'Buy My Fat Chickens', 1916.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
'In 1274, Edward I isued the following statute for the regulation of the trade in poultry in the city of London: 'That no hackster of fowl go out of the city to meet them that bring poultry in, but buy in the city after the buyers of the King have bought what shall be needful, namely after 3 o'clock'. Our picture shows an itinerant poultry dealer of the 18th century with his birds carried in wicker cages slung from a pole.' Number 15 in the 1916 series of 25 'Cries of London' cigarette cards isued by John Player & Sons.The images on these cards are based on a variety of 17th-18th century engravings that portrayed street traders hawking their wares. The most notable of these was the series 'The Cryes of London' drawn by Marcellus Laroon in 1687. However, many other series followed, such as the hand-coloured engravings produced in 1792-1796 by Francis Wheatley.