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This item sold on November 5, 2012.

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It was late. Later than anyone else cared to hang around the museum to work. But Elias always did his best thinking after ten o'clock anyway. Thus, his presence there in the wee, dark hours of the morning was not an unusual occurrence, but what he was working on was... quite out of the ordinary.

His team had spent the week articulating a skeleton, recently unearthed from an excavation site in the Gobi desert. It was clearly reptilian, and as far as the excavators could tell, from the Cretaceous period, although when Elias had spoken with them on the phone to make shipping arrangements, they made it clear to him there was something different about this skeleton. Something that made them hesitant to simply call it a dinosaur. As Elias stared at the assemblage of bones, he wondered if some mistake had been made. Was this two creatures whose bones had been mixed together? Because of course, it made no sense at all, evolutionarily speaking. Nothing was impossible, he thought to himself, but some events were simply so improbable that they mathematically approached the impossible. The four-limbed morphological homology of the vertebrate line was unchallenged. But here he stood, staring at a reptile clearly in possession of six distinct appendages. Two hind legs. Two forelegs. And, bafflingly, a set of wings.

He shook his head in bewilderment and thought back to the old world maps, with their succinct description of the unknown: "Here there be dragons," he murmured.


The "Elias" collection of curiosities is contained in a vintage box designed for a gentleman's personal effects, measuring 11" x 6" x 1 3/4". Contents include:

• duck, domestic goose, and turkey feathers
• muskrat jawbone
• red fox jawbone
• raccoon jawbone
• coyote jawbone
• bobwhite quail egg
• mink vertebra
• white coral
• scallop shell
• coyote canine
• deer vertebrae disc
• raccoon vertebra
• forest snail shell
• coyote carnassial
• Mazon Creek fossil
• deer molar
• mink vertebra


* Sorry, this item is not available for international shipping!

Note: Feather & Moss loves wildlife, and we know you do, too! Therefore, we source ALL materials lawfully and in accordance with United States regulations, including the Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918 and the Endangered Species Act of 1973 -- protected species are NEVER used in our collections.

Cabinet of curiosities. "Elias." Jawbones, feathers, vertebrae, teeth, shells.


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