Isis-class fast battleships
36,000 tons normal; 38,250 tons full load
229 x 31 x 8.75 metres
Steam turbines, 36 boilers (28 coal, 8 oil), 4 shafts, 100,000 shp, 27.5 knots
4 dual 38cm/45, 18 single 14cm/50, 10 single 10cm/50, 8 84mm AA, 8 2 pound AA, 4 21 inch TT aw (never installed)
75-350mm belt, 25mm-90mm deck, 200mm-380mm barbettes, 420mm turrets, 420mm CT
Aururian battleships purchased during WWI.
(ex-Aururian Princess Elouera
Built by Vickers. Laid down Aug 1913, sold to Britain Sept 1914, renamed Isis.
Launched May 1915. Completed July 1916. Repurchased by Aururia July 1919, name retained. Modernized 1933-1935. Reserve 1946. Sold for scrapping 1958.
(ex-Aururian Princess Miryan
Built by Armstrong, Elswick. Laid down Sept 1913, sold to Britain Sept 1914, renamed Queen Anne.
Launched July 1915. Completed October 1916. Repurchased by Aururia July 1919, name retained. Modernized 1934-1936. Reserve 1946. Sold for scrapping 1958.
These ships had their genesis in the relentless French building programme in the wake of the Franco-Prussian war and 'The Seventy-Three' between Aururia and France. Six Dantons gave way to six ships... and six more... and six more after that. With the Entente Cordiale at least somewhat guaranteeing France could afford to send most of them to Cam Ranh Bay, the Empire's concern as the moment of 'maximum danger' seemed to approach steadily grew. Casting about for ships, first came the Brazilian Rio
. Her design was intensely unsatisfactory, but she was available - and that was enough. She could be refitted later. The Argentines bowed to American pressure and refused to sell their dreadnoughts - much the same for Chile, whose would be delivered too late anyhow. With the 1914 programme fixed at four ships, the government turned to Vickers-Kaurna, who turned to their corporate parent, still closely wedded at this point in history - specifications were ready, and a premium paid to return the sketch designs quickly. They would not be fully acceptable ships, but they would do. They had to. The contracts were signed, and the delivery date set for twenty-four months. Six and a half million pounds was paid for the two ships, a crushing burden for the time. Then an Archduke was shot down in Bosnia, and the two most powerful ships building in Britain became an even more tempting target for the Royal Navy. There was a purchase option in the contract, but it laid a stiff price. The full cost of the two ships and the broker's commission, to be paid in gold, in addition to a usage fee for as long as they remained in British service. With the German invasion of France, the government in Mayi-Thakurti was willing to sell, on the condition that they would have the right of repurchase as soon as a peace was signed. With the armour, turrets, and guns already ordered, they could complete without further throwing chaos into the British warship building programme - and they promised a counterbalance to rumours of new German battlecruisers.
Both ships missed Jutland, joining the Battlecruiser Fleet not long afterwards, having been converted to oil fuel under Fisher's influence, each touching 29 knots during abbreviated wartime trials. Their war service left them run-down as 1919 rolled around, but they had escaped being exposed to enemy fire but for the ever-present danger of U-Boats and mines.
As soon as Versailles was signed, locked into a new building race with the Japanese and Americans, the amazons returned, wanting their two ships back. Paying the agreed upon price, they had effectively made a profit on a pair of battleships, though the conversion from coal to oil fuel had left them intensely cross at what had been done. They joined their intended fleet under their names as commissioned, for they were amenable to the lower deck, and there was no need to risk ill omens by a re-naming, as was sometimes necessary for foreign commissions.
The last foreign-built vessels for the Imperial Navy until the Zubr
types, they were regarded as being satisfactory ships in every respect, serving as the core of the battle-line alongside their home-built half-sisters of the Silver Sea
class until after the Great Pacific War.