We regret the error


29 Responses to “We regret the error”

  1. That lion has to be my next Twitter avatar

  2. Brainspore says:

    It’s like the taxidermist was working from another person’s vague description of what a lion looked like, and that second person’s knowledge of lions came solely from old Disney cartoons.

    • Maggie Koerth-Baker says:

      From what I read, the taxidermist’s second-hand knowledge of lions actually came from coats of arms. Which makes a lot more sense. Especially when the lion is viewed from the side. 

  3. Jim Phelps says:

    When I was work at UT-Knoxville, there was an art install in the library.  It was a centaur fossil dig complete with bow (see it here: http://www.lib.utk.edu/aboutlibs/hodges/centaur.html)  After it was up for a week or so, fliers appeared next to it that explained that centaurs are mythological creatures and that this was an art install (not science).

  4. phlavor says:

    WTF? That thing will haunt my dreams for weeks. Apple should have used that one for 10.7.

  5. OldBrownSquirrel says:

    A few of the older HMNH specimens are a bit zoologically improbable, though they’re far better than the notorious Swedish lion.  Really, though, the saddest thing is the giraffe held together with packing tape.  Not all the mounted specimens are aging well, and they’re admittedly often difficult if not impossible to replace.  That being said, my four-year-old son loves the HMNH, so at the very least, it’s not terrifying for all small children.

  6. mehan says:

    Via this blog post (http://www.ulrikagood.com/2011/04/lion-of-gripshoms-castle.html), I stumbled upon a Swedish Facebook fan page for the lion, which contains some A+ photoshops: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Lejonet-p%C3%A5-Gripsholms-Slott/113607498385

    Best one, IMO: http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_mR5m79UlcZE/S8CxZxNx8XI/AAAAAAAAEPM/Z-X1iop-ELU/s1600/24216_109722122380126_100000270168981_188640_6634081_n.jpg

  7. KBert says:

    Oh, that all lions look so adorably goofy.
    That absolutely _made_ my day!

  8. Daryl Fritz says:

    Is the sign the exhibit?

  9. pauldrye says:

    Though a quick look at Charles XII himself suggests where the lion taxidermist may have been coming from:


    I said *more forehead* peon!

  10. zuludaddy says:

    Hey, is that a pangolin tail next to the sign? Pangolins are cool. With or without fezzes.

  11. niceguyted says:

    Did nobody read the article?  The crappy lion taxidermy job was just an example – not what was actually on display.  Maggie’s trying to find out if anybody knows what exactly was on display and taken down.

  12. styrofoam says:

    No, maggie’s trying to find out who put that sign on display, which was the entirety of the art installation.

  13. haineux says:

    I am going to bet 500 quatloos on David Hildebrand Wilson of the Museum of Jurassic Technology.

  14. haineux says:

    By the way, the Harvard Museum of Comparative Zoölogy is so outstanding you should fly to Boston just to visit it.

    • jere7my says:

       By the way, the Harvard Museum of Comparative Zoölogy is so outstanding you should fly to Boston just to visit it.

      Heck yeah! The MCZ is one of my favorite spots in the Greater Boston Area. Pangolins, platypus skeletons, pink fairy armadillos, the Blaschka glass flowers exhibit…good stuff. I recognized it as soon as I saw the display case.

      If Xeni wants to know what inspired the sign, my guess is one of the aye-ayes. One of them is frickin’ terrifying.

  15. Bucket says:

    I’ve been told that bears can’t snarl and bare their teeth the way they’re usually presented when stuffed.

    I’m honestly not sure if this is actually true or not, though. I make it a point to avoid provoking bears whenever possible.

  16. Nawel says:

    So that lion image is REAL? Well, after looking at the side photo someone posted, yep, it seems the taxidermist had only seen lions on heraldica…

  17. Elizabeth Schechter says:

    Oh dear GOD! To heck with being terrifying to small children, that thing scared ME!

    Kill it! Kill it with a stick!

  18. Kimmo says:

    PMSL at the taxidermist…

    I bet the teeth were as crazy wrong in 1731 as they are today.

    And the eyes, they will haunt me

  19. Lobster says:

    It’s unethical to censor science just because it might scare little children.

    However I’m pretty sure there are other reasons to revise that one…

  20. That delightful sign was placed in an
    empty space (nothing actually removed) next to the tail of the pangolin — as
    part of the Harvard Museum of Natural History’s 2011 Bizarre
    Animals event, which drew
    over 700 to the museum for an extraordinary evening of innovative art
    installations, performances, video..and more.  That sign was one of many
    placed throughout the galleries for just that one evening, as part of an installation by New York-based
    poet Jen Bervin and the Woodberry Poetry Room at
    Harvard (Christina Davis, curator). You can still see the pangolin and 500 other taxidermied animals at the museum, but no poet’s signs.  Visit online at  http://www.hmnh.harvard.edu.

  21. J West says:

    You can see some Flickr photos of the event here…


  22. planaplagiarism says:

    what’s a lion?

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