3797 – Taxidermy fox with wax death mask

Physical description:
Stuffed taxidermy fox in sitting position with white human face made of wax.
Museum classification:
Images of witchcraft
43cm x 50cm x 36cm

This object was provided with the following information:

"According to Victorian folklore, if a "witch" wished to be reincarnated as a spirit animal then a death mask or wax effigy would be placed on the body of his or her chosen creature.  Doing this would ensure the witch would become, in this case, a fox!"

There is a Dartmoor legend that the spirit of a dead witch appeared in the shape of a black-tailed fox, and lured a local landowner and his pack of hounds out onto the moor, where they were turned to stone and became Great Hound Tor. See http://www.legendarydartmoor.co.uk/black_fox.htm and http://www.paranormaldatabase.com/hotspots/dartmoor.php

Fur, animal skin, bone, taxidermy preservation materials, wax
Copyright ownership: