A jungle girl (so-called, but usually adult woman) is an archetype or stock character, often used in popular fiction, of a female adventurer, superhero or even a damsel in distress living in a jungle or rainforest setting. An alternate depiction is a cave girl.
Jungle girls are generally depicted as wearing either a scanty animal print (usually leopard) bikini or some type of jungle dress made from fur, leather, or sometimes vegetation. Most are barefoot, while some are shown in primitive shoes. Some are feral children; some come from a wealthy, educated family who grew up in the jungle. Others come to visit, whether by accident or design, and decide to stay and serve as protectors of the land and local tribes. They are the female counterpart of Tarzanesque characters. They are depicted either as a tough heroine, perhaps a jungle queen, or as a bound and gagged damsel in distress to be rescued by a male, loincloth-wearing hero.
A prototypical version of the jungle girl was the ancient but eternally youthful sorceress Ayesha in H. Rider Haggard's She: A History of Adventure (1886). The first forest-dwelling character in fiction was Rima from W. H. Hudson's 1904 novel Green Mansions. One popular character, adapted into various media, is Sheena, Queen of the Jungle, who, though created by American writer-artists Will Eisner and Jerry Iger, made her debut in the British magazine Wags #46 (1937). Sheena went on to star in the American comic book anthology series Jumbo Comics the following year.
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