This is the first in a small group I envisioned. In Dickens' Bleak House, there is an old woman, a minor character; Miss Flite. She frequents the proceedings at the law courts & in particular her interest is in the protracted case 'Jarndyce & Jarndyce'. She has squandered her lifetime waiting for the settlement to come & in that process she has lost a portion of her sanity and other valuable attributes & resources. She keeps a large number of birds with allegorical names like Hope, Youth, Beauty, and Words, Confusion, Jargon, Plunder, Precedent, Despair, Ruin, Sheepskin, Spinach & Gammon to signify the consumption of all things by fruitless law cases.
This little birdcage is 3 - 4 inches tall, made with steel wire, tart tin, chain, a bit of mirror, bell, etc. The bird 'Despair' has escaped although the cage has no door. There was a tiny feather in the bottom, which must have blown away! I'm working on another, similar, but not identical. I'd like to try making a mobile of them.