Walter Rothschild: The Man, The Museum And The Menagerie

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An engaging narrative revealing the life of one of the most eccentric and enthusasitic zoologists of the Victorian era

Born into what was one of the wealthiest families in the world, Walter Rothschild became the best known zoologist of his dayand one of Britain's great eccentrics. A benign and enigmatic figure with a boundless enthusiasm for nature, he amassed the largest single accumulation of zoological specimens ever collected by one man, establishing his own private Museum in 1892, now the Natural History Museum at Tring. Walter's extraordinary life traversed the fields of politics and finance as well as zoology and it was packed with achievements and incident. From his involvement with the Balfour Declaration to a prodigious personal scientific output, Walter's life was anything but commonplace. He went up to Cambridge accompanied by a flock of kiwi, drove a team of zebra down Piccadilly and into the forecourt of Buckingham Palace, and was a victim of blackmail for many years. With the help of evocative photographs Miriam Rothschild has produced a compelling narrative which, while demonstrating her personal admiration and affection for her uncle, does not shy away from the complexities and conflicts this remarkable man faced during his life.

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