RMS Berengaria (ex-Imperator) model

large model of a cruise liner

The passenger liner Berengaria, originally named Imperator, was built in Germany in 1913 for the Hamburg-Amerika Line. Intended as a rival to Britain’s Olympic, Titanic, Lusitania and Mauretania, she was then the largest ship in the world (919 feet long, weighing 52,117 tons).

She was handed over to Britain after the First World War, then bought by Cunard as a replacement for Lusitania. Her first voyage for Cunard, still named Imperator, was from Liverpool to New York in February 1920. This was her only voyage from Liverpool, as she later sailed from Southampton.

During the 1920s Berengaria was the flagship of the Cunard fleet, joining Mauretania and Aquitania on the weekly service between Southampton and New York. She made her last Atlantic crossing in 1938.

This builder’s-style model of the ship, scale 1:50, was donated to the museum by the Cunard Steamship Company.

Accession number 1964.154

Did you know?

  • Imperator/Berengaria was almost forty feet longer, six feet wider and 6,000 tons larger than Titanic
  • Imperator is still the largest passenger ship ever to enter the Liverpool dock system in peacetime