Corvette is a small warship, the smallest class of vessel considered to be classified as a warship.
The warship class above the corvette is that of the frigate, while the class below was are coastal patrol craft, missile boat and fast attack craft.
A Corvette is typically between 500 tons and 2,000 tons, although recent designs may approach 3,000 tons, which might instead be considered a small frigate.
The role of the corvette consisted mostly of coastal patrol, fighting minor wars, supporting large fleets, or participating in show-the-flag missions.
Corvette are usually armed with medium- and small-calibre guns, surface-to-surface missiles, surface-to-air missiles (SAM), and anti-submarine weapons. Many can accommodate a small or medium anti-submarine warfare helicopter.
The first operational corvette based on stealth technology was the Royal Norwegian Navy’s Skjold class.