Battleship Roma was one of the three Italian Littorio class battleships operating during the Second World War. She was one of the most modern and powerful battleships of her times. The construction of Roma and her sister Impero, the fourth battleship never finished, was planned to strengthen the Italian Navy which, until then, had only two modern battleships and some old WWI battleships. Battleship Roma was laid down by the Italian shipbuilder "Cantieri Riuniti dell'Adriatico", in Trieste, on 18 September 1938, almost four year after the first two battleships Vittorio Veneto and Littorio of her class. She was launched on 9 June 1940, the day before Italy entered the war, and was commissioned into "Regia Marina" the Italian Navy on 14 June 1942. Based on experience of the first two ships, some small improvements were made to her, including additional freeboard to the bow.