the battle on the Italian navy. Could have done with more maps and graphics showing fleet dispositions. One person found this helpful. Format: Paperback. I enjoyed reading this book and I learned a lot from it, but even if it is a very honest thing, it has some weaknesses which prevent me from giving it five stars.

To begin with the good things, let's say that author described quite comprehensively the events which led to the battle of Matapan and then the fight itself. The Italian point of view, which I never really heard before, is very much present and it is an asset. The writing is good, the story is well structured and events can be easily followed. The size of the book is just about right for the topic and it is never boring. Illustrations are quite honest, even if two pictures of obsolete Armstrong guns on island on Malta were maybe not the best of choices - still, all other pictures were very useful.

On another hand the maps are rather basic and oversimplified, but still acceptable - and having myself some experience with maps in historical publications I will certainly not be the one to cast the first stone here I think author very well seized the main point of the whole battle, showing clearly how badly Italians lagged in intelligence gathering, communications, co-ordination of their navy with air force and finally the night fighting equipement.

That doesn't take away any merit from the British, who made much earlier the necessary efforts in those fields and at Matapan reaped the fruits of all this work. My remarks are ultimately rather limited. Of course, the damage suffered by "Vittorio Venetto" and the loss of three powerful and precious heavy cruisers "Zara", "Fiume" and "Pola" and of two destroyers were a very serious blow for Italian Navy and certainly took away much of the pressure the British were feeling at that time - especially considering that Royal Navy suffered almost no damage In fact, as actually author describes himself, the darkest hours for Mediterranean force of Royal Navy was still ahead and both Italians and Germans were going soon to challenge very, very seriously British control of this sea Also, siding with those critics of admiral Cunningham who accused him of not knowing how to use aircraft carriers is really, REALLY not fair!

In fact he was the FIRST admiral to really exploit their amazing potential, because before the Taranto raid they were still not fully recognized by naval hierarchies around the world. At Matapan admiral Cunningham again used his only carrier in optimal way and achieved a great victory as result - the exploits of great carrier commanders such as Nagumo, Ozawa, Halsey, Fletcher and Spruance came only significantly later, once ABC showed them the way Of course, two ou of four carriers he received in and ended crippled by enemy action, but let's not forget that in those years admiral Cunningham was waging war against heavy odds - and where wood is being chopped, splinters fly Although it is a minor thing, it must be also said, that when author says that Italy started war without torpedo carrying planes, well, that is NOT entirely true.

Finally, there are some annoying typos here and there - for some reason the poor Fulmars Royal Navy embarked fighters fighters are particularly afflicted and in most cases they are called "Fulmers" But this is a very minor point. Still, all those points notwithstanding, I liked his book and I learned quite a lot from it. I will keep it and I recommend it to all those interested by the history of naval warfare. See all 5 reviews. Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers.

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Alexa Actionable Analytics for the Web. Sell on Amazon Start a Selling Account. AmazonGlobal Ship Orders Internationally. Amazon Inspire Digital Educational Resources. Amazon Rapids Fun stories for kids on the go. ComiXology Thousands of Digital Comics. DPReview Digital Photography. Admiral Cunningham ordered a signal to be made on the Merchant Marine emergency band.

This signal was received by the Italian High Command. It informed them that, due to the risk of air strikes, the Allied ships had ceased their rescue operations and granted safe passage to a hospital ship for rescue purposes. The location of the remaining survivors was broadcast, and the Italian hospital ship Gradisca came to recover them. Italian losses were up to 2, sailors, most of them from Zara and Fiume. The Allies rescued 1, survivors, while the Italians saved another Matapan was Italy's greatest defeat at sea, subtracting from its order of battle a cruiser division.

The British in the Mediterranean lost the heavy cruiser York and the new light cruiser Bonaventure in the same period 26—31 March , but while the Royal Navy lost four heavy cruisers during the war York, Exeter, Cornwall and Dorsetshire , at Matapan the Regia Marina lost three in a night. That the Italians had sortied so far to the east established a potential threat that forced the British to keep their battleships ready to face another sortie during the operations off Greece and Crete.

The Italian fleet did not venture into the Eastern Mediterranean again until the fall of Crete two months later.


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Despite his impressive victory, Admiral Cunningham was somewhat disappointed with the failure of the destroyers to make contact with Vittorio Veneto. The escape of the Italian battleship was, in the words of the British Admiral, "much to be regretted". There is still controversy in Italy regarding the orders given by the Italian Admiral Angelo Iachino to the Zara division to recover the Pola, when it was clear that an enemy battleship force was steaming from the opposite direction.

A number of controversial theories were published before more complete accounts emerged after records were declassified in Only later, after Dilly's rodding method was demonstrated by Mavis Batey to the Admiral in charge of naval history, were Italian official records corrected. Background In late March , as British ships of the Mediterranean Fleet covered troop movements to Greece, Mavis Batey, a cryptographer at Bletchley Park, made a breakthrough, reading the Italian naval Enigma for the first time.

Cape Matapan. Location of Cape Matapan.

EngvarB from March 2016

Cape Matapan is the southernmost point of mainland Greece, and the second southernmost point in mainland Europe. It separates the Messenian Gulf in the west from the Laconian Gulf in the east. History Cape Matapan has been an important place for thousands of years. The tip of Cape Matapan was the site of the ancient town Tenarus, near which there was and still is a cave that Greek legends claim was the home of Hades, the god of the dead. The ancient Spartans built several temples there, dedicated to various gods. Under the Byzantine Empire, the temple was converted into a Christian church, and Christian rites are conducted there to th.

The ship's keel was laid down in October , launched in July , and readied for service with the Italian fleet by August She was armed with a main battery of nine millimeter Vittorio Veneto saw extensive service during the war. He was widely known by his nickname, "ABC". After starting his schooling in Dublin and Edinburgh, he enrolled at Stubbington House School, at the age of ten, beginning his association with the Royal Navy. After passing out of Britannia Royal Naval College, Dartmouth, in , he progressed rapidly in rank.

He commanded a destroyer during the First World War and through most of the interwar period. He was awarded the Distinguished Service Order and two Bars, for his performance during this time, specifically for his actions in the Dardanelles and in the Baltics. Prelude The 24 Venetian sailing ships under Marcantonio Diedo, commander of the Venetian fleet, met up with another Venetian squadron of 24 galleys under the Capitano generale da Mar Pisani and a small squadron of 9 mixed Portuguese-Maltese ships under the Maltese knight Bellefontaine near Cape Matapan on July 2.

Battle of Cape Matapan - WikiVisually

After trying separately to win the wind gauge, and running out of water supply, the Allied force went to Marathonisi, near the top of the Gulf of Matapan, to resupply. They had tried to reach Sapientza, but winds were against them and they took the risk of being caught in the gulf. The battle The Ottoman fleet, with 30 sailing ships, and 4 galleys, was seen to. She was built in the Odero-Terni-Orlando shipyard in Livorno in the early s and entered service in She was the third of four ships in the class, which also included Zara, Fiume, and Gorizia.

Pola was built as a flagship with a larger conning tower to accommodate an admiral's staff. Like her sisters, she was armed with a battery of eight millimeter 8. Pola initially served as the flagship of the 2nd Squadron, and in she led the squadron during the battles of Calabria and Cape Spartivento, in July and November, respectively. Pola was thereafter reassigned to the 3rd Division, along with her three sister ships. The ship took part in the Battle of Cape Matapan in late March During the battle, she was disabled by a British airstrike.

Later, in a fierce night e. For the most part, the campaign was fought between the Italian Royal Navy Regia Marina , supported by other Axis naval and air forces, and the British Royal Navy, supported by other Allied naval forces, such as Australia, the Netherlands, Poland and Greece.

American naval and air units joined the Allied side in Each side had three overall objectives in this battle. The first was to attack the supply lines of the other side. The second was to keep open the supply lines to their own armies in North Africa. The third was to destroy the ability of the opposing navy to wage war at sea. Outside of the Pacific theatre, the Mediterranean saw the largest conventional naval warfare actions during the conflict. In particular, Allied forces struggled to supply and retain the key naval and air base of Malta.

By the time of the September armistice betw. Named after the Italian city of Zara now Zadar, Croatia , the ship was built at the Odero-Terni-Orlando shipyard beginning with her keel laying in July , launching in April , and commissioning in October Zara saw extensive service during the first two years of Italy's participation in World War II, having taken part in several sorties to catch British convoys in the Mediterranean as the flagship of the 1st Division. In the last engagement, Zara and her sister ships Fiume and Pola were sunk in a close-range night engagement with thre.

See also: List of locations in the Honorverse. See also Matapang Mattapan, Massachusetts.


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He built the team and discovered the method that broke the Italian Naval Enigma, producing the intelligence credited with Allied victory at the Battle of Cape Matapan. In , Knox broke the Abwehr Enigma. Trento was the first of two Trento-class cruisers; they were the first heavy cruisers built for the Italian Regia Marina Royal Navy. The ship was laid down in February , launched in October , and was commissioned in April Though nominally built under the restrictions of the Washington Naval Treaty, the two cruisers significantly exceeded the displacement limits imposed by the treaty.

Trento frequently served as the flagship of the Cruiser Division throughout the s. During the pre-war period, she also made lengthy trips abroad, including a tour of South America from May to October and a deployment to China from January to June to protect Italian nationals during the Chinese Civil War. She also took part in numerous naval reviews held for visiting foreign leaders. She was named after the Battle of Cape Matapan between the Royal Navy and the Regia Marina, which ended in a decisive victory for the RN force, resulting in the destruction of three cruisers and two destroyers of the Italian Navy and was a heavy blow to the Italians.

So far, she has been the only ship of the Royal Navy to bear that name. She was placed in reserve on completion of her sea trials and would remain in such a state for a lengthy period of time, ultimately seeing service in the s as a sonar trials ship. In the process she outlived all her fleetmates in Royal Navy service. She was launched on 30 April and finally completed on 5 September The ship undertook her builders and acceptance sea trials over a period of two weeks, during which she steamed for a total of hours, arriving at Chatham on 22 S.

Mario Morassutti,[2] as she steamed with the Mediterranean Fleet against the German sea-borne invasion of Crete and sank 30 nautical miles south-east of Crete on 21 May John Reginald Joseph Tyrwhitt and would have had a complement of to seamen and officers. It is figured that crew lost their lives after 3 high-powered explosions split Juno in two, sinking her in around 97 seconds. The ship was laid down in June , was launched in October , and was commissioned in December The ship spent the s conducting training cruises in the Mediterranean Sea, participating in naval reviews held for foreign dignitaries, and serving as the flagship of the Cruiser Division.

She also helped transport Italian volunteer troops that had been sent to Spain to fight in the Spanish Civil War return to Italy in HMS Gloucester was one of the last batch of three Town-class light cruisers built for the Royal Navy during the late s. Commissioned shortly before the start of World War II in August , the ship was initially assigned to the China Station and was transferred to the Indian Ocean and later to South Africa to search for German commerce raiders. She was transferred to the Mediterranean Fleet in mid and spent much of her time escorting Malta Convoys.

Gloucester played minor roles in the Battle of Calabria in and the Battle of Cape Matapan in She was sunk by German dive bombers on 22 May during the Battle of Crete with the loss of men out of a crew of Gloucester acquired the nickname "The Fighting G" after earning five battle honours in less than a year. Fiume was a Zara-class heavy cruiser of the Italian Regia Marina. She was the second of four ships in the class, and was built between April and November Fiume saw extensive service during World War II, having participated in several sorties to catch British convoys in the Mediterranean.

In the last engagement, Fiume and her sister ships Zara and Pola were sunk in a close-range night engagement with three British battleships. Design Line-drawing of Pola; Fiume was similar in appearance Fiume was She displaced 13, long tons 1. They were named after mythological figures, and all ships were commissioned between and Design The Leander class was influenced by the York-class heavy cruiser, and was an attempt to better provide for the role of commerce protection.

Their secondary armament consisted of four high angle QF 4 inch Mk V naval guns, which were later replaced by twin mountings for eight guns the later high angle QF 4 inch Mk XVI naval gun. Their close range anti-aircraft weaponry consisted of twelve 0. After being completed in late , she was briefly assigned to the Home Fleet before being transferred to the Mediterranean Fleet as a replacement for her crippled sister ship Illustrious.

"War at Sea", Mediterranean. ATV documentary from 1960.

Formidable's aircraft played a key role in the Battle of Cape Matapan in early , and they subsequently provided cover for Allied ships and attacked Axis forces until their carrier was badly damaged by German dive bombers in May. Assigned to the Eastern Fleet in the Indian Ocean in early , Formidable covered the invasion of Diego Suarez in Vichy Madagascar in mid against the possibility of a sortie by the Japanese into the Indian Ocean. Formidable returned home for a brief refit before participating in Operation Torch, the invasion of French North Africa in November.

She remained in the Mediterranean and covered the invasions of Sicily and mainland Italy in before beginning a lengthy refit. The class was composed of four ships—Littorio, Vittorio Veneto, Roma, and Impero—but only the first three ships of the class were completed. Built between and , they were the most modern battleships used by Italy during World War II.

They were developed in response to the French Dunkerque-class battleships, and were armed with millimeter The class's design was considered by the Spanish Navy, but the outbreak of World War II interrupted construction plans. They formed the backbone of the Italian fleet, and conducted several sorties into the Mediterranean to intercept British convoys, though without any notable success. The two ships were repeatedly torpedoed throughout the. During the Spanish Civil War of —, the ship enforced the arms blockade imposed by Britain and France on both sides as part of the Mediterranean Fleet.

During the first few months of the Second World War, Havock searched for German commerce raiders in the Atlantic Ocean and participated in the First Battle of Narvik during the Norwegian Campaign of April—June before she was transferred back to the Mediterranean Fleet in May where she escorted a number of convoys to Malta. She was damaged during the Battle of Crete the following month, but participated in the Syria—Lebanon Campaign in June.

Havock began escorting supply convoys in June to Tobruk, Libya until the ship was damaged in October. She was repaired in time to escort a convoy to Malta during the First Battle of. For the rest of the First World War, except for the inconclusive Action of 19 August , her service during the war generally consisted of routine patrols and training in the North Sea.

During the s and s, the ship was assigned to the Atlantic, Mediterranean, and Home Fleets. Barham played a minor role in quelling the Palestine riots and the —39 Arab revolt in Palestine. The ship was in the Mediterranean when the Second World War began in September and accidentally collided with and sank one of her escorting destroyers on her voyage home three months later. She participated in the Battle of Dakar in mid where she damaged a Vichy French battleship and was slightly damaged in return.

Barham was then transferred to the Mediterranean Fleet where she covered multiple. Philip was born into the Greek and Danish royal families.

HMS Barham - Battle of Matapan

He was born in Greece, but his family was exiled from the country when he was an infant. From July , he began corresponding with the year-old Princess Elizabeth, whom he had first met in Before the official announcement of their engagement in July , he abandoned his Greek and Danish royal titles and became a naturalised British subject, adopting the surname Mountbatten from his maternal grandparents. He married Elizabeth on 20 November Just before the wedding, he was created Duke of Edinburgh, Earl of Merione.

She is the only ship of the Royal Navy ever to have been named after Ilex, the genus of flowering plants commonly known as holly. Description The I-class ships were improved versions of the preceding H-class. The ships had an overall length of feet They were powered by two Parsons geared steam turbines, each driving one propeller shaft, using steam provided by three Admiralty three-drum boilers. The ships' complement was officers and rating. The Fairey Fulmar was a British carrier-borne fighter aircraft developed and manufactured by aircraft company Fairey Aviation.

It was named after the northern fulmar, a seabird native to the British Isles. The design of the Fulmar was based on that of the earlier Fairey P. Fairey had redesigned the aircraft as a navalised fighter to satisfy the requirements of Specification O. Although its performance like that of its Battle antecedent was unspectacular, the Fulmar was a reliable, sturdy aircraft with long range and an effective armament of eight machine guns; the type could also be put into production relatively quickly.

On 4 January , the first production aircraft made its first flight and delivered commenced shortly thereafter, while production of an improved model, the Fulmar. Hasty returned to the British Isles in early and covered the evacuation of Allied troops from Namsos in early May during the Norwegian Campaign. She was transferred back to the Mediterranean Fleet shortly afterwards and participated in the Battle of Calabria and the Battle of Cape Spada in July In June, Hasty participated in the Syria-Lebanon Campaign and was escorting convoys and the larger ships of the Mediterranean Fleet for the next year.

During the Second Battle of Sirte in March she defended a convoy from an Italian battleship and several cruise. She was laid down by R. The ship was launched on 9 September and commissioned on 8 May , four months before the opening of hostilities. Designed as a flotilla leader to the J-class destroyers, who were intended to make up the 7th Flotilla, Jervis was the sister ship of, and identical to, Kelly, leader to the K class and similar to Napier of the N class. However, despite an impressive war record she earned 13 battle honours she remains virtually unknown, overshadowed by her more famous sister.

The first six months of hostilities was taken up with sweeps across the North Sea, in "appalling weather conditions" which saw the F. The Oriani class also known as the Poeti class , were a group of four destroyers built for the Italian Navy in the late s. They were a repeat of the Maestrale-class destroyers, but had increased machinery power and a different anti-aircraft armament.

The increase in power, however, disappointed in that there was only a marginal speed improvement. Significant upgrades were made to the weapons systems of the two ships that survived Matapan, similar to those made to the Maestrales. Before the end of the war, one ship, Oriani had German Seetakt radar and an additional 20 mm cannon. This is a list of military engagements of World War II encompassing land, naval, and air engagements as well as campaigns, operations, defensive lines and sieges. Campaigns generally refer to broader strategic operations conducted over a large bit of territory and over a long period.

Battles generally refer to short periods of intense combat localised to a specific area and over a specific period. However, use of the terms in naming such events is not consistent. For example, the Battle of the Atlantic was more or less an entire theatre of war, and the so-called battle lasted for the duration of the entire war. Another misnomer is the Battle of Britain, which by all rights should be considered a campaign, not a mere battle.

The Roman Empire at its farthest extent in AD In the years following the unification of Italy in , Italian nationalists who saw Italy as the successor state to the Roman Empire attempted to revive the term.