Italian submarines in World War Two


Malachite (MH)
Malachite

TypeCoastal / Sea going 
ClassPerla (22) 
Laid down 31 Aug 1935 Odero-Terni-Orlando, Muggiano
Launched15 Jul 1936
Commissioned6 Nov 1936
End service
Stricken
Loss date9 Feb 1943
Loss position38° 42'N, 8° 54'E
History
Fate Sunk on 9th February 1943 south of Cagliari, Sardinia, in position 38°42'N, 08°54'E by the Dutch submarine HrMs Dolfijn.

Commands

CommanderDate fromDate toCommand
C.C. Renato D'Elia15 Dec 193911 Aug 1940
T.V. Guido Coscia12 Aug 194026 Aug 1940
T.V. Gianfranco Gazzana Priaroggia27 Aug 19408 Nov 1940
T.V. Luigi Baroni8 Nov 194017 Nov 1940
T.V. Enzo Zanni18 Nov 194024 Mar 1942
T.V. Olinto Di Serio24 Mar 194220 May 1942
T.V. Alpinolo Cinti20 May 19424 Sep 1942
T.V. Oscar Gran5 Sep 19425 Oct 1942
T.V. Alpinolo Cinti5 Oct 19429 Feb 1943

Patrols and events

 CommanderDateTimePortArr. dateArr. timeArr. portMilesDescription
D'Elia, Renato10 Jun 1940Taranto10 Jun 1940TarantoAt Taranto.

1D'Elia, Renato17 Jun 19402330Taranto2 Jul 19400750Taranto2169,8Patrolled between 40°40'N and 41°20'N and 02°40'E and 03°20'E, 40 miles southeast of Barcelona up to 27 June.
  21 Jun 19401144
1045 (e)
39° 51'N, 5° 10'EAt 1144 hours, a formation of twelve aircraft was sighted at a distance of 3,500 metres. They attacked Malachite who dived. She reached 44 meters when she was shaken by an explosion, which caused slight damage.

This could have been French T 2 Squadron (Laté.29-8 seaplanes evacuating from Berre to Bougie) which attacked a submarine with five aircraft. The attack is reported as havinf occured on 22 June, but refers to a signal from Marine Bougie of 1325 hours on 21st June, so the date is probably an error. The attacks were carried out by T 21 piloted by L.V. Lamiot (unable to drop his bomb), T 22 (did not attack), T 23 piloted by L.V. Jourdain (dropped a bomb, which did not explode), T 210 piloted by E.V. Grosclaude (dropped a bomb which exploded), T 27 piloted by Maître Le Gall (dropped a bomb) and T 21 which made a second run and dropped a bomb, but it did not explode.
  24 Jun 1940220241° 18'N, 2° 44'EAt 2202 hours, a tanker was sighted at a distance of 5,000 metres followed shortly after another four merchant vessels. Malachite tried to close the range unsuccessfully and the heavy seas prevented a gun action.
  28 Jun 1940135039° 48'N, 5° 22'EAt 1350 hours, a submarine was sighted at a distance of 3,500 metres, steering 340° in heavy seas. C.C. Renato d'Elia decided not to attempt an attack as he believed it might be Nani. This could not be, as she had already reached Naples. Possibly this could have been either Ascianghi, Cappellini or Mocenigo but their patrol reports are not precise enough to determine which one.

D'Elia, Renato15 Jul 19400545Taranto17 Jul 19401800Pola614Passage Taranto-Pola. Then refit.

Coscia, Guido12 Aug 1940Pola26 Aug 1940PolaRefit in Pola. Change in command.

Gazzana Priaroggia, Gianfranco22 Oct 19400730Pola22 Oct 19401622Pola46Exercises.

Gazzana Priaroggia, Gianfranco29 Oct 19400710Pola29 Oct 19401522Pola52,5Exercises.

Gazzana Priaroggia, Gianfranco30 Oct 19401107Pola30 Oct 19401830Pola15Exercises.

Gazzana Priaroggia, Gianfranco2 Nov 19400930Pola2 Nov 19401725Pola56Exercises.

Baroni, Luigi9 Nov 19400855Pola11 Nov 19401315Taranto531Passage Pola-Taranto. Uneventful.

2Baroni, Luigi12 Nov 19400500Taranto13 Nov 19401830Taranto180Defensive patrol in 150° - Torre Scanzano - 13' (Gulf of Taranto).

Zanni, Enzo28 Nov 19400815Taranto28 Nov 19401513Taranto35Exercises.

Zanni, Enzo29 Nov 19400745Taranto29 Nov 19401815Taranto53Exercises.

Zanni, Enzo30 Nov 19401235Taranto1 Dec 19401655Augusta314Passage Taranto-Augusta.

3Zanni, Enzo15 Dec 19401213Augusta30 Dec 19401327Augusta1257Patrolled off Cyrenaica with Smeraldo, between 33°10'N and the Libyan coast, and between 22°00'E and 22°50'E.
  15 Dec 19401515
? (e)
36° 00'N, 15° 36'E
(0) 111° - Cape Murro di Porco - 14 miles.
At 1515 hours, a Blenheim bomber was sighted at a distance of 2,000 metres. It closed to 700 metres but did not drop any bomb as Malachite opened fire with her machine guns.

Zanni, Enzo1 Jan 19410050Augusta1 Jan 19410902Messina77Passage Augusta-Messina.

Zanni, Enzo20 Jan 19410805Messina20 Jan 19411645Messina62Exercises.

Zanni, Enzo23 Jan 19410800Messina23 Jan 19411630Messina47Exercises.

4Zanni, Enzo26 Jan 19411800Messina27 Jan 19411330Messina120Defensive patrol (hydrophone watch) north of the Strait of Messina. Uneventful.

5Zanni, Enzo4 Feb 19411720Messina18 Feb 19411600Messina1563Patrolled off Cyrenaica within 60 miles from 33°10'N, 22°10'E.
  14 Feb 19410106
(0) Off Cyrenaica.
At 0106 hours, a dark silhouette, believed to be a cruiser or a destroyer, was sighted on an easterly course. Malachite attempted to close the range but, at 0100 hours on the 21st, the enemy vessel passed some 6 to 7,000 meters away and disappeared in the distance.

Zanni, Enzo6 Mar 19410805Messina6 Mar 19411535Messina39Exercises, escorted by R.D.57.

6Zanni, Enzo9 Mar 19411800Messina24 Mar 19411540Leros1450Patrolled South of Crete within 20 miles from 33°30'N, 27°20'E on a NE-SW axis, then on 18 March shifted 235° - 50 miles and passage Messina-Leros.
  19 Mar 1941010933° 00'N, 26° 40'ESince the previous evening, noises had been picked up by the hydrophones without resulting in any visual confirmation.

At 0030 hours, hydrophone effects were picked up again. At 0055 hours, in heavy mist, a shadow was finally sighted,followed shortly after by another. They were believed to be a SOUTHAMPTON class cruiser and a destroyer steering 050°-040° at 18 knots

At 0109 hours, Malachite fired two bow torpedoes from the surface, at a range of 2,500 metres, aimed at the cruiser. They missed. A third torpedo was about to be fired when the destroyer suddenly turned toward the submarine. Malachite crash-dived. Two depth charges were heard, followed by two more.

The target was possibly the light cruiser HMS Gloucester escorted by the destroyer HMS Hasty on passage from Alexandria to Piraeus via the Kythera Channel and carrying General Blamey and 1,087 troops of the Australian corps.

7Zanni, Enzo8 Apr 19411720Leros23 Apr 19410900Augusta1258Patrolled in 33°55'N, 31°20'E on a NE-SW axis and passage Leros-Augusta.
  14 Apr 1941232734° 55'N, 24° 44'E
(0) Very approximately.
At 2327 hours, two liners (10,000 to 20,000 GRT), escorted by two destroyers, were sighted at 7,000 metres, steering 100°. Malachite could not close to the attack.
  15 Apr 19410110
(0) 100 miles North of Sidi Barrani.
At 0110 hours, two steamers estimated at 3,000 to 5,000 GRT escorted by two destroyers were sighted at a distance of 5,000 metres, steering 100°. Again, Malachite could not close to the attack.
  17 Apr 19410149
(0) Ca. 100 miles North of Sidi Barrani.
At 0149 hours, an enemy destroyer was sighted at a distance of 2,000 metres and she turned toward the submarine. Malachite crash-dived but the voice pipe had not been closed causing a large amount of water to penetrate the submarine. It was finally closed and the submarine went down to 80 meters and appeared to pick up sounds from a passing convoy on her hydrophones . She surfaced at 0212 hours but did not sight anything.
  17 Apr 19412000
(0) Ca. 100 miles North of Sidi Barrani.
At 2000 hours, information was received of a large heavily escorted convoy. Malachite altered course to intercept but nothing was sighted or heard.
  18 Apr 19412000
(0) Ca. 100 miles North of Sidi Barrani.
At 2000 hours, information was received of a large convoy steering 300°. Malachite steered west to intercept.

Between 1700 and 1900 hours on the 20th, Malachite was on her way to Augusta when a series of distant explosions were heard. This was believed to be from a convoy under air attack, but nothing was sighted.

Zanni, Enzo10 May 19410800Augusta10 May 19411215Augusta2Exercises.

Zanni, Enzo10 May 19411345Augusta10 May 19411815Augusta2Exercises.

Zanni, Enzo11 May 19410815Augusta11 May 19411025Augusta5Exercises.

Zanni, Enzo12 May 19410805Augusta12 May 19411215Augusta9Exercises with Smeraldo, escorted by a tug and MAS 529.

Zanni, Enzo17 May 19410915Augusta17 May 19411145Augusta7Exercises with MAS 528 and auxiliary motor sailing vessel V.68.

8Zanni, Enzo18 May 19412118Augusta5 Jun 19410842Augusta1780Patrolled in Eastern Mediterranean, within 20 miles from 33°10'N, 28°20'E on a NE-SW axis, On 28 May, patrol was shifted between Gaidaro and the Cretan coast (34°40'N, 25°30'E?). Uneventful. Heard only H.E.

Zanni, Enzo23 Jun 19410805Augusta23 Jun 19411111Augusta18Exercises.

Zanni, Enzo28 Jun 19411425Augusta28 Jun 19411715Augusta7,5Exercises.

Zanni, Enzo29 Jun 19410818Augusta29 Jun 19411118Augusta16Exercises by MAS 531.

9Zanni, Enzo30 Jun 19412030Augusta17 Jul 19410835Augusta1724Patrolled north of Ras Azzaz, between 32°25'N and 32°40'N, and between 24°40'E and 25°00'E.
  3 Jul 19412007
2110 (e)

(0) Off Ras Azzaz (UK: off Mersa Matruh).
At 1937 hours, Malachite was submerged when noises were picked up with the hydrophones. Nothing could be observed with the periscope, so she surfaced at 1946 hours.

At 1947 hours, two destroyers were sighted zigzagging and firing at aircraft at a distance of 6-7,000 metres. As they were closing toward the submarine, Malachite submerged at 1957 hours, but again nothing could be observed through the periscope. Surfacing at 2004 hours, she immediately sighted a DIDO class cruiser with two destroyers.

At 2107 hours, a single torpedo was fired from a bow tube at a distance of 2,500 metres aimed at the cruiser and the submarine crash-dived. Two torpedoes were intended, but the first had misfired. After 150 seconds, a loud explosion was heard and it was believed that the cruiser had been hit.

These were actually the destroyers HMS Defender, HMAS Stuart and HMAS Vendetta on their way to Tobruk. HMS Defender sighted the torpedo track and avoided it. HMAS Stuart sighted the submarine's conning tower and rushed to the attack, dropping two depth charges. HMS Defender hunted the submarine without success.

Italian Naval Intelligence had intercepted a signal from the light cruiser HMS Phoebe reporting an attack (she was actually operating off the Syrian coast) and deduced that she was undamaged but that possibly one of the destroyers had been hit.
  6 Jul 19412046+
(0) Off Ras Azzaz.
At 1943, hydrophones detected noises and Malachite steered toward them.

At 2046 hours, a destroyer was sighted at a distance of 7,000 metres, steering 250° at 30 knots. The submarine could not gain an attacking position.
  8 Jul 19410020
(0) Off Ras Azzaz.
At 0020 hours, the submarine Tembien was sighted at 2,000 metres. Malachite dived to avoid a case of mistaken identity.

Zanni, Enzo21 Jul 19410830Augusta21 Jul 19411550Messina74Passage Augusta-Messina.

Zanni, Enzo20 Aug 19410815Messina20 Aug 19411645Messina25Exercises.

Zanni, Enzo23 Aug 19410837Messina23 Aug 19411715Messina27Exercises.

Zanni, Enzo25 Aug 19410800Messina25 Aug 19411615Messina32Exercises.

Zanni, Enzo29 Aug 19410805Messina29 Aug 19411645Messina35,5Exercises.

Zanni, Enzo30 Aug 19410903Messina30 Aug 19411245Messina28Exercises.

Zanni, Enzo31 Aug 19412306Messina1 Sep 19410650Augusta70Passage Messina-Augusta.

Zanni, Enzo6 Sep 19410815Augusta6 Sep 19411210Augusta18Exercises, escorted by the auxiliary minesweeper Tea.

Zanni, Enzo10 Sep 19410815Augusta10 Sep 19411145Augusta21Exercises.

Zanni, Enzo18 Sep 19410815Augusta18 Sep 19411200Augusta15Exercises.

10Zanni, Enzo22 Sep 19412115Augusta8 Oct 19410915Augusta1383Patrolled 20 miles north of Ras Amer on a patrol line with Tricheco. Uneventful.

Zanni, Enzo11 Oct 19410025Augusta14 Oct 19411600La Spezia630Passage Augusta-La Spezia. Sighted only Italian vessels.

Zanni, Enzo17 Oct 19410830La Spezia17 Oct 19411730La Spezia36Exercises with Veniero and Platino, escorted by MAS 572 and the auxiliary Capodistria.

Zanni, Enzo19 Oct 19410730La Spezia19 Oct 19411230La Spezia37Exercises.

Zanni, Enzo6 Dec 19410845La Spezia6 Dec 19411510La Spezia36Exercises, escorted by the auxiliaries San Marco, Crotone, Capodistria and Giasone.

Zanni, Enzo11 Dec 19410800La Spezia11 Dec 19411500La Spezia36Exercises, escorted by MAS 510.

Zanni, Enzo19 Dec 19410845La Spezia19 Dec 19411730La Spezia62Exercises with the submarines Da Procida and H.1, escorted by the auxiliaries Porto Sdobba, Crotone and Capodistria, MAS 507 and MAS 510. .

Zanni, Enzo21 Dec 19410830La Spezia21 Dec 19411245La Spezia24Exercises.

Zanni, Enzo22 Dec 19410805La Spezia22 Dec 19411730La Spezia40Exercises with the submarine Platino, escorted by the auxiliaries Porto Sdobba, Capodistria and Favignana.

Zanni, Enzo29 Dec 19410940La Spezia29 Dec 19412125La Spezia55Exercises.

Zanni, Enzo31 Dec 19410835La Spezia31 Dec 19411710La Spezia26Exercises with the submarine Colonna, escorted by the auxiliaries Capodistria and Crotone.

Zanni, Enzo3 Jan 19421325La Spezia3 Jan 19421840La Spezia27Exercises.

Zanni, Enzo6 Jan 19420900La Spezia6 Jan 19421810La Spezia21Exercises.

Zanni, Enzo7 Jan 19421705La Spezia7 Jan 19422110La Spezia3Exercises.

Zanni, Enzo10 Jan 19421705La Spezia10 Jan 19422110La Spezia25Exercises with the submarine H.6, escorted by the torpedo boat La Masa.

Zanni, Enzo12 Jan 19421700La Spezia12 Jan 19422140La Spezia25Exercises, escorted by the torpedo boat La Masa.

Zanni, Enzo14 Jan 19422330La Spezia17 Jan 19421600Augusta625Passage La Spezia-Augusta. Uneventful.

11Zanni, Enzo20 Jan 19421815Augusta31 Jan 19420945Messina1170Patrolled north of Cyrenaica between 33°00'N and 33°40'N and 21°20'E and 21°40'E in Italian Grids 9146 and 1546. On 16th January, she was ordered to Grids 7927 and 3327 or 31°20'N and 31°40'N?). Uneventful. Heard only H.E. Then short refit.
  20 Jan 1942024136° 30'N, 16° 30'E
(0) Approximately.
At 0241 hours, a submarine was sighted steering 320°. Malachite altered course away. This was Menotti returning to Augusta from a supply mission to Tripoli.

Zanni, Enzo8 Feb 19420845Messina8 Feb 19421040Messina6,6Trials.

12Zanni, Enzo10 Feb 19421640Messina26 Feb 19420910Messina1762Was supposed to sail for exercises with patrol-boat Marzano (A.S. 67), but instead sailed for patrol north of Cyrenaica on the meridian within 8 miles from 34°00'N, 20°00'E on a patrol line with Topazio, Tricheco and Perla. On 13th February, she was moved 20 miles south. At 2000 hours on the 15th, following orders from MARICOSOM, she proceeded to a new position at 148° - 98 miles.
  11 Feb 19420029
0043B (e)
At 0029 hours, a submarine was sighted on an opposite course, at a distance of 1,200 metres. This was HMS Upright (Lieutenant J.W.D. Coombe, RN) who sighted Malachite at just 300 metres and immediately dived. Neither submarine could regain contact.
  11 Feb 19422147At 2147 hours, a submarine was sighted at a distance of 2,000 metres. Malachite turned away. Perhaps this was HMS Tempest who was lost two days later.
  17 Feb 19420620At 0620 hours, a derelict mine was sighted 200 metres away and was sunk by machine gun fire. It was not of Italian manufacture.

Zanni, Enzo17 Mar 19421407Messina17 Mar 19421700Messina13Trials, escorted by the auxiliary Marras.

Di Serio, Olinto25 Mar 19421330Messina25 Mar 19421730Messina13Trials and exercises escorted by the auxiliary Marras.

Di Serio, Olinto27 Mar 19420800Messina27 Mar 19421145Messina16Exercises, escorted by the auxiliary Marzano.

Di Serio, Olinto29 Mar 19420812Messina29 Mar 19421130Messina17Exercises, escorted by the auxiliaries Marzano (A.S.67) and Marras (A.S.51).

Di Serio, Olinto4 Apr 19420800Messina4 Apr 19421130Messina20Trials.

Di Serio, Olinto6 Apr 19420630Messina6 Apr 19421335Messina62Trials, escorted by MAS 562.

13Di Serio, Olinto6 Apr 19422010Messina24 Apr 19420648Messina1876Patrolled north of Cyrenaica, between 33°40'N and 34°20'N, and between 22°00'E and 22°20'E on a patrol line with Uarsciek.
  8 Apr 19421150
1240 (e)
At 1150 hours, a Blenheim bomber was sighted at a distance of 5,000 metres. It circled twice the submarine, making strafing runs. At 1200 hours, Malachite took an opportune moment to dive.

This was a Maryland (291) of 203 Squadron piloted by Flying Officer Curtiss who sighted a surfaced submarine, course 130°, 8 knots and took photographs. This was the third U-boat sighted on this patrol.

Di Serio, Olinto12 May 19421410Messina12 May 19421715Messina18Trials.

Di Serio, Olinto15 May 19422100Messina17 May 19421135Cagliari364Passage Messina-Cagliari.

Di Serio, Olinto19 May 19421350Cagliari19 May 19421945Cagliari33Trials.

14Cinti, Alpinolo30 May 19421800Cagliari11 Jun 19421115Cagliari1251Patrolled in western Mediterranean, in area between 37°50'N and 38°10'N, and between 03°00'E and 03°40'E. Reached the area on the morning of 1 June. In the same afternoon she was ordered to move 60 miles west.
  1 Jun 1942080038° 02'N, 3° 25'EAt 0800 hours, a 4-5,000-ton motorship was sighted at a distance of 6,000 metres, steering 358° at 14-15 knots. Malachite tried to close to identify her, but the vessel proved too fast and disappeared.
  1 Jun 1942092038° 02'N, 3° 25'EAt 0920 hours, an aircraft was seen at 10,000 metres and Malachite dived.

At 1456 hours, the submarine was ordered to move her patrol 60 miles to the west.
  2 Jun 1942014538° 02'N, 2° 01'EAt 0145 hours, a destroyer was sighted at a distance of 12-13,000 metres, steering 160°, 25-30 knots. Malachite closed to attack and had three bow torpedo tubes (533 mm) ready for firing, but a sudden change in course of the destroyer prevented it from being carried out.
  9 Jun 19421220
1226 (e)
37° 56'N, 2° 15'EAt 1220 hours, a Blenheim bomber was sighted at a distance of 6-,000 metres and it attacked the submarine. Malachite crash-dived and, at 1222 hours, as she reached a depth of 30-35 metres, four bombs exploded.

The attack was made by Catalina 'D' (VA 726) of 240 Squadron, piloted by Flight Lieutenant Godber. The U-boat had been sighted at a range of 6 miles, steering 136° at 10 knots. The aircraft actually released eight depth charges from a height of 50 feet and no result was observed.
  9 Jun 1942153937° 56'N, 2° 15'E
(0) Approximately.
At 1539 hours, an aircraft was sighted at 7-8,000 metres flying at an altitude of 1,000 metres. Malachite dived.

This was possibly a Sunderland which sighted a submarine at 1645 hours in 37°46' N, 00°36' E steering 305°, 8 knots. The submarine dived before an attack could be made [at the time, Malachite was steering 180°, but the aircraft may have made an error in direction].

15Cinti, Alpinolo14 Jun 19421800Cagliari20 Jun 19420650Cagliari908Sailed to intercept an enemy cruiser reported to be damaged and being towed at 1600/14 June in 37°58'N, 07°18'E, course 270°. She was ordered to the area between 37°20'N and 37°40'N, and between 02°20'E and 02°40'E.
  16 Jun 1942112537° 33'N, 1° 33'EAt 1125 hours, an enemy cruiser with two destroyers were sighted at 20-22,000 metres. Malachite attempted to attack but could not get to closer than 10,000-12,000 meters at 1140 hours.
  16 Jun 1942151737° 26'N, 1° 10'EAt 1517 hours, a ship believed to be French was sighted at a distance of 20,000 metres steering 180°.
  18 Jun 1942035537° 16'N, 2° 47'EAt 0355 hours, a submarine was sighted at a distance of 500 metres, steering 270°. It was similar to Bronzo or a German U-boat. Malachite turned away, the other submarine did the same.

16Cinti, Alpinolo23 Jun 19420600Cagliari25 Jun 19420935Cagliari270Sailed to form a patrol line with Velella, Uarsciek and Giada off Cape Carbonara between 37°20'N and 37°50'N, and between 09°40'E and 10°00'E but recalled at 2150/24.

Cinti, Alpinolo10 Jul 19420800Cagliari10 Jul 19421815Cagliari5Gyrocompass tests.

17Cinti, Alpinolo16 Jul 19420340Cagliari17 Jul 19422000Cagliari283Patrolled off Cagliari, between 37°20'N and 37°40'N, and between 09°40'E and 10°00'E. On a patrol line with Bronzo, Velella and Dagabur. Interrupted by leaks which caused chlorine fumes in the battery.

Cinti, Alpinolo21 Jul 19420500Cagliari22 Jul 19421000Naples268Passage Cagliari-Naples.

Cinti, Alpinolo24 Jul 19420905Naples24 Jul 19421220Naples26Trials.

Cinti, Alpinolo25 Jul 19421400Naples25 Jul 19421645Naples13Trials, then long refit.

Gran, Oscar5 Sep 1942Naples5 Oct 1942NaplesRefit in Naples. Change in command

Cinti, Alpinolo11 Oct 19421030Naples11 Oct 19421530Naples23,8Trials.

Cinti, Alpinolo15 Oct 19420815Naples15 Oct 19421845Naples59Trials.

Cinti, Alpinolo20 Oct 19420920Naples20 Oct 19421240Naples34,5Trials.

Cinti, Alpinolo23 Oct 19420910Naples23 Oct 19421515Naples1,6Trials.

Cinti, Alpinolo24 Oct 19421430Naples24 Oct 19421830Naples17,5Trials.

Cinti, Alpinolo25 Oct 19421200Naples25 Oct 19421900Naples29,2Trials and exercises.

Cinti, Alpinolo27 Oct 19421200Naples27 Oct 19421845Naples39,7Trials and exercises.

Cinti, Alpinolo4 Nov 19421421Naples4 Nov 19421748Naples32Trials and exercises.

Cinti, Alpinolo5 Nov 19420834Naples5 Nov 19421141Naples29Exercises.

Cinti, Alpinolo5 Nov 19421853Naples7 Nov 19420815La Spezia333Passage Naples-La Spezia.

Cinti, Alpinolo9 Nov 19421512La Spezia9 Nov 19421652La Spezia5Trials.

Cinti, Alpinolo13 Nov 19420900La Spezia13 Nov 19421514La Spezia3Trials.

Cinti, Alpinolo15 Nov 19420810La Spezia15 Nov 19421533La Spezia22Exercises.

Cinti, Alpinolo16 Nov 19420900La Spezia16 Nov 19421545La Spezia36Exercises.

Cinti, Alpinolo17 Nov 19420807La Spezia17 Nov 19421209La Spezia22Exercises.

18Cinti, Alpinolo18 Nov 19420600La Spezia25 Nov 19421323Cagliari1103Patrolled in western Mediterranean, in area between 37°20'N and 37°40'N, and between 07°40' and 08°00'E, off Cape de Fer and Bay of Philippeville.
  23 Nov 1942231037° 09'N, 7° 07'EAt 2310 hours, an MTB was sighted at a distance of 4-5,000 metres. Malachite dived.
  24 Nov 1942041137° 11'N, 7° 05'E
(0) Italian Grid 8418,/4.

Cinti, Alpinolo26 Nov 19421029Cagliari27 Nov 19422020Naples292Passage Cagliari-Naples.

Cinti, Alpinolo9 Dec 19420812Naples9 Dec 19421330Naples23Exercises.

Cinti, Alpinolo11 Dec 19421944Naples13 Dec 19420028Cagliari274,5Passage Naples-Cagliari.

19Cinti, Alpinolo15 Dec 19421900Cagliari25 Dec 19421000Cagliari1023,5Patrolled in western Mediterranean, between 37°20'N and 37°40'N, and between 08°20'E and 08°40'E.
  18 Dec 19422243At 2243 hours, an aircraft was seen at a distance of 3,000 metres circling around the submarine. Malachite dived.
  19 Dec 19422015At 2015 hours, Information was received that, at 1828 hours, two unknown warships had been sighted by German air reconnaissance in Italian Grid 5678/2 (030° - Bone - 50 miles) steering 150°. Malachite altered course to intercept but failed to see anything.
  22 Dec 19422125At 2125 hours, Information was received that, at 1756 hours, five steamers had been sighted by German air reconnaissance in Italian Grid 4793/2 steering 090°. Malachite altered course to intercept, only hearing distant noises, but failed to see anything.
  23 Dec 1942232337° 33'N, 8° 29'EAt 2323 hours, in poor visibility, a submarine similar to the ARGO class, was sighted at a distance of 3-4,000 metres, steering 300°. Malachite turned away and dived to avoid a case of mistaken identity.

20Cinti, Alpinolo4 Jan 19430415Cagliari6 Jan 19430745Cagliari295Patrolled in area between 37°40'N and 38°00'N, and between 08°40'E and 09°00'E, on a patrol line with Dandolo, Argento, Avorio and Mocenigo. Uneventful.

Cinti, Alpinolo15 Jan 19431300Cagliari16 Jan 19431600La MaddalenaPassage Cagliari-La Maddalena.

Cinti, Alpinolo19 Jan 19431816La Maddalena20 Jan 19430010La MaddalenaExercises.

21Cinti, Alpinolo20 Jan 19430210La Maddalena23 Jan 19431440Cagliari558Patrolled off Cape Bougaroni, in area between 37°40'N, the North African coast, and between 06°20'E and 06°40'E.
  22 Jan 19430518.4037° 13'N, 6° 24'E
(0) Italian Grid 8850/3.
During the evening of 21st, January, Malachite had been informed of the passage of an important convoy steering eastward.

At 0415 hours on the 22nd, Malachite was proceeding at a depth of 35 metres, when she was violently shaken by bomb explosions, seemingly directly above her. A minute later, the hydrophones picked up numerous noises, presumably for the expected convoy.

At 0455 hours, the convoy came into view at a distance of 10,000 metres. It appeared to consist of ten 5-10,000-ton merchants, including tankers, escorted by three destroyers, steering 120°, 8 knots. One destroyer briefly appeared to alter course toward the submarine, before returning to the convoy, then came back again. T.V. Alpino Cinti, believing he had been discovered, elected to attack the destroyer instead. The target was now steering 015° at 16 knots.

At 0518.40 hours, four torpedoes (533mm, G7e type) were fired from the bow tubes at a distance of 1,100 metres. Malachite immediately went deep. She had barely reached a depth of 3 or 4 metres when a double explosion was heard. No depth charging followed and the submarine moved away from the area.

At 1134 hours, she was at a depth of 30 metres when explosions were heard close by and it was believed that she may have been spotted by an aircraft. She was undamaged and resumed her patrol.
  23 Jan 19430800-083038° 36'N, 8° 23'EAt 0830 hours, a derelict mine was sighted at a distance of 1,000 metres. Malachite closed to 500 metres, expending 120 machine gun rounds but did not succeed to sink it.

Cinti, Alpinolo31 Jan 19431950Cagliari1 Feb 19430124CagliariExercises.

22Cinti, Alpinolo2 Feb 19431930Cagliari9 Feb 19431100Sunk690Sailed for special mission off Algeria. Sunk in 38°42'N, 08°54'E (near Cagliari) by Dutch submarine HrMs Dolfijn, T.V. Alpino Cinti, three officers, nine ratings were picked up by the Italian minesweeper Arcioni and the fishing vessel Dori. One officer and thirty-four ratings were lost. A reconstructed patrol report was made.
  6 Feb 1943034536° 57'N, 3° 26'EAt 0345 hours, two destroyers were sighted at a distance of 4,000 metres, steering 270°, 20-25 knots. Malachite could not gain a good attack position.
  6 Feb 1943211036° 46'N, 3° 26'E
(0) 105° - Cape Matifou (Algeria) - 9.5 miles.
At 2110 hours, ten saboteurs of Italian Special Forces (1st battalion of the 10th Arditi Regiment) were landed on the Algerian coast in three boats. Their objective was a railway bridge about 30 km east of Algiers. The landing was successful. Malachite returned at 0558 hours on the 7th to pick them up but they failed to show up. The ten men had been captured.
  9 Feb 19431103
1059.5 (e)

(e) 38° 42'N, 8° 54'E
At 1103 hours, Malachite had just entered the searched channel leading to Cagliari, when the lookout, 2° Nocchiere (2nd Helmsman) Sisto Fosci, spotted torpedo tracks coming from the port side. The helm was immediately put hard to starboard. The first torpedo missed 50 metres ahead, the second 5-10 metres and the third only about one metre from the bow, but the fourth hit the submarine aft. The explosion was not very great and looked more like a large shell hit but the submarine sank stern first in about 50 seconds. About 20 minutes later, the auxiliary minesweeper Arcione and the fishing vessel Dori arrived on the scene and picked up the survivors. T.V. Alpino Cinti, three officers, nine ratings were the only ones found. One officer and thirty-four ratings were lost.

The attack had been made by the Dutch submarine HrMs Dolfijn (Lieutenant Commander H.M.L.F.E. van Oostrom Soede). At 1048 hours, she had sighted a submarine described as of the GEMMA class at a distance of 2 miles.

At 1059.5 hours, she had fired a salvo of four torpedoes from a range of 2,200 yards at 8.5-second firing intervals. One explosion was heard and when the periscope was raised, the target was observed to sink by the stern.

130 entries. 107 total patrol entries (22 marked as war patrols) and 38 events.

Events

GH 09.03.2021: This table kept here until we make fix the possible missing events in table above

CommanderDateTimePositionDescription
Renato D'Elia21 Jun 19401144
1045 (e)
39.51 N, 05.10 E
(e) 40.10 N, 04.30 E
At 1144 hours, a formation of twelve aircraft was sighted at a distance of 3,500 metres. They attacked Malachite who dived. She reached 44 meters when she was shaken by an explosion, which caused slight damage.

This could have been French T 2 Squadron (Laté.29-8 seaplanes evacuating from Berre to Bougie) which attacked a submarine with five aircraft. The attack is reported as havinf occured on 22 June, but refers to a signal from Marine Bougie of 1325 hours on 21st June, so the date is probably an error. The attacks were carried out by T 21 piloted by L.V. Lamiot (unable to drop his bomb), T 22 (did not attack), T 23 piloted by L.V. Jourdain (dropped a bomb, which did not explode), T 210 piloted by E.V. Grosclaude (dropped a bomb which exploded), T 27 piloted by Maître Le Gall (dropped a bomb) and T 21 which made a second run and dropped a bomb, but it did not explode.
Renato D'Elia24 Jun 1940220241.18.5 N, 02.44 E
At 2202 hours, a tanker was sighted at a distance of 5,000 metres followed shortly after another four merchant vessels. Malachite tried to close the range unsuccessfully and the heavy seas prevented a gun action.
Renato D'Elia28 Jun 1940135039.48 N, 05.22 E
At 1350 hours, a submarine was sighted at a distance of 3,500 metres, steering 340° in heavy seas. C.C. Renato d'Elia decided not to attempt an attack as he believed it might be Nani. This could not be, as she had already reached Naples. Possibly this could have been either Ascianghi, Cappellini or Mocenigo but their patrol reports are not precise enough to determine which one.
Enzo Zanni15 Dec 19401515
? (e)
36,55 N, 15.36 E
(o) 111° - Cape Murro di Porco - 14 miles.
At 1515 hours, a Blenheim bomber was sighted at a distance of 2,000 metres. It closed to 700 metres but did not drop any bomb as Malachite opened fire with her machine guns.
Enzo Zanni14 Feb 19410106(o) Off Cyrenaica.At 0106 hours, a dark silhouette, believed to be a cruiser or a destroyer, was sighted on an easterly course. Malachite attempted to close the range but, at 0100 hours on the 21st, the enemy vessel passed some 6 to 7,000 meters away and disappeared in the distance.
Enzo Zanni19 Mar 1941010933.00 N, 26.40 E
Since the previous evening, noises had been picked up by the hydrophones without resulting in any visual confirmation.

At 0030 hours, hydrophone effects were picked up again. At 0055 hours, in heavy mist, a shadow was finally sighted,followed shortly after by another. They were believed to be a SOUTHAMPTON class cruiser and a destroyer steering 050°-040° at 18 knots

At 0109 hours, Malachite fired two bow torpedoes from the surface, at a range of 2,500 metres, aimed at the cruiser. They missed. A third torpedo was about to be fired when the destroyer suddenly turned toward the submarine. Malachite crash-dived. Two depth charges were heard, followed by two more.

The target was possibly the light cruiser HMS Gloucester escorted by the destroyer HMS Hasty on passage from Alexandria to Piraeus via the Kythera Channel and carrying General Blamey and 1,087 troops of the Australian corps.
Enzo Zanni14 Apr 1941232734.55 N, 24.44 E
(o) Very approximately.
At 2327 hours, two liners (10,000 to 20,000 GRT), escorted by two destroyers, were sighted at 7,000 metres, steering 100°. Malachite could not close to the attack.
Enzo Zanni15 Apr 19410110(o) 100 miles North of Sidi Barrani.At 0110 hours, two steamers estimated at 3,000 to 5,000 GRT escorted by two destroyers were sighted at a distance of 5,000 metres, steering 100°. Again, Malachite could not close to the attack.
Enzo Zanni17 Apr 19410149(o) Ca. 100 miles North of Sidi Barrani.At 0149 hours, an enemy destroyer was sighted at a distance of 2,000 metres and she turned toward the submarine. Malachite crash-dived but the voice pipe had not been closed causing a large amount of water to penetrate the submarine. It was finally closed and the submarine went down to 80 meters and appeared to pick up sounds from a passing convoy on her hydrophones . She surfaced at 0212 hours but did not sight anything.
Enzo Zanni17 Apr 19412000(o) Ca. 100 miles North of Sidi Barrani.At 2000 hours, information was received of a large heavily escorted convoy. Malachite altered course to intercept but nothing was sighted or heard.
Enzo Zanni18 Apr 19412000(o) Ca. 100 miles North of Sidi Barrani.At 2000 hours, information was received of a large convoy steering 300°. Malachite steered west to intercept.

Between 1700 and 1900 hours on the 20th, Malachite was on her way to Augusta when a series of distant explosions were heard. This was believed to be from a convoy under air attack, but nothing was sighted.
Enzo Zanni3 Jul 19412007
2110 (e)
(o) Off Ras Azzaz (UK: off Mersa Matruh).At 1937 hours, Malachite was submerged when noises were picked up with the hydrophones. Nothing could be observed with the periscope, so she surfaced at 1946 hours.

At 1947 hours, two destroyers were sighted zigzagging and firing at aircraft at a distance of 6-7,000 metres. As they were closing toward the submarine, Malachite submerged at 1957 hours, but again nothing could be observed through the periscope. Surfacing at 2004 hours, she immediately sighted a DIDO class cruiser with two destroyers.

At 2107 hours, a single torpedo was fired from a bow tube at a distance of 2,500 metres aimed at the cruiser and the submarine crash-dived. Two torpedoes were intended, but the first had misfired. After 150 seconds, a loud explosion was heard and it was believed that the cruiser had been hit.

These were actually the destroyers HMS Defender, HMAS Stuart and HMAS Vendetta on their way to Tobruk. HMS Defender sighted the torpedo track and avoided it. HMAS Stuart sighted the submarine's conning tower and rushed to the attack, dropping two depth charges. HMS Defender hunted the submarine without success.

Italian Naval Intelligence had intercepted a signal from the light cruiser HMS Phoebe reporting an attack (she was actually operating off the Syrian coast) and deduced that she was undamaged but that possibly one of the destroyers had been hit.
Enzo Zanni6 Jul 19412046+(o) Off Ras Azzaz.At 1943, hydrophones detected noises and Malachite steered toward them.

At 2046 hours, a destroyer was sighted at a distance of 7,000 metres, steering 250° at 30 knots. The submarine could not gain an attacking position.
Enzo Zanni8 Jul 19410020(o) Off Ras Azzaz.At 0020 hours, the submarine Tembien was sighted at 2,000 metres. Malachite dived to avoid a case of mistaken identity.
Enzo Zanni20 Jan 1942024136.30 N, 16.30 E
(o) Approximately.
At 0241 hours, a submarine was sighted steering 320°. Malachite altered course away. This was Menotti returning to Augusta from a supply mission to Tripoli.
Enzo Zanni11 Feb 19420029
0043B (e)
(e) 37.29 N, 16.26 E
At 0029 hours, a submarine was sighted on an opposite course, at a distance of 1,200 metres. This was HMS Upright (Lieutenant J.W.D. Coombe, RN) who sighted Malachite at just 300 metres and immediately dived. Neither submarine could regain contact.
Enzo Zanni11 Feb 19422147At 2147 hours, a submarine was sighted at a distance of 2,000 metres. Malachite turned away. Perhaps this was HMS Tempest who was lost two days later.
Enzo Zanni17 Feb 19420620At 0620 hours, a derelict mine was sighted 200 metres away and was sunk by machine gun fire. It was not of Italian manufacture.
Olinto Di Serio8 Apr 19421150
1240 (e)
(e) 34.46 N, 20.26 E
At 1150 hours, a Blenheim bomber was sighted at a distance of 5,000 metres. It circled twice the submarine, making strafing runs. At 1200 hours, Malachite took an opportune moment to dive.

This was a Maryland (291) of 203 Squadron piloted by Flying Officer Curtiss who sighted a surfaced submarine, course 130°, 8 knots and took photographs. This was the third U-boat sighted on this patrol.
Alpinolo Cinti1 Jun 1942080038.02.5 N, 03.25 E
At 0800 hours, a 4-5,000-ton motorship was sighted at a distance of 6,000 metres, steering 358° at 14-15 knots. Malachite tried to close to identify her, but the vessel proved too fast and disappeared.
Alpinolo Cinti1 Jun 1942092038.02.5 N, 03.25 E
At 0920 hours, an aircraft was seen at 10,000 metres and Malachite dived.

At 1456 hours, the submarine was ordered to move her patrol 60 miles to the west.
Alpinolo Cinti2 Jun 1942014538.02.7 N, 02.01 E
At 0145 hours, a destroyer was sighted at a distance of 12-13,000 metres, steering 160°, 25-30 knots. Malachite closed to attack and had three bow torpedo tubes (533 mm) ready for firing, but a sudden change in course of the destroyer prevented it from being carried out.
Alpinolo Cinti9 Jun 19421220
1226 (e)
37.56 N, 02.15 E
(e) 38.18 N, 01.56 E
At 1220 hours, a Blenheim bomber was sighted at a distance of 6-,000 metres and it attacked the submarine. Malachite crash-dived and, at 1222 hours, as she reached a depth of 30-35 metres, four bombs exploded.

The attack was made by Catalina 'D' (VA 726) of 240 Squadron, piloted by Flight Lieutenant Godber. The U-boat had been sighted at a range of 6 miles, steering 136° at 10 knots. The aircraft actually released eight depth charges from a height of 50 feet and no result was observed.
Alpinolo Cinti9 Jun 1942153937.56 N, 02.15 E
(o) Approximately.
At 1539 hours, an aircraft was sighted at 7-8,000 metres flying at an altitude of 1,000 metres. Malachite dived.

This was possibly a Sunderland which sighted a submarine at 1645 hours in 37°46' N, 00°36' E steering 305°, 8 knots. The submarine dived before an attack could be made [at the time, Malachite was steering 180°, but the aircraft may have made an error in direction].
Alpinolo Cinti16 Jun 1942112537.33 N, 01.33 E
At 1125 hours, an enemy cruiser with two destroyers were sighted at 20-22,000 metres. Malachite attempted to attack but could not get to closer than 10,000-12,000 meters at 1140 hours.
Alpinolo Cinti16 Jun 1942151737.26 N, 01.10 E
At 1517 hours, a ship believed to be French was sighted at a distance of 20,000 metres steering 180°.
Alpinolo Cinti18 Jun 1942035537.16 N, 02.47 E
At 0355 hours, a submarine was sighted at a distance of 500 metres, steering 270°. It was similar to Bronzo or a German U-boat. Malachite turned away, the other submarine did the same.
Alpinolo Cinti23 Nov 1942231037.09 N, 07.07 E
At 2310 hours, an MTB was sighted at a distance of 4-5,000 metres. Malachite dived.
Alpinolo Cinti24 Nov 1942041137.11 N, 07.05 E
(o) Italian Grid 8418,/4.
Alpinolo Cinti18 Dec 19422243At 2243 hours, an aircraft was seen at a distance of 3,000 metres circling around the submarine. Malachite dived.
Alpinolo Cinti19 Dec 19422015At 2015 hours, Information was received that, at 1828 hours, two unknown warships had been sighted by German air reconnaissance in Italian Grid 5678/2 (030° - Bone - 50 miles) steering 150°. Malachite altered course to intercept but failed to see anything.
Alpinolo Cinti22 Dec 19422125At 2125 hours, Information was received that, at 1756 hours, five steamers had been sighted by German air reconnaissance in Italian Grid 4793/2 steering 090°. Malachite altered course to intercept, only hearing distant noises, but failed to see anything.
Alpinolo Cinti23 Dec 1942232337.33 N, 08.29 E
At 2323 hours, in poor visibility, a submarine similar to the ARGO class, was sighted at a distance of 3-4,000 metres, steering 300°. Malachite turned away and dived to avoid a case of mistaken identity.
Alpinolo Cinti22 Jan 19430518.4037.13.15 N, 06.24.40 E
(o) Italian Grid 8850/3.
During the evening of 21st, January, Malachite had been informed of the passage of an important convoy steering eastward.

At 0415 hours on the 22nd, Malachite was proceeding at a depth of 35 metres, when she was violently shaken by bomb explosions, seemingly directly above her. A minute later, the hydrophones picked up numerous noises, presumably for the expected convoy.

At 0455 hours, the convoy came into view at a distance of 10,000 metres. It appeared to consist of ten 5-10,000-ton merchants, including tankers, escorted by three destroyers, steering 120°, 8 knots. One destroyer briefly appeared to alter course toward the submarine, before returning to the convoy, then came back again. T.V. Alpino Cinti, believing he had been discovered, elected to attack the destroyer instead. The target was now steering 015° at 16 knots.

At 0518.40 hours, four torpedoes (533mm, G7e type) were fired from the bow tubes at a distance of 1,100 metres. Malachite immediately went deep. She had barely reached a depth of 3 or 4 metres when a double explosion was heard. No depth charging followed and the submarine moved away from the area.

At 1134 hours, she was at a depth of 30 metres when explosions were heard close by and it was believed that she may have been spotted by an aircraft. She was undamaged and resumed her patrol.
Alpinolo Cinti23 Jan 19430800-083038.36.5 N, 08.23 E
At 0830 hours, a derelict mine was sighted at a distance of 1,000 metres. Malachite closed to 500 metres, expending 120 machine gun rounds but did not succeed to sink it.
Alpinolo Cinti6 Feb 1943034536.57.5 N, 03.26 E
At 0345 hours, two destroyers were sighted at a distance of 4,000 metres, steering 270°, 20-25 knots. Malachite could not gain a good attack position.
Alpinolo Cinti6 Feb 1943211036.46 N, 03.26 E
(o) 105° - Cape Matifou (Algeria) - 9.5 miles.
At 2110 hours, ten saboteurs of Italian Special Forces (1st battalion of the 10th Arditi Regiment) were landed on the Algerian coast in three boats. Their objective was a railway bridge about 30 km east of Algiers. The landing was successful. Malachite returned at 0558 hours on the 7th to pick them up but they failed to show up. The ten men had been captured.
Alpinolo Cinti9 Feb 19431103
1059.5 (e)
(e) 38.42 N, 08.54 E
At 1103 hours, Malachite had just entered the searched channel leading to Cagliari, when the lookout, 2° Nocchiere (2nd Helmsman) Sisto Fosci, spotted torpedo tracks coming from the port side. The helm was immediately put hard to starboard. The first torpedo missed 50 metres ahead, the second 5-10 metres and the third only about one metre from the bow, but the fourth hit the submarine aft. The explosion was not very great and looked more like a large shell hit but the submarine sank stern first in about 50 seconds. About 20 minutes later, the auxiliary minesweeper Arcione and the fishing vessel Dori arrived on the scene and picked up the survivors. T.V. Alpino Cinti, three officers, nine ratings were the only ones found. One officer and thirty-four ratings were lost.

The attack had been made by the Dutch submarine HrMs Dolfijn (Lieutenant Commander H.M.L.F.E. van Oostrom Soede). At 1048 hours, she had sighted a submarine described as of the GEMMA class at a distance of 2 miles.

At 1059.5 hours, she had fired a salvo of four torpedoes from a range of 2,200 yards at 8.5-second firing intervals. One explosion was heard and when the periscope was raised, the target was observed to sink by the stern.

All Italian submarines