Can you identify this mystery ornament?
September 20, 2014 4:18 AM   Subscribe

I inherited this ornament from my dad, who had inherited it from his father. I believe my grandfather found it in Ireland in the forties. Flickr photo set

It looks like it should be a hood ornament, like on a Rolls Royce but it's pretty large - seven inches not including the wooden base (which was made by my dad, not originally part of it). The 2nd photo shows the only markings on it (R/D AEL) but that wasn't enough to get anything useful with google.

It's pretty heavy - feels solid rather than hollow and I think chrome plated, it doesn't seem to tarnish. There's a screw hole in the base (also pictured).
posted by *becca* to Grab Bag (5 answers total)
Best answer: Could she be this "'Speed Nymph' marked 'AEL' for the designor Augustine Émile Lejeune (6 1/2" H x 4 1/4" W), oxidation)"? Close-up here.
posted by MonkeyToes at 4:40 AM on September 20, 2014 [2 favorites]

Best answer: Looks like a vintage "Speed Nymph" from the Louis Lejeune foundry, which makes car hood ornaments. I rather like the snail.
posted by cocoagirl at 4:42 AM on September 20, 2014 [1 favorite]

Best answer: And here she is in action on a circa 1918 vehicle.
posted by MonkeyToes at 4:50 AM on September 20, 2014

Response by poster: That is fantastic, that's definitely her. And pretty cool to see that they're still being made.

It looks like they weren't made for specific model of car but something people bought separately to put onto their car - have I understood that correctly?
posted by *becca* at 6:10 AM on September 20, 2014

I suspect that spending some time at Mascot Mania might be in order -- I'm having difficulty navigating the site, but there is a page for the AEL Speed Nymph, and the pages on Factory Mascots and Accessory Mascots (column on the left) might help answer your question.
posted by MonkeyToes at 6:22 PM on September 20, 2014

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