Nicholas Jone was an Italian merchant during the fifteenth century married to an Englishwoman. Like most men of his time he realised that patronage was essential. In 1442 or early in 1443 he went to Turkey and he came home with gifts – three camels and a turkey (bet he was popular during the voyage.). Henry VI was delighted with the new additions to the royal menagerie and gifted Jone the office of the brokerage of the exchanges and securities of carracks, ships, and galleys coming to England – if I’m honest I think I can see who got the better end of the deal.
They were not the only camels and ostriches to be given as gifts. Edward IV was presented with a camel and in 1472 sent to Ulster, ‘She resembled a mare and was of a yellow colour’.1
1 The Irish Digest, vol 36, issues 1-3, 1950, p.84