Pidcock's Menagerie Two-Headed Cow and Royal Coat of Arms Halfpenny

Pidcock’s Zoological Exhibition London (Middlesex) copper Conder halfpenny token undated. Obverse: A two-headed cow to the right with legend: “EXETER CHANGE * STRAND LONDON *”. Reverse: The Royal Coat of Arms with “ICH DIEN”, the Prince of Wales’ motto and legend: “LONDON AND MIDDLESEX HALFPENNY”. Plain edge. Ex-Tompkin Collection. J. Pidcock was the proprietor of the Exeter 'Change Menagerie and importer of foreign animals. The business later passed to Gilbert Pidcock, and the tickets issued by both men were trade tickets advertising the menagerie and passed for small change in circulation. The two-headed heifer was a live exhibit and an advertisement referring to it appeared in the 29th January 1791 edition of the London Chronicle: "Now exhibiting at the Lyceum Strand. The surprising Heifer with two heads. This very remarkable creature has two Heads, Four Horns, Four Ears, Four Nostrils, through each of which it breathes, &c. This truly wonderful Curiosity is the only one of the kind in Europe; and what is more astonishing, it takes its Sustenance with both mouths at the same time, to the admiration of the Faculty, and the Beholders in general; and it also the received opinion of John Hunter, Esq., Professor of Anatomy, that it has two hearts. One of the Heads, together with the Horns, represents that of a bull, and the other a Cow. The height of the animal is thirteen hands, and each Horn measures twenty-five inches long. Admittance One Shilling. N.B.- Most money given for all sorts of foreign Beasts and Birds, if alive, by G. Pidcock. A capital collection of Wild Beasts, with waggon, horses, &c, to be sold. Enquire as above". Nice collectable condition with usual weak reverse centre, see photograph.

D&H Middlesex No: 455. Diameter 28.7mm. VF+. £95.00

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