Edinburgh has a nice zoo; but one of the animals has a distinction that sets him apart from the others: he was knighted. His name is Sir Nils Olav.
The story begins when the Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen brought back a king penguin for the Edinburgh zoo. He became the nucleus of the penguin exhibit. Back in 1961, near the fiftieth anniversary of the gift, the Norwegian Royal Guards came back for a visit. One of them, Nils, suggested that they adopt one of the penguins at the zoo as a mascot. Accordingly, he was given the rank of lance corporal.
King Olav V of Norway loved the idea, and the penguin was named Nils Olav. He, and successor penguins, rose in the ranks until the present Nils Olav (the third one to bear that name) was given the rank of Colonel-in-Chief of the Royal Guard. And King Harald V knighted him Sir Nils Olav, declaring him in every way qualified for knighthood! Not bad for a resident of Scotland!
|Here's Sir Nils reviewing the troops.|