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Dr. Dolittle
DrDolittle

Real Name

Dr. John Dolittle

First Appearance

The Story of Doctor Dolittle (1920)

Original Publisher

Frederick A. Stokes

Created by

Hugh Lofting

Origin

John Dolittle was a medical doctor and quiet bachelor living with his spinster sister, Sarah, in the little town of Puddleby-on-the-Marsh in the West Country of England. His love for animals resulted in his household becoming the home of a large menagerie, that eventually scared off his human clients (and his sister). After learning to speak to animals in their own language with the help of his parrot Polynesia, the good doctor decides to open a veterinary practice.

Eventually, Dolittle's compassion and ability to speak to animals results in him gaining a great reputation amongst animals around the world. Eventually, he is summoned to Africa to cure a monkey epidemic. Unfortunately, Dolittle's reputation among animals has not translated into financial success with humans, and facing bankruptcy, he borrows supplies and a ship to head for Africa.

Dolittle has a number of adventures involving pirates and the natives of Jolliginki, who are skeptical of the intentions of white men. However, he is successful in helping to stop the monkey epidemic, and as a result, the monkeys give him a rare pushmi-pullyu, a shy two-headed gazelle-unicorn cross. Upon his return to England, he takes the pushmi-pullyu on tour with the circus and regains some of his fortune.

Later, Dolittle takes up a quest to find a man named Long Arrow, who is purported to be the greatest naturalist in the world. The quest takes Dolittle around the world, with fantastic adventures in the Mediterranea region, South America, on the mysterious floating island of Spidermonkey Island, and even underwater!

Powers and Abilities

In addition to being a skilled physician, Dolittle could communicate with nearly any kind of animal. He also spoke Spanish. He was described as a "round" man, but he also demonstrated some athleticism. He was generally not a violent man, often demonstrating great compassion and making friends and allies along the way.

Public Domain Appearances

Literary

  • The Story of Doctor Dolittle (1920)
  • The Voyages of Doctor Dolittle (1922)
  • Doctor Dolittle's Post Office (1923)
  • Doctor Dolittle's Circus (1924)
  • Doctor Dolittle's Zoo (1925)

See Also

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