A man who cut off his own earlobes has sold them in a horror-themed auction in Leamington.
Circus performer Hannibal Hellmuerto cut off his earlobes after they became over stretched.
The 41-year-old, who used to be a tax inspector in Germany, is now professional sword swallower in the Circus of Horrors.
The circus performer originally stretched his earlobes as part of his ‘body modification programme’, which has also left him with a forked tongue, floating ribs, over-sized teeth and a body covered in tattoos.
Over time Hannibal’s skin around his earlobes got thinner and he became concerned they would rip.
In a last-ditch attempt the sword swallower attempted to superglue the dangling skin but the adhesive wore off so he went to hospital.
While at the hospital Hannibal discovered that his earlobes had been stretched by 2.4 inches.
Hannibal’s only option was to have his earlobes removed and stitched back together.
During his time at the circus, the sword swallower has previously ended up in intensive care after splitting his oesophagus.
After his earlobes were removed, the circus performer decided to pickle them and sell them at the Auction of Horrors, which was held last weekend at the Old Elephant House on Morton Street in Leamington.
Before the auction, Hannibal said: “After I had the operation to remove my earlobes I always kept my ear to the ground in case an opportunity like this came up.
“I will be delighted for someone to take a little piece of me home with them.”
The auction company, Elephant House Auctions, run quarterly sales of vintage amusement items and have also been hosting the Auction of Horrors since 2012, with this year marking the eighth auction.
Before the auction, a spokesman for auctioneers said: “As far as we know we are the first auction house to ever sell physical chunks of flesh of a living person that the buyer can take home and proudly display on their mantelpiece next to a photo of the mother-in-law.”
The circus performer’s earlobes were estimated to sell for between £250 and £300 at the auction, and ended up selling for £460.
Other items that were sold at the auction also included a mummified hand, vampire killing kits and a human skull.