A few years ago two very old taxidermied Colobus monkeys turned up in the basement of Vienna’s Natural History Museum. They were sent by the collector Henry Smeathman to one of his patrons, the wealthy naturalist and collector, Thomas Pennant. The monkeys’ story, of how they travelled from Sierra Leone to England in the early 1770s, sheds light on the intersection of collecting with the history of the British slave trade. The article then moves from museums to menageries, and to further discussion of the lives and afterlives of animals via a review of John Simons’ The Tiger that Swallowed the Boy: Exotic Animals in Victorian England (2012).
Recommended CitationColeman, Deirdre, Menageries and Museums: John Simons' The Tiger that Swallowed the Boy (2012) and the Lives and Afterlives of Historical Animals, Animal Studies Journal, 2(1), 2013, 114-132.