Edward James Corbett (1875 - 1955) was an Indian-born British hunter, conservationist and naturalist, famous for hunting a large number of man-eating tigers and leopards in India.
In 1947 Corbett and his sister Maggie retired to Kenya, where he continued to write. Jim Corbett was at Tree Tops, a hut built on the branches of a giant ficus tree, when Princess Elizabeth stayed there in February 1952, at the time of the death of her father King George VI. He was also a director of Safariland Ltd and a mentor to many young hunters.
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My India by Jim Corbett (1952) is the autobiography of Corbett who spent a lifetime in India among the poor villagers in the Himalayan foot-hills and among the labourers while he was employed by the Bengal and Northwestern Railway at Mokameh Ghat as a Trans-shipment Officer from the late 1890s to the beginning of the First World War.
The Temple Tiger by Jim Corbett (1954) was published with 'More Man-Eaters of Kumaon'. It is the last of Colonel Jim Corbett's books on his unique and enthralling hunting experiences in India. Corbett saves his best story of all for the long concluding chapter in this volume, describing, in The Talla Des Man-Eater, how he embarked on what he feared might be a fatal last test of skill and endurance. As always, he writes with an acute awareness of all jungle sights and sounds, choosing words charged with a great love of humanity, birds, and animals. His calm and straightforward modesty heightens the excitement and suspense of these experiences, in which he continuously risks his life to free the Indian tarai of dangerous man-eaters.
More Man-Eaters Of Kumaon by Jim Corbett (1954) was published with 'The Temple Tiger'.
Jungle Lore by Jim Corbett (1953) is about all the jungle lore that Corbett learned in a lifetime of stalking tigers in the jungles of India.
The Man-Eating Leopard Of Rudraprayag by Jim Corbett (1948). Man-eating leopards are rare and when according to official government records 125 people were viciously killed and eaten, Corbett began a search for it which seemed impossible. Government employees caught it once only to have it escape through its cunning. Corbett set out to stop it and this is the remarkable story. Free eBook
Tree Tops by Jim Corbett (1955) was his last book before he died in 1955. In February 1952 he was a member of Princess Elizabeth and Prince Philip's group at 'Tree Tops', when as he remarks, "She climbed into a tree a Princess and came down the next day a Queen".
My Kumaon: Uncollected Writings by Jim Corbett (2012) is a collection of Jim Corbett's unpublished writings on man-eaters, nature, his beloved Kumaon, personal letters, articles written for newspapers and gazettes by his contemporaries, and letters exchanged between Corbett and his publisher. It highlights Corbett's engagement with the times in which he lived, his complete empathy with the people of Kumaon, his great understanding of tigers and leopards, and also the gradual development of his ideas about conservation and the need to preserve the tiger and its habitat.
Carpet Sahib: A Life Of Jim Corbett by Martin Booth (1990). Is a rather sensationalised and inaccurate biography of big-game hunter and conservationist, Jim Corbett. Corbett was a big-game hunter in India, notably of tigers, who was instrumental in the establishment of the first Indian tiger reserve.
Rhino Road: The Black And White Rhinos Of Africa by Martin Booth (1992) is a naturalist's study of the two species of African rhinoceros, the white and the black. Aimed at the layman and animal lover as well as the naturalist and conservationist, the book affords a deep insight into the life and times of this animal.Includes encounters with rhinos by hunters as well as conservationists.
Gentleman Hunter: Retracing Jim Corbett's Hunts For The Great Man-Eating Cats Of India And Nepal by Peter Byrne (2007) retraces Jim Corbett's hunts for the famous man-eating tigers and leopards of India and Nepal. Peter Byrne is an ex-professional big game hunter who lived and hunted man-eaters in the same areas as Corbett did so many years ago and who actually went to the places where Jim Corbett shot his man-eaters. 'Gentleman Hunter' is full of stories that illustrate the bravery and valour that exemplified Corbett the man and Corbett the hunter.
Shikari Sahib by Peter Byrne (2002) is the same book as 'Gentleman Hunter' which is the US published deluxe version.
Hunting In The Mountains And Jungles Of Nepal by Peter Byrne (2012) is a collection of stories and anecdotes from some of the seventy-two shikars Peter Byrne conducted in the 1950s and 1960s for tigers and other Nepalese game which he considers his most memorable hunts.
Gone Are The Days: Jungle Hunting For Tigers And Other Game In India And Nepal, 1948-1969 by Peter Byrne (2001) is the account of the author's adventures in India and Nepal hunting tigers, elephants and leopards. He hunted tiger right up till the closure of tiger hunting in 1969. His exploits in the Terai (forested southlands of Nepal) included encountering a man-eating tiger which was eventually killed by a train. This is the story about a time that now is completely gone, when tigers, gaurs, leopards, sambar deer and many other jungle denizens were plentiful.
Tracking Jim: A Hunt In Corbett Country by Prosenjit Das Gupta (2005) is a detailed biography and reappraisal of the life of Jim Corbett of Kumaon, by an enthusiast intimately connected with that region of India. Readable and interesting. Corbett actually shot his first man-eater when he was ten.
Jim Corbett's India by R E Hawkins (1978) is about Corbett's career as a hunter of man-eaters - whether leopard or tiger - which stretched from 1907 to 1939. The books in which he described both these expeditions and his daily life in the northern India of those years were best sellers. This is a selection of his writings taken from Man-eaters of Kumaon, My India and Jungle Lore.
No Beast So Fierce: The Terrifying True Story Of The Champawat Tiger, The Deadliest Animal In History by Dane Huckelbridge (2019) is an account of the Champawat tiger, which took 436 lives in northern India and Nepal from 1900 to 1907, and Jim Corbett, the legendary hunter who pursued it. A possibly more accurate account of this tiger will be found in Jim Corbett's own book 'Man-Eaters Of Kumaon'.
Under The Shadow Of Man Eaters: The Life & Legend Of Jim Corbett Of Kumaon by Jerry Jaleel (1997) is the only authenticated biography of Corbett, written after an extensive research spanning 35 years by contacting Corbett's surviving friends and relatives. The author is also the founder of the Jim Corbett Foundation.
On Jim Corbett's Trail And Other Tales From Tree-Tops by A J T Johnsingh (2004). Dr A J T Johnsingh grew up near the forests around the Western Ghats, he devoured the stories of Jim Corbett at a local library and was hooked. Since then, he has had a long and eminent career in wildlife biology. In the forests of the Himalayan foothills he has tracked tigers and elephants, observing individual animals over many months. He has returned to all the places Jim Corbett wrote of in his famous stories of maneating tigers and documented the changes.The essays in this book convey the beauty and thrill of Indian forests and their wildlife to the non-specialist. Dr Johnsingh takes us for walks in the jungle with him and in each essay he tracks a different animal and tells us not only of his experiences, but also of the habits, biology and current condition of the species he is discussing.
Jim Corbett Of India: Life & Legend Of A Messiah by Anand S Khati (2003). A detailed biography of Jim Corbett with much of his correspondence reprinted, as well as something of the current tiger conservation effort in India and what it owes to Corbett. The author devotes a lot of space to recounting many of the good works and acts of kindness done by Corbett in his lifetime. Fascinating and slightly bonkers.
Jim Corbett: Portrait Of An Artist by N K Singh (1991) is a painstaking effort to bring out the literary values of Jim Corbett's books and to give them artistic perspective.
Click here to buy the 2002 movie DVD Kingdom of the Tiger inspired by the writings of Jim Corbett.