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Zarafa: A Giraffes True Story, from Deep in Africa to the Heart of Paris
Zarafa: A Giraffes True Story, from Deep in Africa to the Heart of Paris by Michael Allin 0802713394 9780802713391
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Zarafa: A Giraffes True Story, from Deep in Africa to the Heart of Paris by Michael Allin

In October 1826, a ship arrived at Marseille carrying the first giraffe ever seen in France. A royal offering from Muhammad Ali, Ottoman Viceroy of Egypt, to King Charles X, she had already traveled 2,000 miles down the Nile to Alexandria, from where she had sailed across the Mediterranean standing in the hold, her long neck and head protruding through a hole cut in the deck. In the spring of 1827, after wintering in Marseille, she was carefully walked 550 miles to Paris to the delight of thousands of onlookers. The viceroys tribute was politically motivated: He commanded the Turkish forces then fighting the Greeks in their war of independence, and hoped his gift would persuade the French not to intervene against him. But the viceroy and his intentions were quickly forgotten as France fell in love with its beautiful stranger. Zarafachronicles the full story of this remarkable animal, revealing a kaleidoscope of history, science, and culture that opens an exotic window on the early nineteenth century. From the Enlightenments blossoming fascination with science to Napoleons ill-fated invasion of Egypt in 1798from the eminent French naturalist tienne Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire to Bernardino Drovetti, French consul general in Egypt and tomb robber extraordinairethe era was full of memorable events and characters. Michael Allin deftly weaves them into the story with an appreciation for detail and an uncommon affection. The giraffes strange and wonderful journey linked Africa and Europe in mutual discovery. Although her arrival did not keep the French out of Alis war, she became an instant celebrity in Paris and over the next eighteen years she fascinated all of Europe. Through Michael Allins narrative skill,Zarafastirs the imagination as it provides a new context for the history of a distant age.

Author: Michael Allin

Language: English

Edition: First Edition

Binding: Hardcover

Pages: 224

Publisher: Walker Books

Publication Date: 1998-08-01

Our Price: $4.09

ISBN: 0802713394

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Michael Allin (Edition: First Edition) Hardcover

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