Italian submarines in World War Two

Italian Commanders

Bruno Napp

Born  29 Dec 1909Trieste
Died  7 Mar 1983(73)Trieste


  T.V.Tenente di Vascello


12 Jan 1942 Medaglia d'argento al valore militare
11 Apr 1951 Medaglia di bronzo al valore militare

Career information

MACALLÈ (T.V. First Officer): from 28.03.1939 to ?
PERLA (T.V. C.O.): from 27.12.1940 to 31.10.1941.
From ca. January 1943, served on training ship VESPUCCI.

Commands listed for Bruno Napp

Submarine Type Rank From To
Perla (I.33 or I.30)Coastal / Sea goingT.V.27 Dec 194031 Oct 1941

Ships hit by Bruno Napp

No ships hit by this Commander.

War patrols listed for Bruno Napp

 SubmarineDateTimePortArr. dateArr. timeArr. portMilesDescription
1.Perla (I.33 or I.30)1 Mar 19410530Dakiliat Bay (Massawa)20 May 19411600Bordeaux13932After considering internment in Madagascar, it was decided to send her to Bordeaux with the assistance of German vessels (Atlantis refuelled her on 29 March 1941 in 34°00'S, 49°00'E and Nordmark (7,750 GRT, built 1930) on 23rd April 1941 in 26°00'S, 18°00'W). According to the subsequent interrogation of one of her survivors, she had a crew of only thirty-five as twelve were left behind when she sailed hurriedly. She also had a German Merchant Navy captain and an Italian Warrant Quarter Master as passengers. British Intelligence knew of both rendezvous and the cruisers HMNZS Leander and HMAS Canberra had sailed from Mauritius on 10 March and had been ordered to cruise the vicinity of 35° S, 50°00'E [yet O.I.C. reports it as 33° S, 50°'E] from 12th to 20th March, while the City of Durban (4,499 GRT, built 1921) would try to pass herself as the German supply ship (Operation SUPPLY). Leander refuelled at Mauritius on 20th March and resumed the search. The Vichy French Charles LD (5,267 GRT, built 1934) was intercepted and captured on 23rd March and the tanker Trocas, which was believed missing, was located on 27th March and escorted to Mauritius. In the South Atlantic, a similar operation was to be carried out by the British submarine HMS Severn, the sloops HMS Bridgewater, HMS Milford and the AMC HMS Alcantara. She reached Bordeaux after 13,100 miles and 81 days at sea. With Malaspina, escorted from Gironde Buoy no.1 to le Verdon by Sperrbrecher III. Then refit until September 1941.
  1 Mar 19410700
(0) South of Massawa.
At 0700 hours, a Blenheim bomber was sighted. Perla dived but was not attacked. She surfaced again at 0745 hours,
  1 Mar 19411315
(0) Off Summa (south of Massawa) or off Dahlak Island.
At 1315 hours, a Blenheim bomber attacked Perla with two depth charges. The submarine crash-dived and suffered no damage.

This was a Blenheim bomber from 14 Squadron. The pilot claimed a direct hit and a near-miss and the submarine was believed sunk.
  2 Mar 19410130
(0) Off Shab Shaka (south of Massawa).
At 0130 hours, two flashing lights were observed, apparently from two warships exchanging signals. Perla steered away on the surface.
  6 Mar 19412310
(0) Off Cape Gardafui.
At 2310 hours, a steamer was observed steering 120°. Perla had instructions to refrain from attacking.
  12 Mar 194110203° 00'S, 50° 00'EAt 1020 hours, an American steamer of the Export Line was sighted going toward Madagascar. Perla steered away.
  29 Mar 19410515-183034° 00'S, 49° 00'EPerla had reached the rendezvous point with the raider Atlantis since 0500 hours on 25th March and cruised for four days in the vicinity.

At 000 hours (GMT) on 28th March, she began emitting a beacon signal.

At 1715 hours, she sighted a smoke on the horizon and proceeded toward it and, at 1800 hours, she stopped her engines at proximity of the German raider. T.V. Napp went aboard Atlantis to confer with Kapitän zur See Rogge. They agreed to select a new position (34°00' S, 49°00' E) for the refuelling, as a measure of precaution.

At 2255 hours, the submarine proceeded to the new rendezvous.

At 0515 hours on 29th March, she had reached the rendezvous and began refuelling and taking provisions from the raider. The process was completed at 1830 hours and Perla steered for the Cape of Good Hope.
  7 Apr 1941144537° 00'S, 26° 00'WAt 1445 hours, a steamer was sighted steering 090°. Perla dived to avoid being seen.
  12 Apr 1941102031° 00'S, 8° 00'EAt 1020 hours, a steamer was sighted steering for the Cape of Good Hope. Perla dived to avoid being seen.
  22 Apr 1941160525° 00'S, 20° 00'WPerla had reached her rendezvous point with the German supply ship Nordmark at 2250 hours on 20th April and was cruising in the area.

At 1605 hours on 22nd April, the supply ship was met and again, as a measure of precaution, instructed Perla to go to a new rendezvous point.
  23 Apr 19410720-165026° 00'S, 18° 00'W0720 hours, Perla reached the new rendezvous point and began taking fuel and provisions from the German supply ship Nordmark.

The operation was completed at 1650 hours and the submarine steered toward her final destination of Bordeaux.
  1 May 194109201° 00'N, 24° 00'WAt 0920 hours, a British steamer was sighted steering 135°. Perla dived to avoid being seen.
  3 May 194113457° 00'N, 25° 00'WAt 1345 hours, an American steamer was sighted steering 140°. Perla dived to avoid being seen.
  13 May 1941172531° 00'N, 25° 00'WAt 1725 hours, a ship was sighted steering toward the Azores. Perla dived to avoid being seen.

Perla (I.33 or I.30)4 Sep 19410702Bordeaux4 Sep 19411125Le Verdon48Sailed for La Pallice for trials but returned because of defects.

Perla (I.33 or I.30)4 Sep 19411403Le Verdon4 Sep 19411825Bordeaux48Passage Le Verdon-Bordeaux.

Perla (I.33 or I.30)6 Sep 19410749Bordeaux6 Sep 19412300La Pallice118Passage Bordeaux-La Pallice for trials.

Perla (I.33 or I.30)7 Sep 19410800La Pallice7 Sep 19411600La Pallice21Trials.

2.Perla (I.33 or I.30)8 Sep 19412030La Pallice13 Sep 19411430Bordeaux514Sailed for training patrol between 45°00'N and 45°30'N and 06°00'W and 07°50'W.

Perla (I.33 or I.30)20 Sep 19410700Bordeaux20 Sep 19411245Le VerdonPassage Bordeaux-Le Verdon.

3.Perla (I.33 or I.30)20 Sep 19411900Le Verdon3 Oct 19411100Cagliari2743Passage Le Verdon-Cagliari. Passed Gibraltar on 28th September 1941.
  22 Sep 1941153244° 58'N, 10° 00'WAt 1532 hours, the submarine Argo was sighted. Perla submerged.
  23 Sep 1941103543° 56'N, 13° 00'WAt 1035 hours, the submarine Morosini was sighted. Perla steered away.
  28 Sep 19410345At 0345 hours, a submarine chaser was sighted at a distance of 1,500 metres. Perla steered away.
  28 Sep 1941042035° 58'N, 6° 00'W
(0) Approximately.
At 0420 hours, a fishing vessel was sighted at a distance of 500 metres. It closed to 200 metres making the signal "P". Perla steered away, but the fishing vessel kept on coming until forced to withdraw by the threat of the submarine< gun armament.
  29 Sep 19410448At 0448 hours, a large motor boat was sighted at a distance of 200 metres, making the signal "P". Perla steered away, but the fishing vessel kept on coming. The submarine made as if it was entering Ceuta and the boat finally turned back toward Gibraltar.
  30 Sep 19410218
0200 (e)

(0) Near Cape de Gata.
At 0155 hours, a dark 8,000-ton ship westbound was sighted at 600 metres. Perla followed her to ascertain her direction as it appeared she was proceeding at 12 knots toward Gibraltar.

At 0218 hours, a pair of bow torpedoes (533mm, S.I. type) were fired at a range of 1,800 metres. The second torpedo veered right just after firing. Both missed. Immediately upon firing, Perla turned hard to port to present her stern and fired a third torpedo. The torpedo disappeared from sight shortly after firing and may have sunk or had an erratic run. T.V. Napp intended to continue the action with the gun,but an illuminated vessel, obviously neutral, came in between and thwarted this action, moreover, the target vessel was moving away at high speed. He have up the chase.

The target was the City of Pretoria (8,049 GRT, built 1937) travelling from Malta to Gibraltar. She heard two or three rapid shots followed by a dull explosion. She made smoke and dropped smoke floats, escaping into Spanish territorial waters.

Perla (I.33 or I.30)15 Oct 19410500Cagliari16 Oct 19410950Naples272,5Passage Cagliari-Naples. Refit until December 1941.

Perla (I.33 or I.30)17 Oct 19411435Naples17 Oct 19411640NaplesExercises.

27 entries. 10 total patrol entries (3 marked as war patrols) and 19 events.

Italian Commanders

Italian Submarines