Menagerie: The History of Exotic Animals in England

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9780198714705: Menagerie: The History of Exotic Animals in England
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Menagerie is the story of the panoply of exotic animals that were brought into Britain from time immemorial until the foundation of the London Zoo--a tale replete with the extravagant, the eccentric, and--on occasion--the downright bizarre.

From Henry III's elephant at the Tower, to George IV's love affair with Britain's first giraffe and Lady Castlereagh's recalcitrant ostriches, Caroline Grigson's tour through the centuries amounts to the first detailed history of exotic animals in Britain. On the way we encounter a host of fascinating and outlandish creatures, including the first peacocks and popinjays, Thomas More's monkey, James I's cassowaries in St James's Park, and Lord Clive's zebra--which refused to mate with a donkey, until the donkey was painted with stripes.

But this is not just the story of the animals themselves. It also the story of all those who came into contact with them: the people who owned them, the merchants who bought and sold them, the seamen who carried them to our shores, the naturalists who wrote about them, the artists who painted them, the itinerant showmen who worked with them, the collectors who collected them. And last but not least, it is about all those who simply came to see and wonder at them, from kings, queens, and nobles to ordinary men, women, and children, often impelled by no more than simple curiosity and a craving for novelty.

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About the Author:


A zoologist, formerly a curator in the Museums of the Royal College of Surgeons, Caroline Grigson is now an honorary professor at the UCL Institute of Archaeology. The subjects of her numerous publications range from prehistoric animal husbandry to the study of natural history and its relationship to art in eighteenth-century London.

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'With a deft hand and a sharp eye for significant detail, Caroline Grigson guides us through more than seven centuries during which exotic animals were imported to England in increasing numbers and with developing purpose. Some came as pets, or to enliven the chase (whether as hunter or prey); some had no other role than to ornament the contrived landscapes of country estates; perhaps the majority were destined for a wretched life as exhibits in shows, static or itinerant, dressed up as "rational gratification for the curiosity of the multitude"EL Grigson's long experience as a zoologist, combined with assiduous historical research, results in a book that is at once informative and enjoyable, and an immensely valuable source of reliable detail.'-- Arthur MacGregor, author of Animal Encounters


"With her book, Grigson has proved that scholarship and high entertainment are perfectly compatible."-Henrik Bering, New Criterion


'With a deft hand and a sharp eye for significant detail, Caroline Grigson guides us through more than seven centuries during which exotic animals were imported to England in increasing numbers and with developing purpose. Some came as pets, or to enliven the chase (whether as hunter or prey); some had no other role than to ornament the contrived landscapes of country estates; perhaps the majority were destined for a wretched life as exhibits in shows, static or itinerant, dressed up as "rational gratification for the curiosity of the multitude" Grigson's long experience as a zoologist, combined with assiduous historical research, results in a book that is at once informative and enjoyable, and an immensely valuable source of reliable detail.'-- Arthur MacGregor, author of Animal Encounters


"With her book, Grigson has proved that scholarship and high entertainment are perfectly compatible."--Henrik Bering, New Criterion


"Menagerie is a fact-driven narrative with exemplary commitment to detail."--London Review of Books


"[L]ively and entertaining....Grigson uses her expertise to distinguish among the species whose identities are often masked by fluid naming conventions, and provides a helpful glossary....Grigson's human cast is as riveting as the animals."--Anna Taylor, H-Animal


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Book Description Oxford University Press, United Kingdom, 2016. Hardback. Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Menagerie is the story of the panoply of exotic animals that were brought into Britain from time immemorial until the foundation of the London Zoo - a tale replete with the extravagant, the eccentric, and - on occasion - the downright bizarre. From Henry III s elephant at the Tower, to George IV s love affair with Britain s first giraffe and Lady Castlereagh s recalcitrant ostriches, Caroline Grigson s tour through the centuries amounts to an impressively detailed history of exotic animals in Britain. On the way we encounter a host of fascinating and outlandish creatures, including the first peacocks and popinjays, Thomas More s monkey, James I s cassowaries in St James s Park, and Lord Clive s zebra - which refused to mate with a donkey, until the donkey was painted with stripes. But this is not just the story of the animals themselves. It also the story of all those who came into contact with them: the people who owned them, the merchants who bought and sold them, the seamen who carried them to our shores, the naturalists who wrote about them, the artists who painted them, the itinerant showmen who worked with them, the collectors who collected them. And last but not least, it is about all those who simply came to see and wonder at them, from kings, queens, and nobles to ordinary men, women, and children, often impelled by no more than simple curiosity and a craving for novelty. Seller Inventory # AOP9780198714705

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Book Description Oxford University Press, United Kingdom, 2016. Hardback. Condition: New. Language: English. Brand new Book. Menagerie is the story of the panoply of exotic animals that were brought into Britain from time immemorial until the foundation of the London Zoo - a tale replete with the extravagant, the eccentric, and - on occasion - the downright bizarre. From Henry III's elephant at the Tower, to George IV's love affair with Britain's first giraffe and Lady Castlereagh's recalcitrant ostriches, Caroline Grigson's tour through the centuries amounts to an impressively detailed history of exotic animals in Britain. On the way we encounter a host of fascinating and outlandish creatures, including the first peacocks and popinjays, Thomas More's monkey, James I's cassowaries in St James's Park, and Lord Clive's zebra - which refused to mate with a donkey, until the donkey was painted with stripes. But this is not just the story of the animals themselves. It also the story of all those who came into contact with them: the people who owned them, the merchants who bought and sold them, the seamen who carried them to our shores, the naturalists who wrote about them, the artists who painted them, the itinerant showmen who worked with them, the collectors who collected them.And last but not least, it is about all those who simply came to see and wonder at them, from kings, queens, and nobles to ordinary men, women, and children, often impelled by no more than simple curiosity and a craving for novelty. Seller Inventory # AOP9780198714705

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