One might think if a bird was called a Polish chicken that it would at least come from Poland. Normally, that would be the case but in this case, these birds with their large crests, might be from The Netherlands.
I like this Polish chicken drawing but I’m not sure it truly does these beautiful birds justice. The rooster looks a bit like he has dreadlocks on his head rather than a resplendent and full crest that these birds are known for. But, he still puts on quite a show with his dramatically colored feathers. Golden yellow, rust and brown feathers cover much of his body and his elaborate tail feathers. His head, including his wattle is black.
The female is somewhat smaller and while her tail and crest are smaller is colored similarly. John Lawrence (1753-1839) said these birds are considered mostly ornamentals. They don’t generally make good mothers but they do tend to be prolific egg layers.
Lawrence didn’t live to see the 8th edition of his book on farm animals and birds be release in 1842, so it isn’t clear if he would have identified the illustrator of this polish chicken drawing, had he the chance.
This image is copyright free and in the public domain anywhere that extends copyrights 70 years after death or at least 120 years after publication when the original illustrator is unknown.