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The Walter Rothschild

Born into what was one of the wealthiest families in the world, "Walter Rothschild" became the best known zoologist of his day - and one of Britain's great eccentrics. A benign and enigmatic figure with a boundless enthusiasm for nature, he amassed the largest 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 was packed with both achievement and incident. From his involvement with the Balfour Declaration to his 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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Table of Contents

Preface to this edition vAuthor's Preface viiAuthor's Acknowledgements viiiLionel Walter Rothschild--principal events xiCHAPTERS 1--351 Walter Rothschild 12 Tring is Fairyland 33 Emma, Walter's Mother 94 Emma--the iron apronstrings 195 Walter's Father--the Eminence Blanche 256 Walter's Father--Nobody wanted to touch Lloyd George 417 Because I am so happy, Mama 528 I have nearly driven Althaus out of his senses 579 Who is the pink and gold boy in the corner? 7010 I am not a Lieutenant, I am a Captain 8011 Please ask Walter 8612 Rozsika, Walter's sister-in-law 9413 My Museum 10014 The rump of our only old male is rather dicky ... 11015 The fellow is always right 12016 Walter's Curators--Ernst Hartert and the birds 12817 Walter's Curators--Karl Jordan and the butterflies 14318 Walter's Collectors 15419 Walter's Collectors--A.F.R. Wollaston and N.C. Rothschild 17020 Walter's Collectors--William Doherty 17721 Walter's Collectors--The King of Bulgaria is coming on Friday ... 18122 Hurrah! We are off ... 18523 The Giants 19724 The Rothschilds and animals 20625 The Great Row 21526 Catherine wheels 22427 If His Majesty's Government will send me a message ... 23328 Dear Lord Rothschild 24929 What has become of two ostriches ... 27030 A figure in the background 28331 You will be painted blue and yellow and exposed in the High Street 28732 The Primrose Way--The truth about the Rothschilds 29533 The birds cross the Atlantic 30234 Home Farm 30535 Candle ends 313Bibliographical notes 319BibliographyBooks 351Newspapers, Journals, Catalogues and Reports 356Manuscript Sources 362Appendix 1Synopsis of species and subspecies of plants and animals named inhonour of Walter Rothschild 362Index 363Family tres 383

About the Author

Miriam Rothschild was the niece of Walter Rothschildand, a renowned naturalist herself, shared her uncle'spassion for the natural world. In 1995 she was elected aFellow of the Royal Society and was made a Dame in2000. Dame Miriam died in 2005.

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