CIJ tinplate model of Alfa Romeo P2 – £4600 at Duke’s.

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This 20½in (52cm) long rosso corsa (racing red) toy is the best-known product of the French company CIJ (Compagnie Industrielle du Jouet). The series of original models from 1925-35 were modelled after the full-size racing car first built by the Italian designer Vittorio Jano in 1924.

A Jouet Francais label on the underside stated A Syndicate of French Toy Makers alongside a made in France mark. The model featured a clockwork mechanism and intricately painted stencils.

This example came from a toy collection with a provenance to the Eyre estate. The late Rufus Eyre was a prominent local collector and supporter of the arts.

Robot pioneer


KT Lilliput robot – £1400 at Duke’s.

From the same collection, a Japanese KT Toys Lilliput tinplate clockwork robot labelled NP 5357, 6in (15cm) high, sold for a within-estimate £1400.

These are often considered to be the first mass-produced robot toys, dating possibly from the 1940s, but there have been many reproductions since.

The Duke's sale took place on June 10.