Stuffed

Washing machine repairer, Paddy Devlin, took a glass-cased, stuffed dog along to the Antiques Roadshow when it recently visited Hillsborough Castle near his hometown of Lisburn in Northern Ireland.

victorian_taxidermy_chihuahua_late_19th_century_Christies_01aTaxidermy Chihuahua, possibly by John Hancock, late nineteenth-century. (Christie’s)

“Ooh”, purred the antiques specialist, Elaine Binning. “This is an exceptional and rare taxidermy Chihuahua mounted by the celebrated Newcastle-upon-Tyne taxidermist, John Hancock. Hancock exhibited at the 1851 Great Exhibition at the Crystal Palace in London and is considered the father of modern taxidermy. He was much celebrated during the Victorian era, securing commissions from the Duke of Westminster and the Duke of Portland for their collections and many private orders too. Do you have any idea what the little dog would fetch if it were in good condition?”

Paddy leant back to better focus on Elaine’s face, stared at her for a moment and curtly replied “Sticks!”

Jack Plane

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About Jack Plane

Formerly from the UK, Jack is a retired antiques dealer and self-taught woodworker, now living in Australia.
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12 Responses to Stuffed

  1. hughjengine says:

    Huzzah!

    Like

  2. Rick Lapp says:

    Thanks!

    Like

  3. Eric R says:

    “Sticks” !
    Great one !

    Like

  4. Jonathan Miller says:

    Rats!

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    • Jack Plane says:

      I once saw a rat embarrass a Chihuahua.

      JP

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    • Tim Shaw says:

      Sticks are more like it for this little fella. Jack Rusells are the ones for rats. There’s a similar stuffed terrier named Shorts in a case at Audley End. I’ve only seen him in the guidebook, though – he was being conserved when we were there.

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      • Jack Plane says:

        Being that Audley End is in Essex, I would have expected some sort of Pit Bull mongrel rather than a Chihuahua.

        JP

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        • Tim Shaw says:

          Not a Chihuahua or a pit bull mongrel either. Some sort of stout little terrier like a cairn. He belonged to one of the Earls. English Heritage’s site is cluttered up with pictures of costumed role-players and doesn’t mention Shorts at all, which I think is a shame. I don’t think of Essex as pit bull land. Is it?

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  5. dzj9 says:

    If it fits in a snow globe, it ain’t a dog.

    Like

  6. RobinWire says:

    Once when I was walking down the street with a 2 years old, he pointed at a handbag dog and said “look at that cat on a lead”. Kids say what we are all thinking.

    Like

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