A E Hodge, Editor of the Aquarist, and his book ‘Peeps at the” Zoo” Aquarium’. The ‘Peeps at Nature’ Series

The latest issue of Archives of Natural History, the journal of the Society for the History of Natural History, has a great deal of information on the ‘Peeps at Nature’ 17-volume series published between 1911 and 1932 and its editor and principal author, the Reverend Charles A Hall (1872-1965)*. The whole series was aimed at stimulating the interest of young naturalists.

The author of the paper, PG Moore writes:

Albert Ernest Hodge’s volume Peeps at the “Zoo” Aquarium (1927), based on the aquarium at London Zoo, seems the most eccentric contribution to Hall’s series. Hodge, a Fellow of the Zoological Society of London, went on to write more on aquarist theme (for example, Hodge and Derham, 1931) and had previously written on collecting Lepidoptera (Hodge, 1919).

Also getting a mention is W. Harold Cotton (William Harold Cotton, 1906-1987) from King’s Heath Birmingham who wrote Aquaria and Garden Ponds in the ‘Peeps at Nature’ series. Cotton was a regular contributor to the Aquarist and advertised his services as an ‘icthyonotomist’ which I think meant that he would examine an aquarist’s dead fish to see what parasites they had carried and to identify the cause of death.

This cutting is from the the Aquarist’s Silver Jubillee issue of May 1949:



*Moore PG. 2015. Peeping at nature with the Reverend Charles A Hall FRMS (1872-1965). Archives of Natural History 42, 10-22.


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