Sideshow performer shocks TV audience as he lifts weight with nothing but his tongue

By Vicki Newman
thomas blackthorne split image

A brave sideshow performer shocked audiences when he lifted a weight heavier than a two-year-old boy using nothing but his tongue!

Thomas Blackthorne (UK) set the record for heaviest weight lifted by tongue on the set of our Italian TV show Lo Show dei Record on 22 February 2022.

He lifted an astonishing 13 kg (28 lb 10.5 oz).

thomas blackthorne on lo show dei record

To put that into context for you, the average two-year-old boy weighs around 11.8 kg (26 lb) and an adult human skeleton weighs around 11 kg (24 lb).

Thomas has broken this record multiple times on Guinness World Records TV shows around the world, first in 2004 with a weight of 11.025 kg (24 lb 3 oz).

He kept coming back to outdo himself, eventually setting it once again in Italy, beating his own previous record of 12.5 kg (27 lb 8.96 oz) set in 2008.

thomas blackthorne dangles his gwr certificate from his tongue

Thomas said: “I travel around the world and meet many people who want to see crazy things.

“I do unique and spectacular things. And sometimes, when I demonstrate those things…”

He then gave the audience a taster of what he was about to do by hammering a huge nail through the hole in his tongue into a wooden block and sliding his tongue upwards.

thomas blackthornes latest weight lift with his tongue

He completed his sentence by holding up a sign which read: “I can’t finish the interview anymore, so I say goodbye!”

After taking to the stage and chatting to the show’s host Gerry Scotti, Thomas inserted a huge meat hook through his tongue and attached it to chains that held a large block decorated with the symbol of Visconti di Milano, a noble Italian family, in homage to the show’s location.

The audience fell silent during the five seconds he had to hold the weight at least 10 cm (3.93 in) off the ground.

thomas blackthorne with weights dangling from his tongue

When asked how he discovered his unusual talent, Thomas said: “It was curiosity, lots of curiosity. Since I was born, I was putting my fingers where I shouldn’t be putting them, and everything adults told me not to do, I would do.”

Gerry admitted that he “didn’t have the courage to watch” Thomas lift the block with his tongue.

He said: “Congratulations, Thomas! I don’t know if there is any more margin for improvement, but don’t overdo it, my friend, because we need you alive and healthy.”

thomas blackthorne can lift weights with his tongue

Thomas, who features in Guinness World Records 2024, has a further four world records to his name:

Most sword swallowers to swallow the same object simultaneously – Thomas teamed up with Space Cowboy (Australia), Captain Frodo (Norway) and Gordo Gamsby (Australia) to swallow the four steel legs of the same bar stool during a live show in 2007.

Heaviest object sword-swallowed – Thomas swallowed the 24 mm (0.94 in) thick drill bit of a Dewalt D25980 demolition hammer weighing 38 kg (83 lb 12 oz) and then held the full weight of the hammer and bit in 2007. The hammer was switched on.

thomas blackthorne has been lifting weight with his tongue for years

Thickest object sword-swallowed – Thomas swallowed a giant screwdriver with a shaft diameter of 2.5 cm (0.98 in) in 2008.

Most swallowed sword – Thomas made “The Sword of Swords” in 1994 as a symbolic icon to link the sword-swallower community together. It set this record in 2007, by which point it had been swallowed by 33 people, and again in 2009 when 40 people had swallowed it.

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