The parson and the pig: an incident at the burning of Kotka barracks, Finland, 27 July 1855

No. 2 in Fanshawe's Baltic and later album, 1843 - 83. Captioned by the artist 'Kotka, 27th July 1855, Midnight', on the album page below the image. For the circumstances of the attack on the Kotka barracks, see PAI4673. Fanshawe's role, commanding the 'Cossack', was to guard the causeway bridge which linked Kotka island to the mainland, to prevent a Russian counter-attack. 'The marines guarding the bridgehead were keenly on the alert, for a Russian attack in force was very probable. Suddenly at midnight the general silence was broken by a great commotion; the men stood to arms, all eyes were strained into the darkness of the fir-wood on one side, or the glare of the burning barracks on the other. A few moments' tension, and the cause explained itself to be - a parson chasing a pig! The latter had been trying to escape from the burning buildings; the former had come from England in a yacht to witness naval operations in the Baltic. Piggy's fate was sealed, for the marines vigorously joined the chase, and all had roast pork for supper' (Fanshawe [1904] p. 327). Marines in the foreground advance to help dispatch the pig: the flames of the burning barracks behind illuminate the scene.

Object Details

ID: PAI4674
Type: Drawing
Display location: Not on display
Creator: Fanshawe, Edward Gennys
Places: Finland
Date made: 27 Jul 1855
Credit: National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, London
Measurements: Sheet: 176 x 256 mm
Parts: Album of watercolours of the Baltic, Mediterranean, Scotland, Switzerland and Burma (Album)

Your Request

If an item is shown as “offsite”, please allow eight days for your order to be processed. For further information, please contact Archive staff:

Tel: (during Library opening hours)

Click “Continue” below to continue processing your order with the Library team.