Thursday, December 4, 2014

Beatrix Potter and Her Belgian Rabbit named Benjamin

I don't think I've ever seen this wonderful winter image by Beatrix Potter dated 1894. via

Or this one either from Sotheby's. There is a sweet story about the real bunny who was the inspiration for Benjamin Bunny. 

Benjamin Bouncer was a Belgian rabbit and was the first of Beatrix Potter's pet rabbits. He was acquired around 1885. She bought him from a London pet shop and brought him home in a paper bag.

This never-before-seen Victorian photograph shows the real Belgian rabbit who inspired Beatrix Potter's famous character Benjamin Bunny.
Benjamin Bouncer is pictured here in the late 1880s or early 1890s. He would later become Benjamin Bunny in Beatrix Potter's novels. She said he was very tame and clever. Read more about him in a great story in The Daily Mail. I never tire of reading about her and I love finding new artwork and photos to share with all of you. 

Beatrix Potter shown here with a pet dog. I don't recall ever seeing any of her artwork with dogs though I've seen many photos of her with them. Enjoy the article. xo


Sally Thomas said...

There's a wise collie in The Tale of Jemima Puddleduck. And a rat-hating Westie in The Tale of Samuel Whiskers.

Lovely bunny pictures! Perfect for the time of year.

Karen in VA (was CT) said...

Hi Rosemary ...

I have had so may Beatrix Potter books and most of the figurines. I even had a cookbook of Beatrix Potter favorites.

Occasionally the Pierpont Morgan library will exhibit a few of the original illustrations. I saw an exhibit there in the late 80's, and it was astonishing. The colors are so much more vivid than we imagine them to be.

I think there is a story she wrote and I assume illustrated involving a black dog named Duchess. I remember her reaching into some sort of cupboard.

When I went to the Lake District in England, I went with a booklet that showed the area around Hawkshead and Sawrey ... Views from her illustrations and next to them, the actual illustration ... And where to stand to see her backgrounds.

Peter Rabbit and all her creations are so dear to me ... A lovely post. Thanks

Karen in VA

J Yale said...

Oh, those were wonderful pictures. I am a sucker for "old fashioned" rabbit illustrations. Love Beatrix Potter!! -Jenn

Content in a Cottage said...

Sally Thomas -- Thanks so much for the update. I'll have to look for her collie and westie drawings.
xo, Rosemary

Content in a Cottage said...

Karen in VA -- Thanks. I really want to see her dog drawings. Glad you have seen some of her original artwork. What a treat!
xo, Rosemary

Content in a Cottage said...

J Yale -- Jen - I was thrilled to find the two winter rabbit illustrations. I can't get enough either!!!
xo, Rosemary

Karen said...

I'm so happy you share BP's drawings. I love her work and her story. I never tire of it. I hope to one day visit the Lake District to see some of her surroundings in person.
Have a wonderful December weekend.

Susan said...

Thank you for the lovely trip back to my childhood! We grew up with Beatrix Potter and I still love her books and artwork.