Everything You Need To Know About Russian Nesting Dolls Before Buying One

The nesting doll was born in the workshop “Children’s Education”, which belonged to a couple artists, brother of a famous philanthropist, was directly involved in its creation: he demanded from the masters more and more new samples of toys. The main occupation was a publishing house, the store “Children’s Education” was originally a book, apparently, only later with it was opened a workshop in which toys were made. If you are wondering how to make a russian nesting doll, the the below mentioned points can help you out a lot. You can also find more info about it in nestingdolls.co.

Here’s how the turner Zvezdochkin describes the emergence of the nesting doll:

In 1900 I invent a three- and six-seater (!) nesting doll and send it to an exhibition in Paris. I worked with Mamontov for 7 years. In 1905, VI.“From the materials of V. Zvezdochkin’s autobiography, written in 1949 (an excerpt from which is quoted above), it is known that Zvezdochkin entered the“ Child care ”workshop in 1898 (he was from the village of Shubino, Podolsk District). Could have come to light before 1898. Since the master’s memories were written almost 50 years later, it’s still difficult to vouch for their accuracy, so the appearance of the dolls can be dated to approximately 1898-1900. As you know, the World Exhibition in Paris opened in April 1900 h Nachit this toy was created a little earlier, perhaps in 1899. By the way, at the Paris exhibition the Mamontovs received a bronze medal for toys.

Facts Collected

Interesting facts were collected in 1947 became interested in the history of the nesting doll creation. From conversations with Zvezdochkin she found out that he somehow saw the “suitable chock” in the magazine and, following her model, carved a figure that had a “ridiculous look, reminded as if she was a nun” and was “deaf” (was not revealed).

On the advice of the masters of Belov and Konovalov, he carved it differently, then they showed a toy to Mamontov, who approved the product and gave it to paint to a group of artists who worked somewhere on the Arbat. This toy was selected for an exhibition in Paris. Mamontov received an order for it, and then Borutsky bought samples and distributed them to the handicraftsmen.

Question of Accuracy

Probably we will never be able to accurately find out about the participation of S.V. Maljutina in the creation of the nested doll. According to the memoirs of V.P. Zvezdochkina, it turns out that he himself invented the shape of the nesting doll, but the master could forget about painting the toy, many years passed, the events were not fixed: after all, no one could assume that the doll would be so famous. S.V. Malyutin at that time collaborated with the publishing house of A.I. Mamontov, illustrated books, so that he could paint the first nesting doll, well, and then, following his model, the toy was painted by other masters.

Where did the name “matryoshka” (nesting doll) come from?

Everyone knows that Matrona is a female name, beloved by the peasantry. But still there are a lot of popular peasant names, why was this chosen? Perhaps the toy with its appearance resembled some particular girl Matresha, and therefore received such a name (as the famous Oscar, similar to someone’s uncle Oscar). It is unlikely to ever be able to find out the truth. By the way, the name Matryona comes from the Latin Matrona, which means “noble woman”, Matron was written in church, among the diminutive names: Motya, Motrya, Matresha, Matyusha, Tyusha, Matusya, Tusya, Musya. That is, theoretically, the nested doll could be called a mock (or muska). Sounds, of course, strange, although the worse, for example, “marfushka”? Or Agatha, By the way, the popular porcelain painting is called “earthenware”. Although we agree that the “nesting doll” name is very good, the doll really became “noble”.

By the number of dolls in one set, there is also no agreement. Turner Zvezdochkin claimed that he originally made two dolls: a three-and six-seater. An eight-seater nesting doll is kept in the Toy Museum in Sergiev Posad, which is considered to be the first, that same chubby girl in a sundress, apron, a headscarf with a flower, which holds a black rooster in her hand. It is followed by three sisters, a little brother, two more sisters and a baby. It is often claimed that there were not eight but seven dolls, they also said that the girls and boys alternated. For a kit stored in the Museum, this is not the case.

Now about the prototype nesting doll

Was there Fukurum? Some people doubt, although why did this legend appear, and is it a legend? It seems that the wooden god is still kept in the Toy Museum in Sergiev Posad. Perhaps this is also one of the legends. By the way, ND Bartram himself, director of the Toy Museum, doubted that the doll “was borrowed by us from the Japanese. The Japanese are great masters in the field of turning toys. But their well-known” kokesh “are not similar in principle to their construction.”

Who is our mysterious Fukuruma, good-natured bald sage, where did he come from?

Apparently, this holy one of the seven gods of fortune, the god of learning and wisdom, Fukurokuju. His head has an unusual shape, his forehead is excessively high, as a man of remarkable mind should be, in his hands he holds a staff and a scroll. By tradition, the Japanese on New Year visit the temples dedicated to the gods of fortune and acquire their small statues there. Perhaps the legendary Fukurum contained within itself six other gods of luck? This is only our assumption (quite controversial).

V.P. Zvezdochkin doesn’t mention Fukurum at all the figure of the saint, which was split into two parts, then another old man appeared and so on. Note that, in the Russian folk crafts split wooden products are also very popular, for example, the well-known Easter eggs. So there was Fukurum, it wasn’t, it’s difficult to know, but it’s not so important. Who remembers him now? But our nesting doll knows and loves the whole world!