Animals of the Bible by Dorothy P. Lathrop – 1937 Caldecott Medal

Animals of the Bible by Dorothy P. Lathrop – 1937 Caldecott Medal

Animals of the Bible received the first Caldecott Medal award.  The text is simply Scripture passages involving animals out of the Old King James version.  While I enjoy reading these verses and thinking about them from the perspective of the animals involved, the illustrations do not accurately depict some of text.  After looking through this book, I chose to not read this book to my children because I do not want them to be confused with the memory of these lovely pictures and the true descriptions in the words.  For instance, the awe-inspiring drawing of a hippopotamus with the passage out of Job which describes a creature with a large tail is misleading.  The black and white, line and stippling illustrations are lovely, but I would suggest that parents carefully choose which of these stories to read to their children from this book.

Caldecott Criteria:
1. “Excellence of execution in the artistic technique employed.” – The black and white, line and stippling illustrations are detailed and majestic.
2. “Excellence of pictorial interpretation of story, theme, or concept.” – Some of the pictures accurately depict the stories, but others do not.
3. “Appropriateness of style of illustration to the story, theme or concept.” – The illustrations do seem to fit the wording in the Old King James version of the Bible.
4. “Delineation of plot, theme, characters, setting, mood or information through the pictures.” – Really no plot or mood, but the settings are well portrayed.  Some characters and information are unclear and unfaithful to the text.
5. “Excellence of presentation in recognition of a child audience.” – Due to a lack of color and objects being a smaller size, many of the illustrations are probably not effective for children today.
Age Range: 3-10
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