The Ricky Jay Collection

The Ricky Jay Collection

View full screen - View 1 of Lot 496. (Learned Animals, Pigs) | The Philosopher of the Swinish Race .

(Learned Animals, Pigs) | The Philosopher of the Swinish Race

Auction Closed

October 28, 08:54 PM GMT


800 - 1,200 USD

Lot Details


(Learned Animals, Pigs)

At Home for a Short Time, Toby, the Sapient Pig. London: Topping, [ca. 1820]

Broadside handbill (215 x 139 mm). Woodcut vignette of our aforementioned pig; not examined out of frame, old folds, light thumbsoiling. Framed and glazed with Plexiglas.

"Toby was the most famous of a host of sapient swine that captivated the public in the London of the early nineteenth century ... Toby would spell, read, tell time, solve mathematical problems, play cards, and determine the age of any spectator. Most impressive, however, was this: "He will discover a Person's Thoughts — a thing never heard of before to be Exhibited by an Animal of the swine race" (EE). 


Exemplars, p. 262; EE, pp. 76-77