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Allô! Allô! Bostock [c 1900] movable book Capendu - complete

movable book by A. Capendu
Antique movable book by Capendu

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Allô! Allô! Bostock - original antique moveable book - Capendu

Very large French movable book Circa: 1900

Movable Published by A. Capendu,Editeur, Paris

Translates to: Hello! Hello! Great Album of Animal Scholars

Text by Mlle Adeline Reynaud

Publisher: Published by A. Lion , Paris

Medium: Color lithography and hand colored lithography

Condition: All 6 Movable scenes complete and working.

( Book is undated but we know that Capendu published several movable books during the late nineteeth century including a couple by Meggendorfer. This one is likely not a French Meggendorfer. It does however, use rivets to move the pieces)

Six moveable scenes showing animals dressed and acting as humans

26 cm x 38 cm

10 1/4" x 15"


See photos - All movable parts complete and original except one of the cows legs in the dentist scene. That leg has been expertly restored.

This large book is in very good condition. No date indicated, however, other similar work by Reynaud and published by Capendu date around 1905. The book contains six full page colored pictures with moving parts and six full text pages with sepia drawings. The covers are clean with minor aging signs and shelf wear. The front cover retains bright colors in the scene of various animals, representing characters to appear in the book, surrounding a handsomely dressed elephant. The original cloth spine is in very good condition with only minor pull wear at top and small tear at bottem. The original fly sheets have very little wear or staining. Several pages, including the title page and fly sheets, have been reattached with archival linen tape so the book is tight. Text pages show light yellow aging and some smudges. All movements are in good working order. All parts are original (except for one facsimile in dentist scene) All pulls are in excellent condition with only minor finger smudge on each and pull openings have been recut. This apparently has proven very good for ease in working movements. The picture pages show some light stains or smudges and occasional small tears along the page edges. There are repaired tears usually around the pull areas. Any repairs or faults other than the general comments above are indicated in the individual scene descriptions and shown in the photographs.

It is basically an exceptional book in very good physical condition, especially interesting, and one whose delightful humor will still be enjoyed.

Text page has been reattached to back of title page.

Allô! Allô! (hello Hello)
Complete and working

Monsieur de Fine-Oreille, an elephant of fine heritage, phones his friend, a hippopotamus, reminding him to dress well for the big party in honor of his 80 years which is to include invitations to many other animal friends. A pull of the tab nods his head moving his arm. The drawing on the text page depicts a proud Monsieur de Fine-Oreille at the party wearing his very best clothes, sword at his side and boasting glorious metals. "His trunk trembling with joy." A cat, also in her fine attire, offers him a drink.

La Lecon de Lecture (The Reading Lesson)
Complete and working

Professor Raminagarobis asks the boy, Mistenflute to say letters and numbers then accuses the boy of cheating saying he could see them on the board. With the tab pull the standing boy with book in hand and a seated girl lean forward as the professor lifts his arm holding a book. The professor says that he has promised to take any students to a festival if they do not cheat, say stupid things during class, meow, claw, sneeze or purr. But the boy says he can already hear the music of the trumbone, flute and violin (which is portrayed in the sepia sketch of cats playing the instruments at top of text). But an angry professor responds that the boy deserves to work rather than going telling him that he is the biggest in class yet the laziest and most ignorent. He describes how much smarater the two girls are as they can write and know the alphabet. The boy, thinking he must be good at something, asks is it that he can talk? I doubt that got him a trip to the festival.

Un Artiste Original (An Original Artist)
Complete and working. Bottom edge along the pull section has been reinforced. There is no need for pages to be reattached or reinforced as the original sewing is intact.

Maitre Aliboron considers himself a very original artist with new ideas. Under the picture caption has him saying,
"A few more strokes and the portrait of Mr. Bovin will end. He could remove his glasses" A pull of the tab nods the head and moves the arm holding the paint brosh across the canvas. In the text he goes on to explain that "Artists you know sometimes have new ideas" and goes on to describe his new system of locomotion that will "revolutionize the world."
He is pictured at the bottem of the text riding his new mount, a snail, with several things including a bell from its neck to be heard, a lantern hanging on its shell for night travel and a straw hat to protect from sun. But the text concludes with the question "Will it go as fast as a car?" Somehow I doubt it also.

La Partie De Billard (The Billard {Pool} Party)
Complete and working. Pages have no reinforcement in seam but there is a separation of about 4" at bottom. Otherwise original sewing is intact and tight. There is a small hardly noticeable tear repaired at the bottom center on the red jacket .

Bob and Fox, two old friends talk about their memories as they play a game of billiards In caption under the billiard scene Bob assures his dear friend that "...it is not you who will win the game." Fox replies "My dear, do not brag so much, a swipe well directed will perhaps reverse your expectations." A pull of the tab moves the entire body top and arm of one player across the table with the pool stick.
The bragging continues as Bob recalls winning a fight with a grumpy cat who had challenged him to a boxing fight when he had first arrived in town. The drawing at the top of the text depicts the rough boxing match he was go proud of winning.
Fox goes on relates his proud memories bragging of being a guide dog, then being adopted by a troop of acrobats and becoming a trained dog. Soon he brags, he enlisted in the army and "led the campaign of the famous war between cats and dogs." I don't know which of the two big "winners" won the billiards game.

La Lecon De Chant (The Singing Lesson)
Complete and working

Le Parofesseur Ouistiti is giving Monsieaur Le Bouc (Goat) a singing lesson. In the caption under the picture he asks his young student friend not to bleat as singing. The student replys that he thought that bleating was very fashionable among great singers. A gentle pull of the tab moves the disgusted teachers arm and hand while shaking his head. The self assured goat raises his sheets of music with both hands obviously bleating out the song. Meanwhile, while he is at his music lesson, the goats mother, ailing with rheumatism, is pictured at top of text resting peacefully in a chair when there is a loud banging on the window. Afraid it is a robbery she bleats out a horrified yell but then recognizes it to be Jaccquotot, a young monkey boy, beating on the window with a broom. He enjoys teasing her that way and continues banging on the window. She bleats out to the rude boy that whoever breaks the glass pays. At least someone knows how to use bleating .

Le Dentiste (The Dentist)
Complete and working. The pages have been reattached. Lower edge of the picture page has been reinforced. (The kicking leggs are the only facsimile in the book.)

The text begins with Monsieur Duveau telling Monsieur Poulain (the Dentist) that he is suffering from a tooth and wishes him to help soon The dentist replies that the best remedy is to pull it as it will continue if he eats hot and cold. Mr. Duveau then describes attending the grand wedding of Mr. Taureau (Bull) where he was obligated to refuse ice cream and sorbet due to a tooth ache. He explains that out of love for him his mother refused also. The drawing at the bottom of the text shows the fashionally dressed mother cow refusing the deserts.
The dentist replies that with his experience he would take good care of Monsieur Duveau so he could eat ice cream and sorbet. Telling him to put his hat and cane on the floor and to sit in the chair, he adds, "I'll put my glasses on, grab my best clips and operate! Open your mouth and close your eyes." The final scene is depicted with a tearful Monsieur Duveau cringing in the chair. A pull of the tab makes his legs jerk while a determined dentist lifts his arm holding the clips. The tearful patient cries to the dentist "You told me you pull teeth without pain." A very self assured Monsieuar Poulain replies, "There's nothing to cry like a baby for a very slightly pulled molar." You won't cry as you read. You will smile at the humor in each story.

Feel free to email me with specific questions at [email protected]


Product Code: CAP-2

Original Antique Vintage French Movable Book from the 1800's