Staffordshire figures of a tiger and a lion, titled "The Death of a Negro" and "The Roaming Lion"
Lot 31*
A remarkable pair of Staffordshire models of a tiger and a lion, circa 1830
Sold for £8,750 (US$ 14,707) inc. premium
Lot Details
A remarkable pair of Staffordshire models of a tiger and a lion, circa 1830
Of Obadiah Sherratt type on distinctive 'Table Bases', the lion naturalistically modelled with a tan coat and grey mane, standing to the right, its front left paw resting on a ball, the base with two plaques titled 'The Roring Lion (sic)', the tiger with a yellow coat painted in black with leopard spots, standing to the left with its mouth open, the base titled 'The death of a negro', the bases enamelled in bright green and grey, 33.3cm and 32cm wide (some restoration to bases, two teeth of lion restored, the mouth of the tiger restored and a figure apparently lacking) (2)


  • The model of the tiger is most unusual with its inscription on the base, and it is presumed this originally held a figure of a native in its mouth. The tiger was apparently modelled as part of the celebrated Obadiah Sherratt group of the 'Death of Munrow' where the tiger attacks a British officer. The same tiger is occasionally found as an individual model, see Myrna Schkolne, People, Pastimes and Pleasures (2006), p 37, where the model is shown on a similar table base. The colouring of the present lot, using leopard spots rather than tiger stripes is surprising. A model of a tiger with copper lustre decoration, in the reserve collection in the Potteries Museum, Stoke-on-Trent, holds a struggling native in its mouth. In Jonathan Horne's Exhibition Catalogue part III (1983), he showed a large Pratt Ware tiger with a native under its paw. A similar incident was represented by a pair of models of a lion and tiger on Sherratt type table bases, sold by Bonhams on 10 May 1985, lot 253. On this occasion the lion is shown attacking a woman while the tiger holds a prostrate black native under its front paws. For another example of the Roaring Lion, its title also misspelt, see the following lot in this sale
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