A very special toy with an ingenious mechanism
L’homme toupie made by Victor Bonnet from Paris, the last owner of the Fernand Martin toy factory in Paris.
This clown has the product number 252
It has been produced from around 1921/1922
This toy can be winded by means of a separate key.
The height is 19 cm = 7,5 inch.
After winding, place him on top of his head / hat on a flat table and let go. (in his hat is a clearly visible screw on which the whole turns)
He then starts to turn around his axis and at some point his hands slowly move towards the table, then stops turning and then pushes his head / hat away from the table.
His legs then separate and back together.
Then his head / hat returns to the table and everything starts all over again.
The manufacturer calls it a spinning top but therefore a very special ingenious spinning top.
He is now collected by collectors of tin toys and then mainly collectors of Fernand Martin toys.
He is therefore also collected by spinning tops collectors and collectors of circus acts.
It has a tin body, head, feet and hands.
The arms and legs are made of metal wire.
The feet, hands and the head with the hat are hand painted.
Furthermore, the whole is provided with colorful fabric clothing.
To wind it up, there is a keyhole on the back
What is important at purchase this toy, look at this keyhole, there is normally a Brass ring with disc attached in the fabric clothing, the disc is clothed with fabric, but very often this ring with disc is torn out and disappeared due to frequent use.
The clown is marked on top of the hat with the text: Article Francais V.B & Cie Paris.
All photos are from my own collection