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After 1851The Material and Visual Cultures of the Crystal Palace at Sydenham$
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Kate Nichols and Sarah Victoria Turner

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780719096495

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9780719096495.001.0001

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Dinosaurs Don’t Die: the Crystal Palace monsters in children’s literature, 1854–2001

Dinosaurs Don’t Die: the Crystal Palace monsters in children’s literature, 1854–2001

(p.159) 8 Dinosaurs Don’t Die: the Crystal Palace monsters in children’s literature, 1854–2001
After 1851

Shelley Hales

Nic Earle

, Kate Nichols, Sarah Victoria Turner
Manchester University Press

Dinosaurs Don’t Die, claimed the title of Ann Coates’ 1970 children’s book. Coates’ prose, and the charming illustrations by John Vernon Lord which accompanied it, wondered what would happen if the antediluvian monsters from the Crystal Palace came back to life. In fact, the prehistoric creatures had already refused to die: first resurrected by Benjamin Waterhouse Hawkins and Richard Owen in the early 1850s they had survived the 1936 fire to become Sydenham’s only remaining display. The monsters have lived on, both on a set of South East London islands, but also in many children’s books from the mid-nineteenth to the early twenty-first centuries. In this article I track how the Crystal Palace monsters fit into the evolution of more general representations of extinct creatures in children’s books and exhibitions over the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

Keywords:   Dinosaurs, Children’s literature, Education, Fiction, Geology, Benjamin Waterhouse Hawkins

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