Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania: Stuffed Lion Attacks Camel and Man

A poor camel (and human camel-driver) are about to become lunch for hungry Mr. Lion. A triumph of 19th century shock taxidermy. Restoration in 2017 revealed a real human skull inside the driver's head!

Carnegie Museum of Natural History

Address:
4400 Forbes Ave., Pittsburgh, PA
Directions:
In the first floor entry hall of the Carnegie Museum of Natural History. East of downtown, on the south side of Forbes Ave., at the corner of Forbes and S. Bellefield Aves.
Hours:
Su-M, W-Sa 10-5; Th 10-8 (Call to verify)
Phone:
412-622-3131
Admission:
Adults $20, Children 3-18 $12
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Visitor Tips and News About Stuffed Lion Attacks Camel and Man

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Lion vs. camel and rider.

Lion Attacks Camel and Man

The diorama is still a major attraction at the Carnegie Museum of Natural History. Formerly in the second floor Hall of African Wildlife, a recent renovation moved it to the first floor entry hall. A postcard and small history book about it are sold in the gift shop.

[Andrew McLaughlin, 04/04/2018]

Lion attacks camel and rider.

Diorama of Lion Attacking a Camel

"High Drama in the North African Desert" is a diorama created by French taxidermist and naturalist Jules Verreaux in 1867. It depicts a now extinct subspecies of Barbary lion attacking a very distraught-looking camel with an equally distraught Arab courier on the camel's back. As an innocent youth some 50 years ago, I remember seeing a picture of the diorama in an encyclopedia and thinking "Ewwwww!" I was surprised to stumble across the actual diorama a half-century later, and I still thought "Ewwwww!"

[John Takao Collier, 02/14/2016]

For years the diorama was named, "Arab Courier Attacked by Lions." Museum founder Andrew Carnegie bought it for $50 after it had been showcased at the Paris Exposition Universelle. In 2017 its named was changed again, to "Lion Attacking a Dromedary," and it was revealed that the man's head contained a real human skull.

Nearby Offbeat Places

Dippy the DinosaurDippy the Dinosaur, Pittsburgh, PA - < 1 mi.
Stephen Foster's Horse JawboneStephen Foster's Horse Jawbone, Pittsburgh, PA - < 1 mi.
Ten-Story-Tall Pole With People Walking Up ItTen-Story-Tall Pole With People Walking Up It, Pittsburgh, PA - < 1 mi.
In the region:
U.S.S. Requin, Cold War Sub, Pittsburgh, PA - 4 mi.

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