This is the quite extraordinary, hilarious and yet melancholy tale of the biggest battleship of her era - Rio de Janerio, Sultan Osman I and finally HMS Agincourt.
In the midst of the naval arms race that culminated in the First World War was the dreadnought battleship. While the great powers built many, some smaller nations coveted battleships too. None more so than Brazil, which stunned the world in 1911 by ordering the biggest battleship yet planned.
There followed a struggle between British and German shipyards to secure the order to build this monstrous warship. Her completion on the Tyne, years later, took place under tragi-comic circumstances, with British bayonets barring possession to her rightful owners.
She had brought two countries close to bankruptcy and had become the prize in a tense international auction, having been the object of admiration, affection and despair.
She finally became HMS Agincourt and joined the British Grand Fleet, where she dwarfed her contemporaries. The Big Battleship, or "Gin Palace" went to fight at the Battle of Jutland in 1916. When broken up after the war, she was much missed by those who served in her, the quirkiest of the Grand Fleet's battleships.
by Richard Hough ISBN No 1904381146
14x22cm 167 pages with 16 b&w photos