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Early Pets to Potter Books

Aug 17, 2007
Beatrix Potter created the famed children's bunny, Peter Rabbit. She was born in Kensington London in 1866, to a Victorian era family with several servants and a large house. A shy girl who spent many hours of every day alone, she learned art, music, reading and writing from her governess. A full time nurse was her other usual companion. Other than summers, her brother Bernard, six years younger than she, spent his time away at school.

During the summer Beatrix Potter and brother Bernard wiled away many hours enjoying the splendors of nature in the Lake District of Scotland. They ran through the fields and woods, chasing and sometimes catching many small wild animals that ran there. The Potter children also created sketchings and paintings galore of these animals and their natural habitat. It was here that her love for nature and wildlife was born. Her focus on preservation of nature's beauty was influenced the local Lake District Vicar, Canon Rawnsley, who talked to her about the destructive influence of tourism and industry.

Beatrix and her parents were overprotective, discouraging the children from making friends with others their ages. In response Beatrix and Bernard became closer. The put together a wide collection of pets from the nearby woods and fields, which they housed in their schoolroom. One time they had several all living there together - lizards, water newts, a frog, a ring-snake, a rabbit and a turtle. Beatrix Potter and brother Bernard studied these animals, sketching them studiously. All of the famous animal characters she later created were based on these creatures that she and brother Bernard befriended.

Beatrix Potter's favorite pet, Benjamin Bouncer, was her bunny precursor to the famous Peter Rabbit, of children's fairy tales fame. She had bought him from a bird shop in London, without telling her parents, and then placed him in a paper bag and snuck him into the nursery. This beloved Benjamin, she wrote on the back of a photo of Benjamin, is very fond of hot buttered toast. She said that he used to scamper quickly into the drawing room each time he heard the bell for tea.

Beatrix Potter's Peter Piper was actually a buck rabbit from Belgium that she and her brother bought when Peter was a baby. Beatrix described the rabbit as lying on the hearth rug before the fireplace much like a cat. He learned tricks very cleverly, jumping through a hoop, ringing a bell and playing the tambourine, according the Beatrix Potter.

Beatrix's Mrs. Tiggy-winkle was a pet hedgehog who author Potter described as a good traveler who enjoyed taking the train although with a great appetite. SpotSpot was a Spaniel pup and the Potter family's dog. SpotSpot was said to have enjoyed riding in the family carriage and tried to join every family ride. Dogs, however, were the most difficult of animals for Beatrix Potter to sketch, she admitted later. She sketched and wrote about the death of Xarifa, a pet mouse, which she referred to as the sweetest animal that she ever knew. Xarifa became a character in Beatrix Potter's book, The Fairy Caravan.
About the Author
Dustin Cannon is owner of JustArticlesVIP.com and writes on a variety of subjects. To learn more about this topic Dustin recommends you visit: Worldwideshoppingmall.co.uk
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