Rafail (66)

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Hierarchical Path: Seven Years War (Main Page) >> Navies >> Russian Navy >> Rafail (66)

Origin and History

The ship was built by I. V. James (И.В. Ямес) at the Solombalskaya dockyard in Archangelsk. Her keel was laid down on May 10 1757 (April 29 old style, abbreviated O.S. In this article). She was launched on May 31 1758 (May 20 O.S.). She was attached to the Fleet of the Baltic Sea.

During the Seven Years' War, the ship was under the command of:

  • in 1759: Captain I. Gulidov (И. Гулидов)
  • in 1760: Captain A. V. Elmanov (А.В. Елманов)
  • in 1761: Captain A. F. Baranov (А.Ф. Баранов)
  • in 1762: Captain S. B. Shubin (С.Б. Шубин)

The ship was broken up in 1771 in Kronshtadt.

Service during the War

From June to September 1759, the ship made the journey from Archangelsk to Kronshtadt.

In 1760, the ship was part of fleet who sailed from Revel on August 14 (August 3 O.S.) and arrived at Colberg on August 26 (August 15 O.S.). On August 29 (August 18 O.S.), she took part in the bombardment of the coastal fortifications of the fortress. On September 21 (September 10 O.S.), she re-embarked troops and sailed back towards Revel where she arrived on September 29 (September 18 O.S.).

On June 29 1761 (June 18 O.S.), the ship left Revel loaded with troops for the Siege of Colberg. She was once more involved in the bombardment of the coastal fortifications of Colberg which took place from July 26 to 28 ( July 15 to 17 O.S.). On July 30 (July 19 O.S.), she disembarked her troops near Cape Rugenwalde. On August 4 (July 24 O.S.), she took part in another bombardment of the fortress. On August 25 (August 14 O.S.), the Russian ships Varachail (54), Astrakhan (66), Rafail (66) and 3 frigates approached the fortress and bombarded it once more (firing some 3,000 bombs). The Prussian artillery on the waterfront returned fire. The Russian squadron was then assigned to blockade the fortress and to cut all communications. On September 8 (August 28 O.S.), the fleet, including this ship, had to sail away from the Pomeranian Coast due to stormy weather. At sea, she accidentally became separated from the fleet but finally reached Revel on October 26 (October 15 O.S.).

On June 26 1762 (June 15 O.S.), the ship was part of the squadron who transported troops from Colberg. But sudden leakage forced her to return to Revel.


Sketch of a typical 66-gun ship according to the Shipbuilding Regulations – Source: Collection of Roman Shlygin

The design of most Russian ships of the line of this period still adhered tightly to the Shipbuilding Regulations issued by Peter the Great in 1723.

Technical specifications
Guns 66
Lower gun deck 24 x 24-pdrs (Russian pounds)
Upper gun deck 26 x 12-pdrs (Russian pounds)
Quarterdeck and Forecastle 16 x 6-pdrs (Russian pounds)
Crew no information found
Length at gun deck 47.40 m (155' 6”)
Width 13.25 m (43' 6”)
Depth in Hold 5.30 m (17'5”)
Displacement approx. 1,200 metric tons


Main Sources

Ministry of the Sea - Material for the History of the Russian Navy, vol 10, St. Petersburg, 1883 in a collection of 17 volumes published from 1865 to 1904

Veselago, Fedosey Fedorovich: List of Russian Naval Vessels from 1668 to 1869, St. Petersburg: Ministry of the Sea, 1872

Other Sources

Shirokorad, A. B.: 200 лет парусного флота (200 Years of Sailing Fleet)



Roman Shlygin for the initial version of this article