4 Jul 1940
  • Despite having his left leg shattered by a bomb blast, British Leading Seaman Jack Mantle continued to fire his anti-aircraft guns as the merchant cruiser HMS Foylebank sank beneath him during an air raid on Portland naval base in England, United Kingdom. Mantle was awarded a posthumous Victoria Cross medal. ww2dbase [AC]
  • British submarine HMS Pandora sank French gunboat Rigault de Genouilly off Oran, Algeria at 1530 hours. ww2dbase [Main Article | TH]
Anglo-Egyptian Sudan
  • Italians forces captured a number of British forts, including Kassala and Gallabat, in East Africa. The Italian forward units paused to establish anti-tank defenses. ww2dbase [CPC]
Atlantic Ocean
  • Kanalkampf: German Stuka dive bombers and motored torpedo boats attacked British Allied Convoy OA178 south of Bournemouth, England, United Kingdom, which was near Portland. Five merchant ships were sunk, which were British ships Elmcrest and Dallas City, Dutch ships Britsum and Decalion, and Estonian ship Kolga; several other ships were damaged. Meanwhile, German aircraft bombed the Royal Navy base in Portland, sinking British auxiliary anti-aircraft ship Foyle Bank, killing 176, as well as tug boat Silverdial. ww2dbase [Main Article | TH]
  • Japanese bombers attacked Chongqing, China in multiple waves. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • French battleship Strasbourg and four destroyers arrived at Toulon, France after fleeing from the Battle of Mers-el-Kébir. ww2dbase [Main Article | Facility | CPC]
  • Marseillaise arrived at Toulon, France. ww2dbase [Main Article | Facility | CPC]
  • Vichy French government broke off all relations with the United Kingdom. ww2dbase [TH]
French West Africa
  • The French Navy ordered submarines, armed merchant cruisers, and destroyers based in Dakar to sortie to attack British shipping. ww2dbase [Main Article | TH]
  • French bombers attacked the British fleet at Gibraltar, causing no damage. ww2dbase [Main Article | TH]
  • The Dame of Sark, ruler of the island of Sark in the English Channel, surrendered to the German forces. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Sark in the Channel Islands, having been occupied by the Germans since two days prior, officially surrendered. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Italian bombers again raided Malta. ww2dbase [TH]
  • King Carol II swore in Iron Guard member Ion Gigurtu as the new Prime Minister of Romania. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
United Kingdom
  • Winston Churchill received his first standing ovation in the House of Commons as the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom after delivering a speech justifying the attack on French warships. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
Photo(s) dated 4 Jul 1940

Timeline Section Founder: Thomas Houlihan
Contributors: Alan Chanter, C. Peter Chen, Thomas Houlihan, David Stubblebine
Special Thanks: Rory Curtis

4 Jul 1940 Interactive Map

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Famous WW2 Quote
"Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few."

Winston Churchill, on the RAF