Tower Menagerie in United Kingdom

Tower Menagerie
Closed down1828
CountryUnited Kingdom
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Tower Menagerie, in London, in United Kingdom, was founded in 1235. Tower Menagerie closed down in 1828.

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There is evidence that King John (1166–1216) first started keeping wild animals at the Tower from 1204. Records of 1210–1212 show payments to lion keepers, but officially, The Tower of Londons Menagerie was founded in 1235 when the Holy Roman Emperor gave Englands Henry III three leopards.

Numerous orders issued in this and the succeeding reigns to the sheriffs of London and of the counties of Bedford and Buckingham to provide for the maintenance of the animals and their keepers are extant among the Records. In 1255 they were directed to build a house in the Tower for an elephant which had been presented to the king by Louis king of France; and a second writ occurs in which they were ordered to provide necessaries for him and his keepers.

The menagerie kept up there until at least 1828.

References for records about Tower Menagerie

Recommended Citation

Koehl, Dan (2020). Tower Menagerie, Elephant Encyclopedia. Available online at (archived at the Wayback machine)

Sources used for this article is among others:

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This document was updated: 2020-10-30 07:03:11

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