This is the marble Lion of Frank C Bostock. It is probably one of the most well known landmarks in Abney Park Cemetery. You can't really miss it as it's the only grave that is shining white and the lion is breathtakingly beautiful.
When we were there we were told by a lovely lady dog walker that we should touch the Lion's nose or Paw and make a wish. We wished the Lion a peaceful sleep, in return for him granting our own wishes.
As you can probably tell I was fascinated by this majestic Lion and decided to do some research into Mr Frank C.
. To my excitement it turned out that Frank C. Bostock was infact 'The Animal King' and founder of Bostocks menagerie, which would later become Bostocks and Wombells travelling show.
You can read more about him here.
As much as I do not agree with wild animals being kept in captivity in any shape or form, I can't help but be fascinated by these early travelling menageries.
Particuarly with Frank's ability to train so many different breeds and types of animals. It is said that he did so with much kindness and that was the key to his success.
He is quoted as saying " Kindness is the whip used to lead dumb animals to obey".
He also maintained that the animals were his love, passion and hobby and not just a buisness proposition.
Linus the Oreggon wonder horse and his 13ft double mane.
If you have the time I would recommend reading more about him here. It is a lengthy but a fascinating read.
This video shows the animals being taken to Whipsnade Zoo when the travelling menagerie finally retired. Can you imagine what an amazing sight it would have been to watch them walk the streets like that.
Frank C. Bostock wrote a book on how to train wild animals, if you fancy having a go yourself you can actually still buy it here .... ;)
Hope you have all had wonderful weekends. xx
Please let me know if you would like me to credit any of them and I will be happy to do so.