Tigers represent many different things to different cultures. However, they are almost always regarded with a sense of intrigue and respect. They are mysterious, powerful and cunning. It has only been since the 1800’s that the relationship between humans and tigers has been forced to become closer, since humans have entered the natural territory of these magnificent animals. Since this has happened, certain tigers have gained acclaim (or, sometimes, notoriety) within the human cultures. These may be real-life animals or those used in fairy tales. Whatever the case, there are a number of famous tigers all over the world.
Champawat – at the beginning of the 20th century, this tigress lived in Northern India. She stalked the plains and the areas inhabited and / or frequented by rural settlers in search of human prey. She is known for having killed an astounding 437 people, a true man-eater. In 1907, the well-known hunter, Jim Corbett, finally tracked and killed Champawat for the safety of those that lived within or near to her territory.
Mohan – it took Rewa Maharaja Martand Singh months of hunting to capture Mohan; the first living White Tiger ever to be found in nature. This beautiful specimen occupied the jungles of Rewa, Madhya Pradesh in India. After several failed attempts at breeding with Mohan, Singh was finally successful. Mohan is now believed to be the genetic forefather of White Tigers all over the world.
Sita – this exquisite tigress graced the cover of the National Geographic magazine several times, testifying to her beauty. Because of this, Sita has been thought, by some, to be the most photographed tiger in the world. Sita lived in the Bandhavgarh National Park and most of the tigers in this park today come from her, whether directly or indirectly. Sadly, Sita was killed by poachers.
Of course, some tigers gained their fame through the artist’s pen, existing only in the fictional worlds of our imagination. These tigers delight young and old alike, and keep the love and intrigue of such beautiful animals alive. Some famous fictional tigers include:
Tigger – perhaps the silliest of all the tigers, Tigger is one of the gang in the famous Winnie the Pooh stories. Tigger bounces around on his coiled-up tail, asks incessant questions and gets into mischief on a daily basis.
Shere Khan – The Jungle Book was one of literature’s most prized productions. Shere Khan was the tiger; an evil villain that sought to eat the young protagonist Mowgli, a human child that grew up in the jungle with the animals.
Rajah – Jasmine, the princess in Aladdin, faced serious threat. Rajah was her loyal body guard, ensuring her safety and proving to be a good friend.
Tiger Tim – as far back as 1904, tigers like Tiger Tim were entertaining readers. Tiger Tim was the first comic tiger and was in the cartoon strip called Mrs Hippo’s Kindergarten, which was published in a British newspaper.
Tony the Tiger – Tony the Tiger is the ‘mascot’ for some of the Kellogg’s sub-brands (such as Frosted Flakes®).