Musical automaton "Spanish dancer"

    Musical automaton "Spanish dancer"

    France, Germany

    circa 1900

    Roullet & Decamps , Simon & Halbig

    Papier-mache, wood, metal, fabric, lace; sewing, mechanical works, painting

    Height 53 cm, 2 kg

    Red stamp on the head under the braid: “Wimpern” and repoussed: “S&H, 1039, Dep”


    Automaton in the form of a Spanish dancer is mounted on rectangular, covered with red velvet stand. Bisque head, open mouth, articulated flirty blue glass eyes with cloth upper lashes, pierced ears, dark-brown hair wig, adult papier-mâché body with bisque shoulder-plate and hands, one raised aloft, the other resting on her hips, with single-tune going-barrel movement playing "Faust Waltz" and causing the dancer to turn back and forth 45 degrees  on her right heel, while stamping her left foot, twirling the tambourine, swaying her head and glancing left and right, in lace-over-satin costume and velvet bolero jacket. With steel key.
    This item was a gift of Nicholas II, Tsar of Russia, to Olga and Elizabeth, daughters of Prince Nicholas and Princess Ellen of Greece in 1904 or 1905.