A capite ad columbam

I have a fondness for statues, I like looking at them and pondering.  So many times I visit large country houses and there is a lion eating a dragon on a plinth over there and a woman pretending to be a sphinx over there.  I also like when they get a bit worn, it shows the passage time and gives them a feeling of becoming part of the fabric of the garden.  So when I visit a garden with statues I will spend time considering them.
For exhibit A I give you 'bint with a dove'.  I do not know her name, but if you look closely you can see that the bird has a new head.  This could mean that the head just dropped off or that maybe, the dreaded stone dove head thief has been in action again.  Either option is likely.

Then I took a step to the side and realised.....
She is standing on a duck.  Well ok, it might not be a duck, it might be a swan but I think it looks like a duck as who would stand on a swan?  Everyone knows a swan can break your leg with its wing; yet this seems little justification to go and stand on a duck instead.  I became rather disturbed the more I thought about this.  She is also rather careless with her clothing, if she spent less time standing on ducks she might have realised that she had a wardrobe malfunction.   I was shocked and so moved on.
This bint, clearly a relative, was standing on a fish.  It is a big fish, but a fish nonetheless.  There are clothing issues here too.  They really need to focus more on what matters as I fear they will catch their death.
Then there was this chap.  He was also scantily clad but thankfully had not let anything slip that might scare the horses.  He is also obviously a gardener as he has a spade and a random jar of something that has been knocked over.  This is perfectly understandable as after a closer look it would appear he had cut his big toe off, probably with the spade.  I think digging in a wispy loin cloth is dangerous and there are probably health and safety guidelines to prevent such things these days.

On the plus side, at least he isn't standing on a fish.


1)  The latin translation is courtesy of an online translation page.  I have never been taught any latin so if it is incorrect I would not be surprised.  I am fairly hopeful it does not say anything rude though.

2)  I considered doing a bit of research into imagery and what standing on a duck means, but it turns out life is too short for such things.  The best I managed was that the bint standing on a duck might be Leda, she had good reason to stand on a swan.  The bint with a fish might be Aphrodite.  The man however I cannot reach a conclusion about, I vaguely thought Bacchus but there does not appear to be enough grapes so any suggestions are welcome, .


  1. As a child, I remember sneaking a look up the dress of one of those "bints" as you call them. I remember deciding that she either had the biggest, droopiest bottom (if you can use "bints" I can use "bottom") in history or had filled her knickers big time. I do think the carvers should pay more attention to the hidden details, don't you? I confine my statuary to meerkats (NOT the plastic ones with solar lights in their noses).

    1. I agree they should pay attention to the hidden bits :) No meerkats here I'm afraid, but a couple of stone cats and the odd gnome :)

  2. Bint with a fish..... *Snigger

  3. Made me laugh so much this morning. Lovely way to start a Monday morning :)

  4. This may just be the best blog post I've ever read! I've just snorted with laughter, thank you Alison!

  5. Awwww! Where can I get a plastic meerkats with solar light in nose. Sounds perfect. I liked the Victorians rushing round sticking stone fig leaves on naughty bits. What a mindset. Great piece Alison. Funny Lady.

  6. Thanks for the kind comments:)

  7. I happened to find your blog by accident. What a happy accident! It made me laugh and that's not an easy thing to do at the start of the day. Great post.

  8. Lovely to see your garden is marching on!


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