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Pennant Number: M 39
Notes: A successful class of fast minelayers, also used for such duties as running special cargoes of ammunition to Malta. Soon after completion, ABDIEL had 4 - 20mm AA added. Later, her twin 4.7" mounts were replaced by twin 4" HA mounts, and 8 - 20mm (twin mounts) added.
ABDIEL served with the Mediterranean Fleet in 1941; she was transferred to the
Eastern Fleet in 1942, then returned to Home Fleet, 1942-43; she was sent back
to Mediterranean Fleet in 1943. As with her sister ships, ABDIEL was used in
both her original role as a minelayer, and as a fast transport ship, ferrying
supplies to bastions in harms' way in the Mediterranean. She laid many minefields, and those mines claimed ten victims; the Italian destoyers CARLO
MIRABELLO, CORSARO, SAETTA,
ASCARI, and LANZEROTTO MALOCELLO, the torpedo boat
CICLONE, the gunboats PELLEGRINO MATTEUCCI and URAGANO, and the transports
KYBFELS (German, 7,764 tons) and MARBURG (German, 7,564 tons). In addition,
the Italian destroyer MAESTRALE was severely damaged by one of ABDIEL's mines.
ABDIEL also landed British commandos at Suda Bay on 27 May 1941, and in the
company of the light cruiser PHOEBE and three destroyers, evacuated 4,000 troops from Crete on 31 May 1941 as this island was captured by German forces.
A special "thank you!" to the following on-line sources for additional information on the ABDIEL: