Concept

Bouvines-class ironclad

Summary
The Bouvines class consisted of a pair of ironclad coastal-defense ships built for the French Navy (Marine Navale) in the 1890s, and . Thoroughly obsolete by World War I, the ships only played a minor role during the war. They were sold for scrap in 1920. Design and description In 1887 preliminary design work began on an armored coast-defence ship intended to serve as the centerpiece of a group of torpedo boats under the auspices of Admiral Théophile Aube, Minister of the Navy and Colonies, and an ardent exponent of the Jeune École (Young School) of naval strategy that believed in the primacy of coastal defences and commerce raiding. The torpedo warfare role was eventually dropped and four coast-defence ironclads, the and the Bouvines classes, were ordered in 1889. The Bouvines-class ships were half-sisters to the Jemmapes class laid down at the same time. They were virtually identical except that the Bouvines were given a forecastle deck to improve seaworthiness and the
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