Born Free: The Full Story
Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub
The fiftieth anniversary edition of the classic story of Elsa the lioness and the woman who cared for her. Fifty years ago Joy Adamson first introduced to the world the story of her life alongside Elsa the lioness, whom she had rescued as an orphaned cub, and raised at her home in Kenya. But as Elsa had been born free, Joy made the heartbreaking decision that she must be returned to the wild when she was old enough to fend for herself. Since the first publication of Born Free and its sequels Living Free and Forever Free, generations of readers have been enchanted, inspired and moved by these books uplifting charm and the remarkable interaction between Joy and Elsa. Millions have also come to know and love Born Free through the immortal film starring Virginia McKenna and Bill Travers. But here is the chance to rediscover the original story in this 50th anniversary edition, in the words of the woman who reared Elsa and walked with the lions.
wished I could explain to him that when his mother was a tiny cub I had been able to teach her to control her claws, and that was why I could play with her fearlessly, but not with him. The following day the same thing happened: Jespah wanted a game and I wanted to play with him, but when I came within reach of his claws I was obliged to break off. Elsa watched the scene from the top of the Land Rover. She seemed to be aware of Jespah’s disappointment at my cautious behaviour, for she came down
few paces and then lie down again. All my attempts to make her drink failed. At about eleven at night she moved into my tent near the studio and lay there for an hour. Then she got up, walked slowly down to the river, waded in and stood there for several minutes making attempts to drink but unable to swallow. Eventually, she returned to my tent and again lay down in it. The cubs came to the tent and Jespah nuzzled his mother, but she did not respond. At about a quarter to two in the morning,
Little Elsa was limping badly, probably from a thorn in one of her pads, but as she was as wild as ever he could do nothing to help her. The cubs were now in excellent condition. Jespah still carried the arrowhead in his rump, but it did not appear to cause him any discomfort or interfere with his movements. They had recovered their trust in George and were quite at ease as he walked amongst them while they fed, refilling their water bowl and their pie dishes of cod-liver oil. Nor was it only
Elsa would drive them in proper lion fashion. After spotting them, she would turn off at right angles down wind, crouching with her belly close to the ground, every muscle quivering, until she had encircled the herd, then she would drive it towards us. No doubt we were expected to wait in ambush and kill the victims she had so cleverly rounded up for us. Other animals also attracted her attention; for instance, one day she sniffed the air and then dashed into a thick bush. Soon afterwards we
which he had recently seen near a poacher’s hideout. Both spoors were superimposed on the tyre marks of George’s car. Plainly the poachers were keeping an eye on our movements, and no doubt, having heard George’s car go off, had next morning come to reconnoitre. How disappointed they must have been to discover that I was still in residence. It was now over a fortnight since the fierce lioness had attacked Elsa and except for the occasion when the Game Scout had found her in the bush, she had