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This very unusual doll is faded in areas and is in a sitting position. He had interesting flat rubber cut out hands. Measures 20 inches tall. He has a wire armature and cotton stuffed body. Mephisto's full name is Mephistopheles, and means according to some, Hater of Light. He is a minor demon or devil, most famous in his appearance in Goethe's Faust and Christopher Marlowe's Dr. Faustus (1604).
Mephisto executes the bargain with Faust to sell his soul to the Devil after a certain period of time in exchange for the chance to live a fulfilling, enjoyable life. Faust is up to that point, a sad and disgruntled scholar. Goethe's work is a classic, but Mephisto has been immortalized in books, plays,music, and art. Many dolls and figures are made of him,including marionettes, porcelain figure, cloth dolls, and ball jointed dolls. George Melies, noted film maker and toy shop owner from the film Hugo and The Invention of Hugo Cabret was a real person who played Mephisto.
Mephisto appeared in Faust, published first in 1806, as a cultivated, skeptical demon. He is more like the early Satan of Milton's Paraidise lost, then the scary, rude crude devil of German Folklore on which Goethe based his long poem, which also appeared as a play in 1829. In using familiar stories and legends to create a new work, Goethe is like Shakespeare and Christopher Marlowe.
Marlowe's play, Dr. Faustus, was published posthumously. It was performed widely after his murder, and is said to have had a "demonic influence" on the audience.
Max Von Boehn pictures a similar Mephisto in his classic Dolls (1927). In a bit of toy trivia, Goethe's mother chastized her son in a letter because during the French Revolution, Goethe wanted to buy his little boy a toy guillotine.
Mephisto comes from a clean, non-smoking environment. If you are in doubt about his character and good behavior, don't sign any documents around him!
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20 Inch Mephisto Character Doll Circa 1920s Cloth Wire Armature Doll
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