December 21, 2020

"Hitler's Alligator" to Be Displayed


"Hitler's Alligator" to Be Displayed
This is no ordinary alligator! Image by H. Zell via Wikimedia Commons

The animals at Moscow’s Zoo are much beloved, even extending into their deaths. In May 2020, an alligator at the Moscow Zoo passed away, and, thanks to his exciting history, his body has been stuffed by taxidermists and will be put on display at the State Darwin Museum.

The alligator, named Saturn, was 84 when he passed away this spring. He was born in the US and then moved to the Berlin Zoo in 1936. It is rumored that Saturn was part of Adolf Hitler’s personal collection. During World War II, Saturn escaped the zoo in a 1943 bomb raid. He was brought to Moscow three years later, where he was installed at the Moscow Zoo.

Now, after six months of taxidermy, Saturn is ready to be displayed in the State Darwin Museum in Moscow. He will be located with other North American wildlife, such as bison, raccoons, and porcupines.

“Each employee treats the newcomer with special reverence — no reptile in the museum has such a rich biography,” stated the State Darwin Museum. The museum is currently closed due to the coronavirus pandemic, but plans to reopen in January 2021, when visitors will be able to see Saturn in person.

You Might Also Like

The Amazing Life of Moscow's Gator
  • May 27, 2020

The Amazing Life of Moscow's Gator

Saturn, a Mississippi alligator, saw Hitler and survived the Battle of Berlin. A tribute to the Moscow Zoo's greatest reptile.
Alligator Tears
  • May 27, 2020

Alligator Tears

The Moscow Zoo laments the loss of an 84-year-old, WW2-veteran alligator.
Like this post? Get a weekly email digest + member-only deals

Some of Our Books

93 Untranslatable Russian Words

93 Untranslatable Russian Words

Every language has concepts, ideas, words and idioms that are nearly impossible to translate into another language. This book looks at nearly 100 such Russian words and offers paths to their understanding and translation by way of examples from literature and everyday life. Difficult to translate words and concepts are introduced with dictionary definitions, then elucidated with citations from literature, speech and prose, helping the student of Russian comprehend the word/concept in context.
The Frogs Who Begged for a Tsar

The Frogs Who Begged for a Tsar

The fables of Ivan Krylov are rich fonts of Russian cultural wisdom and experience – reading and understanding them is vital to grasping the Russian worldview. This new edition of 62 of Krylov’s tales presents them side-by-side in English and Russian. The wonderfully lyrical translations by Lydia Razran Stone are accompanied by original, whimsical color illustrations by Katya Korobkina.
Murder and the Muse

Murder and the Muse

KGB Chief Andropov has tapped Matyushkin to solve a brazen jewel heist from Picasso’s wife at the posh Metropole Hotel. But when the case bleeds over into murder, machinations, and international intrigue, not everyone is eager to see where the clues might lead.
Woe From Wit (bilingual)

Woe From Wit (bilingual)

One of the most famous works of Russian literature, the four-act comedy in verse Woe from Wit skewers staid, nineteenth century Russian society, and it positively teems with “winged phrases” that are essential colloquialisms for students of Russian and Russian culture.
Fearful Majesty

Fearful Majesty

This acclaimed biography of one of Russia’s most important and tyrannical rulers is not only a rich, readable biography, it is also surprisingly timely, revealing how many of the issues Russia faces today have their roots in Ivan’s reign.
Marooned in Moscow

Marooned in Moscow

This gripping autobiography plays out against the backdrop of Russia's bloody Civil War, and was one of the first Western eyewitness accounts of life in post-revolutionary Russia. Marooned in Moscow provides a fascinating account of one woman's entry into war-torn Russia in early 1920, first-person impressions of many in the top Soviet leadership, and accounts of the author's increasingly dangerous work as a journalist and spy, to say nothing of her work on behalf of prisoners, her two arrests, and her eventual ten-month-long imprisonment, including in the infamous Lubyanka prison. It is a veritable encyclopedia of life in Russia in the early 1920s.
The Moscow Eccentric

The Moscow Eccentric

Advance reviewers are calling this new translation "a coup" and "a remarkable achievement." This rediscovered gem of a novel by one of Russia's finest writers explores some of the thorniest issues of the early twentieth century.
The Little Humpbacked Horse

The Little Humpbacked Horse

A beloved Russian classic about a resourceful Russian peasant, Vanya, and his miracle-working horse, who together undergo various trials, exploits and adventures at the whim of a laughable tsar, told in rich, narrative poetry.

About Us

Russian Life is a publication of a 30-year-young, award-winning publishing house that creates a bimonthly magazine, books, maps, and other products for Russophiles the world over.

Latest Posts


Our Contacts

Russian Life
PO Box 567
Montpelier VT 05601-0567

802-223-4955