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In the early 20th century, German and French doll makers offered a novel kind of doll. The makers intended these so-called character dolls with bisque (tinted, unglazed porcelain) heads to represent the faces of real children doing things that real children did. The character dolls came with the faces of infants, toddlers, or youngsters. These new dolls sported expressions that imitated children laughing, crying, pouty, flirting, sleeping, yawning, and smirking and presented facial details like dimples, teeth, and tongues. Some companies made character dolls depicting young ingénues, old women, and old men. The doll-buying public did not welcome the character dolls as much as the manufacturers had hoped. Much of the public found the new dolls "too" realistic and unpleasant to look at and play with. Character dolls first appeared around 1910, and by the end of World War I, only few companies still offered them.

  • Manufacturer: Ernst Heubach
  • Material: bisque | composition | paint | fabric | glass | mohair
  • Origin: Germany
  • Style: character | regional costume
  • Object ID: 95.731
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