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Charlie Chaplin hat and cane sell for US$62,500 in LA

LOS ANGELES--Charlie Chaplin's iconic bowler hat and cane went under the hammer in Los Angeles as part of an auction which also included a John Lennon nude drawing of himself and Yoko Ono.

The hat and cane, trademark of Chaplin's Little Tramp character, are in “remarkable condition” and sold for US$62,500 at the sale by auction house Bonhams on Sunday.

Legend has it that Chaplin came up with the tramp persona and wardrobe spontaneously one rainy afternoon in February 1914, seizing various wardrobe items in a communal male dressing room at a Hollywood studio.

These included baggy trousers from Fatty Arbuckle, size 14 shoes which he had to wear on the wrong feet to keep them from falling off, the hat belonging to Arbuckle's father-in-law, and a mustache intended for another actor.

The 32-inch (81-centimeter) bamboo cane is inscribed “CCLT 36” in black ink, a reference to the Little Tramp, Chaplin's signature character.

The Lennon drawing sold for US$25,000.

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