An elephant is set to steal the show at the final Carmarthen Antiques and Flea Market of the year.

180 years after her death, a child’s plate featuring Mademoiselle D’Jeck is expected to attract quite some interest when it goes on sale at South Wales’ biggest antiques event.

Mademoiselle D’Jeck was a celebrated elephant who performed in Europe and the United States. D'Jeck first created a sensation in July 1829 in Paris, where she appeared at the Cirque Olympique of Antonio Franconi in a piece entitled l'éléphant du Roi de Siam (Elephant of the King of Siam.) From here she went on to perform at the Adelphi Theatre in London before traveling around England.

The historian John Earl notes that the elephant, rather than the author of the play, always took the curtain call. A newspaper at the time reported, "After the dropping of the curtain, a general cry was raised of Elephant! Elephant! and accordingly out she came, unattended. She knelt on her forelegs, bowed gracefully with her proboscis, and retired amidst the universal acclamation from all parts of the house."

Bizarrely however it is as the accused in a murder trial that D’Jeck is most famous. The story begins one day in August 1830 as D’Jeck was walking from Edinburgh to Newcastle via Morpeth, having been booked to appear at the old Theatre Royal. D’Jeck was in the hands of her keeper Jean Baptise and while there are conflicting accounts of what happened it would appear that Baptiste struck D’Jeck on the trunk and then prodded her with a sort of harpoon. She retaliated and crushed Baptiste with her trunk. He either died on the ground of her stall or the next day.

Despite her ‘crime’ Mr Nicholson, the manager of the Theatre Royal, had agreed with D’Jeck’s owner, Mr Yates, for her to perform at the playhouse. Indeed, the stage door had been widened to accommodate her. But before she could make her Newcastle debut D’Jeck was charged with murder and put on trial. She was however, let off with a fine of five shillings (25p) due to Baptiste’s cruelty. Still, the poor elephant was forced to flee the country amid fears the court may change its mind. Forgotten by a public that had once revered her, she ended her days in Geneva in 1837.

The child’s plate to be sold at the Carmarthen Antiques and Flea Market on Thursday December 28th does however celebrate D’Jeck’s heyday bearing not just an image of the elephant but the title ‘The Great Performer of the Adelphi’. It is priced at £75.

With up to 200 stands, inside and out on Carmarthen Showground, not only will you find interesting ceramics, there are also vintage clothes and jewellery, Welsh country furniture, highly collectable children’s toys, unusual decorative pieces and much more.

The Carmarthen Antiques and Flea Market will run between 10am and 4pm on Thursday December 28th.

Admission is £4 for adults with accompanied children admitted free of charge. Well behaved dogs kept on a lead are welcome.

For more information, including details on exhibiting at the Carmarthen Antiques and Flea Market visit or call 01267 236 569.

All indoor pitches must be pre-booked whilst outdoor pitches will be available on the day with set-up at 7.30am.