The Marine Impériale is the principal naval warfare force of the Empire Castairien. Naval forces are used in Castaire since Castorian I's grandfather, Charles, from the 10th century onwards. Since the early reign of Castorian himself, the Marine was engaged in maritime warfare with other navies and became an important branch of the armed forces.
The maritime supremacy of Castaire is ensured by over 300 warships and several thousands of smaller ships for supplement duties and similar things.
The Marine's professional head is the Amiral d'Empire, an admiral and member of the Privy Council of His Majesty The Empereur.
The usage of ships within the castairien territory is tracable back to antiquity. While the first ships, or merely boats, were mainly used for fishing right off the coast (those weren't seaworthy at all), the later developments of galleys, warships propelled by oaring, made it important to have some of these at demand to fight potential enemies. The institution of a permanent, powerful fleet wasn't started until the late 15th century. Before, traders and fishers had, in case of war, to hand over their ships to the government. These were then supplied with men to board the enemies ships. As this proved to be quite counterproductive in long-lasting conflicts (all the fishing boats were pressed into service), the government had to conceive different plans for such situations. This happened under the rule of Césaire III in 1437, when the Amirauté (Admiralty) was founded. This institution became the head of the fleet and was made responsible for all it's matters: conscription/pressing, supplies, armament, the commission of new ships etc.
Armament and Equipment
The ships are subdivided into 6 main categories, related to the amount of the ordnance onboard:
- Ship of the line or great frigates
- 1st Rate: 100 and more cannons; three-decker; >2600 t; 850–950 men
- 2nd Rate: 98–90 cannons; three-decker; >2000 t; 750 men
- 3rd Rate: 80–64 cannons; two-decker; 1300–2000 t; 490-720 men
- 4th Rate: 60–50 cannons; two-decker; 1000 t; 350 men
- 5th Rate: 44–32 cannons; one- or two-decker, frigates; 700–1450 t; 215–320 men
- 6th Rate: 28–20 cannons; post-ship; 340–550 t; 160–200 men
- Small unrated ships
- sloop-of-war: 16-18 cannons; one-decker; 350-400 t; 90-125 men
- gun-brig, brig, cutter, schooner: 4-14 cannons; one-decker; <220 t; 20-60 men
- Flag Officers
- Amiral d'Empire/Grand Amiral
- Senior Officers
- Junior Officers
- Officer Cadets
- Sub Officers
- Matelot Breveté
Titles and naming
List of ships
Given are the name of the ship in italics, the ordnance, the year of commission and a description of its duties.
First rates of more than 120 guns (three-deckers)
- Souverain des Mers 124 (1745) - imperial flagship
- Majestueux 122 (1746) - consort of S. d. M.
- Impérieux 122 (1746) - consort of S. d. M.
- Victorieux 120 (1762) - reissued, with significantly better sailing abilities and higher speed
First rates of 120 guns (three-deckers)
- Saint Stéphane-class
- Saint Stéphane 120 (1742) - flagship of the Amiral d'Empire
- Sainte Chrystelle 120 (1742) - flagship of the Escadre Rouge
- Saint Marcellin 120 (1742) - flagship of the Escadre Bleue
- Saint Elouan 120 (1744) - flagship of the Escadre Blanche
- Sainte Avantasie 120 (1744) - flagship of the colonial fleet
First rates of 108 guns (three-deckers)
- Irréductible 108 (1735)
- Intrépide 108 (1735)
- Redoutable 108 (1735)
- Terrible 108 (1736)
- Foudroyant 108 (1736)
First rates of 106 guns (three-deckers)
- Empire de Castaire 106 (1760)
- Couronne 106 (1760)
- Chastain-Royale 106 (1761)
- Duché du Gardelegen 106 (1762)
First rates of 102 guns (three-deckers)
- Océan 102 (1756)
- Orient 102 (1756)