Wilkins elephant
Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) at
Mr Wilkins in United Kingdom

dead elephant ☨ ♂ Wilkins elephant  dead elephant
Wilkins elephant displayed as museum specimen.
Wilkins elephant as museum specimen.
Taxidermy locationUnited Kingdom (England) unspecified location, , United Kingdom



Species:Asian elephant (Elephas maximus)
Sex and age:Male ♂
Characteristics: skeleton was preserved
Born:* wild
Birth place: in Asia unspecified location
Imported:16XX? by English East India Company
Freight:by ship from Asia
Dead: 1681-07-17
Death location: Mr Wilkins near Custom House, Dublin
Death reason: accident: Cage took fire, and elephant was burnt alive.
Locations - owners
Present / last location:Mr Wilkins, in United Kingdom

Date of arrival

Mr Wilkins
from English East India Company

English East India Company
from Asia unspecified location

Record history
History of updates2021-07-10

Latest document update2021-09-15 14:04:31
Random literature

† Wilkins elephant is a dead Male ♂ Asian elephant (Elephas maximus), , who died 1681-07-17 at Mr Wilkins, in United Kingdom, . Official death reason described as Cage took fire, and elephant was burnt alive..

Museum locationThe Museum specimen remains of this animal is within the collection at United Kingdom (England) unspecified location, in , United Kingdom, since 1681-07-17.


Wilkins elephant was born wild at Asia unspecified location. and imported 16XX? by English East India Company, by ship from Asia

Comments / pictures

While on exhibition in Dublin, the booth in which this elephant was stabled caught fire in the early hours of 17 July 1681. The elephant was burned alive. Such a large crowd gathered around the charred remains of the elephant and its booth that armed guards were employed by the deceased pachyderm's proprietor, Mr Wilkins, to protect his property, after the crowd ‘endeavoured to procure some parts of the Elephant, few of them having seen him living by reason of the great rates upon the sight of him’.12 Confronted with a noxious and rotting carcass, Wilkins sent for the butchers, but the Irish physician Allan Moulin proffered his services and was ‘delirious’ to instruct himself in the ‘structure of the elephant’. That night in a temporary wooden shed in Dublin city centre Moulin undertook the first British dissection of an elephant, boiling bones and cutting into parboiled organs by candlelight.

Wilkins elephant in Mr Wilkins
Wilkins elephant in Mr Wilkins

Reference list


Koehl, Dan, (2023). Wilkins elephant, Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) located at Mr Wilkins in United Kingdom. Elephant Encyclopedia, available online retrieved 5 December 2023 at https://www.elephant.se/database2.php?elephant_id=10838. (archived at the Wayback machine)

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Categories1681 deaths | United Kingdom (England) unspecified location Taxidermy | 16XX imports | Elephants from Mr Wilkins | United Kingdom | Asian elephants

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