Front cover of The Hare and The Tortoise

Themed book list: Talking animals

Explore animal characters in children’s literature from Aesop’s Fables to Wind in the Willows, War Horse, Winnie-the-Pooh, The Tiger Who Came to Tea and Varjak Paw.

Usage terms The Phoenix of Persia © Tiny Owl Publishing, 2019, written by Sally Pomme Clayton ©2019 and illustrated by Amin Hassanzadeh Sharif ©2019. You may not use the material for commercial purposes. Please credit the copyright holder when reusing this work.
Held by© Tiny Owl Publishing, 2019, written by Sally Pomme Clayton © 2019 and illustrated by Amin Hassanzadeh Sharif © 2019

Gobble You Up! by Gita Wolf, illustrated by Sunita

Gobble You Up! by Gita Wolf, illustrated by Sunita

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Usage terms Text by Gita Wolf and illustrations by Sunita for 'Gobble You Up!'
Original Edition © Tara Books Pvt Ltd, Chennai, India www.tarabooks.com

Varjak Paw by SF Said, illustrated by Dave McKean: manuscript drafts and printed book

A handwritten page from the second draft of Varjak Paw by S F Said. It is written in bright blue ink on lined paper. There are many crossings out and corrections.

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Usage terms Text © SF Said. Illustrations © Dave McKean. You may not use the material for commercial purposes. Please credit the copyright holder when reusing this work.

The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson, illustrated by Axel Scheffler: original artworks and printed edition

The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson, illustrated by Axel Scheffler original artworks and printed edition

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Usage terms From The Gruffalo, first published in 1999 by Macmillan Children’s Books, an imprint of Pan Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers International Limited. Reproduced by permission of Macmillan Publishers International Limited Copyright © Text Julia Donaldson 1999 / Illustrations Axel Scheffler 1999. Except as otherwise permitted by your national copyright laws this material may not be copied or distributed further.

Angelina Ballerina by Helen Craig and Katharine Holabird: storyboards, dummy book and finished artwork

Angelina Ballerina by Helen Craig and Katharine Holabird: storyboards, dummy book and finished artwork

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Usage terms Use for Angelina Ballerina CLASSIC: © c. 1983 Helen Craig Ltd and Katharine Holabird.
Use for Angelina Ballerina CGI: © 2020 HIT Entertainment Limited.
Angelina Ballerina (Classic and CGI): The Angelina Ballerina name and character and the dancing Angelina logo are trademarks of HIT Entertainment Limited, Katharine Holabird and Helen Craig.

War Horse by Michael Morpurgo: first manuscript draft and typescript draft

Manuscript draft of War Horse. Blue ink on lined paper.

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Usage terms © Michael Morpurgo
Held by© Michael Morpurgo

The Best of the Bargain: adapted from a Polish folktale by Janina Domanska

The Best of the Bargain: adapted from a Polish folktale by Janina Domanska

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Usage terms © Janina Domanska, 1978. Except as otherwise permitted by your national copyright laws this material may not be copied or distributed further.
Held by© Janina Domanska, 1978.

The Tiger Who Came to Tea by Judith Kerr: sketches and original artwork

The Tiger Who Came to Tea by Judith Kerr sketches and original artwork

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Usage terms © By Judith Kerr. Finished illustrations copyright © Kerr-Kneale Productions Ltd 1968. You may not use this work for commercial purposes. Please credit the copyright holder when reusing this work.

The Hare and the Tortoise, and other stories by Clarke Hutton

The Hare and the Tortoise, and other stories by Clarke Hutton

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Usage terms © The estate of Clarke Hutton. You may not use the material for commercial purposes. Please credit the copyright holder when reusing this work.
Held by© The estate of Clarke Hutton.

Captain Slaughterboard Drops Anchor by Mervyn Peake: early draft manuscript with original artworks

Captain Slaughterboard Drops Anchor by Mervyn Peake: early draft manuscript with original artworks

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Usage terms © SKETCHBOOK COMPRISING COMPLETE PROTOTYPE FOR CAPTAIN SLAUGHTERBOARD, FROM THE VISUAL ARCHIVE OF MERVYN PEAKE (BRITISH LIBRARY) reprinted by permission of Peters Fraser & Dunlop (www.petersfraserdunlop.com) on behalf of the Estate of Mervyn Peake. Except as otherwise permitted by your national copyright laws this material may not be copied or distributed further.

Winnie-the-Pooh by A A Milne, illustrated by E H Shepard: original sketches and artworks

E H Shepherd

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Usage terms © The estate of E H Shepard / Victoria and Albert Museum, London. Except as otherwise permitted by your national copyright laws this material may not be copied or distributed further.

The Tale of Two Bad Mice by Beatrix Potter

Double page spread from The Tale of Two Bad Mice by Beatrix Potter

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Usage terms Public Domain

The Tale of Peter Rabbit

The cover of Beatrix Potter's 1902 edition of The Tales of Peter Rabbit.

Potter deftly brought to the page closely-observed details of animals’ lives.

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Usage terms Public Domain

Just So Stories by Rudyard Kipling: manuscript printer's copy with original illustrations

Just So Stories by Rudyard Kipling: manuscript printer's copy with original illustrations

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Usage terms Public Domain

The Wind in the Willows: Letters from Kenneth Grahame to his son, Alastair (‘Mouse’) Grahame

The Wind in the Willows: Letters from Kenneth Grahame to his son, Alastair (‘Mouse’) Grahame. The image is topped with a printed picture of Fowey Hotel, Cornwall. The letter is handwritten on 28 May 1907.

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Usage terms Image © Bodleian Libraries, University of Oxford

The Speaking Picture Book

The Speaking Picture Book

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Usage terms Public Domain

Edward Lear's ‘nonsense’ manuscript

Edward Lear's 'nonsense' manuscript

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Usage terms © Estate of Edward Lear. Public domain in most countries other than the UK.

'Alice's Adventures Under Ground', the original manuscript version of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

Alice's Adventures Under Ground', the original manuscript version of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland [folio: 2r]

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Usage terms Public Domain

Little Red Riding Hood, 1810

1810 edition of Little Red Riding Hood [page: 3-4]

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Usage terms Public Domain

The Butterfly's Ball and The Grasshopper's Feast

The Butterfly's Ball and The Grasshopper's Feast [page: front cover]

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Usage terms Public Domain

Curiosities in the Tower of London

A small book being held in a persons hands. The book is open. The left hand page shows a black and white illustration of the the White tower, Tower of London. The right hand page is the title page for volume 1 of 'Curiosities in the Tower of London'

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Usage terms Public Domain

A Description of Three Hundred Animals

A Description of Three Hundred Animals [page: 5-6]

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Usage terms Public Domain

Orbis sensualium pictus

Page four of one of the first children's picture books Comenius Orbis sensualium pictus, 1659 edition.

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Usage terms Public Domain

Aesop’s Fables printed by William Caxton, 1484

Page 152 from Aesop’s Fables as printed by William Caxton, 1484. The illustration show a wolf inspecting supporting the hoof of a donkey in its paw as the donkey raises a back leg towards the wolf's face.

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Usage terms Public Domain

Bestiary, with extracts from Gerald of Wales

A page from an English bestiary, showing an illustration of the rebirth of a phoenix.

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Usage terms

Public Domain in most countries other than the UK.

Banner image © The estate of Clarke Hutton. You may not use the material for commercial purposes. Please credit the copyright holder when reusing this work.