Polyphemus, a bizarre broken tulip is described in Robert Sweet’s The Florist’s Guide and Cultivator’s Directory of 1827 from which the picture is taken.
It was a regular prizewinner at shows from 1849 until 1860 and perhaps later. It was in the collections of several different exhibitors.
Although there is no mention of this tulip in the archived minutes, it appears in a report of the 1913 show written by Rev Joseph Jacob and published in The Garden where the author writes about James Knowles.
“This ancient veteran won the copper kettle (the blue ribbon of Tulipdom) in 186o with the celebrated Polyphemus.“