Musical automaton Hurdy Gurdy
Museum no. MISC.33-1965
This is a wooden box with two monkey musicians. The handle at the back of the organ operates the monkeys who play eight different tunes. It is illustrated in a Silber and Fleming catalogue of 1876/77 and is an example of the sort of automaton which was possible to buy in exclusive shops and elegant department stores in the late 19th century. It is very much an adult's toy, probably made in France, which was renowned for its manufacture of luxurious and extravagant toys.