I meant to post this earlier, but there are still several days left: Gale is allowing free access to their reference databases this week (April 18-24). Here‘s the “portal” from which you can enter the four categories: History, Biography and Literature, Business and Law, General Knowledge, and Student/Homework Help. The most exciting database for me is the Times Digital Archive 1785-1985. I did a search on “kangaroo” between 1785 and 1800 and got 36 hits, the first of which was a classified ad from the front page of the Wednesday, Nov 16, 1791 edition:
THE WONDERFUL KANGAROO FROM BOTANY BAY.
AMost beautiful and healthy Animal, in a state of perfect tameness, and entirely free from every kind of blemish, is now exhibiting at No. 31, the Top of the Haymarket. Admittance One Shilling each.
It is not easy to describe that peculiarity of attitudes, and uncommon proportion of parts which so strikingly distinguish the Kangaroo from all other Quadrupedes; and it may be presumed, that few who possess a taste for science, or a laudable curiosity of inspecting the Wonders of Nature, will omit embracing the only opportunity hitherto offered in Europe of viewing this singular Native of the Southern Hemisphere, in its natural state of vigour and activity.
To the left, in the (doubtless most expensive) upper left-hand corner, is a Drury-Lane Company ad for the evening’s performance of “The Inconstant” (“To which will be added the Historical Romance of RICHARD COEUR DE LION”); to the right a publication notice for “THE FEMALE GENIAD; a POEM, in THREE CANTOS. By ELIZABETH OGILVY BENGER, Of Portsmouth.” I don’t know how I lived without this until now, or how I’ll do without it after Saturday, but for now I’m happy as can be.