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An unjointed china doll molded in one piece, a Frozen Charlotte became a popular doll type in the 1850s. Initially sold as bathing dolls or naked babies, these floatable figures supposedly entertained youngsters of the Victorian era as they took their baths. The dolls sold in sizes ranging from one inch to 18 inches. Labeling these figures "Frozen Charlotte" recalls a 19th-century ballad about a vain girl who refused to cover up her pretty party dress while riding to a ball on a frigid winter's night. Of course, the girl of the story dies from the cold: "Fair Charlotte was a stiffened corpse/ And her lips spake no more"; and her demise reminds us to forsake vanity and use a little common sense. The smaller Frozen Charlottes were called penny dolls and popular with children with small coins to spend. Some English families hid small Frozen Charlottes in their Christmas puddings, along with or in place of the traditional hidden coins.

Details

  • Title: Doll
  • Creator: A. W. Fr. Kister
  • Date Created: 1850-1920
  • Location: Germany
  • Type: Dolls from the Nineteenth Century
  • Medium: porcelain, cloth
  • Object ID: 78.9066

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