1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Serval
SERVAL (Felis serval), an African wildcat, ranging from Algeria to the Cape. It is of medium size, with long limbs, short tail, and tawny fur spotted with black; the head and body may measure 40 in. and the tail 16 in. Messrs Nicolls and Eglington, joint authors of The Sportsman in South Africa, state that the serval is fairly common in South Central Africa, frequenting the thick bush near rivers, and preying on the smaller antelopes, guinea-fowls and francolins. The mantles made from its skin are reserved for chiefs and dignitaries of native tribes. Serval kittens can be tamed with little trouble, but are difficult to rear.