I Finally Got My Rooster, Sort Of…

The CE and I are collectors. Me, of furry four-footers and feathered and winged creatures. He, of books and esoteria. Since neither of us seems able to curb the other’s passions, our home has long been overrun with dogs, cats, chickens and stacks upon stacks of books along with the occasional Napoleonic artifact or antiquity.

But roosters have been off-limits. Neighbors too close by and, frankly, I’ve read too many stories about attack roosters and the painful injuries that can be inflicted by their spurs. I guess I’m just, well…a chicken about the whole thing.

I didn’t find the Golden Retriever puppy I’d asked for under the tree on Christmas morning, but the CE presented me with the next best thing. “Open it very carefully”, he said. Mounds and mounds of tissue paper later, I saw this guy peeking out at me:

Finally, something older than me!

Finally, something older than me! (polloplayer photo)

He is all of five inches tall,  described as a “superb Greek votive terra-cotta rooster figurine, circa 4th century B.C.” He is not rare – mold-made terra-cotta figurines were commonly given as gifts in ancient Greek society – but he is wonderful!

According to the dealer description, roosters “were favored domestic pets, as one can see on the numerous depictions of them on Athenian choes (oinochoe)”

A reproduction of a Corinthian Oinochoe featuring a rooster and hen. (image from museum-replicas.com)

A reproduction of a Corinthian Oinochoe featuring a rooster and hen. (image from museum-replicas.com)

One of my favorite museum moments was at the Getty a few years back when I came upon a sweet figurine of a woman feeding her hens. Also from the 4th century, this piece reminded me that the pleasures of flock-keeping go way, way back. The recent ascendance in popularity of the backyard flock is really nothing new; humans have enjoyed having chickens underfoot (and in the stew pot!) for millennia.

This Getty Museum statuette of a woman feeding hens and chicks dates from Boiotia, 500-475 B.C.

This Getty Museum statuette of a woman feeding hens and chicks dates from Boiotia, 500-475 B.C. (polloplayer photo)

You can also see a rooster figurine at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. This one dates from the 2nd - 1st century, B.C., also Greek. (image from met museum.org)

You can also see a rooster figurine at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. This one dates from the 2nd – 1st century, B.C., also Greek. (image from met museum.org)

As I write this, four of my hens are out under the oaks scratching for this and that, while Lola is busy on the nesting counter making breakfast. All just as hens did in the last century and the one before and so on reaching all the way back into recorded human history. Everything old is new again, and I love my old/new rooster!

Luna, Summer, Lola and Ginger soaking up some winter sunshine last week.

Luna, Summer, Lola and Ginger soaking up some winter sunshine last week.

Lola is the first of our new hens to lay!

Lola is the first of our new hens to lay!

Nothing says good morning like a fresh, still-warm egg.

Nothing says good morning like a fresh, still-warm egg.

I also received another work of chicken art this Christmas. Many thanks to our young artist friend, Hannah Allen, for making me a chicken ornament I will treasure forever!

Now I have two roosters!

Now I have two roosters!

About polloplayer

Empty nester searching for meaning of life through the occasional chicken epiphany.
This entry was posted in All Things Poultry, Animal/Vegetable/Mineral, Chicken Facts, Holidays, Oddities and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to I Finally Got My Rooster, Sort Of…

  1. pollo amigo says:

    Congratulation, Lola, on your beautiful egg!

  2. dizzyguy says:

    The Greek terracotta rooster has been sitting in a closet for 3 years, awaiting a proper unveiling. First words out of the box were, “Where are those 5 hens?”, one eyebrow raised. Little guy just strutted right out to the coop with a very determined look in his eye. Knows he can get away with just about anything, as he is right around 2350 years past his food expiration date. Somebody should mention this to Safeway, Vons and Foodland as we have bought their chickens that surely didn’t give away more than a century or two to this guy. Welcome to the barnyard.

  3. Mrs. G says:

    New family member…I think he is cute!

  4. Katherine says:

    Love the rooster! (It’s no puppy, but I guess the CE had to get on a waiting list so we’ll see that on Valentine’s Day no doubt.) The world’s first alarm-clock. No batteries required.

  5. Pingback: More Chicken Love, With a Little Help from My Friends. | Polloplayer | WORLD ORGANIC NEWS

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s