The Zoo: The Story of London Zoo

By J. Barrington-Johnson
PAGES: 192
BINDING: Paperback
SIZE: 244x188 mm

'The Zoo' is a unique, fascinating, and often amusing, history of London Zoo illustrated with over seventy colour and black and white images.

London Zoo had its beginnings in 1826 when Sir Stamford Raffles founded the Zoological Society of London. The Crown had leased part of Regent's Park to the Society and the press excitedly anticipated the coming of the 'ark' to London. The stage was now set for the world's first truly scientific zoo.

The Zoo was to have a number of 'celebrity' animals over the years including: a hippopotamus called Obaysch, much visited by Queen Victoria; Winnie, an exceptionally tame bear who gave A.A. Milne the inspiration for Winnie-the-Pooh's name; and Chi-Chi, the Giant panda, who refused to breed but instead made advances to the eminent zoologist, Desmond Morris! In earlier days, there were some great escapes including that of a bear which ended up face to face with a terrified horse in Regent's Park Outer Circle, and of Cholmondley, a former clothes-wearing, cigarette-smoking pet chimpanzee, who hailed a bus near the Zoo! Some of the more unusual residents included the quagga, passenger pigeon, and thylacine or Tasmanian wolf - now all long since extinct. Jumbo, Ming, Booboo and Jubilee, amongst many others, also have their stories here. In addition, the author recounts the history of Whipsnade Zoo (also founded by the Zoological Society of London). It was a completely different type of zoo and, in common with its forerunner, was the first of its kind in the world.

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