Charles Hunt after B. Hubbard.
The Habertoft Short Horned Prize Cow
29.5 x 24 inches
An aquatint in original colour, engraved by Charles Hunt after Bennett Hubbard and published in London by Messers Fores, 1842.
A fabulous example of the fat pedigree cattle portraits that were so popular in the middle of the nineteenth century. The Habertoft Cow, from Lincolnshire, weighed in at a staggering 231 stone (plus 8lbs!); a colossal achievement at the tender age of 5 years and 2 months! She understandably won a gold medal at the Smithfield show in 1841, a year before this print immortalised her celebrity. Cows like this were deliberately overfed to enlarge their stature and the ultimate accolade was a presentation at the London livestock shows where they would be marvelled at by huge crowds. Sadly, some of the cattle became so unfeasibly fat that they could not stand unaided and specially constructed struts had to be inserted under their bellies to support their weight.