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The Claimant : The Extraordinary Story Of The Australian Butcher Who Said He Was A Baronet - Paul Terry

The Claimant

The Extraordinary Story Of The Australian Butcher Who Said He Was A Baronet

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It’s 1866 and out of the dusty frontier town of Wagga Wagga arises a cause célèbre which sets Victorian England alight – the likes of which have never been seen before or since.

A tale so preposterous that its veracity is still debated today.

Tom Castro – known by his enemies as Arthur Orton - an obese, toothless butcher who lives in a slab-hut with his illiterate wife and children, suddenly comes forward and claims he is the rightful Baronet of Tichborne Park, Hampshire, and head one of England’s oldest noble Catholic families.

Incredibly, the Baronet’s mother agrees.

So sets in train a delicious journey that takes our unlikely nobleman on a rollercoaster ride of fame, glory, prison and penury, unleashes the Tichborne Curse, disturbs Queen Victoria, delights Mark Twain, immortalises our Claimant in wax at Madame Tussauds, and strikes at the very heart of the English class system.

And at the end of a tumultuous life, a strange posthumous victory left some still asking the question that had consumed a generation: Was he baronet, or butcher?

About the Author

Paul Terry is a journalist who has worked in newspapers, television, radio and on-line news for 30 years.



I found this book a little gem ! Probably not everyone's cup of tea but if you like a mystery,not of the "whodunnit" variety, you might find this compelling just the same. What gall the man of the title had ! Very committed to his subterfuge, charming enough in an oily type of way to convince so many people of his right to pursue an aristocratic title but so low in his principles of a personal nature. A very unattractive man but interesting enough to read about his very sordid existence.

Uralla NSW


A fascinating page turner!


This was part of Australian history I was unaware of. An interesting story, well written and researched. I couldn't read it quickly enough to discover the outcome for the Claimant! Fascinating!

NSW Australia



5.0 2


ISBN: 9781760403621
ISBN-10: 1760403628
Audience: General
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 272
Published: 1st September 2016
Country of Publication: AU
Dimensions (cm): 23.4 x 15.3