First Russian Matryoshka Doll (Первая Русская Матрешка)ю An affectionate facsimile of the very first Russian matryoshka doll (see information below). Wood burnt and painted in a wide range of colors with enhancements. 8 nest. 6" down to 1". Made in Russia. 1 only.
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The original is on display in the National Museum of Toys (formerly The Zagorsk Museum of Toys), which is the model of this matryoshka. It first appeared in Moscow in the 1890's. It was carved by Vasily Petrovich Zvyozdochkin (1876-1956 from a design by a folk crafts painter Sergey Vasilyevich Malyutin (1859-1937). In 1919, the matryoshka was acquired by the museum, where is has been on display for 100 years. It has eight pieces of which the first, or head, doll is a young girl holding a rooster, followed by three more girls, then, the fifth doll is a boy, two more girls and finally a baby.
The National Museum of Toys was founded in Moscow in 1918. In 1931 the museum’s collection was transferred to Sergiev Posad (known as Zagorsk from 1930 to 1991). Within the museum are more than 150.000 works of art from Russia, the West, the East, and America.
The original is found in Russian Toys: From the Collection of the Zagorsk Museum of Toys USSR (Moscow): Sovietskaya Rossiya, 1987, by G. Dain. Pg. 104, plate 99.