The German firm of Bahr & Proschild is a highly underrated doll manufacturer from the late 19th century. Not at all as prolific in the volume of dolls they produced as compared to Simon & Halbig or Kestner, this firm nevertheless excelled in producing high quality dolls of superior craftsmanship. The pinnacle of their doll production was with the bisque heads of the 200 series dolls, the most popular of which were the 224 molds. Most desirable of all were the closed-mouth versions of which this is one. B & P made many other 200 series molds that are not frequently found and some of which are quite rare indeed. But as in most German and French dolls of the late nineteenth century--the closed-mouth versions command the highest respect!
In my years of dealing in antique dolls, I had the privilege of knowing the foremost collector of B & P dolls who only sought the very best and rarest dolls from this firm. Indeed, she was working on writing a book about the Bahr & Proschild 200 series dolls. Sadly, she was not able to realize this dream. I now have the honor of offering this very rare closed-mouth 224 B & P doll from her personal collection. I can say with great confidence that she would have valued this doll at $5000. I will be offering many more of her dolls as well, but note that once they are sold, there will be very few more found in the market. She spent the better part of the last quarter of a century amassing this collection and so many of these dolls are so very rare, but as the book was never written, we do not know how rare they are.
This is such a lovely Bahr & Proschild 224 with the sought-after "closed-mouth," and certainly one of the rarer ones in her collection. She has a delightful expression and she is costumed beautifully in a stunning blue silk "Gabriella" dress of the highest quality! It has ruffles , bows and lace galore, just like Linda loved to dress her dolls! Underneath is an antique white cotton full slip with tatted edge, antique pantaloons with tucks and lace trim. She is shod in wonderful brown leather Jumeau reproduction shoes with brown silk rosettes and black stockings. Atop her head is a fancy double cream silk bow and a cluster of antique cloth flowers. Her superb dark brown human hair wig is simply enchanting. It would certainly be hard for any doll lover to pass up this precious sweetheart. If you really seek out exquisite, antique dolls in excellent condition, put this girl as the highest priority on your list because a gem like this will not be here long. Not to mention, this is one of those dolls that will hold her resale value, and even go up as time goes on because she is beautiful and rare! What more could we ask for?
Standing at a full 24" tall, she has a lovely solid domed Belton-type bisque socket head on a fully jointed Sonneberg composition and wood body with straight wrists. Original blue spiral paperweight fixed eyes with painted upper and lower lashes, dark multi-stroke, stacked brows, closed-mouth with shading and accents, dimpled cheeks and chin, pierced ears with vintage glass bead earrings.
CONDITION: Excellent. Perfect and lovely pale, glowing bisque with expert decoration of features as well as very crisp modeling of her very sweet face distinguished by her expressive closed mouth and dimpled chin. The original Sonneberg body in good, original finish, condition with minor and typical age wear and repair to the ring finger on the left hand. A really lovely and rare antique doll most likely produced for the French and American market—just one look at her adorable face and you will be smitten!
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Rare 24" Closed-Mouth Bahr & Proschild 224 Antique doll with Blue Paperweight Eyes