Book, 'Fabulous Histories: The History of the Robins. Designed for the Instructi...

Name/Title

Book, 'Fabulous Histories: The History of the Robins. Designed for the Instruction of Children, Respecting Their Treatment of Animals'

Maker

Mary Trimmer

Maker Role

Author

Maker

Thomas Bewick (1753-1828)

Maker Role

Illustrator

About this object

This book entitled ‘Fabulous Histories’ has the subtitle ‘This History of the Robins. Designed for the Instruction of Children, Respecting Their Treatment of Animals.” During the Victorian era, most people believed it was important to be kind and care for animals because they were a gift of God. In New Zealand imported children’s books about animals, and magazine articles copied from overseas newspapers and journals, often used tips on caring for pets as a way of introducing the concept of kindness to young children. (1)

The book was given to Mary Eliza Lush from her cousin Francis Buckland. Tragically, Mary died from scarlet fever 1854 along with her older sister Charlotte Sarah, and her younger brother Alfred. While the death of a child was not unusual during the Victorian era, this does not mean that the loss was not felt greatly by parents and family members. In the Lush family archives, held at Ewelme Cottage, there are a number of mementoes, including many books, which serve as poignant reminders of the family’s tragic loss. Later, this book was passed on to Mary’s sister Margaret Edith Lush, who also died of scarlet fever in 1876.

(1) Nancy Swarbrick, “Creature Comforts: New Zealanders and their pets: an illustrated history’ (Dunedin: Otago University Press, 2013), pp. 107, 118.

For more information about the Lush family and Ewelme Cottage, which is cared for by Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga, visit our website.

Medium and Materials

Paper and leather

Measurements

15 x 9 x 2cm

Date Made

1834

Place Made

London, England

Publisher

N. Hailes

Publication Date

1834

Publication Place

London, England

Series Title

Juvenile Books

Credit Line

Collection of Ewelme Cottage, Heritage New Zealand Historic Pouhere Taonga

Object Type

Book

Object number

XEC.3177

Copyright Licence  

All rights reserved

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