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1806 Boxing Australian kangaroo in zoo

1806 Boxing Australian kangaroo in zoo

C011/0880

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Credit

PAUL D STEWART / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY PAUL D STEWART / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Copper engraving of a keeper attempting to box a kangaroo. First image of a boxing kangaroo, now an australian national icon. From Thomas Smith, "The Naturalist's Cabinet: Containing Interesting Sketches of Animal History" published by James Cundee. One of two kangaroos originating from Port Jackson (Sydney harbor) kept at Exeter Exchange in London. Amongst the first living specimens to be seen in Britain (kangaroos were 'discovered' by Cook in 1771, and did not arrive in the UK until 20 years later). Smith writes here "I saw this noble quadruped wrestle with the keeper for the space of ten or fifteen minutes, during which time he evinced the utmost intrepidity and sagicity: turning in every direction to face his opponent, carefully watching an opportunity to close with him, and occasionally grasping him with fore paws, while the right leg was employed kicking him".

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