Maida (dog)

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The Sir Walter Scott statue designed by John Steell, located inside the Scott Monument. Sir Walter Scott statue at Scott Monument.jpg
The Sir Walter Scott statue designed by John Steell, located inside the Scott Monument.

Maida (1813–1824) [1] sometimes called a Deerhound, was a crossbreed from a Pyrenean Wolfdog and a Highland Deerhound, [2] belonging to Sir Walter Scott, [3] and reported to be his favourite dog. [4] Named after the Battle of Maida, which took place in 1806, he was a gift from Alexander Macdonell of Glengarry (Alexander Ranaldson Macdonell), a friend of Scott, and whose brother led the 78th Highlanders in the battle, a victory for the British against the French in the Napoleonic Wars.

Scott wrote to his son Charles that "Old Maida died suddenly in his straw last week, after a good supper, which, considering his weak state, was rather a deliverance; he is buried below his monument, on which the following epitaph is engraved in Latin [Maidae marmorea dormis sub imagine Maida / Ante fores domini sit tibi terra levis], [5] thus Englished by an eminent hand : -

'Beneath the sculptured form which late you bore,
Sleep soundly Maida at your master's door.'" [6]

The monument mentioned is a statue of the dog at the hall door of Scott's home, Abbotsford House. [6]

A statue of Scott at the Scott Monument in Edinburgh includes Maida gazing up at the seated figure. [7] William Allan painted "Sir Walter Scott with His Dog 'Maida'" in 1831. [8] Alexander Nasmyth painted the dog alone. [9]

The part of Scott's statue in Perth featuring Maida was stolen, for a second time, in 2020. [10]

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  1. Graham p231
  2. Landseer's painting of Maida and a Deerhound
  3. Brewer's Dictionary of Phrase and Fable
  4. Thomas Brown's written portrait of Maida
  5. "Sir Walter Scott's dog, Maida". Edinburgh City of Literature. Retrieved 28 November 2014.
  6. 1 2 Abbotsford and Sir Walter Scott. Mabbott and Co. 1854. p.  218 . Retrieved 28 November 2014. Sir Walter Scott Abbotsford Maida.
  7. "Scott Monument: About". Edinburgh Museums and Galleries. Retrieved 28 November 2014.
  8. "Sir Walter Scott in His Study with His Dog 'Maida'". Art UK . Retrieved 28 November 2014.
  9. "Alexander Nasmyth (Edinburgh 1758-1840) Maida, Sir Walter Scott's Dog 22 x 27 cm. (8 11/16 x 10 5/8 in.)". Bonhams . Retrieved 28 November 2014.
  10. "Police hunt as Sir Walter Scott’s faithful hound goes walkies in Perth" - The Courier, 6 July 2020