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1880, Valletti, penny farthing, Italy

In the 19th century the high wheel spread, a peculiar vehicle that preceded the bicycle. It’s characterized by a big front wheel where the pedals are and a small back wheel. The starting and stopping procedures were difficult, as well as pedaling. The unique shape of the handlebar was copied by the English models. In England they were called penny-farthing: the name came from the British penny and farthing coins, one much larger than the other, so that the side view resembles a penny leading a farthing

The F.lli Valletti from Verona was a mechanical processing company, among the first Italian firms to produce bicycles. Back then a bike like this cost like two good horses: a mirage for most people.