Distributed for Reaktion Books
As Williams recounts, while Hippos are only found in Africa today, they actually originated in Asia. They are closer relatives to whales than to pigs or horses, as previously thought. And until the last Ice Age, you could find them as far north as Europe. Today the common hippo is confined to south, central, and east Africa, and its mysterious cousin, the Pygmy Hippo, is only found in the forests of Sierra Leone. From these natural confines, Williams explores how hippos have lived in much wider regions of the human imagination, from the hippo deity Taweret in Ancient Egypt to Obaysch, the first living hippo exhibited in the London Zoo in the nineteenth century, whom Charles Dickens called our “illustrious stranger.” A fascinating history of the hippo in natural and human history, this book also serves as a call for conservation efforts to protect this vulnerable animal.
224 pages | 60 color plates, 40 halftones | 5 1/4 x 7 1/2 | © 2017
Biological Sciences: Natural History
"Williams confirms the fearsomeness of hippos, but not their ferocity."
Tim Morris | lection