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A Barrel of Monkeys
Author: Samuel Fanous

ISBN: 9781851244454
Format: Hardcover
Number Of Pages: 144
Published: 11 September 2015
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 17.0 x 11.0 x 1.8
Description:
What should we call the wild animals we spot from our windows? A surfeit of skunks? A dray of squirrels? A patient watch of wildlife enthusiasts might even catch sight of a skulk of foxes or a scavenging sloth of bears. The practice of inventing collective nouns for animals is an ancient pastime which derives from medieval hunts, but the list has been augmented in every age-and it remains an entertaining pastime today.

A Barrel of Monkeys brings together more than one hundred collective nouns for animals, from a bloat of hippopotamuses to a caravan of camels, a tower of giraffes, and a leap of leopards. The rivalry between male rhinoceroses becomes especially apt when the rowdy ungulates are characterized as a crash of rhinos. An ambush of tigers is an apt characterization of the skillful hunters that silently stalk their prey. A blend of wordplay, puns, and alliteration, some of the terms collected here are now commonplace, like a pride of lions. Others aren't heard much these days, but many-like a dazzle of zebras or a prickle of porcupines-richly deserve a comeback.

With charming illustrations by the eighteenth-century artist an...

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