1878 – The Mastiff

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“The Mastiff – by Harrison Weir” is a full page book plate image, taken from the “Chatterbox Album of Animals”, published by W.W.Gardner, circa 1878. The short anecdote accompanying the illustration, relays a rather amazing story, and reads as follows:  “No one in Paris knew who had murdered Aubrey de Montdidier.  It was known that he had been murdered, for his remains had been discovered in the forest. Aubrey’s mastiff had attached himself to an old friend of his master’s. Whenever the dog met Macaire he showed the strongest signs of dislike. Now Aubrey and Macaire had been deadly enemies. This fact, coupled with the dog’s ill-will, made people suspect Macaire. He was arrested, and it was decreed that he should fight the mastiff, it being the custom for one suspected of murder to fight the murdered man’s champion. So Macaire and the mastiff met and fought. Justice prevailed. Macaire fainted away through fatigue, and when his eyes opened he confessed his crime.”

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Detail: The Mastiff, by Harrison Weir       Book Cover: Chatterbox Album of Animals

Detail: 1878 – The Mastiff                                      Book Cover:  Chatterbox Album of Animals, 1878

Detail: The Mastiff, by Harrison Weir       Detail: The Mastiff, by Harrison Weir

Details: 1878 – The Mastiff                                     (Last detail with artist’s signature in plate)

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