The Victoria & Albert Museum
This poor bear stands on its hind legs and balances its weight on a walking stick. A figure of wood and cardboard covered in fur, it contains a clockwork mechanism. The bear has a brown glass eye (the other is missing), red plush jaws and teeth made of bone. Its nose and paws are of carved and painted wood. Upon his mouth, he wears a brass wire muzzle from which hangs an attached chain and ring.
Probably the work of a French toymaker, the toy is operated by a large brass key with a circular handle which is inserted into the right side of the body. When the metal rod on the left side is moved, the figure is animated--alternately rocking from side to side to give the impression of walking and dancing.
It’s attractive and horrible all at the same time, sort of like the very idea of a dancing bear.