This is a wonderful 17" tall French bisque head Bébé Gigoteur or Bébé Parlant Automatique doll made by Steiner circa 1860s - 80s, with original box. the doll has a working mechanical mechanism that winds up to cause her to raise and lower her arms, turn her head and say mama. She is dressed in what is believed to be her original clothing from head to toe, though someone has added snaps to the back of her dress.
The doll has a solid dome bisque unmarked socket head, feathered eyebrows, painted upper and lower eyelashes, fixed glass eyes, open outlined mouth with an upper and lower row of teeth. She has a short blond curly human hair wig with silk headband. She has a taufling body type made of composition upper arms, lower legs, composition covered with fabric torso and kid leather upper legs.
Her clothing consists of matching lace trimmed white cotton pantaloons, petticoat and chemise, topped by a lovely pale teal blue silk dress with shirring and cream lace trim. she also has a silk lined straw hat with teal silk ribbon.
Her box has a wooden box base with worn paper covering and a cardboard lid. The box lid has a tear across the middle and old paper tape re-enforcements around the edges. There are various writings on the box from previous owners such as "Nina L. Abadie (sp?) I played last with her June 13, 18(6 or 8)3 plus a pencil drawing by the child of the doll saying mama. How adorable is that!
Condition is overall good. The only damage to the bisque head is a tiny line through her left earlobe. There is a small indentation/break in the front of the torso. Her silk dress old repairs to places where it was beginning to shred. Her straw hat has some damages around the edges. the box has some damage and repairs.
A note about shipping: I will not offer cheaper ground shipping for this doll, only Priority (US only)or Express (both US and international). If you choose US Express shipping then the insurance cost is less and I will adjust that cost for you. International shipping is only by Express mail as listing in the shipping terms.
You can find a charming Steiner mechanical bébé on any given day, but to find one in such original working condition, and original box with a previous child owner's provenance is truly rare. I hope she will find a new home with someone who will continue to preserve her as such.
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