`Translated from the equine', as the title page of the first edition announces, Black Beauty is one of the most celebrated of all animal stories. The account of a horse's experience at the hands of many owners, it describes the excitements of Black Beauty's early life - escape from a blazing stable, narrow avoidance of a flood, and more than one ride on desperate errands of mercy. The horse's later years are a moving record of injury, ill-treatment, and decline, reversed at last by an idyllic ending. First published in November 1877, the book had sold over 100,000 copies by the time of Anna Sewell's death in April 1878. The author intended the book to be an admonishment to horse owners in a period when England contained an enormous population of working horses and cruelty was commonplace. Yet Black Beauty succeeds as a dramatic and compelling story while effectively fulfilling its humanitarian purpose. This book is intended for general readers, especially those interested in horses or animal welfare. Also children, students of 19th century literature and popular literature, postgraduate and undergraduate students of children's literature and student teachers of English.