Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) at
Dublin Zoo in Ireland

dead elephant ☨ ♂ Prince  dead elephant

Alternative name: Tommy
Taxidermy locationTrinity’ College Zoological Museum, , United Kingdom


EEP nr671


Species:Asian elephant (Elephas maximus)
Sex and age:Male ♂

People killed:1: William Paton
Born:* wild
Birth place: in Asia unspecified location
Dead: 1882
Death reason: unknown:
Locations - owners
Present / last location:Dublin Zoo, in Ireland

Date of arrival

Dublin Zoo
from Sandringham Zoo

1871-08-25Sandringham Zoo
from London Zoo

1871-06-03London Zoo
from Duke Alfred of Edinburgh

1871-00-00Duke Alfred of Edinburgh
from Jung Bahadur Rana (Bir Narsingh Kunwar)

Record history
History of updates2021-09-02

Latest document update2021-07-03 12:02:39
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† Prince is a dead Male ♂ Asian elephant (Elephas maximus), , who died 1882 at Dublin Zoo, in Ireland, .

Museum locationThe Museum specimen remains of this animal is within the collection at Trinity’ College Zoological Museum, in , United Kingdom, since 1882-00-00.


Prince was born wild at Asia unspecified location.

Comments / pictures

Records about Prince from EEPEuropean Studbook for Asian elephants state following records for the asian elephant Prince:

671 M ~ Jul 1867 UNK UNK PUBLIC ~ Jan 1871 NONE Transfer TOMMY/PRIN
LONDON RP ~15 Jun 1871 935 Loan to
PUBLIC 25 Aug 1871 NONE ltf Transfer

Source: EEP studbook for Asian elephants online

Tom was a gift from Jang Bahadur of Nepal to Alfred, Duke of Edinbourgh, in March 1871, and was shipped out of Calcutta on the ship H.M.S. Galatea, where the duke was commander. The first week, Tom was cared for by his Indian mahout, who left the ship in Madras, later by a corproral of the marine artillery, Mr. William Paton.

On arrival in Plymouth, William Paton was assisted by two gentlemen from London Zoo, C. Bartlett and Mr Smart.

Paton managed to get the elephant onboard the train, but after the train reached full speed, Tom pannicked and crushed the wall between him and his keeper. When trying to keep him back, Paton was crushed against a wall, and died later, before the train arrived in London.

Tom was later brought to Dublin Zoo, where his owner, the Duke of Edinburgh also came to visit him.

Prince Tom gave rides on a Howdah and ‘purchased’ buns from the shop with coins provided by visitors.

Colourful reports in the newspapers suggested that Prince Tom was a docile animal who was relaxed and safe with visitors. This was not true because, on more than one occasion, he had ‘broken loose and endangered himself and others’.

When the Duke of Edinburgh asked that Prince Tom be brought around to the Viceregal Lodge where he was staying on a brief visit, the council had to admit that the elephant was too dangerous for such a walk.

Prince Tom lived in Dublin Zoo until 1882 but his last years were spent in the restricted area of his house and a small yard. When he died, he was drawn on a float to Trinity College Department of Anatomy where he was dissected with the aid of shears, ropes and pulleys. His Skeleton is now in Trinity College Zoological Museum.

How Dublin zoo has morphed, by Catherine de Courcy
Reference list


Koehl, Dan, (2024). Prince, Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) located at Dublin Zoo in Ireland. Elephant Encyclopedia, available online retrieved 25 July 2024 at (archived at the Wayback machine)

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Categories1882 deaths | Trinity’ College Zoological Museum Taxidermy | EEP | Elephants from Dublin Zoo | Ireland | Mankillers | Asian elephants

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