‘Watership Down’ author Richard Adams has died at age 96

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

English novelist Richard Adams holding a pet mouse, 3rd March 1974. (Photo by Tom Smith/Daily Express/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

LONDON — The daughter of British author Richard Adams, whose 1972 book “Watership Down” became a classic of children’s literature, says her father has died at age 96.

Juliet Johnson told The Associated Press on Tuesday that Adams died on Christmas Eve.

A statement on the official website for “Watership Down” said Adams’ children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren announced his death “with sadness.”

His tale about the plight of rabbits whose home was under threat was published in 1972 and became an astonishing success.

Adams dreamed up the elements of the novel while working as a civil servant and telling his daughters Juliet and Rosamond bedtime stories about rabbits.

The book has since sold tens of millions of copies and was made into a film, with a remake scheduled for next year.