See a Gorgeous Book on the Animal Kingdom From 1895
In 1895's Popular History of Animals for Young People, author Henry Scherren opens with a clear objective:
"The object of this book is to give a short account of the Animal Kingdom in clear and simple language. The book being intended chiefly for young people, no formal classification has been given, and popular names have been used throughout. But the main divisions of the Animal Kingdom have been plainly indicated; and modern classification has been practically followed. The Author's aim has been to write in such fashion that the book may serve to waken or quicken, interest in the observation of the habits of the lower animals, and as an introduction to the study of their relations to us and to each other."
The journey from "Man" (chapter two) to the "The Oldest and Simplest Animals" (chapter 30) contains lovely, detailed illustrations both in simple black and white, and full color. The entire text can be found at Archive.org, but you can scroll down here for a look at the book's colorful depictions of our planet's wide-ranging cast of creatures. It's a zoological deep dive that you don't have to be a kid to enjoy.