In 1805 the young Lord Byron, a new undergraduate at Cambridge University, was annoyed to find that he was not allowed to keep a dog in his rooms. So he bought a bear instead. And that might have been the end of it – except that Daisy was no ordinary bear.
Three years later, thanks entirely to her unsparing efforts, the idle and dissolute young poet left Cambridge with a Master of Arts degree under his belt, and Daisy set out on a career as a scholar, entertainer, navigator and statesbear. As Napoleon’s armies swept over Europe, it was a time when history was being made. She fought beside the future Duke of Wellington, gave wise advice to the Tsar of Russia and Sir Stamford Raffles, unfortunately rescued John Bellingham who was later to shoot the British Prime Minister, and in company with an eccentric Russian aristocrat took a ship through the icy Northeast Passage for the first time.
This is her diary, written over seven momentous years that shaped the modern world.