Calls and sounds of the Peking street peddlers

Paintings of street sellers and descriptions of their cries and jingles from Samuel Victor Constant's Calls, Sounds and Merchandise of the Peking Street Peddlers, written in 1936 as a master's thesis at the College of Chinese Studies.


The trained monkey men travel in pairs each carrying a box containing various hats and articles used by the monkey. They have a small dog and a goat.

The monkey opens the boxes himself and puts on the different kinds of hats. Then the little dog does a few tricks after which the monkey does a few turns on a pole or small ladder. The last part of the performance takes place with monkey riding around on the goat’s back.

During the performance one of the men sings and hits his gong. This is a large gong about two feet in diameter.